… And I guess I’ll find some time for a new build soon.
It has been a while since I built my last clicky board, so I decided I “need” another…
I have Box Whites, Navies and Jades in use, and I really like them for their clean, refined clicks. But I catch myself going back to old Cherry Blues again and again.
So I started to wonder what it is that draws me back to them, despite their obvious flaws?
I realized it’s two things:
The first and most important one is, that the click-jacket switches only click on the downstroke. Of course there is a sound when the jacket is resetting on the upstroke, but a lot quieter. The more I think of it, the clearer it gets. The double click of the switch-bar is the only thing I (kind of) “dislike” with the click-bar switches.
The second and far less important is, that I actually like the electrical hysteresis of click-jacket switches. I can’t really explain it convincingly, it’s purely subjective taste. The effect of the delayed circuit opening is of course very subtle, but I like it in direct comparison.
What I am looking for is a switch that only clicks on the downstroke.
(If it has an electrical hysteresis, even better. But I realize that reduces the possible choices to click jackets).
Do you have suggestions for a clicky switch, that is more refined/clearer than Cherry blues, but only clicks on the downstroke?
My preference is more about resistance, but I have been very happy with my beyond-cheap Outemu dustproof Green. I find them sharp and clear, and IIRC they’re fairly light for Greens. I have Box Navies and Box Whites too, and I do prefer the Navies to the Outemu, but I’m not sure I prefer them 2x or 3x to match the price. Maybe I should get some Box Jades. The Whites I think of the same way other people think of their favorite light linears; they’re so… gentle… and quiet. LOL.
I found a discussion here on keebtalk from a couple of years ago. Looks like the easiest thing to try today (easiest, not necessarily best or cheapest) would be THESE that are probably from the original Outemu molds and some Tecsee v3 PCB mount stabs that can accommodate mid-height switches.
Cream Clickies are definitely worth trying - I love typing on them, and the experience really is unique among keyboard switches. Might be the smoothest clicky around, and in terms of feel they’re essentially linear. They can be kind of weird for gaming because the click mechanism doesn’t re-set until near the top of travel, so it’s possible to re-actuate the switch without re-setting the clicker. Pretty unlikely in normal typing, though.
Aside from those, here are some jacket clickies that I think might be worth a look:
Outemu Ocean clickies: Looks almost identical to their Ocean silent linear, but what we have here is a pretty darn refined jacket clicky. No switch of this kind is free from rattle, but this one has less than average while retaining a nice, sharp click. It’s a loud, dry sound - pretty much what you’d expect from a jacket clicky, if on the extra-crispy side of things. Compared side-by-side with a basic Outemu Blue, the jacket has a lot less play and spends a lot less time bouncing around in there.
TTC Blues*: Adjacent to the Gold Blues / Brothers but not the same, these lack the dampening plug in the tube and have a more muted click instead of a muted bottom-out. In most ways these are traditional clicky blues, but the click itself is a lot less loud and dry sounding - I’m thinking there’s just some light lube at work here. This is a switch for people who love the feel of jacket clickies but wish they weren’t as loud.
Gateron Ink Blues: On the pricy side and not necessarily “better” in any objective way, these switches do have Gateron’s “Ink” material for their housings. While I personally love these for tactile frankenswitches, they might be the most “premium” MX-traditional clicky around - and they are almost certainly the bluest Blue. In terms of sound, they’re right between the subdued TTCs and extra-crispy Outemus, and do have a more firm spring than most typical blues, giving them a nice “solid” feel compared to many peers.
*if you’re interested in trying the TTCs, let me know and I’ll send you some samples. Reason being, I have a ton of them I got from mystery switch boxes but don’t know the exact model name. TTC’s current basic blue is called the “K-series” Blue, and while it seems like that might be what I have, the badging is different - so I’m not exactly sure where to direct folks to buy these.
You might have heard of TKC Blackberries - I actually don’t recommend those for you, since they’ve been designed to click on the upstroke as well as the downstroke. Aside from that they might be the most refined jacket clicky on the market right now.
