Having a mechanical keyboard with a sound that is too noisy will cause problems for yourself and those around you. In addition to making your focus distracted when using it to type, you can also disturb the people around you when using it in the office or in public environments such as libraries and others.
To make a mechanical keyboard even quieter, there are several inexpensive ways such as adding foam to the mechanical keyboard case, adding O-Rings to your keycaps, using a desk mat, or modifying your stabilizer. But does this really work?
The best thing to make your mechanical keyboard silent is to replace your switches with silent switches. But this may cost a hefty amount but this is the most effective way in my opinion.
Through this article, I will give 7 recommendations on how to make your keyboard quieter, starting from the cheapest way to the most expensive way. Let’s get started….
How To Silence Your Mechanical Keyboard
- Add Rubber O-Rings to Your Keycaps
- Use a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad
- Add Dampening The Keyboard Case
- Modify and Lube Your Stabilizers
- Lube Your Switches
- Buy a Better Keycaps Set
- Replace Your Current Switches to Silent Switch
1. Add Rubber O-Rings to Your Keycaps
Installing Rubber O-rings on your keycaps is the cheapest and easiest solution to make your mechanical keyboard a little quieter.
The rubber O-ring can minimize the impact between the plastic keycaps and the plate on the mechanical keyboard. The collision between the bottom of the keycaps on the mechanical keyboard will be very noisy if your mechanical keyboard uses a plate made of aluminum or iron. If your mechanical keyboard uses an ordinary rubber plate, the sound of collision between the keycaps and the plate will not make a big sound when used to type.
Installing Rubber O-rings on all of your keycaps may take 10 to 20 minutes, and installing Rubber O-rings is also very easy. You just need to open each keycap and install the Rubber O-ring on the inside of the keycaps right on the keycaps rod that is inserted into the switch head.
Besides being useful for dampening the impact of keycaps with switches and plates, Rubber O-rings can be useful for minimizing sound resonance on keycaps, because thin keycaps will produce louder sound reflections compared to thick keycaps.
Rubber O-rings are quite easy to get and are sold in various colors such as white, blue, yellow, pink, and many more. This can be useful for filling your mechanical keyboard even if it is not visible.
Rubber O-rings work without interfering with RGB or LED lighting on your mechanical keyboard. Don’t worry, they will still shine like they haven’t installed the Rubber O-ring.
The thing you have to consider when installing Rubber O-rings on your mechanical keyboard keycaps is, Rubber O-rings can change your typing feeling like you are using a membrane keyboard, this is because Rubber O-rings are made of rubber and can stick at any time. The solution is to replace your Rubber O-ring regularly, because if it is sticky it will change your typing feeling.
2. Use a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad
Using a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad as a mechanical keyboard base is the second cheapest thing after using rubber O-Rings on keycaps. Besides being able to beautify the appearance of your PC desk, using a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad can reduce the mechanical noise of the keyboard when used for typing. How does it work?
Using a Desk Mat or a Thick Mousepad can dampen vibrations that are directly knocked onto your desk every time you type. By using a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad, you can dampen vibrations directly between the mechanical keyboard and the table. Tables made of wood or aluminum are very easy to receive vibrations from the mechanical keyboard at every type, by using a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad you can minimize vibrations and reduce sound.
Using a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad provides significant sound attenuation. You only need to have a Desk Mat or Thick Mousepad that already has a good reputation and is widely used by people. The following are recommendations for a quality desk mat or mousepad that can work better to reduce the sound of your mechanical keyboard:
- KTRIO Large Gaming Mouse Pad with Stitched Edges
- Madala Warm Desk Pad
- ZAZZIO Large Mouse Pad
- REETPEET Large Gaming Mouse Pad
- AnubisGX (39 Color/Size Options) Gaming Mouse Pad
We highly recommend that you purchase a desk pad or mousepad that has a rubber base to provide a good grip on your desk. The thickness of the desk pad greatly affects the soundproofing of the mechanical keyboard. The thicker it is, the better the resulting damping. Having a wide desk pad is enough for your mechanical keyboard and mouse. You don’t need to buy or use a mousepad anymore.
