Keyboard Cherry MX Switches

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

Cherry Corporation of Germany makes a series of mechanical key switches called Cherry MX.

Cherry MX series of switches are first introduced in 1983. They are the most well known switches. There are several different models, with different feel to them. These models are color coded.

Cherry MX Switchfeelforcepre-traveltotal travel
β–© Speed Silverlinear45g1.2mm3.4mm
πŸŸ₯ Redlinear45g2mm4mm
πŸŸ₯ Silent Redlinear45g1.9mm3.7mm
⬛ Blacklinear60g2mm4mm
🟫 Browntactile55g2mm4mm
🟦 Blueclicky60g2.2mm4mm
cherry mx switch tester 08767 s
Key Switch Tester
Cherry MX keyswitch
Cherry MX key switch, disassembled. Notice the spring. It is the spring that determines resistance of the key.
cherry mx switch contact 45337
animation showing Cherry MX switch's electric contact mechanism

Linear Action: Red, Silent Red, Black

All these are linear switches. They differ by the force of the spring.

Cherry MX red MXStd Red v004 4v8ss
Cherry MX Red. Smooth linear action. Popular in gaming keyboards.

CHERRY MX Red switches

Tactile Action: Brown

The MX Brown switch have a tactile bump. When you press down, after certain point, there's a bump feel.

Cherry MX Brown v004 j3qr3
Cherry MX Brown Switch mechanism. Light bump.

Cherry MX Brown switches

Click Action: Blue

The MX Blue switch has a strong clicky bump. When you press down, the is a very sharp click point. Blue is very noisy. It makes a β€œclick” sound by design.

Cherry MX Blue v004 62b6w
Cherry MX Blue Switch mechanism. Sharp bump, with audible click.

Cherry MX Blue switches

There are many other color-coded Cherry MX switches, but less common.

Key Switch Topic

Xah Keyboard Guide