New Drop 'Holy Panda X' switches

Drop is releasing a Holy Panda “successor” manufactured by Gateron. Details so far are sparse, but from Quakemz’s comments throughout the thread it sounds like the tactility has been modified to be more similar to U4Ts except with a “rounder” bump. Pitch described as “medium”, 60g springs. It sounds like they won’t be lubed from the factory.

Reddit seems incredibly upset that Drop are using the Holy Panda name but personally I don’t really mind. I guess it could be confusing for people who don’t pay that much attention to the switch landscape, but I understand why Drop would continue using the name for new switches with aggressive tactility.

(ETA: I’ve just noticed people are already discussing this a bit in the Things That Make Us Go Hmmm thread. Oops? I do think this is newsworthy enough to deserve its own thread though, especially considering Drop will be releasing more info later this week.)


I think the issue making a “big” announcement that is just a cash grab on the Holy Panda name instead of trying to bring something new, apparently it doesn’t feature the Halo stem, nor the Invyr housing nor the Gateron X molds (that are presumably smoother).

This brings nothing new into the table, the user posting this barely giving any useful info depite being involved in the creation and development for months.

How does this differ from the million other Holy Panda like switches in the market? I’ll tell you how.
Drop will continue selling the super over priced OG Holy Pandas to the crowed who lead to believe this is the best option, and sell the [probably] cheaper new switch to compete with the cheaper market, with the HP name to attract customers, because why would I get this over something like the much superior to the market U4T?


This is a bit disappointing as someone who wasn’t the biggest fan of U4T switches :frowning:


I’m so confused. SoRrY.

So “Holy Panda” is not a :registered: held by Glorious – and these are somewhat “real” successors to the original HP’s since Dorp and Invyr are bff’s?

Here goes drop making another product I have to tell my friends, who don’t keep up with the keyboard meta and just want a nice mech keyboard, to avoid. Then during the process of trying to explain to them how many switches are better and easily available but from smaller vendors, they will inevitably be overwhelmed and just order another Logitech.

IIRC Glorious backed-off the name after the community reaction, but then Dorp snatched it up, legally speaking.


Glorious did back off to allow Drop to register the trademark, but the USPTO has marked both applications for “Holy Panda” as “DEAD/abandoned”. I’m guessing Drop’s application failed because they couldn’t justify trademarking a phrase used for things that aren’t their products even though they do sell a product called Holy Pandas.


I’m quite glad to hear that, if only for my personal satisfaction. :stuck_out_tongue:

As for these new switches… I’m with @Manofinterests; the description of the tactility is less than exciting for me. I do like that they went with Gateron, though.

Of course I get why they keep using the name, but at least when it comes to the enthusiast community, I think the main thing they are accomplishing here is diluting any cultural capital that may be left in it. To quote Bob Marley:

If you want a big tree, use a small axe.

This seems like cutting the whole thing down for fast lumber to me - one last squeeze of value from the name before finding something else to hype.

Then again - Dorp’s product descriptions aren’t exactly known for accuracy as much as being key-word soup, so who knows - it might be nothing like that description. :man_shrugging: Many of my keeb purchases are driven by curiosity and a desire to share what I learn… I think I’ll leave this one to the sponsored reviews.


Oh boy. I have a friend that thinks Holy Pandas are GOAT and no replacements. I genuinely don’t care one bit with the naming stuff, but the color stuff, cloning stuff, and trademarking stuff really tick me off sometimes.

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Also to be fair, I’m paraphrasing a lot of stuff @Quakemz said in order to summarize the info we have so far. Here’s the full comment he left about the tactility:

And it should also be noted that he was responding to someone who asked for a comparison to U4T. I hope the equivalence wasn’t too heavily influenced by the question, but with only one person in the community having any info on these and that being the only comparative comment he’s made on pushfeel, I don’t have much else to work with and I’m sure as hell not leaving that out of the topic.

I really, really hate how Drop is just teasing these rather than releasing info, but it’s definitely an effective strategy when it comes to advertising on Reddit. Releasing new info bit by bit gets more eyes on the product overall since they’ll be able to easily get on the front page of /r/mechanicalkeyboards multiple times this week.


It’s getting a little out of control with the overloading of the name “holy” with some combination or none at all “panda”. As a lover of tactile switches, I was completely let down by the set that I bought. I hated the sound of the switches so much that I end up putting a different stem in the housing and tossing the stems.

I understand where people are coming from with using the name. The problem is that you can’t “test drive” the switch before purchasing so all you have to go on is the monikers that’s used in the community and the vendors to identify what a switch will feel like. And being that the name has been used so often as a baseline description of what a tactile switch feels like, using it in a product name is just misleading.

And by the same token, I hate switches that bottom out on the long pole since they tend to clack on the bottom out but “thock” on the returns (I thought U4t’s were the exception, but I’m not willing to spend anymore money on other long pole switches). It’s quite jarring to my ears, personally. That being said it’s probably good that drop pick the name with a panda in association so I know to stay away from them LOL.


It seems I’ll be in the minority on this one (I certainly would be on reddit). As far I’m concerned, the biggest problem with the name is that it will get confused with Gateron X and the “original” Holy Panda, but whatever - much ado about nothing.

To me, the most interesting part is that Gateron is the manufacturer. Given the run they’ve been on lately (Kangaroo, Silver Blizzard, Limbo, Minks, Pinks, Oil Kings, CJs, Hippos, to name a few), I’m reluctant to dismiss the switch.


