Every day, millions of people worldwide tap out e-mails, type reports, and write poetry on their keyboards. But what is it that makes a keyboard make that distinctive clicking sound?
There are several keyboards: mechanical, capacitive, and rubber domes (tiny rubber caps on top of the computer’s keyboard).
Each of these keyboards has a different composition that affects how they click.
The following are some reasons why each type of popular keyboard make noise:
Why These Top 3 Keyboards on the Market Make Noise
1. Mechanical Keyboards
In a mechanical keyboard, every key is made of three layers. The top two are made of tiny pieces of metal, usually brass, with a little piece of plastic between the two. When you press the key down, the plastic compresses the two pieces of metal together and causes them to touch each other.
The third layer is a spring that pushes them apart when you take your finger off the key.
When this happens, there is pop as the spring pushes the tiny pieces apart and back together again. These keyboards make noise from the spring.
2. Rubber Dome Keyboards
Rubber domes keyboards are almost the same, but instead of having a spring in the middle, there is a piece on top and bottom that keep the pieces apart when you press down on the key. The two pieces are held together by rubber under tiny ridges on the top and bottom.
When you let go of the key, these ridges pop apart, which makes a sound very similar to a rubber dome keyboard’s clicking and makes noise in this way too.
3. Capacitive Keyboards
A capacitive keyboard has no moving parts at all. When an electrical current is put across two pieces of metal, it creates a force between the metal and pushes them away from each other.
When you press down on the key, your body brings the two electrically charged pieces of metal together, and they push back apart again when you take your finger off the key. This makes a smooth, quiet sound.
8 Top Ways to Silence a Noisy Keyboard;
There are ways to silence a noisy keyboard and stop it from making noise. The following are 8 of the top way to make them more quiet:
1. Buy a quieter keyboard.
Buying a quiet keyboard can be difficult as each manufacturer has its style and noise level. There are many options for purchasing a quiet keyboard. The most common is the split keyboard which is two keyboards in one, one on top of the other.
Another choice is a mechanical keyboard which offers silent typing with a different click sound. There are also rubber dome keyboards that offer silent typing and no noise.
2. Use an alternative to the keyboard.
Try using the mouse, stylus, or even your voice and avoid using the keyboard altogether. This option’s key is finding a method that you are comfortable using, even if it is not ideal or practical.
For example, if you prefer a stylus, try using it while sitting near your computer, so you do not have to walk back and forth between your desk and monitor. Also, it is easier than using the keyboard to draw a picture or type something you want to keep.
3. Change a ‘sticky’ key on the keyboard.
Do not be alarmed if you find that you hear a specific key clicking now and then. The most common are the keys used for moving from one menu or section of your computer to another.
Changing the settings for these keys can help by making them ‘sticky’ and retracting them automatically when you move from one part of your computer to another. If these keys are too loud, try removing them from the keyboard.
4. Add sound dampening material.
Adding sound dampening material to the keyboard can help to reduce the clicking noise. Try adding foam or absorbent material to the parts of the keyboard that make noise when you type on them. This will soften the noise, make it less distracting, and help you focus on your work.
5. Use a different typing style.
Try using a different typing style that works better for you and reduces the noise levels of your keyboard, like tapping or even finger placement. Experiment with these options to find one that fits your needs.
If possible, choose the type of key you use most often and use it wherever possible if you are unsure of the best way to reduce noise, try each option until you find what works for you.
6. Put a cover over your keyboard.
Applying a thin piece of rubber-like material to the top of your keyboard can help reduce the noise. This is called an egg crate and comes in many different styles and shapes. It can be attached using double-sided tape, glue or even Velcro.
If you do not like this material’s look or feel, try using a plastic dome instead.
7. Change the keys on your keyboard by replacing them with quieter ones.
Changing the keys on your keyboard can help reduce noise and make it easier to find the keys you need. Many people like to use a ‘split’ keyboard that has numbered keys on both sides of a regular keyboard.
This is especially helpful when typing codes or letters as it makes finding the key much more effortless.
8. Remove the key that is making the noise.
If you have found the key that is causing the problem, then you can remove it from the keyboard and use something else instead. This could be a rubber dome, a mechanical key, or a USB keyboard.
Make sure to change your settings if you use something other than your typical keyboard, as not all keyboards work in the same way and may not let you select different keys.
Why Do Keyboards Make Noise? Final Thoughts
Noisy and distracting keyboards are annoying and can make it harder to concentrate on your work. Using a quiet keyboard, reducing the noise by changing your work habits, or using a different typing method can help reduce any distracting noise you may hear from your keyboard.
Making sure that your computer is in the best position for you is just as important as having the best gear and equipment for it. The best way to ensure that you have the best setup for your work is to experiment with different setups and change things to find what is most comfortable for you.
If you enjoyed this article, check out our “Why Do Keyboards Get So Dirty?” article here!