Author Topic: Best switches for each category  (Read 13584 times)

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Offline MutachoNacho

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Best switches for each category
« on: Sun, 05 April 2020, 07:45:55 »
Dear keyboard enthusiasts,

I've been wondering what switches would be the absolute best for each category.

-Here's the categories:

  • Linear
  • Tactile
  • Clicky
  • ...and their silent versions

Please note, that the performance of the switches in stock is irrelevant. What really matters is the performance after lubing.

Thank you in advance for your recommendations!
« Last Edit: Sun, 05 April 2020, 07:48:18 by MutachoNacho »

Offline ddrfraser1

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #1 on: Sun, 05 April 2020, 08:03:34 »
Everyone's opinion will differ. Here's my take. I'll give two answers for each, cherry clones as that's the most popular and easily acceptable but not necessarily the over all best, and then the best over all.

Linear - Cherry mount: Tealio's from zeal PC because they are smooth stock and super smooth lubed. Best overall: steel series' omni point switches for being even smoother but will only work in their boards.
Tactile - Cherry mount: Holy Pandas. Best over all: Orange alps because alps are delicious. I would also put Topre with BKE redux domes right up there.
Clicky - CHerry mount: zealiostotles, (box click switches are also great and have the added plus that you don' t have to build them yourself) Best overall: Either blue alps (amazing) or IBM buckling springs although I have heard that IBM beam springs are the best but i haven't had the chance to try them yet.

I would go watch Chyrosran22's videos on youtube.

Offline Sintpinty

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #2 on: Sun, 05 April 2020, 16:11:06 »
Dear keyboard enthusiasts,

I've been wondering what switches would be the absolute best for each category.

-Here's the categories:

  • Linear
  • Tactile
  • Clicky
  • ...and their silent versions

Please note, that the performance of the switches in stock is irrelevant. What really matters is the performance after lubing.

Thank you in advance for your recommendations!

Ink Blacks are best linear, Box white/navy is best clickies and Zealios V2 are best tactile. Best silent switch is zilents

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #3 on: Sun, 05 April 2020, 19:18:18 »
Somewhat in order
Linear -  I don't use them
Tactile - Hand wired Jailhouse Blues, Alps/Matias tactile, Boy Royal/Purple
Clicky - Buckling Spring, Alps, Box Navy, Box Jade, Speed Bronze (I think bronze has the clickbar)

I haven't tried Zeals or Pandas, but I do have browns, Clears and Ergo Clears, to me they don't match the tactility of the ones listed. MX in general doesn't lend itself to tactile without something more than just a tactile bump, same for click. The same applies to clicky, just because it makes a lot of racket doesn't make it a good clicky switch (looking at you Cherry Blues).
Novelkeys NK65 Aluminum w/62g Zilents/39g springs
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Offline Dumble_Hub

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #4 on: Sun, 05 April 2020, 20:17:14 »
Call me a fanboy but:

Linear -  ALPS SKCL green / vintage Cherry blacks
Tactile - ALPS SKCM paper modded orange
Clicky - Model M buckling spring (I havent had the pleasure of owning a Model F)

Offline chyros

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #5 on: Mon, 06 April 2020, 02:28:40 »
Please note, that the performance of the switches in stock is irrelevant. What really matters is the performance after lubing.
That's... the worst thing I've ever read xD . I just died a little bit inside xD .
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Offline Venaros

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #6 on: Mon, 06 April 2020, 09:54:48 »
For MX-style switches:
Linears: Good Vintage/Retooled Blacks, Gateron Inks, Alpacas, C3 Tangerines v2, Tealios, Gateron Yellow
Tactiles: Holy Pandas, T1's, Zealios, Outemu Sky
Clickies: Box Jade, Box Navy
Silents: Healios (silent Tealios), Gateron silent ink, Zilents (silent Zealios), Tacit (silent T1s), Silent Alpacas, Outemu Silent Sky

Offline nettoxx7

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #7 on: Tue, 07 April 2020, 09:42:54 »
Linears:  Alpacas, C3 Tangerines v2
Tactiles: Holy Pandas, Zealios v2
Silents: Gateron silent ink, Zilents

But these are my preferences, and I have yet to try them all, but good luck OP finding something you like!

Offline Merranza

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #8 on: Tue, 07 April 2020, 11:24:23 »
For linears, I'd like to add Kailh Pro Burgundy... The more I use them, the more I like them. Sound, force curve, stability. I like them a lot. I'm using them stock so I do feel a bit of scratchiness but other than that they are pretty amazing and lubed they must be even better.

