What’s Best: Mechanical or Membrane Gaming Keyboards?

There’s a big debate in the world of computers, especially in the gaming industry, when it comes to the type of keyboard you should be using. Some of the most iconic players in the industry recommend particular brands, some specific types or models, but there’s always one clear distinction that needs to be made; mechanical or membrane?

Today, we’re going to explore the differences between mechanical and membrane keyboards, helping you to learn everything you need to know when it comes to choosing the device that’s right and best for you.

What is a Mechanical Keyboard?

If you imagine a computer keyboard in your head right now, the chances are you’re thinking of a mechanical one. These are the traditional form of keyboard. These are keyboards that operate using highly durable plastic switches underneath each key that make it responsive. 

You push the plastic key, the stem within the key is pushed down into the switch underneath that then triggers the key. Typically, these keys are spring-loaded, meaning they will bounce back automatically when pushed. Most commonly, there’s also a clicking sound when each key is pressed, so you know it’s been pressed fully.

One of the greatest benefits of a mechanical keyboard is the fact you can press multiple keys at the same time without issue. Often this comes in the form of an FN key and a number key which then allows you to carry out functions like changing game mode, skipping a song, or changing the volume of your system.

However, mechanical keyboards tend to be much heavier than their membrane counterparts, and due to the clicking sound produced on pressing a key, they can also be very loud, especially when typing fast.

What is a Membrane Keyboard?

Whereas a mechanical keyboard uses physical switches and stems to be responsive, a membrane keyboard is a much quieter, much more responsive kind of keyboard. This is because gaming keyboards in this variety use dome switches.

These are flat switches that, when pushed, are registered on the conductive current underneath the switches that then signal that the key has been pressed. Traditionally, these keyboards are created using rubber or silicone designs that mean the key you’re pressing is all there is, rather than relying on pressure or lots of physical parts.

Which is Best?

Which type of keyboard is best for your gaming rig is really up to you, and it truly depends on what you’re after. There is a very obvious benefit to membrane keyboards which many people are drawn to which is the fact they are so quiet. Whether you’re annoyed by the constant clicking sound your keyboard makes when playing, or you’re a streamer who doesn’t want the keyboard sounds picked up by your mic, a membrane keyboard, like the ones found on QuietResources, will be best for you.

However, if you’re looking for a more traditional experience that provides reliable feedback when you press a key, as well as a keyboard you can easily clean, and will last so much longer in terms of key presses (most lasting several million), a mechanical keyboard will be best for you.

The best thing to do is to do your research, see what models and devices suit your price tag and your personal requirements, and you’re ultimately going to find the best keyboard for you!

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Hello there! I’m Gareth, the 16-Bit Dad; a retro gaming blogger, Twitch Streamer and Autism Parent. With a focus on great games, a wonderful Stream community and help for other Autism Parents, I review games, play them with the community and share my learnings about Autism!

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