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Cherry VIOLA switches aim to make mechanical keyboards more affordable

CHERRY has long been a market leader when it comes to mechanical switches, often being the number one choice. Today, not only did Cherry announce that its MX Switches now have twice as much durability and longevity, but there is also a brand new switch on the way called VIOLA. 

Cherry VIOLA is the first fully mechanical key switch for keyboards aimed at the lower end of the market, giving budget-oriented shoppers a fully mechanical option. The VIOLA is intended to replace the likes of rubber dome switches with a higher quality alternative with more reliability, durability and better typing feel.

The VIOLA is based on Cherry’s patented V-shape contact system, which establishes an efficient connection between two pads on the circuit board. It is a solderless design, making the switches swappable, which is good news for cost and ease of replacement.

Most Cherry switches are defined as either ‘Linear’ or ‘Tactile’. VIOLA sits in a new category that Cherry is calling ‘CrossLinear’, essentially meaning 45 cN of actuation force is required for the 2mm pre-travel and to fully bottom out the key, actuation force ramps up to 75 cN with 4mm of total key travel.

As you might expect, Cherry is also making VIOLA switches compatible with RGB LEDs, so there could be a new wave of cheaper RGB mechanical keyboards on the way, all still carrying the Cherry logo.

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KitGuru Says: We’ve seen various companies attempt to bring mechanical-style switches to low-cost market segments, often resulting in a ‘mem-chanical’ switch, VIOLA seems to be the first to offer a fully mechanical switch in this market segment, so it will be interesting to see how peripheral makers embrace this new switch and what sort of prices we can expect. 

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