I agree, the whole Holy Panda thing has become such a meme to me the naming being used anywhere doesn’t bother me anymore. On the other hand these being made by Gateron & having the X tag line, they damn well better being using the X bottom housings. Which I do not think they will be using…


I hope they select a spring that has the same bottom out force at the end of travel as the peak tactile force, similar to the original Holy Pandas. That was one of the things that the original HP does very well compared to its big bump successors, the bump is relatively round and because of the reduced travel the switch bottoms out at 60g instead of 67g, making you just barely bottom out instantly.

Given Gateron is the manufacturer I would expect better QC than Drop but well, its Drop so who knows.

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Morning coffee ramble incoming:

I love me some Gateron switches (found a new favorite last night that I’ll be gushing about somewhere soon), but they do have some loose / confusing naming conventions.

If I understand right, the newest Inks being sold now are still called “Ink V2s” but have been revised since “V2s” were first released some time ago; I remember Keybored making a distinction between older and more recent ones - why not call them V3s to communicate the revision? :man_shrugging: Gateron: great switches, occasionally confusing names.

Then again, this name is probably all Dorp. I’m sure it will be a quality switch, and it’s probably just that part of my brain that prefers things to be neatly categorized and materially relevant that’s irked by the name. I’m with you that “Holy Panda” itself being used is more worthy of a chuckle than a pitchfork at this point - my main concern (even that might be too strong a word) is that of customer expectation from the name vs the product itself.

It’s like the electric Mustang that Ford is making; all indications point to it being good and meeting its goals in terms of how it functions - but it’s built on a crossover SUV frame and looks like a crossover SUV. They could have called it the “E-scape” and that would more accurately convey its relationship to their existing vehicles - but - who’s gonna get excited about that?

Cashing-in on brand recognition / cultural capital only makes sense, though I’d say it’s most effective when the thing taking up the name has an easily trace-able connection to whatever the origin-point of that name is.

Some example personal-opinion scores on some funky names:

Mustang Mach-E:

:x: 2-door coupe
:x: V-8
:x: Iconic lines
:white_check_mark: “pony car”
:white_check_mark: Fastback

Naming grade: C

Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

:x: 2-door coupe
:x: Small, light, nimble
:x: Iconic lines
:x: A car
:white_check_mark: Available AWD

Naming grade: D-

Toyota Supra:

:x: 2JZ-lineage engine
:x: Manual transmission option
:x: A Toyota
:white_check_mark: 2-door sports coupe
:white_check_mark: Iconic lines

Naming grade: C

Anne Pro 2

:white_check_mark: Iterated from original
:white_check_mark: Same form-factor
:white_check_mark: Same main functions
:white_check_mark: Improved features
:white_check_mark: Same use-cases

Naming grade: A+

Drop Holy Panda:

:x: Tried to copyright community name
:white_check_mark: Panda housing
:white_check_mark: Halo stem
:white_check_mark: Iconic look
:white_check_mark: Snappy clax

Naming grade: A-

Glorious Holy Panda: (before renaming)

:x: Tried to copyright community name
:x: Panda housing
:x: Halo stem
:x: Iconic look
:white_check_mark: Snappy clax

Naming grade: D-

Drop Holy Panda X

:x: Stop, he’s already dead! :horse:
:x: Panda housing
:x: Halo stem
:x: Iconic look
:grey_question: Gateron X bottom
:white_check_mark: Snappy clax* (probably)

Naming grade: D-


I also feel the other thing missing from drop and glorious panda switches is the diy satisfaction. Holy Panda, to me, was the first frankenswitch to become a household name. I always felt the love for Holy Panda switches wasn’t about being the best tactile switch, it was more about a switch that was good and emerged from the community. It was a rare switch that generally had to be made by hunting down the pieces and building them yourself.
I understand why a company like drop is using the name for a new product but it would be cool if their description and marketing acknowledged the switch’s history instead of implying that it is a combination of parts they created and supply. Maybe there is a record of them doing this that I am missing.
I suppose I’m just feeling emotional about it because hunting down the parts, lube, small tools etc to assemble holy (trash) pandas was my first big keyboard projects and I hate to think about all the other people who miss out on such fulfilling projects within this hobby.
That being said any quality switch is going to be a gateway drug to new enthusiasts so maybe these will be great!


I’d be lying if I said I didn’t like the look of that comparison.

The new photos look nice, too. Also, this is a first, isn’t it? A Gateron-made top housing without their logo on it. Zeal’s upcoming Clickiez have the Zeal logo, but they do also have the Gateron one.

Still down here in case there’s any doubt.

Not sure if it’s already been mentioned already, but it looks like they do have the new-ish North-friendly curve in the housing that’s showing up on most newly manufactured Gaterons.

I don’t think they talk about the curve or its resultant compatibility explicitly, but the badge being right-side-up with the LED facing North and the above photo showing North-mounted switches with some GMK-looking caps on them could be references it it. They could also be coincidental.


So this is funny; I learned something positive today that definitely would have informed and at least somewhat changed my opinion on the HPX naming scheme.

I saw Kevin from Drop casually mention they pay licensing fees in a discussion about the HPX vs the Glorious Panda, so I asked for a clarification and got one:

I feel like this is one of those things that Drop has been doing right this whole time, but that few if any realized they were doing right because they didn’t mention it. Not that it should be a big announcement or anything - but maybe a bullet-point on a story page or something.

IMHO, paying creatives their dues goes a long way towards maintaining good will in situations like these, and late as it is I did want to give Drop credit for it, especially in context of all the name and copyright criticism that surrounded this product.