Loudest Mechanical Keyboard Switches

As keyboard enthusiasts, we understand the joy of hearing a satisfying “click” each time we press a key. The audio feedback can be quite therapeutic, transforming the mundane task of typing into a pleasant experience. If you’re a fan of the louder keystrokes, this article is your guide to the loudest mechanical keyboard switches currently available.

The Importance of Switches

The unique sound produced by a keyboard is determined by its switches – those tiny mechanical devices beneath each key that register your keystrokes. Not all switches are created equal. Some are designed to provide a more tactile feel, while others are tailored for a louder click. One popular example is the Cherry MX Blue switch, often hailed as the king of clicky switches, providing a high actuation force and a crisp click with every keystroke (learn more about Cherry MX switches).

Sound Showdown: Top Clicky Switches

While Cherry MX Blue switches are quite loud, they’re not the only ones in the game. Other switches like the Kailh Box, known for its double click bars, offer a clean, rattling-free sound. Meanwhile, Arctic Foxes from Kailh/Chosfox generate a light and airy metallic sound that’s neither hollow nor overbearing.

The Everglide Dark Jades (AKA Moyu Black) are another top contender with a strong tactile bump accompanied by a bassy bottom out sound. But if you’re looking for a unique touch, Topre switches, especially on the HHKB Professional HYBRID keyboard, deliver a distinctive “thock” sound that’s music to a keyboard enthusiast’s ears.

Now, if you desire something smoother yet still audible, Zeal Tealios V2s (linear switches) provide a delightful pop with each press. And for those in search of something premium, Matias Clicky Switches are louder than the Cherry MX Blues, making a name for themselves in the loud switches market.

Factors That Affect Sound

Besides the switch type, other factors also influence the sound of your keyboard. The keyboard’s frame, the type of keycaps, and the presence of sound-dampening components can all impact the audio output. Even the travel distance of the keys and actuation force (higher force equals louder sound) can play a part.

Additionally, the desk your keyboard sits on can alter the sound. A hollow wooden desk might amplify your keyboard’s sounds, while a solid one could dampen them. Each brand’s color scheme, peculiar as it may seem, also subtly affects the sound, adding another level of customization.

You can further control the sound output by lubricating your switches. Disassembling and applying lubricant can make switches quieter, but if you desire the clicky sound without the rattling, you can apply lubricant to specific moving parts only (learn how to lube keyboard switches).

Matching Switches to Keyboard Sizes

The size of your keyboard is a vital factor when selecting the perfect switches. Smaller keyboards might resonate more with switches that produce a sharper, crisper sound. In contrast, larger keyboards have the capacity to accommodate the reverberations of switches producing deeper, more bass-heavy tones.

However, remember that the final choice should ideally be a harmony of your personal preference, typing style, and the keyboard size. So whether you have a compact 60% keyboard or a full-size layout, there’s a switch out there to hit the right notes (learn more about the best keyboard switch).

Sound Modifiers: Amplifying the Symphony

While picking the right switches for your keyboard is a significant first step in tailoring your auditory experience, there are other modifications you can explore to further customize the sound to your liking. From foam inserts to sound-dampening mats to custom keycaps, there’s a world of possibilities to tinker with the acoustics of your keyboard.

Foam Inserts

Foam inserts are a popular option when aiming to modify the sound of your keyboard. By fitting a piece of foam between the PCB (printed circuit board) and the base of the keyboard, you can noticeably dampen the resonance, resulting in a more muffled, dense sound.

Sound-Dampening Mats

Similar to foam inserts, sound-dampening mats can alter your keyboard’s acoustics. These mats are often thicker and denser, designed to absorb excess vibrations and reduce echo, creating a more refined, controlled sound profile.

Custom Keycaps

We can’t talk about keyboards without paying homage to keycaps. They can be major game-changers when it comes to your keyboard’s sound profile. Materials and shapes can transform the acoustics, producing a high-pitched ‘click’ or a deeper ‘thock.’ For example, PBT keycaps, being denser, generally produce a deeper sound compared to the higher-pitched click of ABS keycaps.

O-Rings and Dampeners

O-Rings and dampeners are another option to consider. They are small rubber rings that are placed on the keycap stems, reducing the travel distance and the noise of the key bottoming out. While not necessarily making your keyboard louder, these can help control the overall sound profile and reduce unwanted noise.

It’s important to note that the extent of the impact these modifications will have can vary based on the original sound of the switches and the specific keyboard construction. Therefore, as with all things keyboard-related, a bit of experimentation is encouraged to achieve the perfect sound.

The Perfect Pitch

The sound of your keyboard is as personal as your typing style or your preferred switch type. While the switches certainly play a crucial role in creating that auditory experience, these additional modifications can take it to another level, allowing you to fine-tune the sound profile according to your preference. So, whether you’re a fan of the sharp, crisp click or the soft, muffled thock, there’s a symphony waiting for you in every keystroke.

Wrapping Up: Switches for Typing and Gaming

Now, loud keyboard switches can be a writer’s delight or a gamer’s secret weapon—it’s all about personal preference. Whether you’re penning the next great novel, cracking code, or battling it out in the digital realm, there’s a loud mechanical switch out there that will strike the right note for you.

Remember, the beauty of mechanical keyboards lies in discovering a switch that feels just right for you. When that happens, typing transforms into an art form, and every keystroke becomes a note in your personal symphony.