In addition to the Switches, many people tend to ignore another important factor that affects the feel: key consistency. That is, whether the keyboard can achieve the same pressing feel and force feedback for each key, including the large key.
You may not understand how there is a difference in feel with the same switch body and the same keycap. The difference is mainly reflected in the large keys such as Switches, TAB, Enter and space bar. When we press the small key, that is, when typing, we usually press the center of the key, but when we press the large key, we usually press the two ends of the key. In this way, there will be an unbalanced force on the keycap. In the case of unbalanced force, it is necessary to ensure the consistency of the feel, which is the ultimate test for the keyboard.
So how to see how the large keys of a keyboard perform? In addition to comparing whether there is a difference in the feel feedback by tapping the different positions of the large keys, the best way is to disassemble, that is, pull out the keycaps to have a look. In order to ensure the consistency of the large key, two structures are generally seen after the large key is disassembled, one is called the balance bar, and the other is called the satellite Switches.
The balance bar is to use one or two metal wires to clamp on the large keys, and use the metal wires to transmit power, thereby reducing the force imbalance of the large keys.
A balance bar with poor workmanship is relatively cheap, and it may shake after a few years of use, which makes it difficult to achieve uniform keystrokes, and it is also more complicated to reinstall after removing the keycaps of large keys. However, the balance bar has a strong mechanical feel, quick rebound, and a crisp feel, especially the green axis, and the big keys don’t feel meaty.
This year, mainstream brands on the market mainly use the structure of satellite switches, that is, two mechanical switches are added at both ends of the large key position, so that no matter where you press, you can press the switches, and the keys are more consistent. It will be much better, the cost of the satellite switch is higher, and it is more durable, and there will be no shaking of the keys after a few years of use. The disadvantage is that the large keys feel more fleshy, the rebound sound is not crisp enough, and the mechanical feel is slightly weaker than that of the balance bar.
It should be noted that whether it is a balance bar or a satellite shaft, there is no strict distinction between good and bad. It mainly depends on the manufacturer’s materials and workmanship. That is, for manufacturers with strict quality management, even if the big key is used The balance bar still ensures excellent key consistency. As mentioned above, the balance bar and the satellite axis have their own advantages and disadvantages. It is not meaningful to simply discuss which is better without looking at the workmanship.
In addition, the grooves at the bottom of the large keycap corresponding to the balance bar and the satellite axis are different. If you want to buy a third-party personalized keycap, remember to check whether the matching large keycap groove in the keycap matches the large keycap of your keyboard.