Can You Type Faster on a Mechanical Keyboard?
Mechanical keyboards have taken the world by storm. Since their reappearance in the mainstream market in 2010, the momentum of mechanical keyboards has not slowed down. Everyone from professional gamers to casual users is now using mechanical keyboards on their desks.
Due to how advanced and customizable mechanical keyboards are, most mechanical keyboard models will allow you to type faster. However, there are several things that you need to consider when purchasing a mechanical keyboard since they can potentially slow you down. And, of course, you can still type fast on non-mechanical keyboards.
Mechanical keyboards are almost always recommended over membrane keyboards due to their benefits. One of these benefits is that they can make you type faster? However, is this truly the case?
In this article, we will be debunking whether or not mechanical keyboards can make you type faster. We will also check out if you can still type fast on other types of keyboards. And ultimately, we will determine what truly makes you type faster.
Why a Mechanical Keyboard Can Make You Type Faster
There are several reasons why people claim that mechanical keyboards can make them type faster. The first reason is that mechanical keyboards simply have better quality than standard membrane keyboards. Each keystroke is more defined and more accurate compared to membrane keyboards.
And since you won’t be getting as many misfires as a membrane keyboard, your overall accuracy will go up, which leads to higher WPM. Another possible reason as to why you can type faster on a mechanical keyboard is due to their better feel.
Most membrane keyboards feel quite mushy, which results in a less enjoyable typing experience. But with a mechanical keyboard, some users find that the more satisfying feel and acoustics help them type faster and more consistently.
Also, the feel and sound of most custom mechanical keyboards can be tailor-fitted for the needs of the typist. This allows the user to get the best possible configuration which will ultimately help him type faster.
Why a Mechanical Keyboard Can Also Make You Type Slower
Despite the benefits of mechanical keyboards, some of them can actually slow you down. This is because not all mechanical keyboards are made equally. Some mechanical keyboards have a subpar feel due to their switches or build quality which can hinder you from achieving your maximum potential.
For example, some users find that they cannot type properly with clicky and tactile switches. The tactile allows for better control but can get in the way for users who are used to bottoming out linear switches.
Likewise, some users may find linear switches to be too sensitive. And when your keys are too sensitive, you are more likely to make more typing errors.
Additionally, a lot of more budget-oriented keyboards tend to have rattly stabilizers. This makes essential keys such as the spacebar and the backspace incredibly hard to control and will thus bring down your accuracy.
Even the keycaps that you are using with your keyboard can affect your typing speed and accuracy. Some keycap profiles may be too high or too low for the user. Even these minor things can affect how your keyboard feels and ultimately, your accuracy.
Again, mechanical keyboards are certainly a step above regular membrane keyboards. However, you have to consider the quality of your mechanical keyboard since the smallest nuances can hinder your typing speed.
Types of Mechanical Switches
To expand our discussion earlier, let us quickly go through the three common types of switches: clicky, tactile, and linear. Clicky switches are loud switches that are commonly associated with mechanical keyboards. They have an audible click as well as a tactile bump.
Tactile switches are very similar to clicky switches, but the key difference is that they do not produce an audible click. Most of the sound that you will be hearing is the bottoming out of the switches.
And lastly, linear switches are smooth and fast switches that do not have a tactile bump. These switches allow the users to bottom out, making them ideal for heavy typists.
The best switch depends on the typing style of each individual user. What works for one user may not work for the other. And as we mentioned earlier, if a certain switch doesn’t suit you, then it will most likely bring down your typing speed.
One thing to take note of is that different switch models will have different characteristics. For example, the Gateron Milky Yellow and Gateron Ink Black V2 are both linear switches and are both from the same manufacturer. However, they both feel and sound different, which will certainly affect your ability to type fast.
Additionally, some switches can be improved by doing modifications such as lubing and filming. So the takeaway here is that you should do some experimentation to find which switch type and switch model is the best one for you.
Can You Still Type Fast on Other Keyboards?
Despite all their benefits, some people just can’t get into mechanical keyboards. Some aren’t a fan of their aesthetics or the sound that they produce. Other users who are used to other keyboard types can’t adapt to mechanical keyboards.
And, of course, some users are immediately put off by the high asking price of most mechanical keyboards. Regardless of what the reason is, not everyone can get into mechanical keyboards. So the question is, can you still type fast on other types of keyboards?
The answer is pretty simple. Of course, you can still type fast and efficiently on other keyboard models. After all, mechanical keyboards have been absent in the mainstream market for a long time, and yet there were still lots of fast typists who were only using membrane keyboards.
Some users even find that they can type faster on certain keyboards as compared to mechanical keyboards. Famous YouTuber Ali Abdaal has demonstrated that he can type faster on his Apple Magic keyboard.
Of course, several factors, such as the time that he spent on that keyboard, certainly play a big role. However, at the end of the day, his video shows that you can achieve fast typing speeds even on non-mechanical keyboards.
It also shows how subjective keyboards are. So at the end of the day, find out which type of keyboard best suits your typing style.
How To Type Faster With Your Mechanical Keyboard?
As a bonus, let us quickly give you some tips to type faster. Of course, the most obvious one is to practice typing. However, this can be an incredibly tedious task for most users.
Monkeytype is currently the most popular website with mechanical keyboard enthusiasts. And the biggest reason for its popularity is due to its customizability. Almost everything about the website, such as the font, the layout, and the information displayed, can be customized.
Even the theme has various customization options. Most of the themes are from famous GMK keycap colorways, which certainly helps increase its appeal. Also, MonkeyType has its own Discord server, which gives you updates as well as a solid community to interact with.
Also, more importantly, the user can set various challenges, which helps target which areas need to be improved. This website is aimed towards users who have already built solid typing techniques and are looking to improve and reach higher WPMs.
10FastFingers is a very similar website that has existed far longer than MonkeyType. This website offers various features that can help you learn how to type properly as well as improve on your weaknesses.
Some features that are unique with this website include the lessons, challenges, and community tournaments. This website is highly recommended both for newer and more advanced users.
And lastly, TypeRacer is a fun way of competing with others. It is a browser-based multiplayer game that pits you against three other players.
Unlike the other two websites, TypeRacer is focused more on the competitive aspect rather than on teaching you how to type. This website is highly recommended for those who wish to have fun while improving their typing speed or accuracy or for competitive users who wish to test their skills.
Summary – What Ultimately Affects Typing Speed
In conclusion, mechanical keyboards certainly affect typing speed. This is especially true if you are coming from a significantly lower-quality keyboard. However, this does not necessarily mean that other keyboard types will not give the same effect.
Overall, what truly determines your typing speed aside from raw skill is the quality of your keyboard. If you are using a low-quality keyboard, then you will be struggling with your tool. However, if you are using a keyboard that perfectly suits your typing style, then you will be able to unlock your true potential,
This perfect keyboard can be a high-end custom mechanical keyboard. However, it can also be the chiclet keyboards on your laptop. At the end of the day, it all depends on your personal preference.
The KBE team is dedicated to sharing our knowledge and creating useful resources about computer keyboards. This article was written as a team collaboration, combining our knowledge and years of experience using, building and modding keyboards. Meet the team here.