Cherry has just announced a new improved version of its venerable Cherry MX switches at Gamescom 2023 , in the shape of the new Cherry MX2A switch. With a smoother action, lower noise, and an actuation rating of over 100 million, they aim to put Cherry comfortably back at the top of the premium keyboard switch market. With many of the keyboards on our best gaming keyboard list already sporting Cherry MX switches, there’s good reason to be excited about a new version.
Cherry Xtrfy MX2A
As a wholesale upgrade of the Cherry MX, these new switches will be available in all the standard Cherry MX variants, so there will be MX Red, MX Brown, MX Black, MX Speed Silver, and MX Silent Red versions, along with RGB variants of all the above. MX Blue switches will also get some of the upgrades, but their clicky mechanism requires them to retain the previous spring and they don’t get the new lubrication.
The changes, then, include factory-applied lubrication to help smooth out the action of the switches. Lubricating switches has long been a key upgrade of many mechanical keyboard owners, with Cherry MX switches generally not being pre-lubed (to use the community lingo). Cherry has developed its own grease for lubing the switches and claims the performance of its lubricant is similar to Krytox GPL 205 Grade 0.
Another upgrade is the shape of the spring, which has changed from cylindrical to barrel-shaped. This ensures there’s minimal contact between the spring coils, minimizing wear and noise. There’s also a new spring-centering stem that has a ‘crown of ribs’. This ensures a more precise and consistent feel and sound, reducing scratchiness and improving sliding properties, according to Cherry.
The stem guide has also been improved with a new diamond-polishing process used to smooth the sliding surfaces in both the lower and upper housing sections, making for increased smoothness during actuation.
One aspect that hasn’t changed is the contact point system, which continues to use the gold crosspoint arrangement that Cherry says results in ‘an unbeatable debounce time of less than one millisecond’.
Cherry was the originator of the modern trend for ‘mechanical’ switch keyboards, with its Cherry MX switches being the gold standard of quality and the standard format for switches of this type – nearly all ‘alternative’ switches use the same shaped housing and keycap mounting system.
However, in recent years, many competitors, such as Gateron and Kailh, have picked up significant market share, while the likes of Logitech, Razer, and SteelSeries have engineered their own switches instead of paying for Cherry ones. As such, the launch of a brand new and improved Cherry MX switch is a big deal.
The Cherry MX2A switches are available now for B2B orders but will also be available soon for end customers and DIY enthusiasts to purchase. Keyboards featuring the MX2A switch will also follow shortly.
Cherry Xtrfy K5V2
Along with its new switches, Cherry has also announced the first new keyboard to feature the MX2A switches, the Cherry Xtrfy K5V2. The 65 percent format keyboard is based on the company’s K5 keyboard and, like its MZ1 gaming mouse, it includes a host of customization options. It has customizable switches, stabilizers, keycaps, cable, frame, and even the logo plate is swappable.
The K5V2 also uses a metal plate in its construction for extra rigidity and heft, while its super-scan technology scans all the keys every half a millisecond for faster detection of keystrokes.
RGB lighting is of course onboard too, with per-key customizable RGB backlighting and an RGB light strip. The Cherry Xtrfy K5V2 is expected to be available later this year.
Are you excited about these brand-new Cherry MX switches, or have you already moved on to rival brands? Let us know your thoughts on the Custom PC Facebook page, via Twitter, or join our Custom PC and Gaming Setup Facebook group and tap into the knowledge of our 400,000+ members.