They are actually pretty nice to type on but they have two downsides. First, the spring ping is nearly as loud as the click so spring lubing is essential, and second, the lower housing is quite fragile so don’t expect them to survive being swapped out more than a few times. (Both those points hold true for all the base/budget Outemu switches.)
I just looked into “spring ping” to make sure I was listening for the right thing, and If I hold my ear up to the boards I can hear it moreso than in the Kailh, but but the greens’ click jackets and my lead-fingered bottom-out thuds make it non-issue for me personally. That being said, if you’ve changed my brain where I start noticing it now, you owe me 100 Box Jades.
The samples arrived, together with original OUTEMU-snap-spring switches (See this thread@wjrii mentioned).
These are my first impressions:
I really don’t like this switch. Maybe I got a bad sample, but there are two things I find displeasing.
The strong stick-slip effect, and the inconsistent click sound. Sometimes it simply doesn’t click, but when it does, the click itself is quite pleasing.
Strong, defined sound, nice tactility. Almost impossible not to bottom out after the click, but that suits me.
I really like it, and will probably build a board with it some time.
TTC Golden Blue:
I was curious how a “half-silenced” click-jacket sounds. It sounds nice, at least in my ears.
The unavoidable jacket-rattle is of course audible when pressing the switch right besides your ear, but nobody types like that
Relatively high pitched sound, as expected.
Weird little oddball, might build a board with it.
GTMX and OUTEMU snap spring blue:
Both share the same click mechanism, but as @rpiguy9907 stated in the aforementioned thread, the original Outemu switches are clearly superior. We should have more switches with the snap-spring mechanism. The sound is different to all the other mechanisms. If I had to describe it, I’d say it reminds me of a click jacket without the rattle, more defined and not as loud.
I’m already in the process of building a board with them. My favourite out of those five.
Do you modify the stabilizers or caps somehow?
Even with the tecsee low profile stabilizers, the stabilized switches bottom out about a millimeter higher than the non-stabilized ones.
The stem shaft of the keycaps (at least the cherry-profile ones I used for testing) hits the stabilizers housing before the switch itself bottoms out.
Not a big deal, I’m just curious if you do something about that, or if you don’t mind or don’t have the problem.
I ordered a whole lot of them without even trying them before, and I am not disappointed.
Can confirm what you wrote about them.
Thanks for the suggestion!
Together with the Outemu Ocean clickies, I also ordered Outemu Cyan clickies (at least kprepublic calls them like that). Very cheap, and a lot more rattle than the Oceans, but I prefer the push feel over the Oceans. Very pronounced electric hysteresis, which I like when typing a lot.
I think that’s what most of the Aliexpress vendors will call the Outemu Green. I have the dustproof on an E-Yooso board, and I think I like them better than Gateron Green, but not as much as the Box Navy. I haven’t decided if I like the Box Navy twice as much though, and that’s the price difference.
More to help folks find these when looking for non-bar clickies;
Gateron just released a new switch featuring a relatively narrow click leaf - mine haven’t come in yet, but the manufacturer does have a positive track record with click leaves in general, so I expect them to be at least decent - I’m sure reviews are but a few days away at this point.
I ordered mine a couple of days ago.
Still struggling with Gateron though, trying to convince them that I neither have or need a VAT-number, and that I simply can’t get one as a private individual here in Norway.
Gateron figured out the shipping, and my Melodics are on their way.
What I am curious about is the following quote from their homepage:
With a minimum lifespan of 6000w keystrokes
With an average word length of about 5 letters (assuming English), that would come down to a meager 30.000 strokes.
Of course there is little or non at all long-term experience, and I guess that’s the reason they’ve purposefully chosen a rather low number.
But it seems a little odd anyway.
Obligatory I’m not Chinese nor an expert here, but from what I’ve found, in Chinese the letter “w” means 10,000. So 6000w would be 6000 x 10000 = 60000000. It’s kind of like how English uses “k” to mean 1000.