People who know keyboards know what they like. Switches go underneath the keycaps of your mechanical keyboard: some people like them to sound and feel tactile, some like them clicky, and others like them linear. Linear switches are the most straightforward (and most popular) mechanical keyboard switches out of the three options. Fast typers and avid gamers love a fast simple linear switch, the type you find in your good ol’ standard MacBook keyboard.
If you’re the linear type, this is the article for you. We’ve searched far and wide to find the best linear switches for people who like their keys without any distracting clicks or bumps. Without further ado, let’s see the best linear switches on the market today.
Product Comparison Table: Best Linear Switch
|Best in class
|DUROCK Linear Keyboard Switch
|DAIDAI Mechanical Keyboard Switch
|Best for Gamers
|Gateron Ink V2 Linear Switch
|Akko CS Linear Switch
|Epomaker Silent Mechanical Keyboard Switches
The best linear switches have great sound, no spring ping and most importantly, no stem wobble. The best linear switch in the anti-wobble stakes is by far the DUROCK. These 5-pin switches are translucent for RGB and backlight builds, and with a 62g bottom-out force, their smoothness approximates and improves upon the fan-favourite Alpaca model – in a wider range of colours. They also come pre-lubed from the factory.
- Smooth as silk
- Requires charging
Ready to use stock, the DUROCK Linear Keyboard Switch places firmly among the best linear switches. These polycarbonate wonders can even be used in plate mounted keyboards with the appropriate pins cut – and rest assured, they’re great-sounding and wobble-free with no need for re-lubing.
The best linear switches for those who find five pins to be two pins too many? Look no further in these terms than the DAIDAI, perfect for gamers. This Cherry MX/Kalih-style 3-pin mounts seamlessly, with a POM shaft, stainless steel spring, and MX structure design.
With initial force of 50gf and end force of 65gf, total travel is 4.0±0.4mm, which we hear is the best functionality for gaming. DAIDAI linear switches are tested up to 80 million keystrokes, so you can pull off as many 360-no-scopes as you want, for as long as you want.
- 3-pin structure
- Good lifespan
- May need additional lube
Reliable and user-friendly, DAIDAI linear switches are a gamer’s best friend. They come in a range of colours, and we loved the individual packaging per switch! Each unit comes in a little individual tube with a pull-tab lid, making installation a dream and a pleasure. Bye-bye missing pieces while modding.
Gateron Ink V2 Series Switches have a lifespan of up to 50 million keystrokes, and they’re the best linear switches if you love that silky smooth feel. Your fingers will notice no spring ping or crunch as you glide over your typing or gaming projects.
What truly makes this the best linear switch for feel is the way the Gateron V2’s shaft optimises the feel of the paragraph, making it more rounded, obvious and smooth. With its translucent smoky housing in a range of colours, imagine how pretty your RGB will look – prevented from protruding from the PCB surface – as you (try to) listen to the soft pure keystrokes of your new linear switches.
- Beautiful soft sound
- Unmatched feel
- Not pre-lubed (for additional customization)
Sometimes you don’t care about sound, it’s all about feel. Still, the Gateron V2 should be commended for its vocal performance as well as for being our best linear switch for feel under the fingers. Spring noise is greatly reduced here, with a gentle click that’s pure, blunt and hollow. How soothing!
An improvement on the Akko V2, the Akko CS is an affordable wonder. These are the best linear switches on a budget, with a satisfying typing experience worthy of a far higher price tag. A light crisp sound when bottoming-out plus a lab-confirmed 60 million keystroke lifespan equals a very happy linear-minded keyboard modder.
CS stands for Custom Series, and that’s reflected in the massively customizable range of colour options. No other linear switches we’ve reviewed offer this rainbow of choices to mix and match, especially with an MX-style structure, built-in LED slots and SMD compatibility.
- Huge colour range
- Competitive price
- Innovative and unique technology
- Some find these a little loud
- Only 45 keys per pack
The best linear switches don’t have to cost the earth, and these Akko CS Linear Switches come out at a blisteringly budget-friendly 0.31 cents a switch! We love to see any products that make mechanical keyboards a more accessible hobby for anyone and everyone. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, these Akko linear switches are ideal.
Hey. Shh. Can you hear that? We can’t hear the Epomaker Linear Keyboard Switches because they’re our best linear keyboard switches if you like silence. Quietness is one of the things that makes linear switches the favourite choice of those who love them, and this model came up quieter than quiet in our tests.
Competitively priced and competitively quiet, the Epomaker Silent Mechanical Switches boast initial force of 35gf and end force of 60gf, and a total travel of 2.00mm… all in total silence. Allegedly, this is down to not the stainless steel spring, but the stem.
- Can be used stock
- Quiet and smooth typing experience
- RGB compatible
- Only 45 keys per pack
There’s nothing more peaceful than a quiet keyboard, and Epomaker knew that when they created the best linear switches for silence-lovers. Pre-lubed and easy to install are two other compliments we could throw these switches’ way. They bottom-out a little heavy, so they’re not great for gaming – but gamers aren’t known for their quietude, are they?