Old school technology is making a comeback. Mechanical keyboards are a modern version of the typewriter. These keyboards are a great alternative to standard common membrane computer keyboards. They are ideal for gamers, writers, or anyone who needs a keyboard with more accuracy or speed. But there’s one problem with them. They aren’t what you’d call quiet. If you work in an office with other people, the last thing you want to be is the noisy clicky clicky guy. Your fellow work co-workers will be able to hear every word you type from the other side of the office!
But if you desire the satisfying key registration that a mechanical keyboard can offer, while at work, the its your lucky day.
I have created a list of the best quiet mechanical keyboards that are less obtrusive in the office.
Mechanical keyboards come with a variety of features. They also come in a variety of designs. When buying a mechanical keyboard, it’s important to know which features or designs are best for your needs.
Please also check out my quiet keyboards guide as well.
A Complete Quiet Mechanical Keyboards Buying Guide
There are six key features you need to take into consideration when selecting the best quiet mechanical keyboards. These features can either enhance or detract from your performance with your mechanical keyboard. The six features you need to consider are the keyboard’s lifespan, size, layout, noise, durability, and design.
The lifespan of a keyboard refers to how long its keys last. Most standard common membrane keyboards have an average lifespan of about 5 million keystrokes. Mechanical keyboards, however, can range in lifespan from 30 million keystrokes up to over 100 million keystrokes.
In years, the number of keystrokes mechanical keyboards can handle averages well above 75 years even with heavy daily use.
Size and Layout
The layout of a mechanical keyboard is very important since it can affect the usability of the keyboard. Some mechanical keyboards do not have a full-sized keyboard while others have both numerical keys and media keys.
If you are a gamer, you may find that you don’t need a full keyboard with number keys. The keyboard you may need instead is a tenkeyless keyboard. Though tenkeyless keyboards don’t have a number pad, they do have arrow/navigation keys. You might be interested in our post on the best quiet gaming keyboards if you are in the market for a gaming model.
One thing to keep in mind if you are a gamer is that a number pad can be helpful if you like to remap game commands. Also, some games require the use of number keys.
If you are a writer or a student who needs to use your mechanical keyboard for typing, a full sized keyboard with number keys is essential. This keyboard is called a standard mechanical keyboard.
If size is important to you, and you need something that is compact and easy to carry, then a compact mechanical keyboard is what you need. Compact mechanical keyboards do not have a number pad or arrow/navigation keys. Compact keyboards are ideal if you have a small workspace or need to travel with your mechanical keyboard often.
Noise & Key Switch Types
Mechanical keyboards are known for being loud. If you are a gamer or type with music playing, the noise of your mechanical keyboard may not be of concern. However, if you will be using your keyboard in an office setting, or if you share a room with a roommate, it may be best that you get a keyboard that has quieter switches.
A mechanical keyboard’s noisiness depends on which materials it is made with, the switches they use as well as the distance the keys have to travel. Tactile feedback switches are quieter than clicky switches and the color of switch will determine how quiet the keys are likely to be. You do get ‘silent cherry MX red switches’ and ‘cherry MX silent black’ switches now, which dampen the sound of the keypress for the quietest sound. But the one color of switch to avoid for noise would be blue clicky switches. These blue switches may provide a good typing experience, but they do come with noise as a trade off.
If you do go for silent red switches, make sure they are really MX silent reds and not just regular red cherry MX switches with o-rings to dampen the sound. There is a difference when it comes to the actuation force and feel of the keyboard switches.
Mechanical keyboards and durability go hand in hand. Still, some mechanical keyboards are more durable than others. A good durable mechanical keyboard should be able to withstand drops or falls. Some mechanical keyboards can even withstand tumbles down staircases.
There are numerous design features that mechanical keyboards can come with. Some mechanical keyboards include backlights or RGB lighting. Backlights can be useful for using your computer in the dark. Backlights can be a single color or, with RGB lighting, multiple colors. Some mechanical keyboards allow the backlights to be programmed by the user for personal customization.
These programmable keyboards let the user choose when the backlights come on as well as which keys are backlit. They can also have flashy lighting modes.
If you are a touch-typist, meaning you can type without looking at the keys, then backlights may not be a feature you need to consider. Although, you may enjoy their aesthetic appeal.
Anti-ghosting keys are another feature that mechanical keyboards have. In fact, anti-ghosting keys are one of the main reasons why people purchase mechanical keyboards. Anti-ghosting keys are keys that a computer register is pressed. Anti-ghosting keys are particularly helpful when gaming since some games require multiple keys being pressed at once.
Another design feature that some mechanical keyboards include is USB ports. Mechanical keyboards can come with 1, 2, or even 3+ USB ports.
The final design feature that mechanical keyboards can have is water-resistant keys. This feature can be essential if you like to eat or drink beverages while working or gaming. Even a small droplet of water is enough to damage a keyboard key irreversibly.
The Ultimate List of 7 Best Quiet Mechanical Keyboards
The Das Keyboard 4 Professional Cherry MX Brown Mechanical Keyboard can withstand over 50 million keystrokes. It has an aluminium top panel and a soft tactile feel. This mechanical keyboard is a standard keyboard that also includes media keys. As Cherry MX brown switches are tactile and give a ‘tactile bump’ on the keypress, they are a bit louder than a linear switch. However, they are far from loud like a ‘clicky’ switch.
The Das Keyboard 4 Professional Cherry MX Brown Mechanical Keyboard has a 2-port USB 3.0 hub as well as an instant sleep button. This keyboard also has laser etched key inscriptions, and the F and J keys have bumps on them.
