The popularity of mechanical keyboards knows no bounds, for gamers as well as manufacturers. The offerings have significantly increased since our last round-up. About time for a renewed comparison of 22 models by 15 different manufacturers, with prices ranging from $80 to $270
The appeal of keyboards with mechanical keys is part solid construction and part the feeling and feedback of the switches while typing or playing games. Ever since the German manufacturer of the Cherry MX switches was, almost by accident, promoted to being all but the global standard, a lot has changed in the land of mechanical switches. The patent on the original switches ran out, which boosted offerings from Chinese manufacturers, who were prone to copying products anyway. Cherry got a boost as well, to develop new types of switches which they could still exclusively produce. And so they did, creating quieter and faster switches, with a high actuation, among others.
Meanwhile, companies like Kahua (who make the Kailh switches), improved and diversified their production, in collaboration with Razer. Logitech is continuing their work on the Romer-G switches which they developed together with Omron and we can see optical switches lacking electronic components starting to pop up. These will not only have a potential longer life but will also offer new possibilities, like sending analogue signals. Dutch company Wooting is embracing this technique, which we’ll revisit later in this article.
For this review, we analysed and tested 22 keyboards extensively. A substantial amount, so let’s kick it off with the first one.