Last Updated on February 17, 2023
At the heart of every modern office is a computer, and with it comes the need for a keyboard. But not all keyboards are created equal. There are mechanical keyboards, which are favored by gamers and typists for their tactile feedback and durability, and there are membrane keyboards, which are the most common type of keyboard found in offices. The question is, can you use mechanical keyboard in office? The short answer is yes, but there are some things to consider.
A mechanical keyboard is a type of computer keyboard that uses individual mechanical switches for each key instead of the rubber dome switches used in most traditional keyboards. These switches are typically more durable and offer a different typing experience compared to traditional keyboards.
Mechanical keyboards are known for their tactile feedback and audible click, which can help users type with more accuracy and speed. The switches are designed to register each keypress with a distinct and consistent feel, so users can type with confidence and avoid errors. The tactile feedback also makes it easier to feel when a key has been pressed, which can be particularly useful for touch typists.
Mechanical switches are available in a variety of types, each with their own characteristics. Some switches require more force to activate, while others are lighter and easier to press. The type of switch you choose can affect the typing experience and the sound the keyboard makes.
The individual switches used in mechanical keyboards are also designed to be more durable than traditional rubber dome switches. They are rated for a certain number of keystrokes, typically ranging from tens of millions to over a hundred million, depending on the type of switch.
In addition to the tactile and audible feedback, mechanical keyboards often offer more customization options than traditional keyboards. Many models allow users to swap out individual keycaps to create a customized look and feel. Some mechanical keyboards also have built-in lighting, which can be customized to match a user’s preferences.
Overall, mechanical keyboards offer a different typing experience than traditional keyboards. They are often more durable, offer more customization options, and can be particularly useful for users who type frequently or who require a high degree of accuracy in their typing.
Why people might want to use mechanical keyboard?
Here are some reasons why people might want to use a mechanical keyboard:
- Tactile Feedback: The mechanical keyboard provides tactile feedback to the user when typing. The tactile feedback helps the user to know when a key is pressed and when a character is registered, which is very beneficial for touch typists. With this feedback, typists can adjust their keystrokes to ensure they hit the right key.
- Durability: Mechanical keyboards are more durable than their membrane keyboard counterparts. The mechanical switches used in these keyboards are rated for millions of keystrokes, which means that they last much longer than membrane keyboards. Additionally, since the keycaps on mechanical keyboards can be removed and replaced, users can switch out individual keys that wear out over time.
- Typing Speed: Many typists believe that mechanical keyboards allow for faster and more accurate typing. The tactile feedback and the short key travel distance help typists to quickly and confidently hit the right key, which can increase their typing speed.
- Customization: Mechanical keyboards can be customized in many ways, including the keycaps, switches, and lighting. Users can choose from different keycap colors, designs, and materials, and can even create custom keycaps. They can also switch out different switches to achieve a specific typing feel or sound. And, with programmable lighting, users can customize the color and effects of the keyboard lighting to suit their preferences.
- Gaming: Many gamers prefer mechanical keyboards because they provide faster response times and a more tactile feedback. The short key travel distance and the tactile feedback allow gamers to make quick and precise movements, which can be essential in fast-paced games.
Overall, mechanical keyboards are a popular choice for people who want a durable, responsive, and customizable typing experience. Whether for work, gaming, or general typing, the tactile feedback and customizability of mechanical keyboards make them a popular choice for many users.
Benefits of using a mechanical keyboard in the office
- Improved Typing Speed and Accuracy: Mechanical keyboards have individual switches beneath each keycap, providing tactile feedback and a distinct click sound when pressed. This makes it easier to type with higher speed and accuracy compared to membrane keyboards, which have a mushy feeling and are prone to errors due to ghosting.
- Increased Comfort and Ergonomics: Mechanical keyboards are designed to be more ergonomic than their membrane counterparts. They are equipped with high-quality keycaps that are more durable and comfortable to use. This helps reduce the stress on the fingers and wrists, thereby preventing repetitive strain injuries and carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Customizable and Programmable: Mechanical keyboards are customizable and programmable, allowing users to set their preferred typing experience. They offer various options such as backlighting, key remapping, and macro recording, among others, which can improve productivity and ease of use.
