Beginner's guide to keyboards‚ÄĒ 3 keyboards' differences

Beginner's guide to keyboards‚ÄĒ 3 keyboards' differences


5 minute read

It is stated that there is no noble or humble keyboard, just because the needs are different, and there is no chain of contempt. This article is a beginner's guide to show you the differences between mechanical keyboards and membrane keyboards and electrostatic capacitive keyboards.

mechanical keyboard

The mechanical keyboard makes each button an independent switch. Generally, the switch is disconnected and there is no electric current through it. However, when the button is pressed, the two pairs of metal contacts inside the button touch together and the button is triggered. The switch is the axis called the keyboard switch. Cherry is the best switch when a customized switch is not popular. However, there were many kinds of switches at that time, such as the Alps switch. There are also the crank switches of the old keyboards, the OmniPoint switches developed by SteelSeries, and the Omron switches of Logitech. Some of these switches have been eliminated, and some are still on sale, but gradually no one cares about them.
The above is all the previous glory of the cherry switch. Recently, the cherry switch often has had problems. In addition, Chinese switch manufacturers have developed. Some manufacturers have even broken away from the cherry MX switch structure and created a new system which is the BOX switch of Kaih. However, manufacturers such as TTC, Fateron, Outemu, and Content imitated the classic Cherry switches such as green switches, red switches, and brown switches in the early years. They have accumulated enough technology and developed different feel based on the MX structure. The switch has surpassed Cherry in terms of feel and duration of use, and the most significant advantage is its price. Although the switch made in China feels similar to cherry, the price is much lower than cherry, and even manufacturers have their own characteristics.

The following is the schematic diagram

Green switch

Brown switch

Membrane keyboard

There are three layers of circuit boards inside the membrane keyboard, the first and third layers are printed with conductive lines, and the second layer is an insulating layer. The keyboard relies on the silicone bowl under the keys to touch the bottom, so that the first layer of the keyboard contacts the third layer to trigger the signal. It's called a membrane keyboard because the core circuit inside the keyboard is designed on the membrane material.
At present, most of the keyboards in our life are membrane keyboards. Membrane keyboards are easy to manufacture and low in cost. They have replaced mechanical keyboards for a long time.

Electrostatic capacitive keyboard

The electrostatic capacitive keyboard uses the change of capacitance to determine whether the button is pressed. After pressing the button, the capacitance of the air in the conductive glue changes, so that the key is triggered. The whole process can realize the tapping action without a physical contact point. Therefore, the triggering of the switch of the electrostatic capacitor is smooth and there is no noise.

Here is the difference:

Mechanical keyboard and membrane keyboard

1. Feel

The feel of the mechanical keyboard is the feel of the switch. You can refer to the pressure curves of various switches. However, the feel of the membrane keyboard is the feel of the silicone bowl. Similarly, you can refer to the pressure curve of the silicone bowl. (The membrane, the red switch, and the silent red switch can be seen from the pressure curve, and the actual feel is very different.)

2. Trigger point

Although both of their trigger methods are based on the principle of resistance, the trigger points are still different: the membrane keyboard needs to touch the bottom to trigger, and the mechanical keyboard can trigger when it touches the contacts.

3. Because all the keys of the mechanical keyboard are independent, they can be recognized by pressing all the keys at the same time.

4. Mechanical keyboards last longer.

Electrostatic capacitive keyboard and mechanical keyboard

1. Trigger method

Mechanical keyboards are triggered by resistive force, and the contacts need to be contacted, so they are not durable. The electrostatic capacitive keyboard detects the state of the key by measuring the change of capacitance without contacting, so it is more sensitive, and the algorithm can adjust the pressing height, which is more durable.

2. Mechanical structure

The feel of an electrostatic capacitive keyboard is the feel of a plastic bowl. You can refer to the pressure curve of the plastic bowl for details. The feel of the mechanical keyboard is the feel of the switch. You can refer to the pressure curves of various switches.

3. Both of them can be recognized by pressing all the keys at the same time.

4. Electrostatic capacitive keyboard lasts longer.

Electrostatic capacitive keyboard and membrane keyboard

1. Trigger method

The electrostatic capacitive keyboard is more sensitive, faster, and more durable. The electrostatic capacitive keyboard doesn't need to touch the bottom, so it saves effort. The opposite is that the key of the membrane keyboard has to touch the bottom, it's harder and slower.

2. Mechanical structure

According to the structure, the feel of these two keyboards is the feel of a plastic bowl, which should be similar, but the electrostatic capacitive keyboard is still more crisp and refreshing, and the membrane keyboard is more sticky and difficult to press.

3. Electrostatic capacitive keyboard lasts longer.

Through this guide, I hope you can have some understanding of these three keyboards, go and choose your

favorite keyboard!

¬ę Back to Blog

You have successfully subscribed!
This email has been registered
US Student Discount Available - Click here to redeem