Linear vs Tactile vs Clicky Switches

Linear vs Tactile vs Clicky Switches – What The Difference?

You may be confused by the many types of switches on the market today, each switch manufacturer gives unique names for their switches. In essence, the name does not change the character of the switch. Because the different colors on the switch have their own identity and character. For example, Cherry MX Brown and Gateron Brown, these still have the same character, namely the switch has the same tactile character.

Top 15 Best Custom Switches For Typing And Gaming

What then became a lot of questions was the existence of the terms Linear, Tactile, and Clicky. The three terms are groups for each switch with a different color. The following is a brief explanation of the switch groups based on their color.

  • Linear: Red Switch, Yellow Switch, and Black Switch
  • Tactile: Brown Switch and Clear/White Switch
  • Clicky: Blue Switch and Green Switch

We will reveal the secret behind Linear, Tactile, and Clicky switch types in detail in this article. Hopefully after reading this article, you understand the different types and purposes of each color switch without having to read the manual again.

Clicky vs Tactile vs Linear Switch
x
Lube Switches Without Desoldering

Linear Switches

Linear Switches
Linear Switches

Linear type switch means that when you press the button on this type of switch you do not feel a buff or feedback, as the name suggests “Linear” there is no feedback so it feels soft and not noisy. Linear Switch is perfect for people who want to type without being bothered by noisy keys.

Linear switches have the advantage that when pressed it does not require force, feels light and smooth. For fast typing this is the best type of switch you should choose.

You can experience linear type switches on Switch Red, Switch Yellow, and Switch Black

Why Choose Linear Switches?

Linear switches focus on smoother and more consistent actuation. For those of you who don’t want loud sounds, this type of switch is suitable.

For professional workers who need a keyboard with stable pressure to type or do coding work, this type of switch is highly recommended. However, this switch is still a suitable choice for gamers.

Why? Consistent button presses allow these switches to achieve greater precision in games. Overall, linear switches offer speeds that tend to be faster.

Tactile Switches

Tactile Switches
Tactile Switches

Translated simply, “tactile” means to bounce. This mechanical switch is designed to give a ball effect when the button is pressed.

The sensation of bouncing is obtained because the stem or trigger switch is made straight straight against the spring down. Because the spring is under direct pressure, the spring will automatically provide thrust back up so that the finger feels like it is being hit back.

Tactile switches have a visible protrusion accompanied by a feeling of being held down when pressing (actuating) the button down. When the button is pressed down, the switch will close and produce a clicking sound.

Most gaming keyboard switches are tactile type. The loudness of the sound produced by this type of switch can vary. For the tactile switch with a loud sound, it can be found on the blue switch, while the tactile type with a soft sound can be found on the brown switch.

Why Choose Tactile Switches?

If you like feedback from each of your presses that provides a continuous feedback bounce, then the tactile switch is the perfect choice.

In addition to providing feedback bounce when pressed, you also get feedback in the form of a sound that is not too loud, but not too quiet at the medium level. Stuff like this is great because it gives the sensation of being alive when typing.

If you just want to switch to a mechanical keyboard, the tactile switch is perfect for you.

Clicky Switches

Clicky Switches
Clicky Switches

The Clicky type switch is a type of switch that is specifically made to provide a very loud feedback bounce with a very loud sound.

This type of switch is great for those of you who want very pronounced feedback when pressing a button, in addition to producing a hard back impact you will also produce a very loud clicking sound with every press.

Some people like to recommend Clicky for typers or people who like to type because in addition to providing very clear feedback whether our input is registered or not, the Clicky switch gives an eargasm effect for some people because of the click sound earlier.

Why Choose Clicky Switches?

Of all the types of switches, the clicky switch is the loudest for feedback burst, and the sound is very loud.

Clicky switches are not suitable for use in the workplace or around babies, because the clicky switch has a very loud sound that can irritate the ears of others around you.

This switch is suitable for those of you who work in a studio or special room with good room damping. We found a lot of streamers using this switch to show off their mechanical keyboard which has a very loud sound.