Offline Sup

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #9 on: Tue, 07 April 2020, 13:12:24 »
Linears MX silent
Tactile MX Brown
Clicky Blue Alps

 :)
current
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Offline alexfaust123

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #10 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 11:34:31 »
Linears: Ive heard a lot of good concerning C3 tangerine rev2's, and NK creams are great too when lubed, but i'm not sure about the hype surrounding them from taeha and tfue pretty much.
Tacticle: Lubed Holy Pandas. Not just the factory lubed ones, but stripping the factory lube and using your own personal lube. When using the right lube, these switches can be insane, and anyone who says any cherry switch over panda's is better is wrong imo. Only reason I say this is because when you use cherry switches, it feels like you aren't typing on something luxurious or "endgame" haha when it comes to custom keyboards, but a truly unique and luxurious experience imo comes from using lubed holy pandas.
Clicky: Not too sure, haven't used any tbh.

Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #11 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 11:57:17 »
The best budget linears right now are probably the Alpacas and their derivatives such as the Lilacs and Mauves. Although you better be on Discord and getting tip-offs from friends if you want the chance to buy any of them. They sell out instantly.

The reason they are good is that they are very smooth out-of-the-box. There is a light factory lube, which is pretty inoffensive, but it may also be the material contributing to the sliding-quality of the switch. The Alpacas take to lube and filming very well.

And I mean very well. Lubing transforms the Alpacas from a nice stock switch into an endgame linear [if you film them too, maybe]. I've seen and heard the typing tests, and lubed Alpacas sound deep and thocky, and are unbelieviably smooth.

The C3 Tangerine V2s are said to be perhaps better than the Alpacas. You might be able to mod them to a somewhat better quality than the Durock linears. Cause people lube them to use as endgame switches. I haven't tried them yet, but I will as soon as possible. They are said to be the best upscale linear.

If cost isn't an issue, the Gateron Inks are probably comparable to the Alpacas and other Durock switches for just a little more. Because the Inks apparently take well to lubing, too.


For tactiles, it's true that properly lubed Holy Pandas feel more "endgame" then typical Cherry tactiles.

The best stock clickies for most people are BOX Jades, and you can try variants such as the BOX Whites [it's a better MX Blue], Pinks, or Navies [heavy like a buckling-spring]. Also, Novelkeys Sherbets might be worth a try. You don't need to lube BOX clickies, and probably shouldn't.


Best silent? Silents aren't quite "there" yet, at least among tactiles. The quietest silent tactile is probably Aliaz, but it is barely tactile, like a Gateron Brown. And they don't benefit much, or at all from lubing. So if you want a lubed, light tactile silent switch, it may be cheaper to just lube Gateron Silent Browns.

The Zeal Zilent V2s are much, much more tactile. They are in the realm of Holy Panda tactility, except sharper and steeper. Lubed Zilent V2s are said to be very nice.

Then there are the OUTEMU Silent Skies, and you definitely have to lube them for best results. Maybe spring-swap, too. They are a medium tactility, supposedly like a light MX Clear.

Best silent linear? Out of the box, it may be one of the Zeal silent linears. If you're willing to lube and especially film them, the Silent Alpacas are good. They really need that filming though, because of wobble.
« Last Edit: Wed, 08 April 2020, 12:07:17 by HungerMechanic »

Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #12 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 12:01:40 »
BTW I was listing Cherry-compatible. Obviously, if we're talking 'absolutes,' then Orange ALPS is the best tactile, especially after lubing but either way.

Clickies are a toss-up because BOX clickies are actually good, but ALPS clickies are the recognized common classic.

Linears - MX can actually compete here, which means that Alpacas, Tealios, and Tangerines can be world-class. But again, ALPS has some very good linears to their name. I'm not even going into the more obscure switches.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #13 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 12:53:09 »
BTW I was listing Cherry-compatible. Obviously, if we're talking 'absolutes,' then Orange ALPS is the best tactile, especially after lubing but either way.

Clickies are a toss-up because BOX clickies are actually good, but ALPS clickies are the recognized common classic.

Linears - MX can actually compete here, which means that Alpacas, Tealios, and Tangerines can be world-class. But again, ALPS has some very good linears to their name. I'm not even going into the more obscure switches.

