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The Difference Between Mechanical Switches

When it comes to a computer setup a keyboard is one of the most essential parts, whether your setup is for gaming or work, there isn’t much that can be done without a keyboard.

A good keyboard can be your saviour when you’re smashing at the keys in a tight situation in Counter Strike or relying on accurate finger placement across your keyboard for the perfect combo move in Dota. perhaps you’re simply in search for something ergonomic and tactile for your hours and hours you spend typing. A great keyboard deserves just as much recognition as its other peripheral counterparts.

The difference between mechanical switches

Some Important Words to Understand When Talking About Keyboards

When researching about gaming keyboards you might come across some terms that don't quite make sense or that may seem unclear to you. Here are just a few key words to understand when you’re looking at getting yourself a new gaming keyboard:

  • Bottoming-out - This simply means pressing a specific key on the keyboard until it hits the bottom, or cannot be pressed down any longer.
  • Actuation point - This means the distance and the force required for a key to be pressed in order to be registered as a key press. This is measured from the top of the key cap.
  • Travel - The total distance a switch can be pressed.  

One of the common misunderstandings when it comes to mechanical keyboards is that its sole purpose is for nothing other than gaming. Although this is a major factor for mechanical keyboards bringing an unrivaled gaming experience to the end user. With more effective switches and more ergonomic designs to help you game for longer. Aesthetics are also more appealing to the gamer. Incredible RGB lighting and game modes built into the keyboard.

With all this being said, there are other people that are able to take advantage of mechanical keyboards that aren’t gaming enthusiasts or casual gamers for that matter. People who spend countless hours typing or editing will be able to take advantage of certain switches that are used on the keyboard for a more graceful typing experience. Less friction on the keys and seamless key presses with less actuation force needed to register the click can result in a more effective work environment. Not only will you be able to work longer but your health won’t take a knock for working longer hours.

What type of mechanical switches do you get and how are they different?

Regardless of the make of the particular mechanical switch they can be described in three different categories in terms of feeling:

  1. Linear - A linear keystroke feels consistent and smooth with a low actuation force needed to activate the switch.
  2. Tactile - A tactile key press has a slight bump in the middle of the keys travel and this bump is usually around the actuation point of the mechanical switch, before bottoming out.
  3. Clicky - A clicky mechanical switch is very similar to that of the tactile switch except that that a clicky switch is accompanied by a sharp click sound when the key is pressed.

 

When it comes down to choosing what switches you want in a keyboard it's all down to personal preference. What feels more comfortable to you in the long run. All switch types are brilliant when it comes to PC gaming as well as typing. One person might like one switch more than the other for specific tasks such as typing and gaming.

The one undeniable fact is that mechanical keyboards will give you a much better feedback when pressed. This fast reliable feedback is perfect for competitive gaming as you will always know when you are pressing the keys and with a lighter actuation point you can keep your fingers light and agile over the keys for lightning fast transitions from one key to another.

Mechanical keyboards are also known to be far more durable than membrane keyboards. With switches rated from 20-50 million clicks you can be assured that your keyboard will last a long time!

Gaming Giants and their Switches

The Cherry MX Switch family was the golden standard for all mechanical keyboards for a really long time. They set the standard for all modern mechanical switches. Each switch type in the Cherry MX line up has its own colour to distinguish the switch type and its characteristics.

From the Cherry MX family of switches, different companies have taken what the Cherry switches have done and created their own versions, improving them ever so slightly over the years. Making switches more tactile, more responsive and last much, much longer.

Some of the most popular gaming brands have adopted making their own key switches for their gaming keyboards giving you a more specific feel. Examples of that are:

    • Razer - Razer has their own Razer Green, Orange, Yellow and their newest mechanical switch being the Opto-mechanical switch.
      > Razer Green switches has a tactile and Clicky feel
      > Razer Orange switches have a tactile and silent feel
      > Razer Yellow switches have a linear feel
      > And lastly the brand new Opto-Mechanical switches have the same tactile and clicky feel without the actuation delay.

               Razer Mechanical Switches

                                                                           Razer Opto-Mechanical Switch

 

  • Logitech - Just like Razer, Logitech features their own mechanical switches in their gaming keyboards namely the Romer-G Tactile, Romer-G Linear and the GX blue switches.
    > The Romer-G Tactile is their original mechanical switch that provides a very distinctive tactile bump through actuation.
    > The Romer-G Linear provides the user with a fluid and smooth keystroke until the key bottoms-out.
    > And finally the GX Blue key switch, which is an iconic mechanical switch first made popular by the Cherry MX Blue switch, that delivers an unmistakable click when pressed.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to competitive gaming, people are always looking for the edge over their opponents. In this modern era of gaming it is not hard to imagine how so many people are becoming incredibly good at specific gaming titles. Companies are making products so incredible that they take every aspect of gaming and incorporate it into their designs. Mechanical gaming keyboards are an essential addition to your gaming setup especially if you are a competitive gamer. If you are more into the casual gaming side of things a gaming keyboard can still be a valuable purchase.

The durability and longevity of a gaming keyboard can assure that it lasts you an extremely long time. It also adds style and flare to your gaming space if you opt for the additional RGB lights.



What gaming keyboard do you have at home? If you don’t have a gaming keyboard what would you consider getting and why?

Leave us a comment down below!

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