Thursday, March 18th 2021

Cherry Announces Cherry MX Ultra Low Profile Key Switches

CHERRY MX, the market leader and expert for mechanical switches in keyboards, presents the Ultra Low Profile. With this model, the German-based company once again achieves a milestone in the development of switches: CHERRY MX manages to create the ultra-low profile mechanical switch into its own portfolio, which brings new technical possibilities to the design of ultra-low profile notebook and desktop keyboards in the high-end segment. In addition, the ultra-thin solution combines the feature set of the MX switches that have been proven for decades with new attributes, making the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile a game-changer for the industry.

CHERRY MX has not only presented a completely new development with the Low Profile switch introduced in 2018 but also significantly reduced the overall height of mechanical switches in this new design. This step is radically continued with the brand-new Ultra Low Profile. CHERRY MX is moving toward the current limit of technical feasibility with this model: the overall height is now reduced to only 3.5 millimeters. Accordingly, the development team realized a mechanical switch that is around 70 percent smaller than the Low Profile.
Completely new switch design with Gold Crosspoint technology
To achieve this extremely thin form factor, the CHERRY engineers had to come up with a completely new switch design that deviates from the previous MX construction. Accordingly, the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile lacks the traditional housing and plunger components. Instead, it relies on a two-piece keycap mount made of stainless steel, which is preloaded via a spring and is an element of the mechanics. This implementation allows for an extremely precise actuation. Significantly responsible for this and a decisive quality feature of every MX switch is the gold crosspoint contact system, which was specially developed for this switch. Other components of the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile include two translucent polymer components and the metal base frame.

Tactile switching characteristic and acoustic feedback
The Ultra Low Profile switch features a tactile switching characteristic and also generates acoustic feedback in the form of an audible click. In addition, the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile offers a pre-travel of only 0.8 millimeters. Then the switch also actuates directly and provides an ergonomic overtravel of 1.0 millimeters. The total travel is 1.8 millimeters. A force of 45 centinewtons is required for the actuation, which increases to 65 centinewtons at the tactile point. CHERRY's world-exclusive, high-precision, and durable gold crosspoint technology with the corrosion-resistant gold contact points, in combination with the long-lasting mechanics, ensures superior durability with consistent actuation quality.

Acoustic feedback with quality promise
An important quality feature of the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile is the acoustic feedback provided by the unmistakable "CHERRY click sound". To guarantee consistent quality for each individual switch, a new type of acoustic test was developed for production in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Machine Tools and Forming Technology IWU. For this purpose, the researchers analyzed the human auditory perception of the ideal CHERRY click and translated it into a physical measurement, the acoustic fingerprint.

Space-saving and cost-efficient SMD design
The CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile is the first mechanical SMD switch from CHERRY MX that can be soldered directly onto the PCB thanks to dedicated connection pads. This space-saving solution allows for seamless integration into particularly flat and slim keyboards for notebooks as well as desktop applications, as the components can be placed on only one side of the PCB. In addition, this type of assembly process allows manufacturers to increase production efficiency by enabling automation.

Balanced RGB illumination
Due to the special design of the Ultra Low Profile, the respective SMD LED (RGB or single color) is located directly under the switch. In combination with the translucent thermoplastic parts, a balanced and homogeneous illumination is achieved, resulting in a brilliant expression of all 16.8 million colors of the RGB spectrum. This means that even the keycap is brightly illuminated. In addition, the possibility of individual key illumination is given.

Developed and manufactured in Germany
Like every MX switch, the Ultra Low Profile was designed by the experienced development team at the headquarters in Auerbach in der Oberpfalz, Germany. This model is also manufactured in Germany. This guarantees the highest reliability and precision, which is ensured by permanent and strict tests by the in-house laboratory. CHERRY also relies on complete product control in-house, which includes all critical components and processes.

Ultra Low Profile makes its debut in Alienware laptops
In order to meet all the requirements of a switch designed particularly for laptops, the experienced American manufacturer Alienware also contributed in the development of the keyboard. As an industry leader in gaming hardware, the company draws upon decades of expertise and always knows how to inspire with innovation potential. For this reason, the CHERRY MX Ultra Low Profile is used in the Alienware laptops of the m15 R4 and m17 R4 series for the initial launch. These premium models are the thinnest in the company's portfolio and feature the latest high-end components.

In addition, the integrated keyboards offer an RGB single key illumination, which can be customized via AlienFX and synchronized with other compatible devices in the Alienware ecosystem. For absolute reliable typing, 100 percent anti-ghosting with N-Key Rollover (NKRO) is provided. Combined with the outstanding responsiveness and tactile feedback of the Ultra Low Profile switches, gamers get a true mechanical notebook keyboard in this slim form factor for the first time.

