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Kailh Switches (The Definitive GUIDE of 2022!)

Kailh switches are an alternative to the more popular Cherry MX switches. Kailh switches were developed by Chinese electronics manufacturer Kaihua Electronics Co, Ltd. 

In this Kailh Switches Guide, I will take a close look, with a teardown, at different Kailh switches available and their types in detail.

I would discuss different types of Kailh switch variants that would including the clicky switch types, linear switch types, and tactile switch types so that it would be useful for you to make a choice.

Kailh Switches
Kailh Switches

Why Should you Trust Me? Hi, I am Anirban Saha, an Engineer having a Specialization in Electronics and Communication Engineering. I have experience in Smart TVs, Electric circuits, and Computer peripherals.

Let’s get started!

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What are Kailh Switches?

Kailh switches are a group of Cherry MX clone switches manufactured by Kaihua Electronics Co. Ltd. The company is based in China and has been producing Cherry MX clone switches. 

Since the switches are MX clones, they are compatible with MX keycaps, but they are not compatible with MX-style stabilizers. The switches are available in various colors but are not available in clicky or tactile versions.

Like other switch manufacturers, Kailh also has several variants for their different mechanical switches in their lineup.

Here are the several Kailh Switch variants which have different color variants:

  • Kailh Box switch
  • Kailh Speed Switches
  • Kailh Pro Switches
  • Kailh Box Silent Switches
  • Kailh Low Profile Choc switches

#1. Kailh BOX Switch

Kailh BOX Switches are high-quality, cost-effective mechanical keyboard switches compatible with Cherry MX keycaps.

Kailh BOX Switches are optimized for gaming, featuring a super-low resistance, a shorter key travel distance, and durable, high-performance plastic housing.

The Kailh Box switches are similar to the Cherry MX switches but with a different internal design.

The Kailh Box switches are made of metal contacts encased in a box, which is where they got their name, and this box gives them their IP56 waterproof/dustproof rating. 

This BOX switch design also makes the switch’s main springs smaller than the Cherry MX switches, reducing the actuation pressure.

The tactile feel of the Kailh Box switches differently, with the click feeling more like a bump than a click. 

1. Kailh BOX White Switches

Kailh Box White switches are Clicky switches that can be a Cherry MX Blue replacement for you. It has an actuation force of 50g which is decent and has a good life of 80M clicks.

2. Kailh BOX Navy Switches

The Kailh Box Navy is another clicky box switch variant from Kailh Box switches, but they have a higher actuation force of 75g. It is a good switch only if you would like to actuate at 75g.

3. Kailh BOX Pink Switches

Kailh Box Pinks are Clicky Box switches from Kailh with an Operating force of 55g.

4. Kailh BOX Jade Switches

The Kailh Box Jade switches are clicky switches with an actuation force of 65g. It is decent and quite useful considering its Operating life of 80m.

5. Kailh BOX Pale Blue Switches

The Kailh Box Pale Blue switches are clicky switches with an actuation force of 60g to operate them. These feel good and can be compared to Mx Blue switches.

It would feel good for typing and gaming.

6. Kailh Box Royal Switches

The Kailh Box Royal Switches are a tactile switch variant from the Kailh brand. They operate at the low operating force of 45g which is awesome. I like the lower operating switches as they feel easy to type on.

7. Kailh Box Brown Switches

These are brown switches from Kailh Box. These require a 60g operating force to actuate. It is well built and good. You can compare it with the Brown Cherry switches.

8. Kailh BOX Burnt Orange

The Kailh Box Burnt Orange is a tactile switch from Kailh.

9. Kailh BOX Red Switches

Kailh Box Red is a linear switch from Kailh. It has an operating force of 50g and is fast and light to actuate.

You can consider Kailh Box Red for gaming.

10. Kailh BOX Dark Yellow Switches

Kailh Box Dark Yellow is a Linear switch from Kailh with a higher actuation force of 70g. If you like high actuation force, then you can look into it.

This switch is decent and well-operable during typing sessions.

11. Kailh BOX Black Switches

The Kailh Box Black is a linear switch and has an operating force of 60g. The actuation point is at 1.8mm which is decent. I like these switches and can be compared to the MX Blacks.

Here is a tabular representation to help you see the Kailh Box switches in a glimpse:

Kailh Box VariantSwitch TypeActuation ForceActuation PointOperation SpeedOperating LifeMount Type
Kailh BOX White SwitchesClicky50g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/sec80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Navy SwitchesClicky75g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Pink SwitchesClicky55g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Jade SwitchesClicky65g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Pale Blue SwitchesClicky60g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Box Royal SwitchesTactile45g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Box Brown SwitchesTactile60g Operating2mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Burnt Orange SwitchesTactile60g Operating force2mm5-6 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Red SwitchesLinear50g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Dark Yellow SwitchesLinear70g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh BOX Black SwitchesLinear60g Operating force1.8mm3-4 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mount

Here are the Kailh Box Switches available at Amazon:

Last update on 2022-09-30 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

#2. Kailh Speed Switches

Kailh Speed Switches are a cut above the rest when it comes to gaming keyboards.

