Silencing your mechanical keyboard is important, because they are often pretty noisy, especially if you streaming you can hear it. Instead of buying a new cheap membrane keyboard, you should consider one of these methods below.
They are a one-time investment that can pretty much eliminate the noise produced by mechanical switches. All you need to do is to pull off the keycaps, stick an O-ring on a center column and put it back on. And installing them on larger keys like spacebar and backspace is just like with regular keys, except they typically have 3 columns instead of just one.
With o-rings installed, noise is reduced about 5-10 dB(from 60 to 54 dB).
Note: You should also know that o-rings installed on blue switches can’t reduce noise as o-rings installed to red, black or brown switches.
While buying o-rings, consider:
The thicker the O-Ring, the distance you have to press before a key is registered is shorter, so you should buy o-rings with thickness 1.5mm -2mm(0.059 inches) .
If the hardness value is lower, the softer the key will feel to the touch, so consider buying hardness of 40A.
Here is some example of o-rings you should look for.
Soft landing pads
These landing pads reduce the noise of the clack part of your keystroke, which is also known as bottoming out The pads provide for the softest landing. They do the same job as up mentioned as an o-ring in a different format, but soft-landing pads (even the firm ones) are softer than softest o-rings.
To install them, remove your keycap by using a key puller with a wiggle motion, that will prevent your ripping them stem of the switch along with your keycap. Now you just need to place one on the top of the switch and put your keycap back on.
If you still weren’t satisfied, try out these mods:
- Cut a piece of o-ring (or other suitable pieces of rubber)
- Place it carefully in the tube of the MX switch base and push it to the bottom
(Note: Don’t push it in yet, just put it in place)
- Reassemble the switch and enjoy oneness with an o-ring rubber.
This mod reduces the distance to bottom out after the activation point. You can try different length pieces to adjust the amount of travel. You can cut them with straighter edges or more angled and try different lengths to adjust the feel. Nice for testing and finding what you like best. Also, try different materials for a different feel. With about 2 mm and a soft o-ring, you can start to feel the resistance increase about 1 mm after activation. The resistance increases nicely and you can press the key almost to the original bottom out point with good pressure.
To do this, you need to strategically place some liquid latex on the switch to act as a dampener. So instead of plastic hitting plastic, plastic hitting the latex. Place a small amount on the top of the “box” where the stem comes down to silence the bottom out. Then a just a little amount on each side of the top housing where the stem hits on the return. It’s easy to clean up and redo if needed, or you can just remove it if you change your mind.
Another option is Zealencio silencing clips. This product comes from ZealPC, the designer of Zealio switches. But they’re not only for Zeal’s switches. In fact, they’ll fit on almost any Cherry-style switch to ensure a quieter typing experience.
They keep the switch from bottoming out completely, for less noise. The press also doesn’t feel that mushy as o-rings fitted to keycaps. Also, there is no need to take the switches out, and it doesn’t matter if they’re mounted on a plate.
Installation was very simple – took off all of the keycaps, and install the Zealencios. It looks around 3-5 minutes to install. And great thing is that there is already a cutout for the LED’s, so there is no need to worry about that.