Cherry has plenty of street cred in the mechanical keyboard market, as many of the most popular options feature Cherry MX key switches. At the same time, Cherry's business has come under attack by peripheral makers like Logitech and Razer that offer their own custom mechanical key switches. The the pitches from Logitech and Razer are that Cherry MX key switches were never built specifically for gamers. That changes today with the introduction of the Cherry MX Speed, a new "Silver" switch that Cherry says is its fastest mechanical MX switch to date.
"The name speaks for itself," Cherry says, adding that its MX Speed switch has an actuation point of just 1.2 mm and an extremely low activation force of only 45 cN (that's centinewtons). Similar to Cherry MX Red and Black key switches, it's also a linear switch, meaning it moves straight up and down without offering any tactile feedback or those audible clicks that switches like the Cherry MX Blue provide. The result is smooth, fast typing with a bounce time of less than one millisecond.
Cherry is primarily aiming the MX Speed at gamers, an audience that has the most to gain from the short key travel. For the gaming crowd, it's offering transparent RGB covers to its hardware partners, which can then implement fancy (and customizable) lighting effects.
Outside of gaming, Cherry says the new key switch is also suitable for frequent typists who spend the day at home or in the office banging out reports. For hardware partners looking to target the productivity crowd, Cherry will offer its new MX Speed switch with a standard cover.
Corsair will be the first to use the new key switch as part of a six-month exclusivity agreement. After that, you can expect to see other keyboard makers adopt the MX Speed switch.