3. Dampening The Mechanical Keyboard Case With Rubber or Foam
Adding foam or rubber to the mechanical keyboard case is another cheap and easy solution. rubber or foam mounted as PCB tools and other components can reduce noise and reduce sound reflections inside the mechanical keyboard casing.
To perform this installation, you will need a screwdriver to remove the PCB and Plate from the mechanical casing of your keyboard. Here are the steps you have to do:
Remove all mechanical keycaps of your keyboard.
Do not remove the switch from the PCB.
Remove all screws installed in the casing from the PCB.
Place the foam or rubber base on the base of the mechanical keyboard case.
Make a hole so that the casing rod can fit into the PCB as shown above.
Put your PCB back in the case.
Install all screws
Reinstall your keycaps set.
Adding foam or rubber to the mechanical keyboard case is the easiest and most effective way to drown out sound and reduce vibrations every time you type. But there are some of the best foam ospi that you should use, if you only use regular foam, it will only waste your time. Here are some foam and rubber ospi that we recommend:
- Sorbothane Acoustic & Vibration Damping Film: This is the most effective dampening material, besides being able to be used in a room or car, this material is very effective for use on mechanical keyboards. You can find it on Amazon.
- GOKA keyboard bottom echo noise absorption soundproofing: It is a sound absorber commonly used for mechanical keyboards. The price is also very affordable.
- Dualplex Neoprene Sponge Foam Rubber Roll Adhesive: This is a material often used by custom mechanical keyboard owners when building their first mechanical keyboard and is highly effective at maximizing sound and vibration attenuation.
- Neoprene Foam Weather Seal High Density Pads: This material is also very precise to maximize the damping of the mechanical keyboard, is quite thick and easy to fit into the mechanical keyboard case.
The thing you should pay attention to before buying rubber or foam is that you have to know the mechanical size of your keyboard. For this low profile mechanical keyboard it’s pretty much impossible to fit foam or rubber into the case. Installing rubber or foam is only possible on a normal sized mechanical keyboard with a high profile. Because the size of the mechanical keyboard casing will affect the difficulty of installing foam or rubber.
But installing foam or rubber dampers into the mechanical keyboard casing is a very effective thing to reduce vibrations and dampen the sound every time you type because it can reduce the sound reflection gap in the mechanical keyboard casing.
4. Modify and Lube Your Stabilizers
Stabilizers is a component that is able to provide balance to the mechanical keys of your keyboard because it is able to reduce vibrations and eliminate collisions that make keystrokes smoother. Satbilzer is only installed on larger keys such as Space bar, Shift left and right shift, Capslock, Enter, and Backspace.
Modifying and lubricating the stabilizer on your mechanical keyboard is the cheapest thing but it is a very difficult job.
Lubricating the stabilizer is a very easy thing to do, we have written an article on how to lubricate the stabilizer using a toothpick that you can read and do very easily. But what about modifying the stabilizer?
This is a modification method for the cherry style stabilizer, there are 3 ways to modify the cherry style stabilizer:
Band-aid: This is a method of attaching band-aid to the PCB where the stabilizer is installed. Band-aid is used to coat the stabilizer footing which serves to dampen the vibration of the stabilizer to the PCB when you press the button.
Clip: Cutting the rectangular parts on both steps of the stabilizer so that the stabilizer grip is stronger, this is intended to make the stabilizer more sturdy when installed, cutting the rectangular plastic can eliminate vibrations on the stabilizer.
Lubricate the Stabilizer: As I said, this is the easiest thing to do. You only need to apply lubricant to the iron rod and stabilizer housing which can reduce friction between the two components so that the movement of the stabilizer becomes smoother.
If you want to do all three things, we have made a special article on modifying stabilizer with Band-Aid method, Clip, and a different article for lubricating stabilizer using a small brush or toothpick.
The process of modifying the stabilizer will take a long time. If you find that too difficult, lubricating the stabilizer with a toothpick or a small brush is the easiest.
