Lately, I’ve grown tired of these usual switches. Every now and then, I want a keyboard that’s easy to use with quick and smooth keystrokes. So, I started thinking about it and made a list of the lightest keyboard switches.
What defines the lightest keyboard switches?
But first, let’s clarify what makes a mechanical switch light.
The force required to press a switch is what determines it’s lightness. We measure this force in grams (g) or centinewtons (cN).
My personal favorites on this list are the Khail Hako Violets. Input Club designed these switches by combining a Hako switch with a leaf from a Royal switch.
These tactile switches have a smooth and clean tactile profile. They use the lightest spring in the Hako family. Also, their sound is crisp, with a very soft bottom-out.
They have a super light 28g actuation force with a 1.88mm pre-travel and a 3.6mm total-travel. Hako Violets have a “box” structure. Which makes them IP56 waterproof and dustproof to keep dust and moisture away.
Next, we have the Keyfirst Bling Yellows, manufactured by Keyfirst. These linear switches are by far one of the lightest keyboard switches you can find on the market.
The Bling Yellows feel buttery, light, and super fast, which makes them the number two pick for this list. They also produce a crisp and sharp sound with a very smooth keystroke.
They come pre-lubed with a POM stem and PC housings. They have a super light 30g actuation force, a 2mm pretravel, and a 3.8mm total travel.
Next up, we have the Gateron Clears. These are not your usual MX clones. Rather, they are among the lightest keyboard switches Gateron has ever produced.
These switches feel smooth, with an almost buttery, comfy bottom-out feel. That’s thanks to their light spring and little to no scratchiness. Also, they sound great, with a soft, high-toned pitch.
These linear switches have a light 35g actuation with a 50g bottom-out. Coming with a 2mm pre-travel and a 4mm total-travel.
Next up are the Akko CS Jelly Whites. These are some of the best switches made by Akko. They are a modded version of their popular Vintage Whites. But this time, it comes with a dustproof stem and increased stability.
The Jelly Whites feel smooth and consistent, with a nice soft, muted bottom-out. They have a light actuation force, which gives them a “tappy” sound. Also, they produce a nice mid- to high-pitched sound.
These pre-lubed linear switches have a PC top housing, a nylon bottom housing, and a POM stem. They have a 4mm total travel, a 1.9mm pretravel, and a light 35g operating force.
Finally, we have the Box Red Pro, designed by Kailh. These switches combine the best features of the Kailh Box and Kailh Speed switches.
The Box Red Pros feel very light and fast, with little to no inconsistencies. Their bottom-out is great—not too pilowy or spongy. Also, they are very quiet, with a thin, ”clacky” sound.
These linear switches are pre-lubed with a light 35g actuation force, a 1.8mm pretravel, and a 3.6mm total travel. They have a “box” design. Which makes them IP56 water and dustproof.
In conclusion, the lightest keyboard switches are the Hako Violets and the Bling Yellows. Followed by the Gateron Clears, the Akko CS Jelly Whites, and the Kailh Box Red Pros. Each of these switches offers a unique feel that is feather-like and swift. Even though they are quite different from one another, they all offer that light switch feel.
The key is to explore your options and decide what works best for you.