THESE ARE THE TYPES OF THE MECHANICAL KEYBOARD SWITCH YOU SHOULD KNOW

One of the parameters to determine the quality of a mechanical keyboard is to know the type or brand of switches used by the keyboard.

Unfortunately, there are so many types and choices of mechanical keyboards that use various brands of switches on the market. Therefore, you must know the quality and characteristics of the types of keyboard switches.

Cherry MX

Cherry MX is a “legend” as well as a reference for mechanical keyboard switches. Keyboard switches manufactured by ZF Electronics GmbH (Cherry Corporation), a German-American company, have been used by many high-end keyboard manufacturers around the world since 1983.

Kailh/Kaihua

The Kailh brand switches are manufactured by Kaihua Electronics, a semiconductor company from China that has been operating since 1990. Initially, Kaihua cloned Cherry, but over time, the company made its own switch models and cooperated exclusively with several keyboard manufacturers.

Outemu

Outemu is a switch brand produced by Gaote Corp, a well-known semiconductor company from China. Like Kaihl, Outemu draws heavily on the design and characteristics of the Cherry MX.

Gateron

Gateron is one of the switches that is often used in various mechanical gaming keyboard products. Gateron switches are manufactured by Huizhou Gateron Electronic Technology Co., Ltd..a semiconductor company from China that was founded in 2000.

Romer G

Romer-G is a switch that is the result of a collaboration between Logitech and Omron, an electronic equipment company from Japan. Initially, the Romer-G was designed and manufactured to supply Logitech keyboards. But, then, many non-Logitech keyboard manufacturers are also using this switch.

The hallmark of the Romer-G switch is a shorter press distance, about 25%, than the Cherry MX or Kailh. In the middle of the switch there is a space to enter the LED or vibration effect.

  • Characteristics: Highly tactile
  • Sensation: light
  • Finger pressure: 45g
  • Sound level: Quiet
  • Durability: 70 million clicks per button

Things you should consider when buying a switch

Switch ColorDescription
RedLinear switch with light resistance.
YellowLinear switch with medium resistance.
BlackLinear switch with heavy resistance.
BrownTactile switch with medium resistance.
ClearTactile switch with heavy resistance.
BlueClicky switch with medium resistance.
GreenClicky switch with heavy resistance.

There are several things you should pay attention to when you want to buy a switch. Here are some things you should make a benchmark when planning to buy a switch:

Durability

Of course, this is a consideration that you should prioritize. Choosing a switch that has good durability is one solution to save your expenses, you don’t have to spend money every year just to buy a switch set.

If you buy a switch, first check its durability whether it has a strength of up to 50 or 70 million presses.

This is something you have to remember, the higher the keystrokes guarantee number, the better the durability of the switch. Like the Switch from Cherry MX which can last up to 100 million presses.

Spring Strength

The strength of the spring in a switch determines how long you can use the switch. As much as you type, so much spring is working on the switch.

If you have a habit of typing by pressing a bit hard, then a switch with a hard spring can be the right choice for you. If you have a habit of typing gently, a switch with a soft spring is your choice.

Heavy/hard springs have good strength and long durability, because hard springs do not bend easily.

Travel distance

This is an optional choice, about a switch can affect the accuracy and speed of your typing. choosing a switch that you reach more quickly will certainly improve typing accuracy and speed.

It’s about the speed with which each button reaches, as the switches are available with several different height profiles. Low profile is a type of switch profile that is easy to reach because it has a short profile, while this speed profile is not easy to reach but has a fast response when typed.

The low-cost switch is rather light to type, while the speed switch is a bit heavy, but has a faster speed than the lower switch. It all depends on your preference.

Why Get a Mechanical Keyboard?

The keyboard has become one of the necessities for playing PC games and doing tasks. The keyboard revolution is also growing rapidly which has three types, namely, chicklet, membrane, and mechanical.

