A new level of switch reviews


Just a good demo of what a good switch review is.

The key part is after 8mins in


dat spectrogram

I can almost hear a worldwide chorus of why didn’t I think of that

I don’t always agree with him (or more accurately the inferences made or implied by his titles - I generally do agree with the actual content that elaborates on them), but darn if Keybored isn’t making some of the best keeb content out there these days. Great balance of useful information and entertainment, and he keeps getting better.


Yup, Keybored’s content is pretty darn good.

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Actually, I have been thinking about that… Unfortunately, I’m a more detailed person and can say that he has his methodology wrong… He’s not producing a spectrogram of the switches, he’s producing a spectrogram of the case resonance in reaction to the switch + keycap.

Problem with this is, there’s no baseline for the case + key caps he’s using, so the results are only mildly useful from a measurement perspective. Also, there are a lot of factors that he hasn’t controlled for, like a the noise floor, or inconsistency in pressure being applied to the switches…

His wobble measurements in this same video are far more useful I think, but potentially still subject to some issues as he didn’t really show how he was taking the measurements.


I do agree he needs to add a consistent press in his methodology, but as long as he uses the same keyboard (+ key position) and keycaps in every test, I think the data is good enough to generally compare switches. Is the data accurate enough to be used standalone? Well no. I mean we compare switch sound by ear now which is much less scientific, has way more uncontrolled variables, and is very prone to error (bias or influence included).

You should make a few suggestions to tighten up the testing (withing reason of him implementing) on his YouTube video, and I bet he would try to incorporate them.

Nope, there are a ton more things that aren’t being addressed in his methodology. Just to list a couple: consistent microphone placement, consistent keyboard placement, and consistent environmental controls (temperature, humidity, air pressure, etc.). And that doesn’t get into the more technical aspects that need to be considered.

I shouldn’t need to. He already put out a video about why sound tests are bad in which he listed off a lot of the factors that need to be controlled to make something like this reasonable. Not to mention, what I am considering is a different approach to the problem which he likely wouldn’t be able to implement.

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While I agree with your statements to a degree, and certainly fully agree if this were to be scientific experiment, I have no issue with what he did or his conclusions. In fact, I can back up his anecdotal observations/conclusions with my own experience which is good enough for me. I can understand getting salty if he was intentionally misleading people, but he isn’t writing a scientific paper here. I still stand by my statement that there is enough here for comparison’s sake.

I also never ment to suggest that you were required to give him some feedback, but it may be more useful overall than calling him out on this platform. Also, it’s not for to assume that he wouldn’t at least try to implement your constrictive criticism.

Also, I don’t know this guy from Adam, so I have no horse in this race.

So, the reason why I see an issue with this is that he is presenting the spectrogram and audio findings as “measurements”. That puts an air of objectivity on the information that he is presenting, which without having adequate controls should not be the case. And, FWIW, I’m not salty about this. Rather I’m just pointing out there could (and very likely is) going to be an issue of perception with him presenting results that appear to be objective. OTOH - I’ll give him credit for his stem wobble measurements, those do appear to be more objective with a reasonably solid methodology.

I didn’t really intend this to be a “calling out”. His video was presented as a:

Which I felt it proper to point out that there are weaknesses / issues with the methodology of his process. You are perhaps correct to say that it isn’t fair to assume that he wouldn’t implement the feedback that I could make. However, I can say this: I’ve been doing some research, and if it were easy or reasonable to achieve what I have in mind, someone would have done it already.

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Perfect is the enemy of good.

Also, a fellow member might have presented his review as being “good”, but video’s author did not – he was just trying to base his conclusions on more than what he hears directly. I get your point, but I still don’t think it matters. I understand that his findings are still closer to anecdotes than facts, and honestly what are the repercussions of people thinking otherwise. This isn’t a climate change argument – the stakes are pretty low.

Certainly. In fact, I’d say that perfect is unattainable. However, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t set higher standards when possible. If that were true, YT channels like Gamers Nexus, LTT and Hardware Unboxed wouldn’t bother trying to improve on their processes.

He presented his results to a public audience without commentary that he didn’t have confidence in his results… That’s enough of a statement to me.

Well, exploding power supplies and bad riser cables are pretty low-stakes when compared to climate change. That seems a pretty inept comparison in my opinion.

Aside: I hope you are having fun with this conversation. I’m not taking it all that seriously, more as a mental exercise than an actual argument.

Your suggestion to “set higher standards when possible” was an implementation that could not be “easily or reasonably achieve[d]”. Those statements are in conflict with one another, wholeheartedly embodies “enemy of good”, and this whole thing is bordering on pedantry.

Maybe I should tell this guy to put a #notascientist text scroll up before his video as a disclaimer so no one would flame him over the use of the term “measurements” vs “findings”, lol.

My statement about climate change was more of a figure of speech than a comparison – it was to emphasize the extremely low stakes in this scenario. In fact, exposing unwitting fire hazards in your home, and challenging manufacturer’s fraudulent marketing are poor comparisons to some guy’s unscientific audio recordings on YouTube.

All that aside, if you manage to hurdle the unreasonable to create scientifically sound (repeatable) switch audio data videos, consider me subscribed :grin: That would be awesome.

I like Tech Kyle for that purpose - he compares switches in the exact same location, on the same keyboard, with the same mic etc. so the only difference is the switch itself. Of course the baseline is defined by the keyboard case, plate, the desk etc. but in his case it’s a common denominator, and you can make out the actual differences between each switch (which are more subtle than people may think). Try one of his comparison videos, amazing stuff.

You are mixing contexts. The “set a higher standards when possible” was a general statement, whereas the not “easily or reasonably achieve[d]” statement referred specifically to the plans I have in my head.

I’ll give you can example. When I was podcasting I really wanted to have a sound treated room or more ideally a recording booth, but I was living in an apartment. It was definitely unreasonable to think that I could either build a vocal booth, or sound treat a room properly without violating the terms of my lease. So that wasn’t reasonable to achieve.

However, I was able to “set a higher standard” by going a different route: I built a small case with sound dampening material (in this case some thick felt) that served to eliminate the reflections of sound around my microphone. That was something that was reasonable to achieve: the whole thing was only about $20-$30, as opposed to the $1000’s proper sound treatment or recording booth would have cost, not to mention the time investment.

Yeah, comparison of switch recordings to fire hazards was almost as bad a comparison as climate change. :grin: Comparison of wireless keyboards to other fire hazards would be more appropriate.

I’ll drop you a private message on this so you can have some insight into what I’ve been thinking… It will give you some insight into why I wouldn’t propose it to anyone else.