- Longevity and Durability: Mechanical keyboards are more durable and long-lasting than membrane keyboards. They are made of higher-quality materials such as metal and plastic, making them more resistant to wear and tear. With proper maintenance, mechanical keyboards can last for years, which is more cost-effective in the long run.
- Improved Tactile Feedback: Mechanical keyboards offer a satisfying tactile feedback when typing, which gives a sense of satisfaction and reduces fatigue. This makes it easier to stay focused and motivated while working, resulting in improved productivity.
Mechanical keyboards have become increasingly popular in recent years, and for good reason. There are many benefits to using a mechanical keyboard in the office, including increased comfort, improved typing speed and accuracy, and reduced strain on the fingers, wrists, and hands.
First and foremost, mechanical keyboards offer a more comfortable typing experience than their membrane counterparts. This is due to the tactile feedback provided by mechanical switches, which allows you to feel when a key has been fully depressed. This feedback provides a more satisfying typing experience and can help reduce fatigue and strain on your fingers, which is especially important if you spend a lot of time typing.
Additionally, mechanical keyboards are generally more durable than membrane keyboards. The key switches are designed to withstand millions of keystrokes, which means that they can last for years without needing to be replaced. This makes them a great investment for anyone who spends a lot of time typing, as they can save you money in the long run.
Another benefit of using a mechanical keyboard is that they can improve your typing speed and accuracy. The tactile feedback provided by mechanical switches can help you to type more quickly and accurately, as you can feel when each key has been fully depressed. This can be especially useful for anyone who needs to type quickly and accurately in their work, such as writers, data entry clerks, and programmers.
Finally, mechanical keyboards can also reduce strain on the fingers, wrists, and hands. The tactile feedback provided by mechanical switches means that you don’t need to press down as hard on the keys, which can reduce strain on your fingers and hands. Additionally, the key switches are typically spaced farther apart than those on a membrane keyboard, which can help reduce strain on your wrists as well.
Overall, there are many benefits to using a mechanical keyboard in the office. They offer a more comfortable typing experience, are more durable, can improve your typing speed and accuracy, and can reduce strain on your fingers, wrists, and hands. If you spend a lot of time typing, then investing in a mechanical keyboard could be a great decision for your productivity and overall well-being.
Potential drawbacks of using a mechanical keyboard in the office
Here are some of the possible drawbacks:
- Loudness: Mechanical keyboards are louder than traditional membrane keyboards due to their mechanical switches. This sound may be annoying to co-workers in a quiet office environment, particularly if the keyboard is used frequently or for long periods.
- Cost: Mechanical keyboards are usually more expensive than regular keyboards, which may make them a less attractive option for some companies.
- Heavy: Mechanical keyboards are often heavier than standard keyboards, which can be a downside if the user needs to move their keyboard frequently or if the keyboard is attached to a mobile device.
- Learning Curve: Mechanical keyboards require a bit of a learning curve as the keys may be stiffer and require more pressure to actuate. This could lead to a decrease in typing speed and accuracy, particularly for those who are not used to this type of keyboard.
- Repair and maintenance: Mechanical keyboards require more maintenance and can be more challenging to repair than standard keyboards. This can be an issue in an office setting where IT departments need to manage a large number of keyboards.
There are a few potential drawbacks of using a mechanical keyboard in the office. Firstly, mechanical keyboards can be quite loud, particularly if they have tactile or clicky switches. This noise can be disruptive to colleagues, particularly in open-plan offices where sound carries easily. If you work in an environment where quiet is necessary, such as a library, this can be particularly problematic.
Secondly, mechanical keyboards can be quite large and heavy, particularly if they have a full-size layout. This can make them more difficult to move around the office or to take with you to meetings. It can also make them more difficult to fit into your desk setup, particularly if you have limited space.
Thirdly, mechanical keyboards can be quite expensive. While there are budget options available, high-end mechanical keyboards can cost hundreds of dollars. This may be prohibitive for some users, particularly those who are on a tight budget.
Finally, while mechanical keyboards are often marketed as being more durable than membrane keyboards, this isn’t always the case. While they are certainly more robust than many membrane keyboards, they can still break or fail over time. This can be a problem if you rely on your keyboard for your work and need it to be working reliably at all times.
