Cherry MX Low Profile RGB switches arrive in the Ducky Blade Air

Cherry MX-style switches make up the bulk of mechanical keyboards these days. That's a problem for anyone who wants a slim keyboard but isn't willing to sacrifice the smooth feel of typing on Cherry MX switches. Fortunately, Cherry just announced the MX Low Profile RGB keyswitches. The first keyboard to use the new switches will apparently be Ducky's upcoming Blade Air.

The new switches are just 11.9 mm tall (compared to 18.5 mm height of the regular MX), and as a result keyboards made using them can be that much shorter as well. Despite the 36% reduction in height, the key travel is only slightly shorter, at 3.2 mm versus 4 mm on a standard MX. The switches' transparent housings are designed for use with surface-mounted RGB LEDs. At first, only the "Red" linear variety will be available, with an actuation force of 45 cN.

Ducky Channel—known more commonly as simply "Ducky"—is one of the hardcore keyboard nerds' favorite brands. The company's Facebook page is proudly advertising the upcoming Blade Air keyboard. It uses a full-size layout including numeric keypad and dedicated media keys, and packs the MX Low Profile RGB switches. The Blade Air supports N-key roll-over over USB and uses low-profile floating-style double-shot PBT keycaps.

The total height of the Ducky Blade Air is just 0.87" (22 mm). In a rarity among mechanical keyboards, it can be connected with a detachable USB cable, or using Bluetooth. Given the keycaps in use, it naturally supports RGB LED lighting, and has a macro function of some sort. Ducky didn't say when the Blade Air would be available, or for how much. Considering the pricing of the company's other offerings, don't expect it to be cheap.

Comments closed
    • Air
    • 2 years ago

    Looks like they cound’t decide between “blade” or “air” to indicate that it’s a slim keyboard. At least they discarded “stealth”.

      • Growler
      • 2 years ago

      Just wait until they release the Blade Air Slim.

      • K-L-Waster
      • 2 years ago

      They couldn’t very well call it stealth, given that’s it’s lit up like a fairground midway. Even moles and bats could see this thing coming….

      • Chrispy_
      • 2 years ago

      Yeah, there’s nothing stealthy about a flashing RGBLED rainbow-emitter.

    • just brew it!
    • 2 years ago

    If someone made a laptop with low profile blue or brown switches that would be a big selling point for me.

    • Neutronbeam
    • 2 years ago

    Some of the text here is pretty funny!: [url<]http://www.duckychannel.com.tw/en/accessories.html[/url<]

      • jessterman21
      • 2 years ago

      Self-aware Engrish?

    • psuedonymous
    • 2 years ago

    1800 ISO layout, MX low profile Blues or Browns, plus separated media/macro keys. Specific enough that it’s unlikely any stock keyboard will be made mathcing these, so hopefully the MX low profiles will be available for bulk order without too much delay.

      • BillyBuerger
      • 2 years ago

      I agree. I just finished a custom board using regular MX style switches (MOD-M) and was going to build a smaller/low profile version next. Was originally planning on Kailh but it might be fun to use these instead. Or both, can’t have too many keyboards.

    • Skid
    • 2 years ago

    So…. a lot of backlight bleed? umm, no thanks…

    • pirate_panda
    • 2 years ago

    Seems like these are a replacement for Cherry’s own ML switch line, and competition for the Kailh Low Profile Choc switches that came out about half a year ago. The 3.2 mm travel is a tiny bit longer than the Kailh’s 3mm but probably not a noticeable difference.

    Not sure why they kept the iconic cross stem, as they didn’t really need to maintain compatibility. No regular keycaps are going to work on these because the bottom of a normal keycap will hit the switch top before the actuation point.

    • just brew it!
    • 2 years ago

    Very puzzled about the Bluetooth connectivity. What’s the point of having Bluetooth on it when it will still need to be plugged in to power it? What am I missing here?

      • UberGerbil
      • 2 years ago

      I guess it has a battery? So it’s a wired/wireless keyboard? Seems like the RGB lighting would detract from the battery life — and there’s no mention of battery life in the specs on the linked FB page (or really anything about a battery). It does say the USB connection is Type C, which is the first time I’ve seen that in a keyboard. (Not saying it’s first — I’m sure there are others and I don’t pay attention — but it’s still notable)

        • just brew it!
        • 2 years ago

        Yeah, I was thinking if it is cordless the battery life would suck unless you turn the LEDs off or the battery is fairly large.

      • mudcore
      • 2 years ago

      KVM but minus the V. Wired into your desktop, wireless for your laptop/other device. That said I’d probably just pick up a fully wireless one that uses RF for the desktop and Bluetooth for laptop.

    • JustAnEngineer
    • 2 years ago

    6.6 mm is about 1/4″ shorter. I don’t care if my desktop keyboard is 1/4″ shorter. Now, if it’s short enough that I could get an MX Brown version in an ultrabook, that would really be something.

      • UberGerbil
      • 2 years ago

      Yeah, that’s about what I concluded also. I don’t really see the benefit. But if this means we could get back to having [url=https://i.imgur.com/iqGHSqn.jpg<][i<]real[/i<] keyboards in our mobile devices[/url<], that would be awesome.

        • tay
        • 2 years ago

        The benefit is in a shorter throw. Faster actuation for gaming as well. I’m all for these, though I don’t like Cherry switches anymore as they are hard on my hands. I’m picking up a Topre switch keyboard next.

    • turtlepwr281
    • 2 years ago

    I’m a big fan of my Ducky One. Very understated with a great build quality and no distasteful logos or blinkenlights. Definitely glad I did some research before going with a gaming oriented mechanical keyboard.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 2 years ago

      Hilariously, the [url=https://mechanicalkeyboards.com/shop/index.php?l=product_list&c=140<]first Google result[/url<] for Ducky One is a bunch of listings for LED-backlit keyboards. I have a QuickFire XT and it's perfect for my needs. It's a [url=http://www.coolermaster.com/peripheral/keyboards/quickfirext/<]"gaming keyboard"[/url<] but about the only feature I can find related to gaming is the ability to disable the Windows key (Fn + F9). That's pretty dull as far as gaming features go.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This