Top 10 Best Linear Switches for a Mechanical Keyboard


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In an age full of distinctly different mechanical keyboard switches, which ones are the best for gaming and typing? This is a question that might’ve been bugging you for a while now. Well, the answer is quite simple. Linear switches. How so? Well, let us guide you through it.

The 10 Best Linear Switches for a Mechanical Keyboard are:

  1. Kailh Cream Switches
  2. Razer Yellow Switches
  3. Gateron Clear Switches
  4. Cherry MX Red Switches
  5. Outemu Red Switches
  6. Gateron Yellow Switches
  7. Cherry MX Black Switches
  8. Gateron Red Switches
  9. Outemu Black Switches
  10. Cherry MX Speed Silver

In this article, we’re going to talk about linear switches and how you can differentiate them from other switches. We’re also going to talk about the top 10 best linear switches for a mechanical keyboard, so sit back, relax and keep reading this article till the end.

Top 10 Best Linear Switches for a Mechanical Keyboard
Image by: u/JMPeach

What are Linear Switches?

Linear switches are noise-less, fast, and non-clicky mechanical switches apt for fast-paced gaming and professional typing. They do not provide any bump and are incredibly smooth to press.

These switches are the most commonly produced mechanical switches in the market. The click of the linear switch is almost inaudible which helps a lot to people who get easily distracted.

Using linear switches can be really beneficial for gaming as the clicks are smooth and quick which can help quick responses and actions in-game as well as for typing efficiently.

How to Identify Linear Switches?

You might be wondering, how to identify or recognize linear switches from other switches? Well, it may seem difficult to the inexperienced eyes and ears, but we’re here to tell you exactly what you’re going to need to know to identify linear switches.

Acoustics

When it comes to the clicking sound of the switches, the linear switch click sound is almost negligible. In fact, the acoustics are inaudible in comparison to clicky switches or tactile switches. This helps in easy, undistracted typing and focused keyboard work.

Smoothness

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The smoothness of the click is also a great factor when it comes to linear switches. In comparison to tactile or clicky switches, the effort and the actuation force requirement is lesser and that increases the smoothness of the click itself making the typing and playing much more efficient.

No Tactile Bump

When you click a tactile or clicky switch, you feel a very obvious tactile bump. This bump is triggered due to the actuation point bump and the thickness of the spring in the switch. However, the bottoming out in linear switches doesn’t allow any audible click which is why no bump is introduced in these switches.

If you encounter all these features and factors in a keyboard switch, then they’re definitely linear switches. For efficient, smooth, and quick keyboard clicks, you should definitely go for linear switches in mechanical keyboards.

Top 10 Best Linear Switches

If you’re looking to get linear switches for your keyboard or you want to switch to a mechanical keyboard with linear switches, worry not because here we’ve created a list of the best linear switches available in the market which you can get your hands on without having to scour the internet.

1. Kailh Cream Switches

Kailh as we know is one of the best manufacturers of mechanical keyboard switches in the market. Their cream switches are no exception when it comes to amazingly smooth clicking performance.

With actuation travel of 2mm and a bottom out travel distance of 4mm, these switches are easy to press, light, and can perform actions and responses fairly efficiently. Get your own pack of cream switches from Amazon.

ProsCons
MX Compatibility – The MX stem compatibility brings with it the availability of customization with the cream switches.Expensive – The key switch pack is somewhat expensive in comparison to other options.
Smooth Clicks – The linear switches are able to provide smooth and easy clicks.Low Actuation – The actuation point and the full-click is situated lower than other options.
Low effort – The actuation force required is very low around 55g.

2. Razer Yellow Switches

Arguably one of the best linear smooth mechanical switches in the market, the Razer Yellow has all the goods that you look for in a great professional linear switch.

These switches are light, easy to click, stable, have a high actuation point, and are suitable for both gaming and typing professionally. The thing with Razer Yellow switches is that you can only benefit from them if you have a Razer Blackwidow Chroma V2 keyboard which you can get from Amazon.

ProsCons
High Actuation Point – The actuation point of this keyboard is only 1.2mm low which is great.Availability – They cannot be purchased separately and you must buy the Razer mechanical keyboard.
Easy Click – The force required is only 45g which is very little and great for easy clicking.Expensive – The mechanical keyboard Chroma V2 is fairly expensive.
Incredible Quality – The quality of the switches is great and they can last for up to 100 million keystrokes.

3. Gateron Clear Switches

Gateron has made some incredible linear switches for us keyboard enthusiasts to enjoy. The Gateron Clear switches are perhaps the smoothest and lightest linear switches in existence.

These switches provide easy clicking, offer smoothness to the user, and provide inaudible amounts of clicking sound so you can stay focused on your work instead of getting distracted by the clicks. You can get your pack of Gateron clear switches from Amazon.

ProsCons
Price to Value – These switches are very inexpensive and you can get them for your custom keyboards fairly easily.Low Actuation Point – The point of actuation of this particular switch is not the highest.
Smooth clicking – The actuation force is only 35g which is incredibly low.Less stable – These switches are less stable than some of the others.

4. Cherry MX Red Switches

Cherry MX makes some of the best linear switches in the mechanical keyboard industry. The Cherry MX Red switches are fantastic when it comes to high-quality clicks without any excessive force or clickiness.