Overall, while mechanical keyboards offer some advantages, they may not be the best choice for every office environment. It’s essential to consider the potential drawbacks and assess whether the benefits of mechanical keyboards outweigh the costs for your organization.
Ways to mitigate the potential drawbacks of using a mechanical keyboard in the office
Here are some ways to mitigate the potential drawbacks of using a mechanical keyboard in the office:
- Use a quieter switch type: Some mechanical keyboard switches are louder than others. If you’re concerned about noise, consider getting a keyboard with quieter switches, such as Cherry MX Silent or Gateron Silent switches. Alternatively, you can install sound-dampening O-rings or switch dampeners to reduce the sound.
- Use a desk mat: A desk mat can help absorb some of the noise generated by typing on a mechanical keyboard. It can also protect your desk from scratches and wear.
- Talk to your colleagues: If you’re concerned about the noise level, it’s worth having a conversation with your colleagues about it. Let them know that you’re using a mechanical keyboard and ask if the noise bothers them. You can also offer to use headphones or adjust your typing technique to minimize the noise.
- Take breaks: Typing on a mechanical keyboard can be tiring, especially if you’re not used to it. Take breaks throughout the day to give your hands and fingers a rest.
- Invest in a good quality keyboard: A good quality mechanical keyboard can last for years and be a worthwhile investment. Look for a keyboard with features that fit your needs, such as programmable keys, backlit keys, or multimedia controls.
- Customize your keyboard: Some mechanical keyboards allow you to customize the keycaps or add dampening materials to further reduce noise. You can also adjust the actuation point or switch type to fit your typing preferences.
- Use a keyboard cover: If you’re concerned about dust or debris getting inside your keyboard, consider using a keyboard cover. This can also help protect your keyboard from spills or accidental damage.
Overall, using a mechanical keyboard in the office can have many benefits, but it’s important to be mindful of the potential drawbacks and take steps to mitigate them. By choosing a quieter switch type, using a desk mat, talking to your colleagues, taking breaks, investing in a good quality keyboard, customizing your keyboard, and using a keyboard cover, you can enjoy the benefits of a mechanical keyboard while minimizing the noise and other potential drawbacks.
Other factors to consider
Office Culture and Policies:
When considering whether to use a mechanical keyboard in the office, it’s important to consider the company’s culture and policies. Some offices may have strict rules about using certain equipment or devices, and it’s important to make sure that a mechanical keyboard is allowed. Additionally, some offices may have noise restrictions or open office layouts that may make a loud mechanical keyboard distracting to other employees. It’s important to consider how using a mechanical keyboard may impact those around you and if it’s appropriate for the office environment.
Personal preference is another important factor to consider when deciding whether to use a mechanical keyboard in the office. Some people may prefer the tactile feedback and increased responsiveness of a mechanical keyboard, while others may find it too loud or distracting. It’s important to consider what works best for you and what will allow you to be most productive in your work environment. It may also be helpful to try out different types of mechanical keyboards to find one that suits your personal preferences.
Ergonomics and Comfort:
It is important to consider the ergonomic and comfort aspects of using a mechanical keyboard in the office. While these keyboards are generally more durable and responsive than traditional membrane keyboards, they can also be heavier and more substantial.
If employees are typing for long periods of time, they may experience discomfort or strain in their hands, wrists, or arms. This can lead to a range of issues, including repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) and carpal tunnel syndrome.
To minimize the risk of injury, employees should ensure they have a comfortable and ergonomic setup. This may include using a wrist rest, adjusting the height of the keyboard, or using an ergonomic chair. It is also important to take regular breaks and stretch to avoid prolonged periods of typing.
Conclusion: Can You Use Mechanical Keyboard in Office?
Yes, you can definitely use a mechanical keyboard in the office. In fact, many people prefer using mechanical keyboards over membrane keyboards, which are the standard keyboards that come with most computers. Mechanical keyboards offer a much better typing experience, as they have individual mechanical switches underneath each key that provide tactile feedback and an audible click when pressed. This makes it easier to type accurately and quickly, as well as reduces the likelihood of making mistakes.
Additionally, mechanical keyboards are often more durable than membrane keyboards, which means they can withstand heavy use without breaking down as quickly. They also tend to have a longer lifespan and can last for many years, making them a cost-effective investment.
