Razer is calling a "world's first" with the launch of its new keyboard mechanical switch designed for gaming. This switch arrives in two flavors, and is available on the new Razer BlackWidow family of mechanical gaming keyboards. The company is also making the switches available to other gaming peripheral makers who wish to manufacture gaming-grade mechanical keyboards.
Traditional mechanical switches were originally designed for typing. Because of this, Razer set out to completely re-engineer the switch from the ground up with the gaming community in mind. That meant going back to the drawing board and doing a little research to see how modifying the standard switch would be beneficial to a gamer.
The result? Razer's team identified the optimal actuation distance for a gaming switch to a "fraction" of a millimeter. The Razer team also reduced the distance between the actuation and reset point by almost half to allow for faster, more precise gaming commands.
More specifically, a chart provided by Razer shows that the new switch has an actuation point of 1.9 mm, an actuation vs reset point of 0.44 mm and a lifespan of 60 million keystrokes. The standard mechanical switch has an actuation point of 2.2 mm, an actuation vs reset point of 0.7 mm, and a lifespan of up to 20 million keystrokes. That's quite a difference between the two.
"Instead of focusing solely on typing comfort, as traditional mechanical switches have done, we had to completely rethink the conventional approach behind the actuation and reset points of mechanical switches in order to fine-tune them for gaming," said Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder, CEO and creative director.
Razer reports that although the switches were designed in-house, mass production was done by a third party manufacturer. To make sure each switch met Razer's highest standards, Razer's own quality assurance team was on the production floor. These switches were then tested extensively by the "world's most demanding" eSports athletes.
According to Razer, the two flavors of this new Razer Mechanical Switch line include Razer Green that is tactile and clicky, requiring a force of 50 g to actuate. The other switch is Razer Orange that is tactile and silent, requiring a force of 45 g to actuate.
For more information about these new switches, head here.