There are thousands of different keyboards available in the market for sale from different manufacturers.They are either mechanical keyboard vs membrane keyboard.You must have come across the term “Mechanical Keyboard” and wondered, Why is it named so? Being a regular computer user I have switched between a lot of keyboards and realised that each differs from each other. Some perform well while some do not live up to the expectation.People have their personal choices while choosing a keyboard and they are designed for a specific purpose.The Gamers will choose a completely different keyboard than compared to a regular user.So, today we will put Mechanical Keyboard and Membrane Keyboard head to head and share our experience.
What is a Mechanical Keyboard?
Mechanical Keyboards has a sturdy build.The Mechanical Keyboards uses hard switch to send signals in place of a soft membrane.The Keyboard uses different types of switches which give different feedback to the user.Switches come in three variants: linear with consistent resistance, and tactile with a non-audible bump, or tactile with an audible click.Few of keys require more effort to press and few require less, depending upon the spring resistance.Each particular key has its own pre-defined function.The structure of keys has its own base, a spring and a stem.The keycap of the keyboard is user replaceable, thus making the Mechanical Keyboards highly customisable.Mechanical Keyboards are believed to have a higher precision rate as compared to the Membrane Keyboards because two signals will not interfere with each other.
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Pros of using a Mechanical Keyboard:
The keycaps are user replaceable which allows the user to customise the Keyboard according to their wish.They can match it with their Computer Case, Desktop Theme or give a look as they want.Mechanical Keyboards are long-lasting, in case if any switch malfunctions you can replace it easily without spending too much.
The Mechanical Keyboards uses a hard switch in place of a membrane.This makes the keyboards to last longer than any regular keyboard.The hard switch and the contact plate of the keyboards are robust and do not give up easily.If any key causes any disruption, it can be easily replaced.
The keys of the keyboard need not be pressed till bottom.You can easily press it halfway and release.This allows a better typing ergonomics and much faster-typing speed.Moreover, this results in less fatigue and pain in the fingers.Even it returns a tactile feedback after each keypress.
Mechanical Keyboards are heavy and very well-built.The heavy built can be either a boon or a bane for many.But, in most of the case, the users found the heaviness of the keyboard to be beneficial because it holds the keyboard at a particular position.
The effort required to clean the keyboard is very less.The keys can be opened up completely and the base of the keyboard can be easily cleaned.
Cons of using a Mechanical Keyboard:
The keyboards are generally expensive.The premium materials are used to manufacture the keyboards adds to the cost.Moreover, the replaceable components and the technology they use are expensive too thus adding to the price of the mechanical keyboards.
The keyboard makes a tactile sound.The sound depends on the type of the switch which is used in the keyboard.If you are working in the environment where people do not like noise, then this can cause an issue to you.
Replacing the keys yourself needs some DIY skills.If you are someone who does not to like to experiment with your gadgets and devices, If you are planning to get one then better you should grow your interest in that too.
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What is a Membrane Keyboard?
Membrane Keyboards are the most common type of keyboard available in the market.It has a membrane layer which sends the key signal.The Keyboard has a 3 layer membrane design which is very flexible.They are “Top Layer Membrane”, “Holes Layer” and “Bottom Layer Membrane”.When a key is pressed, the signal is passed through the Top Layer Membrane and passing through Holes Layer and finally allowing the pressure pads that are located under each key to passing through.
Pros of Membrane Keyboard:
The Membrane Keyboard makes less noise as compared to a Mechanical Keyboard.The silicon membrane of the keyboard works as a damping for the keys.Even if you type faster than your normal speed, the Membrane Keyboard will be relatively quiet as compared to any Mechanical Keyboard.
The Membrane Keyboards are generally made of plastic.Thus, making the keyboard light and portable.It is always easier to carry a Membrane Keyboard as compared to the heavy built Mechanical Keyboards.
The Membrane Keyboard are significantly cheaper than Mechanical Keyboards.The main component being plastic helps in the cost-cutting.Thus this is the main reason for its higher availability.
Cons of Membrane Keyboard:
Life Span is less but it will last for few years for sure, the plastic prints on the keys wearout soon after use.The membrane gets mushy with time.This makes the typing experience unpleasant.
The cleaning of Membrane Keyboard is a really difficult task.As the keys are non-replaceable it gets difficult to clean the dust out from the middle of the keys.
Typing on these keyboards changes with time as the membrane shrinks or gets hardened.Thus, it require more effort to create the signal.
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Mechanical Keyboard vs Membrane Keyboard: Which one is better for you?
The answer to this question is absolutely based on personal choices.The Mechanical Keyboard is highly customisable with different backlit options and keystroke sound.This allows the user to play around with different looks and configurations of the keyboard. The Mechanical Keyboard is a very well-built and are generally heavy.Thus, these suits well in the permanent working space.The keyboard also requires less effort to type and also last longer as compared to other keyboards.
On the other hand Membrane Keyboards are the most common type of keyboard available in the market.They are more affordable and gets the job done quite comfortably.The Membrane Keyboard may not give the same pleasure of typing as a mechanical keyboard, actually, it requires more effort to type on membrane keyboards.You need to press a key completely to create the signal.They last for a decent period of time.The feel of typing changes with passing time due to the membrane layer, thus making the user adjust with the change.
Frequently Asked Question: Mechanical Keyboard vs Membrane Keyboard
1.Mechanical vs Membrane Keyboard for TYPING?
The primary use of the keyboard is typing, both the keyboard gets the work done.But, if we compare both of them then Mechanical Keyboard scores a little higher than a Membrane Keyboard.The typing experience on Mechanical Keyboard is effortless.The feedback of the keys on the keyboard remain same since day-1 till the keyboard is in use.Moreover, the keys create signal even if the keys are half pressed.
2.Mechanical vs Membrane Keyboard for GAMING?
Mechanical Keyboard scores more here as well, the better ergonomics makes it a better choice for gaming too.The feedback from the keyboard is exceptional when you are playing.If you need to press a key repeatedly then, you can half press the key to get your work done.This may not sound a major point, but the GAMERS will understand.
3.Mechanical Keyboard vs Membrane Keyboard Lifespan?
The lifespan will generally depend on how you decide to use your keyboard.The Membrane Keyboard easily last for 15-18 Months.After that membrane starts to show its age.This result in poor typing experience.
On the other hand, Mechanical Keyboard remains the same throughout the time.If any key malfunctions you can change the key easily and the Keyboard will work as normal.A mechanical keyboard generally last for 2-3 years easily.
4.Why is Mechanical Keyboard expensive than Membrane Keyboard?
Mechanical Keyboard is made of high-quality premium materials.They are rigid and are very well built, the keys can be replaced by the user easily.Moreover, it can be fully customised as per the wish of the user.These are the reason for Mechanical Keyboard being more expensive than Membrane Keyboard.
5.Which one is more affordable and has a better portability?
Talking about affordability, Membrane Keyboard is more affordable.You can get one as cheap as 250/-($4 approx)
Membrane Keyboards are more portable.The built of Membrane Keyboard is not so heavy and can be carried along.Mechanical Keyboard is big NO.They are extremely heavy.