Cherry's enticing new MX2A switches arrive first in generic-looking 'minimalist' KC 200 MX keyboard

Cherry KC 200 MX keyboard
(Image credit: Cherry)

Cherry launched the KC 200 MX mechanical keyboard, a rather unassuming-looking input device that distinguishes itself by being the first keyboard to come fitted with the latest MX2A key switches from Cherry. The MX2A switches were first detailed back in August and are claimed to present a comprehensive redesign of Cherry’s industry-standard components. Will it soon rank among the best keyboards? Time will tell.

The new KC 200 MX mechanical keyboard from Cherry is described as a “reliable and minimalist mechanical keyboard.” While we can’t vouch for its reliability, it's hard to deny it's a minimal design with its simple compact layout and no-frills appearance.

There are no RGB lighting effects here, only white on-key status LEDs for caps lock, scroll lock, and num lock. No fancy dials or knobs are present either, but thankfully you have a trio of essential media keys and a dedicated calculator key just above the numpad.

Cherry tries to give the impression that this wired keyboard is going to be a reliable workhorse for programmers, content creators, and gamers delivering “unrivaled precision and comfort while typing.” The new key switches help it achieve the intended goal with a factory-applied lubricant, redesigned springs, and other optimizations. Moreover, a robust anodized metal construction, claimed improved acoustics, and a choice of switches broaden the appeal of the KC 200 MX.

As well as offering the KC 200 MX in black/bronze and white/silver color schemes, buyers can choose between the MX2A Silent Red and MX2A Brown key switches right now. For those unfamiliar with mechanical keyboards, red switches are quiet and non-tactile, while the browns won’t be clicky but feature an actuation bump for tactile feedback.

One of the big touted improvements with Cherry’s new MX2A switches is the increased durability, now rated for 100M actuations. However, our experience with laser-etched ABS keycaps, as supplied, means some of the lettering will wear out long before you have typed that much. Other features of the KC 200 MX include the design’s purported slip-proof base, anti-ghosting and N-key rollover, 1ms response time, customization of Fn keys and shortcuts via Cherry Keys software, and compatibility with the Palmrest Ergo.

Cherry also talks about the KC 200 MX’s value-driven price, and indeed the $89.99 ask isn’t prohibitive for the stated quality and features. This keyboard is now available and in stock direct from Amazon at the stated price. We checked all the configurations and there were at least 15 of each available to buy now.

If you're wondering what happened to the Cherry XTRFY K5V2 gaming keyboard with a 65% layout that was announced alongside the MX2A switches in August, as far as we can tell it's still “coming soon.” We'll have to test them before we can determine if either the Cherry KC 200 MX or XTRFY K5V2 rank among the best budget mechanical keyboards or best gaming keyboards.

Mark Tyson
News Editor

Mark Tyson is a news editor at Tom's Hardware. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.

  • dwd999
    Sorry they lost me when they said Metal Plate. For those of us who live in arid climates, (or climates where there's low humidity during winter heating season), where we have an occasional static electricity charge buildup, a metal keyboard that will give us a static shock when we touch it is a definite negative.