Mechanical switches tend to be more durable.
DahplA wrote:There probably already topics out there for this question. I've been thinking about getting a mechanical keyboard for a while now, because it seems it's like what everyone uses.
- Is there a benefit to getting a mechanical keyboard?
- What does it provide over a normal keyboard?
- Will I see an immediate improvement, or will I have to get used to it?
You will have to get used to it. Speaking from my own experience, my accuracy was a mess initially when I went from rubber dome to Blue, because of the way the key registers, and how I was expecting it to register.
Basically, with rubber dome, when the key hits the bottom-out point, it registers, and it's easy to recognize this. With Blue switches however, it registers about half-way through the key press, before the point of bottoming-out.
It doesn't take too long to get used to a certain switch type though, but the time to get used to a switch depends on the switch you're going to, and what you're used to.
Edit: Apparently Black and Red require you to bottom-out to register presses, which may be pretty similar to rubber dome.
The question is, what kind of switch will you get? Ideally, I would recommend getting a mechanical keyboard for the intention of using it generally, and not getting one specifically for osu!. This may or may not be the most accurate information, but:
- I hear Red switches are recommended for gaming, but are terrible to type with over extended periods of time.
- Blacks are also recommended for gaming.
- Blues are great for typing, but I don't see too many people recommending them for gaming. They're also regarded as loud.
- Greens are great if you want something similar to the buckling spring switch (basically harder to press down); great for typing.
- Browns are a lighter (quieter)-version of Blue, and I hear it commonly recommended for a good balance between typing, gaming, and silence.
- Buckling springs are great, but this is an "ancient" switch, and you'll likely only see it mentioned with the IBM Model M; which is outstanding for typing.
As for what factors to look into when choosing a switch type for a specific task, it's whether the switch is linear or not, and how much actuation force it takes to press the key down.
I'd personally recommend Brown switches. Blues aren't bad either. And if for some reason you want to go old-school and have a tank of a keyboard that can survive anything (and also have fun possibly fixing it up and learning more about keyboards along the way), could go for an IBM Model M or if you want something newer you can actually pick up in retail, something with Green switches.
Although now that I think about it, I think Blacks and Red switches are linear switches, which ideally means the switch registers on and off around the same point (which sounds and probably is great for accuracy with osu!). Blues I know aren't linear. No idea on Browns or other switches. The switch being linear or not won't matter after a time where you get used to the switch anyway though.
Also, here's a page full of useful keyboard terms you may want to look into: https://mechanicalkeyboards.com/terms.php
Whichever keyboard and switch you do decide to choose though, just make sure to choose it after thorough research. I jumped right into mech keyboard and got Blue without looking at anything else, and kind of regretted it at first (not saying Blue is bad of course; just saying I wish I would have known about other switch types at the time).
Someone please feel free to correct any of that information if it's wrong.