5. Lube Your Switches
By lubricating your keyboard’s mechanical switches, you’ll be able to muffle the sound at every stroke of your mechanical keyboard to be smoother. You only need to lubricate the mechanical switch of your keyboard with two methods, namely:
1. Remove all keyboard mechanical switches from PCB and apply lubricant.
The process of lubricating with this method will take up to many hours. you have to open every switch of PCB. This will be very easy if you have a Hot Swappable mechanical keyboard because there is no need to desoldering the switches from the PCB.
If you want to do the above, make sure you read this article. If you don’t want to do this, then we would suggest you use the second method which is:
2. Lubricate the switch without removing it from the PCB:
This is the easiest method of lubricating the switch. You just need to open all the keycaps on your mechanical keyboard and apply lubricant through the gaps in the stem switch. You only need a Super Lube product that you can buy on amazon and you need a screwdriver to press the stem switch while draining the super lube into the switch housing. You can watch the video lubricating the siwtch with superlube via this youtube link.
6. Buy a Better Keycaps Set
The use of keycaps set made of thin ABS plastic can increase the mechanical noise of the keyboard when you use it to type. This is because thin keycap sets provide more resonant sound space compared to thick keycap sets with quality sticks.
By using a keycap set made of quality and thick plastic, you can drown out the sound of typing because the resonance space on the thick keycaps is less, so it can provide good attenuation every time you press the button. We strongly recommend that you buy a keycap set made of PBT plastic, because it is of good quality with excellent durability and is thicker than regular ABS keycaps.
If you choose this solution, we have made an article about the best keycaps recommendations from the most expensive to the cheapest prices that you can use as a reference.
7. Replace Your Current Switches to Silent Switch
This is the best way to get rid of the noise on your mechanical keyboard but it costs money to do it. Changing your switch to a silent type switch is the best option. Before continuing, we want to explain a little about the types of switches currently available, namely Linear, Tactile, and Clicky:
- Linear Switch: Feedback when typed is smooth and fairly quiet.
- Tactile: Has a rather loud feedback when typed and produces a decent sound.
- Clicky: Feedback when typed very hard seems to jump and produce a very loud sound.
If you want to make your mechanical keyboard silent you should replace your current switches with Silent switches such as Kailh Silent, Gateron Silent, Cherry MX Silent, or ZelaPC Silent (One of the best Silent Switches today)
Siwtch silent has a different working mechanism with other switches. Interaction between internal components in the form of friction or touch is reduced by providing significant distance. The design of the silent switch is also slightly different with the addition of bearings on the stem and top housing switches. You can maximize silent switch damping by applying lubrication.
But using the silent switch can eliminate typing feedback from being very empty. If you don’t want that, linear and tactile switches can be a solution. Besides being able to provide good typing feedback, the sound produced is also very minimal.
Replacing switches is very easy on a mechanical keyboard that has a hot swappable switch feature because you don’t need to desoldering the switch from the PCB. As for a mechanical keyboard with a standard PCB you have to desoldering the switch from the PCB when opening it, and soldering the switch when putting it back together.
If you’re looking to switch to a tactile switch, we highly recommend the Kailh BOX Burnt Orange or White, Gateron Brown, and Cherry MX Brown. All three switches are very good with good typing feedback and minimal noise.
If you want to use a silent switch, we recommend that you use a silent tactile switch such as the Zilent™ V2 Switches (Silent Tactile) from ZealPC which is one of the best silent switches at the moment, the sound produced is very quiet, but provides great typing feedback. .
Important: Pay attention to the number of switch pins on your PCB. Because there are types of switches based on the number of pins. Switches with 3 pins cannot be used on PCBs that support 5 pins. Use a 3 pin switch on a PCB that supports 3 pins, the same goes for a 5 pin switch, use it on a PCB that supports 5 pins.
Why do I need a silent Mechanical keyboard?
Using a quiet mechanical keyboard can give you more extra focus while working or typing. Noisy sounds produced when you type can cause your focus to be split due to listening to the noisy mechanical sounds of the keyboard.
