Why Are Mechanical Keyboards So Loud?
So, why are mechanical keyboards so loud? The short answer is that it might be due to the combination of the keyboard model and switch type you purchased. The lengthier answer is that practically every component of your new keyboard influences the sound you hear when typing. Open-plate designs, such as those used by gaming manufacturers to display RGB lighting effects, expose the loud switches to the air, with nothing to dampen the sound before it reaches your ears. Even enclosed designs may have noise problems since the additional air within may enhance clicking sounds, similar to an echo inside a cave.
Switch types can make a significant impact, with “Silent” switches using various materials in their construction to attenuate the sound and allow you to clack more softly. O-rings may also be added to the stem tips to prevent the key switches from bottoming out (hitting the keyboard plate). If you want, you may place GMK’s Switch Clips over the whole switch, which also helps to isolate the sound, but they can become pricey. In this blog, we also have an article about zop mechanical gaming keyboard that you might want to read about it.
A mechanical keyboard is built with high quality, typically spring activated key switches. These key switches vary based on the keyboard’s application or user preference.”
Mechanical keyboards are very much appreciated by fast typists because they have a springiness and feel that is not the same as the low-cost membrane keyboard accompanying most computers. They are also used by gamers. The main advantage of using a mechanical keyboard is typing feels more natural, your fingers do not need to be pressed down hard on them. This makes it easier for you to type with your wrists, which results in less fatigue. If you are an avid gamer, this can make a huge difference for you. A good example of this is if you play games like Counter Strike.
When compared to a membrane keyboard that has a soft “click” sound when you press the keys, a mechanical keyboard will produce no noise at all. It is quieter than any other keyboard I’ve ever owned.
Mechanical keyboards can provide a more comfortable typing experience than popular rubber-dome keyboards, and people are assembling their own using parts they order online.”
Jordan Novet, author from CNBC.com
Types of mechanical Keyboard Switches
The “switch” used by the keys determines how loud a mechanical keyboard is; some switches are incredibly loud, while others are just slightly louder than a standard membrane keyboard. Each key switch has its own set of qualities, and which one you should select is a matter of personal choice. These are the following properties: sound, tactile feel, linear feel, and actuation force.
The characteristic clicky sound heard with most mechanical keyboards is caused by tactile switches. The tactile switch features a bump that you will feel when pressing the key; this bump symbolizes the “actuation point,” which is the precise position at which the computer will type the character. Tactile keys are excellent for enhancing typing speed since the actuation point indicates when to release the key.
Because linear switches do not have any bumps to denote the actuation point, they are always quieter than tactile switches. These keys continue to deliver a pleasant and simple typing experience. If you want to have a mechanical keyboard but don’t want to make too much noise, linear keys are ideal.
The weight in grams represents the force required to depress the key. If you are concerned about hand discomfort, I would advise you to avoid key switches with a high resistance. The resistance is measured in grams; the typical key switch required 45g to push, with the upper and lower limits being 25g and up to 70g, respectively.
Should you use a mechanical keyboard at work?
The answer will always be case by case; it is up to you to examine your work environment and choose whether or not it is acceptable. Using a silent linear switch reduces the sound of your mechanical keyboard significantly; if you’re in a cubicle or your own office, I don’t believe you’ll annoy anybody by using linear keys.
If you work in an open office area, it all depends on how noisy the setting is in the first place; whether it’s peaceful with minimal chatting or typing, I’d suggest asking around to see if others would mind you using a mechanical keyboard. If your workplace is already noisy due to a lot of chatting and typing, I doubt that adopting a linear switch mechanical keyboard would make a difference. To be safe, bring in the keyboard for one day just to test the waters.