What Mechanical Keyboard Switches are Best for Gaming?

By Robert David Orr / Last updated: Oct 15, 2022

Whether you are a casual or seasoned gamer, the mechanical keyboard is the ideal choice for feel, responsiveness, and getting the most genuinely satisfying gaming experience.

However, setting up a mechanical keyboard can be overwhelming because of the abundant keyboard switch choices in the market. If you want to know what mechanical keyboard switches are best for gaming, you are definitely in the right place.

The best mechanical keyboard switches for gaming are the Cherry MX Speed Sliver switches. The ideal mechanical keyboard switches for gaming should be linear and actuate as fast as possible with the least force– preferably 45 Gs of actuation. There are many options available in the market, but Cherry MX Speed Silver Switches meet most gamers’ needs, delivering a high-performance and satisfying experience. 

The Cherry MX Speed Silver Keys are not your only option. Although they are highly recommended for most gamers, you should not overlook other options like Kailh, Razer, and Logitech mechanical keyboard switches.

If you want to review all these options, this guide will teach you how to choose what mechanical keyboard switches are best for gaming– and which option is particularly best for you.

By the way – before we get too far into it here, if you want to get more great ideas for your gaming room or home office and want to connect with other home office hackers to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group, Battle Station Setup here.

How to Choose the Best Mechanical Keyboard Switches for Gaming

When selecting the best mechanical keyboard switches for gaming, you want to look for the option that meets your needs. Mechanical keyboard switches are grouped into three categories: linear, tactile, and clicky.

Linear key switches produce smooth and consistent actuation with minimum tactile feedback. These keyboard switches are usually quiet, but they can still provide satisfying feedback, but not as loud as the other options.

Tactile key switches are bumpy and satisfying for typing, but not so much for gaming. They can be too loud, especially if you like to play games at night.

Clicky key switches are the loudest option. Many people who work on their computers prefer larger tactile bumps and more audible clicks with every keystroke to know that every key is working properly. It kind of emulates the typewriter in some ways, making them the best option for creative and copywriters.

With that said, which of the 3 mechanical keyboard switch categories should you choose? Linear key switches are your best bet for gaming because of their excellent and quick response, but not all brands provide the same experience for gamers. When choosing the right linear keyboard switches, you must select them based on these factors.

Mechanical Keyboard Switch Factors that Affect your Gaming Experience

Linear mechanical keyboard switches are the best for gaming, but selecting the best linear switches does not end there. There are many factors to consider before choosing one to improve your gaming experience, such as:

Comfort and satisfaction

Note that you might be gaming for hours. So whether you are a competitive or casual gamer, you want to ensure that the mechanical keyboard switches provide maximum comfort. You also want to make sure you are satisfied with every click, which can drastically help improve your performance.


Some people prefer hearing every click, as it adds more satisfaction and confirms that every click is registering without paying too much attention on the screen. Although linear keys do not have a bump in the middle of travel, you can still hear and feel each click. Although. Tactile and clicky keyboard switches are louder; it is best to stick to linear keys for gaming.

Speed and actuation

Winning most PC games depend on how fast you can press the buttons on your keyboard. If that is the case, you want better accuracy with as little force as possible. The actuation force used when clicking keyboard switches are measured by Gs– and the ideal option for gamers is at least 50 to 45 Gs, with a 1mm actuation point and 3.2mm travel distance.


The average lifespan of a mechanical keyboard is 10 years or more, depending on how you use them. For gaming, it could be less than that. Most top-notch options can last for 50+ million strokes, ideal for casual and competitive gamers. Make sure you select an alternative that can last for over 50 million clicks. Fortunately, you can always switch out or hot-swap the keys to make your mechanical keyboard last longer.

Once you have narrowed down all the factors that affect the keyboard switches’ performance, you can also select a keyboard switches based on aesthetics and your budget range. Although factors like RGB lighting do not really affect a keyboard’s performance, you still want to choose an option that fits your budget and your gaming setup in terms of looks.

Can I Switch Out the Key Switches on my Existing Mechanical Keyboard?

Not all mechanical keyboards are hot-swappable, meaning if your existing mechanical keyboard is not hot-swappable, you cannot switch out the switches for the best options for gaming.

On the other hand, if you do have a hot-swappable keyboard– you can definitely upgrade the switches to improve your gaming experience, and here is how:

How to swap your mechanical keyboard’s switches

Steps Action
Get your switches If you have already decided to swap your keyboard switches and already have a hot-swappable keyboard ready– all you need to do is purchase the switches.
Remove the switches using the keycap puller Hot-swappable mechanical keyboards will come with a keycap puller in its package. Insert the puller’s two arms on the keys you want to swap, and use your pointer finger to pull them out quickly. Make sure you set them aside to save time when putting them back on the new switches.
Pull the switches Once the keycaps are off, you can now pull the switches using a switch puller tool that usually comes with the keyboard package. If not, you can purchase a separate switch puller to avoid damaging the switches.
Insert the new switches and put the keycaps back on When inserting your new switches, ensure that the two copper pins are on the south side going into the respective holes. It should make a clicking noise when the two tabs are properly inserted. The next and final step is to put the keycaps back on.

Final Thoughts

Choosing what mechanical keyboard switches are best for gaming depends on your preference. Some people want smooth switches, and others want them loud with excellent feedback. However, the ideal option for competitive gaming is a linear key switch option.

Before choosing the best key switches for gaming, make sure your mechanical keyboard is hot-swappable. If you don’t have a mechanical keyboard yet, it’s better to purchase one equipped with the key switches you prefer to save you the trouble.

Next Steps

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Robert David Orr

I'm an old school gamer from way back as a kid of the 80s - My first console was the Commodore 64. Since then, I've been gaming on everything from PC games to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System to the Xbox One. Learn more.

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