The Keyboard - Debut

Mechanical Switch - Cherry Corp.

The heart of mech keyboards are real mechanical switches underneath every key. They are of high quality, sturdy, solid and long lasting with their Mean Time Before Failure of 50.000.000 keystrokes. There are three main manufacturers of mechanical switches – Cherry, Topre and Buckling Spring. Each of them is different and has a different feel to it – so choosing a mechanical keyboard isn't as easy as going for a dome-switch variant.

With them only now increasing in popularity, I think it is best to further explain how specific switches work and whether or not they should be looked at when buying a new mechanical gaming keyboard.

Cherry Corporation – Cherry MX

Cherry MX Black

Cherry MX Black switches are linear (non-tactile) switches and are considered one of the best switch types for gaming. When gaming, having a tactile bump does absolutely nothing because you're going to be bottoming out anyway. The actuation and release points are at the exact same position as well. So games that require a lot of double tapping become easier than on any other key switch. However, most people don't enjoy typing on them that much do in part, to their linear nature.
If you're a person who tends to hit a wrong key every so often while gaming, these will be beneficial in that the high actuation force will help prevent many of those accidental presses.

Type: Linear Switch, Not Tactile Nor Clicky
Actuation Force: 60g (40g-80g overall)
Key Travel: 2mm to actuation, 4mm to bottom
Keyboards that use them: Cherry G80-11900, Some Deck 82/Legend, DSI SMK-88, Steelseries 7G/6Gv2, TG3 BL-82, Mionix Zibal 60

Cherry MX Blue

Cherry MX Blue switches are the best Cherry switch for typing. The tactile bump can easily be felt, and the resistance is similar to your average keyboard.

Although many people find them just fine for gaming, some don't like the fact that the release point is above the actuation point. This can cause some trouble with double-tapping. This is usually the case with someone who has experienced other mechanical switches before hand.

Type: Tactile & Clicky Switch
Actuation Force: 50g (60g Peak Force)
Key Travel: 2mm to actuation, 4mm to bottom
Keyboards that use them: Filco Majestouch, Rosewill RK-9000, Razer Black Widow (Ultimate), XArmor U9BL, DAS S, Adesso MKB-125b, DSI Modular Mac, Ione Scorpius M10

Cherry MX Brown

Cherry MX Brown switches are considered a middle ground between typing and "gaming" switches. They have a light, tactile feel half way through the key press that lets you know the switch has activated. This gives you an indication of what you can release the switch. The switch is considered a middle ground, because the reset point & actuation point are close enough together that you can "float" at that point, enabling you to double tap faster.

Type: Tactile Switch, No Click
Actuation Force: 45g (55g Peak Force)
Key Travel: 2mm to actuation, 4mm to bottom
Keyboards that use them: Filco Majestouch, Das S Ultimate, Compaq MX11800, some Cherry Corp G80-3000, iRocks KR-6230, Zowie Celeritas

Other MX Switches

Also, Cherry makes rarer switches – MX White's and MX Red's but because of them being very rare and more then not out of production (or in production for a limited cycle) they are very expensive and normally can not be found in the price range suitable for your average gamer Joe.

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