Mechanical keyboards are a pretty big staple for computer gamers in this day and age. We can’t get enough of those sometimes very clicky keys with an action that just feels a lot more assured than non-mechanical variants. This is thanks to the switches that sit below the keys, which come in all different variants and brands. There isn’t really a bigger name when it comes specifically to key switches than Cherry MX, and the brands have just launched a new official community design switch.
The Cherry MX Ergo Clear (opens in a new tab) is a quiet switch that came about thanks to the DIY efforts of the community, and now it’s making its way to the official Cherry line. The Ergo Clear (opens in a new tab) first appeared in March 2011 when a user going by mtl showed off his mod on the Geekhack forums. (opens in a new tab).
The mod involved swapping out the springs that came with the MX Clear board at the time and replacing them with springs from the MX Black switches. You can still go see the post now (opens in a new tab), which details how they came to this combination. It gives a softer typing feel and changes the bottom force, making something a bit like a cross between the MX Clear and MX Brown Cherry switches. More importantly, it was a big hit in the keyboard community.
It’s almost surprising to see that Cherry will take this long to bring these hyped switches into the official rotation, but it’s a nice special edition touch for enthusiasts. In addition, the modification process is quite difficult, and this gives less experienced users a much easier way to get their hands on Ergo Clear keys.
Of course, these official MX Ergo Clear switches have some professional adjustments from Cherry MX because the brand is a fan of clear updates. (opens in a new tab). The original version used a PTFE lubricating coating that was replaced by high-performance grease at specific points. It allows Cherry MX to guarantee more than 50 million actuations, and is probably a bit safer over the life of the switch.
In addition, the Cherry MX Ergo Clear will come in different varieties. There’s the RGB version for gamers who want their keyboards to shine as bright as their kill streak. These have a translucent top part of the keys that will let LEDs show. Or you can rock the standard darker switches for a more discreet look.
Both types will be available in both 3-pin and 5-pin configurations, as well as built into upcoming keyboard models. If the community is anything to go by, these will be nice, smooth, quiet typing experiences, great for gaming and office use. I can’t wait to try some official Cherry MX Ergo Clears for myself and feel the difference.