What Are Cherry MX Red Switches

What Are Cherry MX Red Switches

Cherry MX Red Switches are a linear switch. Due to it's lighter feel as a linear switch, there's a lack of a tactile feedback. Cherry MX Reds have a low resistance, making it a top pick for fast pace and quick reaction gaming. Their actuation force is at 45g, actuation point at 2mm and a total travel distance of 4mm. Cherry MX Red Switches have a lifespan of 50 million keystrokes with regular use.

Cherry MX Red Switches are the most popular mechanical keyboard switch for gamers.   For dedicated writers, it may not be the best option; though, as a writer myself, I've had no issues using Cherry MX Reds.

What Are Cherry MX Red Switches

Cherry MX Red Facts

Actuation Force

45cN

Actuation Point

2mm

Tot. Travel Distance

4mm

Behavior

Linear

Noise Level

Quiet

Lifespan

50 million keystrokes

 

Cherry MX Reds

There's a reason that the Cherry MX Reds have become some of the most popular and widely used switches for gaming. Because of the low spring resistance, there is an immediate trigger response. This delivers high precision and when you're gaming, isn't that what you want? The upper housing of the Cherry MX Red is made out of a CAD (computer-aided design) component of plastic polymer. As stated before, the MX Reds have a low resistance, as in the tolerance is less than 0.01 mm. This low tolerance lets the component guide the switch meticulously, creating the keyswitch's switching mechanism housing.


Linear Switch

What are they? It's an important factor to consider when you're choosing a mechanical keyboard. Linear switches are smooth and that provide a consistent actuation resulting in very little tactile feedback. What is tactile feedback? If a switch is tactile, before the key bottoms out at the end of it's travel, it has a bump in response to your finger pushing down at the point or near the point of which the press registers. Cherry MX Reds are linear, so this means you will not be experiencing any tactile feedback. Linear switches are a type of switch that are typically quiet and more consistent in their entire movement. Linear switches are preferred by pro-gamers and most gamers, like myself and my brother for instance. Don't the disregard writers, too! They live by their keyboards as well and it's not an uncommon pick.


Silent Enough

To be honest (as I often state a lot of my paragraphs in these articles), I believe when it comes to switches, it should be about how you want your switches to feel, over how they sound. However, I know that the sound can be a big factor in the choice. Some of us quite frankly don't want to hear the incessant 'clicky clacky' while we type or play. While Cherry MX Browns, with an O-ring may be a better bet when it comes to less noise, Cherry MX Reds are also a choice pick. I've taken the time to put O-rings on all of my keycaps for the red switch. (Actually there are O-rings on all of my keycaps, to be honest, of all switch varieties.) In my opinion, the O-rings make the key press smoother for me, but it also helps to reduce the sound. Compared to the extremely earful Cherry MX Blue variety, Cherry MX Red will be more silent. Yet, the best red selection for the quieter performance will be the Cherry MX Red Silents (considering that's what you want to stick with), which I have done a review about already. If you're really about the silence, try out Cherry MX Silent Reds.

 

What Are Cherry MX Red Switches


What Are Some Red Switch Choices?

There are other choices for red switches, besides Cherry MX Reds. For instance, there is the Kailh Red, HyperX Red and Gateron Reds. Let's take a look.

HyperX Reds

Actuation Force

45cN

Actuation Point

1.8mm

Tot. Travel Distance

3.8mm

Behavior

Linear

Noise Level

Quiet

Lifespan

80 million keystrokes

They HyperX Red Switches seem to feel about the same as the Cherry MX Reds and the Gateron Reds. They are relatively fast; the travel distance is shorter and so is the activation point, making this is a good option for a gaming keyboard (which HyperX are obviously noted for). A good thing to mention is that HyperX reds use the standard MX stems. Changing out your custom keycaps shouldn't be a problem.


Gateron Reds

Actuation Force

45cN

Actuation Point

2mm

Tot. Travel Distance

4mm

Behavior

Linear

Noise Level

Quiet

Lifespan

50 million keystrokes

Gateron Red Switches are not an uncommon switch type for gamers. They are a cheaper brand, but that doesn't mean what you receive is a cheaper performance. Gateron Red Switches are smoother and have a better feel than other Cherry switches. Gateron Red Switches are also known for their durability. They are a very popular option, which ultimately speaks for itself.


Kailh Reds

Actuation Force

45cN

Actuation Point

2.1mm/2mm

Tot. Travel Distance

3.8mm/4mm

Behavior

Linear

Noise Level

Quiet

Lifespan

70-80 million keystrokes

Over all, Kailh Red Switches are a decent brand of switches, legal clones of the Cherry MXs. The Kailh Reds are almost identical to the Cherry MX Brown. I've noticed over multiple websites that the actuation force and point specs vary. Some say that the actuation force requires a little bit more pressure. Reviews of this switch also depend on the users. The typing seems to be relatively the same. Some users have said they are 'scratchy', while others say that they have a nice blend of gaming and typing.






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