Mechanical Keyboard Noise Comparison
Ranking of Key Switch Noise Levels
Start from loudest:
- IBM Model M keyboard buckling spring switch. Loudest.
- Cherry MX Blue switch.
- Cherry MX brown/red/black switches.
- Cherry MX red quite switches.
- Topre Switch silent. [see Happy Hacking Keyboard]
- Topre Switch. example: HHKB, Filco.
- Logitech Romer-G Switch.
- Rubber dom, cheap desktop keyboard. example: from Microsoft, Logitech, etc.
- Epomaker Niz Plum capacitance switch.
- Kailh Choc Switch
- Laptop keyboards. [see Evolution of Laptop Keyboard]
Mechanical Keyboard Key Noise Comparison with Scientific Instrument
- 1st: Logitech K380 (Scissor switches) 00:11
- 2nd: Red Scarf II ver.c 68 Key (Gateron Brown) 01:16
- 3rd: Filco Majestouch Minila (Cherry MX Brown) 02:18
- 4th: HHKB Pro 2 (Topre 45g) 03:23
- 5th: HHKB Pro 2 Type-S (Topre 45g) 04:27
- 6th: HHKB Pro 2 Silenced mod (Topre 55g) 05:32
- 7th: HHKB BT Silenced mod (Topre 45g) 06:37
Cherry MX Key Switch Sound Comparison
Here is a video that compare the noises they make.
Note: the sound appear louder in videos. Because, microphone usually filter out ambient noise, and now you only hear the keys. And, the wooden desk amplify the sound.
Note: the only one that intentionally makes a sound, is the MX Blue, which makes a click sound.
All the others, do not make any noise if you press the key very slowly.
Where Does the Key Noise Came From
The key noise came from:
- The key hitting bottom. (try hit a key hard and fast, and hear the sound hitting bottom. This sound is similar if you hit desk with your finger fast. Try it. You get knocking sound.)
- Friction noise. The spring, stem, keycap, together makes noises.
- Key bouncing back. (try this: press down the key slowly all the way, then move finger side way off suddenly. The key pops back by spring, “hits top”, makes noise.)
Reduce Key Noise by Rubber Ring
One way to reduce noise is to buy those rubber ring switch dampeners. You put them in each key yourself.