Nice comprehensive post. All I'll add is that for me, and I think most people, clicky SKCM Alps > box thick clicks, the same probably goes for capacitive buckling spring vs thick clicks, although the ping isn't for everyone. I think it does for me as well, but it is close.

I have felt random Alps tactiles, although I haven't had the pleasure of owning any, and they have always felt wonderful compared to any modern tactile I have felt, including box browns, but I'm not a tactile guy and haven't tried any of the boutique ones.

The same goes for Alps linears, even SKCC cream. Buttery smooth. Better than box reds for sure, which themselves blow away Cherry reds and blacks, of any vintage if you ask me. All I actually use linears for though myself as I am, again, not a linear guy, is some old Cherry reds in a K70, for gaming. I haven't tried the boutique linears either.

Hopefully that at least helps with comparison, for those who may not be so obsessed with boards that require adapters to even work on modern computers, but are otherwise experts on modern boutique switches, and lubing, since I don't bother with any of that (yet?).

Offline chyros

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #14 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 13:16:51 »
Linear: something Hall effect or optoelectric
Tactile: Alps SKCM (the older ones)
Clicky: beamsprings

These are so far ahead of anything else that even if you insist on slightly ruining them with some lube they'll still be the best choice, I reckon. Why you feel the need to lube everything is completely beyond me, but different strokes for different folks, I guess xD .
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Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #15 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 14:11:15 »

Nice comprehensive post. All I'll add is that for me, and I think most people, clicky SKCM Alps > box thick clicks, the same probably goes for capacitive buckling spring vs thick clicks, although the ping isn't for everyone. I think it does for me as well, but it is close.

I have felt random Alps tactiles, although I haven't had the pleasure of owning any, and they have always felt wonderful compared to any modern tactile I have felt, including box browns, but I'm not a tactile guy and haven't tried any of the boutique ones.

The same goes for Alps linears, even SKCC cream. Buttery smooth. Better than box reds for sure, which themselves blow away Cherry reds and blacks, of any vintage if you ask me. All I actually use linears for though myself as I am, again, not a linear guy, is some old Cherry reds in a K70, for gaming. I haven't tried the boutique linears either.

Yeah, ALPS > Cherry when it comes to tactiles, clickies, and linears, even though MX-compatible is producing decent things nowadays in the latter two categories. People who have tried ALPS clickies and linears generally rate them higher than Cherry variants, although I wonder if that really holds up today given the latest MX-style linears.

The excessive lubing we see today is a byproduct of classic Cherry designs, in which Blacks and Clears often required lubing and even spring-swaps for optimal functioning. The modern MX-style designs still mostly require lubing for optimal feel. It's just the design. And it leads to a higher use of lubrication of non-MX switches seen at meetups. Lubing has become so prevalent that the Orange SKCM Alps you try at one are likely to be lubed, along with the Novatouched 55 gr Topre.

And yeah, Hall Effect and beamsprings are likely to blow away all other linear / clicky switches, but they are far less commonly-available.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #16 on: Wed, 08 April 2020, 14:28:05 »

Nice comprehensive post. All I'll add is that for me, and I think most people, clicky SKCM Alps > box thick clicks, the same probably goes for capacitive buckling spring vs thick clicks, although the ping isn't for everyone. I think it does for me as well, but it is close.

I have felt random Alps tactiles, although I haven't had the pleasure of owning any, and they have always felt wonderful compared to any modern tactile I have felt, including box browns, but I'm not a tactile guy and haven't tried any of the boutique ones.

The same goes for Alps linears, even SKCC cream. Buttery smooth. Better than box reds for sure, which themselves blow away Cherry reds and blacks, of any vintage if you ask me. All I actually use linears for though myself as I am, again, not a linear guy, is some old Cherry reds in a K70, for gaming. I haven't tried the boutique linears either.

Yeah, ALPS > Cherry when it comes to tactiles, clickies, and linears, even though MX-compatible is producing decent things nowadays in the latter two categories. People who have tried ALPS clickies and linears generally rate them higher than Cherry variants, although I wonder if that really holds up today given the latest MX-style linears.

The excessive lubing we see today is a byproduct of classic Cherry designs, in which Blacks and Clears often required lubing and even spring-swaps for optimal functioning. The modern MX-style designs still mostly require lubing for optimal feel. It's just the design. And it leads to a higher use of lubrication of non-MX switches seen at meetups. Lubing has become so prevalent that the Orange SKCM Alps you try at one are likely to be lubed, along with the Novatouched 55 gr Topre.

