Mechanical Keyboards are the absolute favorite of many gamers and professionals for many reasons. These include their efficiency, reliability, and quick touch response. You do not have to press so hard before you get a response on your mechanical keyboard.
They may be a little more expensive than the regular keyboard, but the features they offer make them worth every penny. There are even lesser priced ones that still afford you such luxuries, so they are easily accessible for all.
However, while your mechanical keyboard may be the best thing that has happened to you, there is a small but largely annoying price that you have to pay for such life-easing features. The clicky-clacky, loud sound the keyboard makes.
Mechanical keyboards are known to be, at times, frustratingly loud to the extent of driving other people around you crazy once you start to press the keys. Thankfully, manufacturers and users of these keyboards are starting to find ways to improve the keyboard’s noisiness to make typing bearable, if that tickles your fancy.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at how to make your keyboard quieter with a few proven methods.
Purchase Silent Mechanical Keyboard Switches
This is the best and surest option you can try to reduce the noisiness of your keyboard. Before choosing this option, learn why your mechanical keyboard seems to be annoyingly loud.
Firstly, mechanical keyboards have in-built switches. When you press each key (which comes with a switch), the plastic sliders beneath the keys come down on a spring. This is what then triggers the electric circuit that activates the key input onto your computer.
This is not the same with regular keyboards; those ones use a rubber sheet to cover the switches, which drowns out the typing sound. This is because typing on the keyboard will not give the same feeling on regular keyboards as it will on mechanical keyboards.
It is usually for this crisp feeling that many gamers and typists buy mechanical keyboards. So, how then can you enjoy what you pay for?
Manufacturers understand that this is a problem and have sought ways to solve it. This is what has led to the new sets of silent switches for mechanical keyboards. To reduce the noisy sound of your keyboard, buying these silent switches will be a better choice.
They are built using a different type of material that is less noisy than the regular switch. This drowns out the noise considerably. While the noisy sound is not completely wiped out, some silent switches like the Cherry MX Silent Red switches claims to be up to 30% quieter than the regular MX key switches.
Add Foam Inside Your Mechanical Keyboard
This is another trusted and sure method that helps reduce clacky keys drastically. For this modification, a foam cloth or keyboard pad is necessary.
Typing causes the keyboard to vibrate, which leads to the obnoxious rattling, pinging sound. To take away this noise, you need an absorbing mat or cloth that drowns out the sound. This is why foam or keyboard padding is necessary. This can be implemented in a couple ways.
The first is adding padding to the individual switches themselves. Soft padding could be foamg or cloth that you place directly on top of the keyboard switches that takes away the noise problem. The only little issue is that you may need to do some work to get the foam on top of the keyboard switches. There are switch clips available that make this a little bit easier.
The second is adding padding inside the case of your mechanical keyboard. Grab a screwdriver and open up your keyboard so that you can place the pad between the PCB and bottom plate. The extent of work and time this will take to get done depends on your type of keyboard.
Purchase a Desk Mat
To tackle a noisy keyboard issue, you need to think smart. Most importantly, when the noise situation doesn’t appear to be coming from within the keyboard.
So, if you’re looking to soften the sound your keyboard makes when you type, what can you do? If you don’t already have a desk mat, this can help solve that to some degree.
If you often type on a desk, you can tell that a vibration or rattle occurs when your fingers hit the keys. That’s because the bottom of the keyboard is hitting the desk. With this method, you do not need to make any changes to your keyboard and still manage to get sweet peace as you type.
Simply order a desk mat online, and place it on the desk you would keep your keyboard. A typical desk mat has a rubber sole and a cloth-like top. It’s also wide enough to cover the desk with enough space for both your keyboard and mouse.
The soft upper part of the mat will drown out your clicking and clacking while your work area looks amazing with the new addition.
Add Rubber O-Rings to Your Keyboard
One other way to reduce the clicking noise on your keyboard is to include a form of padding to absorb the noise. This will help to drown out the noise and make your keyboard quieter. One of the types of padding you can use is rubber o-rings.
These rings are tiny round charms made of rubber/silicone. They used to be for sealing gaskets but are also effective for reducing the noisiness of your keyboard.
You slip the o-ring around the keyboard stem and wear it on the stem to stop the key from hitting loudly on the keyboard plate. It helps to cut the distance between the key and the plate when you press it down, therefore eliminating the sound to some extent.
This is a great choice for keyboards that do not have clicky switches. If your keyboard has a clicky switch like the Cherry MX, which uses a Blue switch, there may not be much difference. And if this is the case, you may be better off choosing a more quiet switch!
Lube Your Switches
Everybody knows lube makes everything better, especially scratchy, rattling keyboard switches.
If you hear a scratchy or rattling sound as you type away, it might indicate that your keyboard might need lubrication. As you press a key, the spring and stem of the switches rub against each other, causing friction to occur. Friction makes unwanted sounds you very much want to get rid of. This is where lube comes in.
There might be a little snag to this modification, however. If you do not have experience with lubricating your keyboard switches, you may spend hours on this mod. If your keyboard switches are too many, you may spend even more time.
To begin the lubrication process, remove the switches by desoldering them. Next, open the switches and lubricate them properly. Put the switches back together and then reinstall them.
After carefully carrying out this process, you can then enjoy a smoother and less noisy typing experience on your keyboard. There are a few other ways to lubricate your switch without desoldering them.
You can try that process if it is more convenient for you. It doesn’t promise to be less time-consuming, however.
Mod Your Stabilizers
This is last because, frankly, it is the most difficult method on our list. It takes a lot of preparation and effort, but your keyboard and ears will thank you for it.
Stabilizers are those parts of your keyboard that are in place to keep larger keys like the space bar steady. It is what helps them not to rattle or shake so loudly. Modding your stabilizers makes the rattling sound even quieter.
For this modification, you will need three items: Band-Aid, lube, and clips. The process of modding the stabilizer is also a three step process.
First, place the band-aid on the part of the stabilizer where it strikes the PCB. This way, the band-aid drowns out each keystroke.
Next, clip out the bottom feet of the stabilizer so the stabilizer is flat up against your PCB. This will make it a little bit more stable and minimize rattling.
Lastly, it is important to lube up the stabilizers to avoid friction. The up and down movement of the stabilizer causes friction, which produces a vibration. This vibration is noisy and amplifies the sound of your keyboard. With lube, this is all in the past. Lubricating the stabilizers make for a more enjoyable, less noisy typing experience.
You don’t have to deal with the noisiness of your mechanical keyboard any longer. A few of the above methods of solving your noise problem are not particularly easy to get around. However, dedicating a few hours to getting these mods done will leave you with a more silent keyboard to show for in the long run.
If you think they’re too difficult or time consuming, go for the simpler methods like buying a desk mat to bring you a bit of relief.