On the hunt for a quiet keyboard? If so, you’re probably aware that mechanical keyboards are popular for a variety of reasons, but quietness definitely isn’t one of them. That familiar clicky sound mechanical keyboard users have grown accustomed to is great feedback for typing when your alone, but around others can be a real nuisance.
The answer to this noisy problem is dampened switches. And I don’t mean simply grabbing a bag of O-rings and adding them to your existing keyboard’s switches. O-rings can help to reduce impact noise, but only slightly and they destroy key feel. If you want a truly quiet mechanical keyboard with minimal alteration to feel the switches themselves (non-clicky) must be internally dampened on both the downstroke AND upstroke. O-rings and other similar products only lessen sound on the downstroke from the keycap making contact with the switch housing. The quiet mechanical keyboards reviewed below go to great lengths for noise reduction through the use of dampened switches, lubed stabilizers, case liners, high quality keycaps and other sound dampening modifications. Continue reading
After starting my research for keyboards to rank on this list I quickly discovered the market for wireless mechanical keyboards is akin to a barren wasteland. There seems to be a solid demand, but the supply of high quality mechanical keyboards with some form of wireless connectivity just isn’t there yet.
Wired mechanical keyboards are somewhat of a small niche themselves (though growing rapidly). Computer and tech enthusiasts willing to pay the premium to own mechanical keyboards are almost always looking for the best performance possible, which admittedly isn’t usually offered via wireless devices. This is especially true for PC gamers who require a reliable connection with low latency and no added input lag. Wireless peripheral options are mainly coveted for the sake of portability or aesthetics (less cable management required).
Still, a larger variety of mechanical keyboards with low input lag, a durable build quality and reliable wireless connectivity is something the mechanical keyboard community would welcome with open arms. Since I’m currently on the hunt for one of my own I thought I would share what I’ve learned from my research. We’ll be examining five of the best wireless mechanical keyboards (and a few honorable mentions) to see if we can find a viable board or two that’s capable of pleasing casuals and enthusiasts alike. Continue reading
The ability to program your mechanical keyboard and assign different functions to specific keys may sound like a luxury feature, but in some cases it becomes a necessity. Anyone who’s ever used a tiny, space-saving form factor keyboard — I’m talking 60% and smaller — knows their default key layouts can be a challenge when the number of dedicated keys is limited. Having the option to customize a key to your desired function can alleviate these shortcomings, making your typing experience more intuitive. Taking the time to choose the best programmable mechanical keyboard and customize functionality according to your own personal preferences will result in a more comfortable and faster typing experience with less errors.
Not only that, but many programmable mechanical keyboards allow the user to setup macros. A macro key can initiate and perform a series of multiple recorded inputs with a single keystroke. This feature is popular among gamers, as it allows advanced combos to be successfully pulled off with 100% accuracy. They have practical purposes too. Any tasks that requires the same repetitive input can be programmed to a macro key. Even something as simple as having your email address bound to a specific key to quicken logins and the process of filling out forms. Continue reading
There are certain words, phrases and acronyms used by mechanical keyboard enthusiasts that will leave the average person who’s unfamiliar with the subject scratching their head. As with most hobbies, the terminology can be confusing and it continues to evolve as the hobby grows. The purpose of this glossary is to provide a quick, easy way to find definitions for the terms you don’t know and expand your mechanical keyboard vocabulary. Continue reading
I recently bought the new RGB version of the popular Redragon USAS K553 mechanical keyboard for testing and review purposes (look for that in a couple weeks). I connected it to my Windows 10 machine and watched as the LED lights went through a “boot up” pattern. I opened up Firefox and tried typing a URL. Nothing happened. I pressed down the Windows key. Nothing. Uh-oh. Not a single key on the keyboard would input a character once pressed. Was my shiny new mech dead on arrival? Read on to find out. Continue reading
Custom keycaps and aftermarket key sets are a fun and easy way to customize your keyboard. Most mechanical keyboards have keycaps that can be removed with a simple keycap puller tool. But Why would you want to replace your keycaps anyway? Lots of reasons.
Eventually keycaps made of cheaper materials will begin to wear out. This usually involves yellowing, losing their texture and having the legends fade or even completely disappear. Mechanical keyboards are generally very sturdy, but the keycaps will endure heavy abuse over the years. Just because the keycaps have outlived their effectiveness doesn’t mean the keyboard is ruined. Continue reading
A mechanical keyboard makes use of a physical switch under every individual keycap in order to process input as the user actuates a key. As you press down a key the switch soldered to the PCB (Printed Circuit Board) underneath is activated. This registers the key press. The keyboard PCB then sends a signal to the computer telling it a specific key was pressed.
This is what a mechanical keyboard is and how it works in very basic terms. But let’s look a little deeper and find out what makes the best mechanical keyboard, the primary advantages they provide over other keyboard types and why you should go mechanical if you haven’t already. Continue reading
Typing technology has come a long way since its inception in the 1700s. Manufacturing of actual typing devices took many more years and the first generation of these devices was introduced in 1870s. Since then such devices have undergone continual evolution through minor and major updates alike.
Mechanical keyboards of today are much more refined, thus capable of typing characters far more quickly and efficiently with greater accuracy. The improvements that have been developed in technology, design and layout lead to availability of present day mechanical keyboards. What steps have been taken to perfect this integral input device that the daily lives and jobs of literally millions of people revolve around? Read on to discover the history behind the evolution of modern mechanical keyboards. Continue reading