And yeah, Hall Effect and beamsprings are likely to blow away all other linear / clicky switches, but they are far less commonly-available.

For now, here's to the successful testing/rollout/evolution of Input Club's hall effect switches of all flavors. It is part of the reason I haven't bothered looking to sell a few of my organs to try the originals.

Offline Scriba

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #17 on: Tue, 16 February 2021, 05:00:29 »
Linear - this is simple: konpeitou (in my opinion an improved marshmallow with longer stem) -> deep sound, ultra smooth, low wobble
Tactile - Holy Bobas, Boba U4T and Zykos -> sharp and round (u4t) bump, really good sound for tactile, really smooth if legs lubed, low wobble with tight housing (not even films are needed)
Clicky - I don't use them (it gives me a headache lol)
« Last Edit: Tue, 16 February 2021, 05:02:46 by Scriba »

Offline micmil

  • Posts: 66
Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #18 on: Sat, 20 February 2021, 18:43:14 »
Dear keyboard enthusiasts,

I've been wondering what switches would be the absolute best for each category.

-Here's the categories:

  • Linear
  • Tactile
  • Clicky
  • ...and their silent versions

Please note, that the performance of the switches in stock is irrelevant. What really matters is the performance after lubing.

Thank you in advance for your recommendations!

Linear: BTC dome with slider.
Tactile: MX Browns that have been sanded down to have less of that annoying bump.
Clicky: Pulling the keys out of buckling springs and shoving potato chips in the hole.

Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #19 on: Sun, 21 February 2021, 15:15:39 »
Linear: Cherry MX BLUE
Tactile: Cherry MX BLUE
Clicky: Cherry MX BLUE
Cherry MX BLUE:  Cherry MX BLUE
Best Veggie: Broccoli

Offline micmil

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #20 on: Sun, 21 February 2021, 15:18:56 »
Linear: Cherry MX BLUE
Tactile: Cherry MX BLUE
Clicky: Cherry MX BLUE
Cherry MX BLUE:  Cherry MX BLUE
Best Veggie: Broccoli


I was with you until that last line, now I'm sure that you're actually Zombie Hitler.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #21 on: Mon, 22 February 2021, 08:29:32 »
Linear: Cherry MX BLUE
Tactile: Cherry MX BLUE
Clicky: Cherry MX BLUE
Cherry MX BLUE:  Cherry MX BLUE
Best Veggie: Broccoli


I dislike MX red less than MX blue ... and I normally prefer clickies.

Offline Pylon

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #22 on: Mon, 22 February 2021, 08:36:46 »
Linear: I don't use linears - haven't tried much if anything.
Tactile: MX Clear stems and spring in MX Blue housing. This ups the tactility noticeably compared to stock MX Clears, but still makes it easy to avoid bottoming out (whereas putting MX Clear stems in Boba housings ups the tactility so much that it's much harder to avoid bottoming out even with the 90g stock springs). I prefer having a bit of pretravel since the point of a tactile bump is to tell my fingers when I've actuated a switch, and a bump at the very top does not tell my fingers anything. I also dislike bottoming out, and one of the major advantages of mechanical keyboards is that you don't need to bottom out, so why do it? Also, with lube and films this ends up being a decent sounding switch.
Clickies: IBM buckling springs

Offline wolverine92

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #23 on: Wed, 24 February 2021, 19:39:52 »
Kailh Box Jades for clicky

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Offline funkmon

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #24 on: Thu, 25 February 2021, 08:54:49 »
Linear: Cherry MX BLUE
Tactile: Cherry MX BLUE
Clicky: Cherry MX BLUE
Cherry MX BLUE:  Cherry MX BLUE
Best Veggie: Broccoli


****ing lol. In between every "do you guys eat Ritz brand crackers on Tuesdays" thread from tp4 he posts a ****ing gem.

Offline ddrfraser1

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #25 on: Thu, 25 February 2021, 09:12:04 »
I feel like the bs crew as definitely become the unofficial tp4 fan club.


Offline killyou

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Re: Best switches for each category
« Reply #27 on: Thu, 25 February 2021, 15:55:56 »
Linears - have them all
Tactile - Zealio v1
Clicky - Kailh BOX, colour depending on the preference. I have custom BOX Pinks with white springs.