Features that make a good silent mechanical keyboard?
The mechanical keyboard that is sold today has various types of features. For the silence, the type of switch and the quality of the keycaps used is a very big influence for sound attenuation. The lienar switch is the right feature if you want to buy a mechanical keyboard that provides a quiet sound.
You can also buy a low profile mechanical keyboard, because this type of mechanical keyboard is specifically made to maximize typing and provide good typing feedback. Surely you will feel the quiet sound on a low profile mechanical keyboard. One of the low profile mechanical keyboards on the market today is the Keychron K1V4.
Which is the Best Solution to Make an existing keyboard silent?
Replacing your current mechanical keyboard switch by switching to a silent type switch is the best. Adding a Rubber O-ring, Adding a Desk Pad, Lubricating the stabilizer and Siwtch will only provide some quiet time. In a few months your mechanical keyboard will be noisy again. Using a silent type switch will keep your mechanical keyboard silent forever and you don’t need to replace the rubber O-rings or lubricate your stabilizers and switches regularly.
Why is the Mechanical Keyboard Noisy?
If you find a mechanical keyboard sounding very noisy this is probably caused by the sound of the switch or stabilizer that has not been modified. Clicky type switches such as the Blue switch will definitely produce a noisy typing sound, because the blue switch is made to provide feedback with a loud typing sound. Meanwhile, if you have an unstable stabilizer, it will produce a noisy typing sound too, therefore try to make modifications to the stabilizer such as Clip-Lube, and Band-Aid in order to reduce the noise.
You can also add silencers by using rubber or foam into the mechanical keyboard case. The next thing is to lubricate all of your mechanical keyboard switches to produce a smoother sound.
Why is the Mechanical Keyboard So Loud?
This could be because you are using a Clicky-type switch, such as the Blue switch, which produces a very loud sound. The thin keycap design can also produce loud typing sounds because it gives too much resonance space. If you are using a tactile or linear switch but it makes a lot of noise, then you need to lubricate your switch for a softer sound.
Also modify your stabilizer and add foam to the mechanical keyboard casing so that it can muffle the typing sound that is too loud.
Why does my mechanical keyboard sound springy?
If you find the mechanical keyboard sound spongy, then you can be sure that your switch is Overlubed. Mostly applying lubricant to the switch can make the mechanical keyboard sound supple, this is because there is too much lubricant in the switch components so that it produces a typing sound like there is no spring moving inside the switch.
You can reduce grease by disassembling all of your switches and cleaning the grease with a tissue or cotton bath to remove the rubbery sound on the keyboard. You only need to lubricate the switch a little, not too much so that the mechanical sound is maintained.
Why is my mechanical keyboard not silent?
What makes the mechanical keyboard not silent is the use of the wrong type of mechanical switch. To get a quiet typing sound you should at least use a linear type switch or a Silent switch product such as the Cherry MX Silent or Gateron Silent Switch.
If you use a Clicky switch such as the blue switch, you will produce a very loud typing sound, because this type of switch has a spring with a wider diameter than linear and tactile switches. So that it provides bumpy typing feedback and produces a very loud typing sound.
How to make a mechanical keyboard sounds Bassy?
By adding foam or rubber to the mechanical keyboard casing can provide damping and produce a bassy typing sound. In addition, you can use a thick keycap set to minimize sound resonance so that your mechanical keyboard will sound negative when typed.
The easiest and simplest way to provide dampening to your mechanical keyboard is to use a desk pad and add rubber O-Rings to your keycaps set but this is not the best solution because it only provides a small amount of damping. Rubber O-rings can reduce your typing pleasure because over time the rubber O-Rings will start to stick and your mechanical keyboard will feel like a membrane keyboard.
The best way is to use silent tactile switches like Zilent™ V2 Switches (Silent Tactile) which can give you very quiet typing sound and you still get amazing typing feedback. You can perfect it by buying Keycaps Set with high quality materials such as Keycaps Set made of thick PBT or ABS plastic.