The Red switches may have a low actuation point but they’re moderately priced and are easily one of the best when it comes to fast-paced clicking and easy pressing. A great keyboard with Cherry MX red switches is this one on Amazon.

ProsCons
Less Actuation Force – The actuation force required is very little which is great.Low Actuation Point – The key must be pressed down fairly deep in order to actuate the switch.
Moderate Price – The price of these switches is moderate in comparison to others.
High-quality clicks – The clicks are silent and linear, making the keyboard experience amazing.

5. Outemu Red Switches

Outemu switches are a great low-priced and high-quality switch option. Their red switches are the perfect example of linear switches which have a lot to offer for a good price.

The Outemu red switches are easy to press, they don’t require too much pressure but one thing about them is that their actuation point is low. If you’re looking for Outemu Red switches, you can go to Amazon to get them.

ProsCons
Linear finesse – The clicks of these switches are high-quality and inaudible.Trigger Level – The trigger level of this switch is low.
Low priced – These switches are very inexpensive in comparison to some of the other options in this list.Stability – These switches are considered to be less stable than some of the others.
Moderate Actuation Force – The actuation force is only 50g which is moderate.

6. Gateron Yellow Switches

Another great linear switch option by Gateron is the Gateron Yellow Switches. If you’re looking for cheap priced yet incredibly high-quality switches then you can get them from Amazon.

The great thing about these switches is that they require less pressure in order to actuate but a problem that comes with these switches as well is the fact that they host a low actuation point. Overall, though, they’re great for the price.

ProsCons
No excessive pressure – With an actuation force of 50g you can press these switches with ease.Low Actuation – The actuation point of these switches isn’t the greatest.
Smooth Clicks – The clicks are inaudible and great to press.
Less expensive – These switches are super-affordable.

7. Cherry MX Black Switches

Cherry MX Black switches are ones that are more powerful and stable when it comes to linear switches. You can get a pack of the MX Black switches from Amazon if you want.

If you’re looking for a stronger linear switch feel and you’re a fan of high-quality noiseless switches that last for 100 million keystrokes, then this linear switch is exactly what you’re looking for in your mechanical keyboards.

ProsCons
Good price – The price to the value of this linear switch is amazing.Low Actuation – The trigger travel distance is not ideal for quick-paced gaming and typing.
 Stability – These switches are built for durability and stability and are going to last for a long while.Excessive Pressure – The actuation force required for pressing these switches is around 60g.

8. Gateron Red Switches

The Gateron Red Switches one-up the Yellow switches with an even smoother click. You can easily press the key without having to put any stress because of the low actuation force of this switch.

Like other Gateron switches, the actuation point is still average at best. The feel, however, is fantastic and that is why you should definitely keep this switch on your priority list. You can get a pack of these switches for a decent price from Amazon.

ProsCons
Smooth press – The press of this switch is incredibly smooth as the actuation force is only 45g which is great.Stability issue – There aren’t any stability walls around the tip of the switch which causes stability issues.
Good price – When you compare the price of this switch with others, they’re incredibly great value.Trigger Level – The trigger level is also quite low.
Noiseless – The clicks are seemingly noiseless in comparison to tactile or clicky switches.

9. Outemu Black Switches

When it comes to office typing or gaming, the Outemu Black switches are incredible. Why so? Well, they’re noiseless, which allows for distraction-less typing. And they provide an incredible power feel while being pressed.

The downside is that the actuation force is a little much and the point of actuation is basically the same as the common linear switches. The great thing about them is the durability and long-lasting capability. You can get Outemu Black switches for a very reasonable price from Amazon.

ProsCons
Durability – The black switches by Outemu can last up to 80 million keystrokes which is incredible for linear switches.Low Actuation – The actuation point is a problem.
High-Quality Linear Switch – The quality of the switch and the walls around the tip make it the ideal switch.Pressure – You need a force of 65g in order to actuate these switches.
Great price – The switches are priced very reasonably.

10. Cherry MX Speed Silver

One of the best picks on this list is none other than the Cherry MX Speed Silver linear mechanical keyboard switch. Looking for the best switches? You can get these bad boys over at Amazon.

These switches are easy to click, require low pressure, are noiseless, and can be used easily for efficient gaming and typing because of the high actuation point these linear switches come with.

ProsCons
 High Actuation Point – The actuation point of these switches is 1.2mm which is absolutely perfect for all kinds of keyboard usage.Expensive – In comparison to other linear switches in this list, the silver speed switches are fairly expensive.
Easy press – The force required to press these switches efficiently is only around 45g.
Stability – The silver speed switches by Cherry MX are incredibly stable and have no wobble to them.
Durability – These switches allow 100 Million keystrokes and can work for a long usage time.

Conclusion

Ultimately, it’s your choice whichever switches you opt for. But if you take our advice and you’re looking for a smooth, non-clicky, fast-paced swift mechanical keyboard experience, then you should definitely go for linear switches for your mechanical keyboard.

With linear switches, whether you’re typing in a professional environment or you’re gaming with your friends, you’re going to have the best experience a keyboard peripheral can provide you.

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