Mechanical keyboards are currently the most in demand and suitable when compared to other types of keyboards. Here are the reasons why a mechanical keyboard is a must-have:

Comfortness

For very intense computer users or for hardcore gamers who can spend up to 8 hours per day in front of the computer, comfortable typing using the keyboard is a must. There are so many testimonials from gamers and regular users that after using a mechanical keyboard they will be lazy and don’t even want to use a membrane keyboard anymore. The reason is a matter of convenience.

With individual switches on each key that we can choose our own character, the mechanical keyboard becomes more customizable to what the user who uses it wants.

Tactical Feedback

This is the biggest difference between a membrane dome keyboard and a mechanical keyboard. Each key on the mechanical keyboard has a kind of spring which when the key is pressed it will provide a back pressure that is felt on the fingers. In addition, the clicky sound will also sound louder on this keyboard, making it produce higher noise than the membrane dome keyboard.

This might make the keyboard louder and louder to use, but that’s not the case here. A company that is ZF Electronics makes several types of mechanical switches called CherryMX which have several types of color codes. Some of the famous colors include Blue, Black, Red, and Brown. Now this color code will determine the character of the mechanical keyboard. CherryMX Black and Blue have a hard and clicky character to press, CherryMX Red has a lighter character to press but still has a clicky sound, while CherryMX Brown also has a light character but eliminates the level of clicky noise generated.

Durability

The average computer user types more than 8000 characters every hour, for example, suppose we use our keyboard for 8 hours per day with 5 working days, so in a year we have typed keyboard keys 16,640,000 times. Here, keyboards that use membrane dome technology will begin to show a decrease in performance such as keys that sometimes don’t get input even after being pressed, keys that get stuck or even come off the keyboard to the keyboard keys that feel heavier to press.

We will not find this on the mechanical keyboard. Due to the design that uses individual switches with direct contact between the keys and the onboard circuit, each key on the mechanical keyboard can last up to more than 50 million beats while in the membrane dome it may only be up to 10 million beats before the problems mentioned above arise.

Maintenance

Have you ever tried to clean between the keyboard? If so, surely all of you know how difficult it is to reach the dirt between the keys on the keyboard. Moreover, the material used by the membrane dome is a type of silicon rubber which is very easy to attract dust and other impurities. In addition, the rubber also decreases its flexibility over time, making it yellow and sticky, thereby reducing the comfort of the keyboard.

We also can’t just remove one keyboard button to clean the dirt underneath, cleaning it means disassembling the keyboard as a whole and reassembling it when it’s finished cleaning. Time consuming job. We will not find this on a mechanical keyboard because each keycap button on this mechanical keyboard can be removed and cleaned easily. No need to disassemble the entire keyboard to clean it, simply remove the keycap buttons on the part you want to clean and put them back on when finished cleaning.

Anti-Ghosting

Have you ever tried pressing multiple buttons on your computer at the same time and not all of them appeared on the screen? that’s called ghosting. Because the circuitry in the keyboard is simple, the membrane dome based keyboard is not able to accept multiple inputs simultaneously.

We will not find this on a mechanical keyboard because each key has an individual switch. All input that we enter in the keyboard, no matter how much it will be accepted by the keyboard and displayed on the screen. The only limit is the number of fingers we have. This ability is called Anti-Ghosting.

You Will be Faster & More Precise

Using a mechanical keyboard will make us faster in doing our activities in front of the computer such as typing documents, assignments or daily work or playing games. That’s because our hands expend less energy to press a button so they still have a lot of energy to quickly move to another button.

In addition to being faster, our hands will also move more precisely to press the buttons we want, this is very important when playing online games because the speed and accuracy of pressing the keyboard buttons will affect the outcome of the match we are doing whether it is winning or losing.

Customizable Keycaps

Each key / keycaps on the mechanical keyboard can be customized at will, this is also supported by various keycap manufacturers who create unique, diverse and attractive designs. Of course this makes your keyboard look very attractive, and different from the others.

Aesthetics

With its eye-catching design and looks dashing, the mechanical keyboard looks cool to decorate our gaming table or give a “pro” impression during gaming tournaments. In addition, most of the mechanical keyboards now have LED backlights, both RGB and mono LEDs, which can be customized with their own lighting character, something that is still difficult for membrane dome based keyboards to do.

