I don’t know if there was ever a time when I considered spending a lot of money on a keyboard. I’ve owned a great number of keyboards over the years, as I’m sure most of you have. Now after owning and using a quality mechanical keyboard, I can honestly kick myself for not making the investment earlier.
Although I’m reviewing the Ducky mechanical keyboard, I hope you find some value in simply deciding to go with a more expensive but more satisfying mechanical keyboard. Is a mechanical keyboard worth the extra money? I hope to answer that question for you in clear terms.
If you’re using a PC often and you’re using a keyboard for input, then consider how important a good keyboard really is. Even though I write a LOT on my PC, up until recently I always went the cheap route when it came to keyboards. A friend mentioned mechanical keyboards and that they are apparently really great. What I did find is that they are really expensive and they are actually really confusing.
There isn’t just mechanical keyboards, there are mechanical keyboards with different configurations. Mechanical keyboards come with a certain key type, which is based on a rating scheme. You will need to determine which key switch is more suited to you.
Your choices for switches are:
- Cherry MX Blue
- Cherry MX Brown
- Cherry MX Black
- Cherry MX Red
- Cherry MX Green
So if you get a “Blue” rated mechanical keyboard, those keys will offer a certain level of resistance and noise. Mechanical keyboards are clicky and noisy for the most part. The “Black” for example is quite stiff in comparison to “Blue” switches and will register a key press when you bottom it out. Gamers for example prefer Black switches because there are fewer accidental button presses.
The point is it gets confusing. Unless you have a keyboard to try out, how on earth can you decide what’s right for you? If you are thinking of going to a local computer store to try one out, consider the fact that keyboards and PC’s aren’t big sellers as before. It may be hard to actually find any keyboards to try out yourself. Because of this, you might want to consider buying a mechanical keyboard from a big retailer with easy returns.
The real issue that I had was trying to determine what would be the ideal “color” key for my desired noise level and responsiveness. What I determined was that Cherry MX Brown was the most popular and was a middle of the road choice. If you are like me, without a real strong gaming use, then the Brown may be the best choice for you.
How Noisy Is The Ducky DK2108S with Cherry MX Brown Keys?
It’s virtually impossible to write about how loud something is. It’s louder than my previous, non mechanical Logitech keyboard. It will be louder than any non mechanical keyboard. You have to consider that when you type, it’s going to make noise. I quite like it actually. Perhaps I feel more productive in hearing the sounds. It’s satisfying! I can say, based on the rating scale, that the Brown is quieter than the Blue and more noisy than Black. Does that help?
What I would really suggest though, is to go onto YouTube and watch various videos of mechanical keyboard switches. People have done comparisons between the switches and this will at least give you an educated perspective on what to expect or what might be tolerable to people living or working near your mechanical keyboard.
Ducky DK2108S Keyboard Review
I was able to save money thanks to some deals during the holiday season. I would not recommend buying a Ducky keyboard until they are on sale. There is no reason to pay full price on any computer parts, especially on a keyboard that will run you near or above $100.
The Ducky DK2108 is backlit. I will admit this is my first backlit keyboard and I would never buy anything else. It’s simply the best feature and I’m really surprised that I deprived myself of for all these years. That said, I have the orange backlights, and this keyboard also have a blue version. It’s easy to select the level of backlighting on the keys, and you have 7 different brightness levels to choose from.
Just be aware that for whatever reason, when you reboot into Windows, the backlighting will cycle through the brightness levels until you choose your desired brightness. A bug? A glitch? It’s minor, but it’s a bit bizarre.
I also want to mention a key feature of this keyboard. This is a heavy keyboard! Now this is not a bad thing, and in fact it’s something that I love about it. It’s extremely stable as a result of the weight. No slipping. No sliding. It’s quite amazing and honestly I have no idea why it’s so heavy. It’s a positive and not a negative.
With a high price point, the advantage of an backlit key is that the number, letter or symbol is actually embedded into the plastic. It’s not like a decal on top of the key. These can’t possibly rub off.
On a cautionary note, this keyboard does not have any splash guard or waterproofing. You need to be absolutely careful. If you have kids, this may not be the wisest choice in keyboard for this reason. It’s expensive and for whatever reason, drink or liquids can easily make it onto a keyboard. I drink a lot of coffee while working on my computer and I’m always sure to keep my cup well off to the side when I’m about to place the mug down. Having your keyboard on a desk sliding/tucked away tray helps for sure.
There isn’t really any flaws in this keyboard, aside from the odd situation when Windows boots up and the backlight cycles through the brightness levels until you pick one. It has a number pad, which adds to the cost of the keyboard, but it’s a must have for me personally. In addition, there are a few nice media keys in the top right corner for sound volume, mute and calculator.
I’ve been using this keyboard for long enough that I’ve forgotten to mention that my first one, had a sticky space bar. Completely unacceptable to me and I returned it for another one, which had no issues. I wouldn’t suggest there are production issues or quality issues with Ducky, but I would be remiss not to at least mention that I first got a defective keyboard from them.
Cost is really going to be the only issue that comes up. There are other manufacturers, some very well known brands, that offer up similar style mechanical keyboards. It wasn’t because of the Ducky brand that I went with the DK2108S, but it was more a sale price and it had the features and design that I was looking for.
The fact is this keyboard is one of the wisest purchases I’ve ever made. I feel a bit foolish for not investing in one of the most important aspects of a computer, which is the keyboard. Afterall, it’s used constantly. I do more writing perhaps than most people, but it makes the experience more pleasurable and when the lights are dimmed, I have no problem seeing the keys thanks to the backlit keys.