Another feature present on this Das keyboard is footboard that is magnetically detachable. This footboard not only raises the keyboard, it also doubles as a ruler. Also, the Das Keyboard 4 Professional mechanical keyboard supports Full n-key rollover. This feature is ideal for programmers and gamers.
The USB cord that comes with this keyboard is over 6 feet, and the volume control knob on the Das Keyboard 4 is oversized for convenience.
The Das Keyboard 4 Professional mechanical keyboard is compatible with Windows, Lino, and Chrome. This keyboard is also compatible with Mac, but you will need to switch the option keys. You will also have to switch the command keys.
This keyboard does not have backlights, but it is quieter than some other mechanical keyboards, so it is safe for office use.
This is a superior keyboard. Rich in features, rich in performance and built to last. The Razer in-house Yellow Mechanical Switches are the quietest in the line that they offer. They are linear and silent switches which can be a rare thing to find on a gaming keyboard. Particularly one that is built to perform as responsively as this. The switches are rated for 80 million keystrokes so the BlackWidow Elite is certainly built to survive abundant gaming hours. The switches on this beast are known for being some of the quickest mechanical switches for gaming.
The keys themselves are stacked with features to improve or add to your gaming experience. The board is a full layout with number pad and 10-key. There are ridiculous levels of customization through the Razor Chroma software, you can set the board up in different ways for different games. This is the tip of the iceberg in terms of features. But in terms of quietness, you would be hard pushed to find any true mechanical gaming keyboard that is as quiet as this.
The quality frame is finished off with a magnetic wrist rest to keep you comfy over those long sessions!
- Razer Proprietary Yellow Mechanical Switches – Linear & Silent Switches.
- Known For Being One Of The Quickest Mechanical Switches In Like For Like Tests
- Rated For 80 Million Keystrokes
- Razor Chroma Software For Ultimate Customization Of All Keys
The Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard has red backlighting through its keycaps. The USB port is connected to this keyboard’s internal USB cable for 100% power and data speed throughout. This means that users can charge their devices using the USB port of this keyboard.
This keyboard includes full function and media keys, and its red backlights mean it is visible in the dark. The function keys are easily programmable, and this keyboard has a brushed aluminum alloy top case that provides it with extra support and durability.
The 26 rollover available on this keyboard means multiple keys can be pressed simultaneously. The Romer-G mechanical key switch that is the foundation of this keyboard is both responsive and relatively quiet. The switches have a shallow actuation depth and feel similar to dampened Cherry MX switches.
The Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is Windows compatible, including Windows XP. This keyboard is not spill-resistant. Its USB connector cable is conveniently six feet long.
The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard can be backlit by a rainbow of color choices. It has more than ten preconfigured lighting modes that allow users to select immersive lighting effects. There are also six programmable macro keys that can be used for remapping game commands. This keyboard also has media controls. Unlike many mechanical keyboards, the keys on this keyboard are quiet.
The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard is compatible with Windows 8, Windows 10, Windows Vista, and Windows 7. Anti-ghosting features are present in this keyboard, and this keyboard has a detachable wrist rest for additional comfort. The tilt of this keyboard is also adjustable for comfort and ease of use.
One AAA battery is necessary for use.
The Corsair Strafe RGB MK.2 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard has a USB passthrough for easy access to an additional USB port for device charging or headset use. The backlights on this keyboard are adjustable and come in a variety of colors. The included multimedia and volume keys make controlling your media while gaming simple and convenient.
This keyboard also has 8MB of onboard profile storage with lighting and macro playback so users can take their gaming profiles with them. The mechanical switch on this keyboard is a 100% linear Cherry MX Red mechanical switch.
The keycaps on this keyboard are textured for easy grip and navigation. The keys on this keyboard also have full key rollover with 100% anti-ghosting capabilities. This means that regardless of how fast you type, every keystroke is registered accurately.
The Corsair Strafe MK.2 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard has a detachable rubber wrist rest, and this keyboard is compatible with Windows/PC. This keyboard does not have an audio port. The cord of this keyboard is approximately six feet.
The Redragon K552 Red LED Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is a compact keyboard that is ideal for travel. This keyboard has custom mechanical switches and adjustable red LED lighting.
This keyboard is constructed out of metal and ABS. It also has a gold-plated USB connector that can stand up to serious gaming. This keyboard also has 87 standard conflict-free keys as well as 12 media keys.
The Redragon k552 Red Led Backlit Mechanical Keyboard is splash-proof, and its keys can withstand 50 million keystrokes. This over-engineered compact keyboard can take a serious beating, and the WIN key can be disabled for gaming.
Even though this keyboard has many features built to make it a gaming powerhouse, this keyboard can also be used in an office setting. The non-slip adjustable rear feet allow it’s tilt to be shifted for the optimal typing angle.
The Code V3 104-Key Illuminated Mechanical Keyboard has white LED backlights and is made with a Cherry MX Blue mechanical switch. The backlights of this keyboard can be adjusted between 7 different levels of brightness.
The Code V3 104-Key Illuminated Mechanical Keyboard also has NKRO technology that allows users to press any number of keys simultaneously over a PS/2 USB adapter. The keys of this keyboard have a soft tactile feel, and the lifespan of the keys is 50 million clicks.
The key outputs of this keyboard are configurable, and it has media keys and multimedia shortcuts. The Code V3 keyboard is a bit noisy, so it is not ideal in an office or public setting, but f you love the clicky sound of a keyboard, then this keyboard may be perfect for you.
Batteries are not required for this keyboard, and it is compatible with Windows and Mac.