Ideal for gamers and typists alike, Kailh Speed Switches feature a housing and stem made out of self-lubricating POM. 

Kailh Speed Switches are the next generation of mechanical switches for your gaming keyboard with high precision and responsiveness.

They are built for speed, durability, and responsiveness. Their high accuracy and low latency are what give them the edge they need.

They also feature an MX style housing, shorter travel, and activation points than Cherry MX switches and are currently available in any color you can think of.

They have MX-style housing, shorter travel, and activation points compared to Cherry MX switches. Hence they are good for gaming. 

1. Kailh Speed Silver Switches

Kailh Speed Silver switches are a linear type of mechanical switch from Kailh. These switches are one of the fastest from Kailh.

2. Kailh Speed Copper Switches

The Kailh Speed Copper Switches are awesome if you are a tactile switch fan and have already heard about the MX Brown switches.

These Kailh Speed Copper switches have excellent crisp tactile feedback on clicks and are very fast actuating mechanical switches of tactile variants.

3. Kailh Speed Bronze Switches

The Kailh Speed Brown switches are actually clicky ones with an actuation force of 50g. These switches are good but next to the Kailh Speed Gold switches in the tactile range of switches.

4. Kailh Speed Gold Switches

The Kailh Speed Gold switches are of a tactile type and have a good bumpy experience. You would like the experience of using them as they actuate fast.

5. Kailh Speed Navy Switches

The Kailh Speed Navy switches are clicky switches with an actuation of 70g force. It is a bit on the harder side to actuate.

Here are the detailed specs about the Kailh Speed switches in the tabular form below:

Kailh Speed VariantSwitch TypeActuation ForceActuation PointOperation SpeedOperating LifeMount Type
Kailh Speed Silver SwitchesLinear50g1.1mm3-4 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Speed Copper SwitchesTactile40g1.1mm3-4 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Speed Bronze SwitchesClicky50g1.1mm3-4 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Speed Gold SwitchesTactile50g1.4mm3-4 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Speed Navy SwitchesClicky70g1.2mm3-4 times/s50M cyclesPlate Mount

Here are the Kailh Speed Switches available at Amazon:

Last update on 2022-09-30 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

#3. Kailh Box Silent Switches

Kailh Box switches are the latest volume switch silent box solution from Kailh. These switches are designed for gaming or industrial applications that demand silent switches.

Designed for use on boards, boxes, and systems that require a silent, unobtrusive switch: like the ones found on keyboards, the Kailh Box Silent switches are a perfect choice.

The switches feature a sealed internal design that employs a shock-absorbing system to protect the internal components from the natural wear and tear caused by continuous operation. 

As a result, the switches are designed to be durable, lasting for 50 million keystrokes.

The switches are also designed to be surface-mount LED compatible, hot-swap compatible, and box-type of switches with dampened sound.

1. Kailh BOX Silent Pink Switches

Kailh Box Silent Pink Switches are the ones if you prefer silence while typing on your mechanical keyboard.

These are linear switches and are very light to actuate. Gaming and typing would be a breeze in Kailh Box Silent Pink switches.

2. Kailh BOX Silent Brown Switches

Are you a fan of tactile switches? Kailh Box Silent brown sets a standard to be one of the good entries in Tactile switches.

The bumpy feeling is decent considering the lower price segment.

Here are the detailed specs in tabular format:

Kailh Box Silent Variant SwitchesSwitch TypeActuation ForceActuation PointOperation SpeedOperating Life CycleMount Type
Kailh BOX Silent Pink SwitchesLinear35g1.8mm5-6 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mounted
Kailh BOX Silent Brown SwitchesTactile45g2mm5-6 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mounted

Here are the Kailh Box Silent Switches available at Amazon:

Last update on 2022-09-30 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

#4. Kailh Low Profile Choc Switches for Laptop

We don’t always like high-profile switches. Kailh Low-Profile Choc Switches for Laptop is the first on the market with a switch contact system based on the patented “BOX” technology of a mechanical switch.

Kailh’s Low-Profile Choc Switches have a smaller ‘chocolate’ key stem, as seen on the Cherry MX Low Profile Switches.

Compared to the standard Choc Switches, the Low-Profile Choc Switches are thinner, shorter, and lighter, allowing for an even lower-key position or reducing the thickness of the keyboard design. 

Kailh Low profile switches are great for laptops that use mechanical switches on their keyboard.

1. Kailh Choc White Switches

The Kailh Choc White switches are clicky and actuate at 50g which is good enough. If you are a Cherry MX Blue switch fan, then you will like it.

2. Kailh Choc Brown Switches

The Kailh Choc Brown switches are tactile low-profile switches from Kailh. You will get enough bumpy experience without noisy clicks from this switch.

3. Kailh Choc Red Switches

The Kailh Choc Red switches are low-profile linear switches from Kailh. It is a good offering with an actuation force of only 45g. With this low-profile switch, gaming will be a breeze.