Which is better linear or tactile or clicky?

For general use and the most preferred is the Tactile type switch. Tactile switches provide small bump feedback when used to type and provide a typing sound that is not too loud.

Tactile type switches are highly preferred and are the most ideal choice for people who want to have a great typing experience. The tactile switch is a favorite for people who want to build a custom mechanical keyboard.

Which is better linear or tactile or clicky for typing?

For typing linear and tactile switches are the most appropriate options. Linear switches provide empty feedback when typing and produce a quiet sound.

While the tactile switch provides a little bumpy feedback when typed and produces a fairly loud sound when typed. To get a quiet typing, most people will choose to use linear switches. While people who want a typing experience with more pronounced feedback, will choose tactile type switches such as Cherry MX Brown or Gateron Brown.

Which is more Durable linear or tactile or clicky?

The clicky switch is a switch that is known for its good durability. This is because clicky switches have a wider spring diameter than linear or tactile switches.

Clicky switches have very bumpy feedback and produce a loud sound when used to type, this is because the clicky switch uses a spring component that is larger and harder than linear and tactile switches, making it stronger and more durable like the Cherry MX Blue or Switch Greens.

Which is better linear or tactile or clicky for gaming?

For playing games, people prefer to use linear or tactile type switches because they are believed to be more responsive and more comfortable to play games.

In fact, the switch that most people like is the Cherry MX Red switch which is a linear type switch. Cherry MX Red was chosen because it is very smooth and very responsive for gaming. Some people also choose tactile switches such as Cherry MX Brown Switch, Cherry MX Clear Switch, and Kailh Speed Copper Switch. For the type of switch, the favorite is Cherry MX Red which is a linear switch.

What is the best Linear Switch?

Linear switches are switches that provide a very smooth typing experience. For a list of the best linear switches, you can see them in the table below:

Best Linear SwitchAward
Gateron YellowBest Budget
Cherry MX Speed SilverBest for Gaming
NovelKeys CreamBest Sound Feedback
Cherry MX BlackGreat Durability
Gateron Ink BlackBest Smooth Feel
The best Linear Switches

What is the best Tactile Switch?

For tactile switches, there are some of the best tactile switches from different brands that we highly recommend. In the table below is a list of the best tactile switches:

Best Linear SwitchAward
Glorious Panda SwitchesThe Snappiest Tactile Switch
Durock T1 SwitchesAll-Around Tactile Switch
Boba U4 Tactile SwitchesAll-Around Tactile Switch
Boba U4T SwitchThe Thocciest
Halo Clear SwitchesA Long Smooth Bump
Cherry MX Brown SwitchA Small Bump
Cherry MX Clear SwitchHeavy and Bumpy
Kailh Speed Copper SwitchLight-Actuating Switch
Topre Tactile SwitchElectro-Capacitive Design
Outemu Brown SwitchesA Super Budget Option
The best tactile Switches

What is the best Clicky Switch?

Clicky switch is a switch that provides loud bumpy feedback with a loud sound when typed. In the table below are the best clicky switches currently available:

Best Linear SwitchAward
Kailh BOX WhiteSuper Bump
Kailh BOX JadeGreat Feedback
Kailh Speed CopperFast And Bumpy (Great for Gaming)
NovelKeys SherbetSmooth And Bumpy
Cherry MX BlueGreat Sound
Cherry MX White Smooth anda Bumpy
Gateron BlueLike The Cherry MX Blue
Otemu BlueLike The Cherry MX Blue
The best Clicky Switches

Conclusion

After explaining at length about the differences between Linear, Tactile, and Clicky switches, we hope you have understood some of the differences between these types of switches.

If you want a switch with no feedback and a quiet sound, then you should buy a linear switch, whereas if you want a switch that can give a little feedback when pressed and a little noise then the tactile type switch should you choose.

Then you want to have a switch with feedback that explodes, and sounds very loud, then the Clicky type switch is your choice. Choose a switch based on your needs.

Top Articles