While some people may find the sound of mechanical keyboards to be too loud or distracting in a quiet office environment, there are many models available that have quieter switches or can be customized with dampeners to reduce noise. Ultimately, the decision to use a mechanical keyboard in the office depends on personal preference and the office environment. However, given the many benefits of using a mechanical keyboard, it is certainly a viable option for anyone who spends a lot of time typing on a computer.
What is a mechanical keyboard and how does it differ from a regular keyboard?
A mechanical keyboard is a type of computer keyboard that uses individual mechanical switches for each key, as opposed to the rubber dome switches used in most traditional keyboards. This gives a mechanical keyboard a tactile and audible feedback when a key is pressed, which can result in faster and more accurate typing. The switches also tend to be more durable and longer-lasting than those found in traditional keyboards.
Why do people prefer mechanical keyboards over regular keyboards?
People prefer mechanical keyboards over regular keyboards because they provide a tactile feedback and better typing experience. The keys have individual mechanical switches that respond to the user’s touch and offer more precision and control. Additionally, mechanical keyboards are more durable and last longer than regular keyboards.
Can I use a mechanical keyboard in the office environment?
Yes, you can use a mechanical keyboard in the office environment. However, it’s important to consider the noise level and how it may affect your co-workers. It’s recommended to choose a quieter mechanical keyboard or use o-ring dampeners to reduce the noise.
Will using a mechanical keyboard in the office cause too much noise and disturb my colleagues?
In general, mechanical keyboards can be louder than regular keyboards, and the noise level can vary depending on the specific type of switches. It is always good to check with your colleagues and supervisor to ensure that your keyboard noise is not causing any disturbance in the workplace. Additionally, there are ways to reduce noise, such as using sound-dampening mats or o-rings on the keys.
Are there any benefits to using a mechanical keyboard in the office?
Some benefits of using a mechanical keyboard in the office include faster and more accurate typing, reduced strain and fatigue on fingers and wrists, and increased durability and longevity of the keyboard. Additionally, some people enjoy the tactile feedback and sound of the keys, which can provide a satisfying and immersive typing experience.
Are there any disadvantages to using a mechanical keyboard in the office?
Mechanical keyboards can be noisier than traditional keyboards, which can be distracting to colleagues in a shared office space. Some mechanical keyboards also have a steeper learning curve, which may not be ideal for individuals who are used to typing on traditional keyboards. Additionally, mechanical keyboards can be more expensive than traditional keyboards, which may not be feasible for some office budgets.
Do mechanical keyboards have any impact on typing speed and accuracy?
Many typists and gamers find mechanical keyboards to have a positive impact on typing speed and accuracy due to their tactile feedback and overall durability. The keys require less force to press, which can help reduce fatigue and increase typing speed. The tactile feedback also provides a clear indication that a key has been pressed, which can improve accuracy. However, it ultimately depends on personal preference and typing style.
Are there any particular brands or models of mechanical keyboards that are better suited for office use?
In general, mechanical keyboards with quieter switches like Cherry MX Brown or Red switches are better suited for office use to avoid disturbing co-workers. Some popular brands for office use are Logitech, Dell, and Microsoft. It is also important to consider factors such as ergonomic design, durability, and ease of use.
Is it okay to bring my own mechanical keyboard to work or do I need to seek permission from my employer?
It would be best to consult with your employer’s IT or HR department before bringing your own mechanical keyboard to work. Some companies have specific policies and regulations regarding the use of personal equipment in the workplace, and it’s essential to follow them to avoid any potential issues.
Can using a mechanical keyboard in the office lead to any health issues or discomfort?
Yes, using a mechanical keyboard in the office can lead to health issues and discomfort if not used properly. The high actuation force and loud noise can cause strain on the hands and fingers, leading to conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome or tendinitis. Additionally, the loud noise can be a distraction to coworkers and may cause discomfort or headaches for some individuals. Proper ergonomics and volume control can help alleviate these issues.
Kizaru is a fan, collector, and has a huge addiction to mechanical keyboards. Kizaru has a collection of dozens of mechanical keyboards that come in different sizes and use different switches. He also frequently contributes to various forums that discuss keyboards such as Reddit and GeekHack.