Here is the detailed information about these switches’ specs below:

ColorTypeActuation ForceActuation PointOperating SpeedOperating Life CycleMount Type
Kailh Choc White SwitchesClicky50g1.5mm1 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Choc Brown SwitchesTactile50g1.5mm1 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount
Kailh Choc Red SwitchesLinear45g1.5mm1 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mount

#5. Kailh Pro Switches

The Kailh Pro series of switches is a noteworthy stride in keyboard switch technology. The Kailh Pro is the switch of choice for speed-typing and quick-key actions.

Available in standard sizes, the Kailh Pro comes in both modern and newly developed low-profile designs.

A plus for all you clicky-clackers out there, Kailh Pro switches feature an earlier activation time than most industry-standard switches.

Select the right switch for your next build and get in there and type!

1. Kailh Pro Burgandy Switches

Kailh Pro Burgandy is an excellent Linear switch from the Kailh Pro range. It is very fast and easily actuated with an actuation force of 35g.

2. Kailh Pro Purple Switches

Kailh Pro Purple is a tactile switch with an operating force of 45g which is decent for a tactile switch.

You would love the tactile feel it produces and feels much similar as the MX Browns.

3. Kailh Pro Light Green Switches

Kailh Pro Light Green switches are Clicky ones with an Actuation force of 50g and produce a good clicky actuation.

Kailh Box Silent VariantSwitch TypeActuation ForceActuation PointOperation SpeedOperating Life CycleMount Type
Kailh Pro Burgundy SwitchesLinear35g1.8mm5-6 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mounted
Kailh Pro Purple SwitchesTactile45g2mm5-6 times/s80M cyclesPlate Mounted
Kailh Pro Light Green SwitchesClicky50g1.7mm3-4 times/s70M cyclesPlate Mounted

Here are the Kailh Box Silent Switches available at Amazon:

Last update on 2022-09-30 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Are Kailh Switches Good?

The Kailh mechanical keyboard switch has many benefits, including its low price point, longevity, and attractive appearance.  

Overall, the Kailh switch is an attractive one that has attracted many mechanical keyboard users.

Are Kailh Switches Hot-Swappable?

Hot-swapping means that you can change them while the system is on. This is very useful for gamers because they can change the keycaps on their mechanical keyboards while the computer is on.

No need to turn off the computer to change the keycaps.

The short answer is no, not really. Kailh switches are not truly hot-swappable, but you can get away with changing them if you’re careful. Kailh switches are extremely difficult to remove, even with the special key.

We can’t be sure if it’s intentional or not. It’s possible that Kailh wants to keep the switches locked in the keyboard to prevent tampering, but it doesn’t make much sense to make them so difficult to remove.

Kailh switches fitted on Hot-swap PCBs are hot-swappable.

So, it depends on the mounting you do while you place the switches on your keyboard.

Are Kailh switches better than Cherry?

Cherry MX Switches are the typical switch used by mechanical keyboards. They are often considered the gold standard for keyboard switches.

Considering the price point, we can say the Kailh switches are better than Cherry. However, in terms of performance and longevity, the Cherry MX is the better one.

The Kailh switches are popular as they are much cheaper with good quality.

Are Kailh switches better than Gateron?

The popularity of Kailh switches continues to grow. With the growing popularity of these switches, I’ve been seeing a lot of confusion about whether Kailh switches are better than the more well-known Gateron switches.

Kailh switches are very similar as compared to the Gateron switches. Kailh is better in terms of low cost as compared to the Gaterons.

However, in terms of overall quality and experience, the Gaterons have the edge over the Kailh switches.

Still, the Kailh switches are considered good for the price we pay for.

Kailh Switches FAQs

Are Kailh silver speed switches 3 pins?

Kailh speed silvers have 3 pins.

How fast are Kailh speed switches?

Kailh speed switches are very fast as they are linear switches and have a travel distance of 1.2 mm. Their response time is speedy due to its low actuation and is very good for gaming.

Are Kailh speed silvers good?

Kailh speed silver has lower actuation as compared to the other Kailh switch variants.

Low actuation makes these switches fast to click and hence are very useful for fast gaming.
It gets very useful for FPS and competitive games and performs very well.

Can you put Cherry MX keycaps on Kailh switches?

Cherry MX keycaps are compatible with Kailh switches as they have a similar structure for their switches. So, you can easily put Cherry MX keycaps on Kailh switches.

Are Kailh switches loud?

Kailh switches like Kailh BOX White, Navy, and Jade are clicky switches and are loud. However, other tactile and linear variants of Kailh switches are not noisy.

Which Kailh switches are the quietest?

Kailh linear variants are the quietest among the Kailh Switches. It includes Kailh Box Dark Yellow, Kailh Box Black, and Kailh Box Red in the Box switches from Kailh.

Does Kailh make Optical Switches?

Kailh has an optical switch variant that is similar to the Kailh Box switch. The difference it has is it does not have a physical contact module like the Box switches.

These switches operate by Light in it to capture the response.  The Kailh Optical switches are Kailh Optical Blue, Kailh Optical Red, and Kailh Optical Black.

Conclusion

Let’s conclude the post on Kailh switches.

In this guide, I covered in detail the Kailh switches and how they perform with detailed specifications. You should have a good idea of what switch is best for you from the Kailh switch range. 

I hope you enjoyed reading this post.

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