New benchmark and innovation leader
CHERRY MX has not only developed the lowest-profile mechanical switch in its own range with the brand-new Ultra Low Profile and setting a new benchmark especially within the notebook segment but is also pushing the keyboard market forward with new innovations as a technology leader. As a new, patented* standard, the model will influence the industry in the coming years and possibly decades. Particularly for the notebook segment, the Ultra Low Profile will enable solutions that were not technically possible before.
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23 Comments on Cherry Announces Cherry MX Ultra Low Profile Key Switches

#1
bug
the ultra-thin solution combines the feature set of the MX switches that have been proven for decades with new attributes
How the hell do they provide the same feature set, when the design is completely different?

That said, I was hoping to see a picture of the assembled key. I'm a sucker for low-profile keyboards, but for some reason I can't stand chicklets.
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#2
MDWiley
This is pretty cool! I’m curious to see it assembled and how the key caps are mounted.
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#3
darakian
Looks very much like apple's butterfly mechanism.
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#4
bug
darakian
Looks very much like apple's butterfly mechanism.
Yes, 3 pieces + one spring is totally the same as a one piece design :rolleyes:
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#5
Operandi
bug
How the hell do they provide the same feature set, when the design is completely different?

That said, I was hoping to see a picture of the assembled key. I'm a sucker for low-profile keyboards, but for some reason I can't stand chicklets.
Design goals and the design are two different things. You can achieve the same thing several different ways.

I don't have any nostalgia for oldschool mechanical keyboards so that might have something to do with it but I almost prefer low profile chicklet keyboards when they are high quality in comparison to the mechanical keyboard that I have on my desktop cause thats what you are supposed to use.
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#6
darakian
bug
Yes, 3 pieces + one spring is totally the same as a one piece design :rolleyes:
I'm referring to the arms (wings?) which hold up the key cap. The spring is certainly a difference, but the overall it looks pretty close to me.
www.extremetech.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/butterfly.jpg
Hopefully it's better than apple's version.
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#7
illli
I love scissor switch keyboards, and this would probably be the closest to a mechanical version of that.
Although this is probably for laptops, I hope someone makes a desktop keyboard with these.
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#8
Octopuss
There are virtually no "regular" low profile keyboards at all even years after the introduction of the switches, this is pointless :(
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#9
Operandi
Octopuss
There are virtually no "regular" low profile keyboards at all even years after the introduction of the switches, this is pointless :(
Logitech G915, Coolermaster SK630, Hexgears X1, Keychron K1 amongst others.....
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#10
Caring1
They're going to be a bitch to repair.
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#11
evernessince
Operandi
Logitech G915, Coolermaster SK630, Hexgears X1, Keychron K1 amongst others.....
Also the fnatic streak65.
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#12
goodeedidid
bug
Yes, 3 pieces + one spring is totally the same as a one piece design :rolleyes:
It's 4 pieces.. genus
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#13
InVasMani
If they make it linear without the audible click I'd probably quite love one of these honestly. I say this coming from a Cherry JD-0400EU02/01 scissor switch wireless keyboard. Also let us hope they make it wireless as well or a wired/wireless design nature. The keyboard I'm using has a phenomenal battery life to it. The build quality on this look robust.
Caring1
They're going to be a bitch to repair.
Perhaps though they look rather bullet proof indestructible at the same time. The only downside I see with the design is it isn't optical, but otherwise they got it right minus the tactile click part I'm not fond of though I'm wagering they'll have a silent linear option.
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#14
Arcdar
InVasMani
If they make it linear without the audible click I'd probably quite love one of these honestly. I say this coming from a Cherry JD-0400EU02/01 scissor switch wireless keyboard. Also let us hope they make it wireless as well or a wired/wireless design nature. The keyboard I'm using has a phenomenal battery life to it. The build quality on this look robust.



Perhaps though they look rather bullet proof indestructible at the same time. The only downside I see with the design is it isn't optical, but otherwise they got it right minus the tactile click part I'm not fond of though I'm wagering they'll have a silent linear option.
my thoughts, especially the second part. I'm fascinated how much engineering went into those little critters and how robust it seems to be. I mean, this is the glorified super polished marketing version and we'll have to see how the mass produced parts look in the end, but if they are up to 90% as well done as this preview piece they would be insanely long-living and just awesome in general :) (as mech-eng I love stuff like this ^^ - it looks beautifully crafted for function )
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#15
hdsonch
Octopuss
Prácticamente no hay teclados de bajo perfil "regulares" en absoluto incluso años después de la introducción de los interruptores, esto no tiene sentido :(
Corsair K70 Mk2 RGB Perfil bajo. Tengo el teclado que menciono y me gustan bastante los interruptores de perfil bajo, lo único malo es que no se obtienen muchas teclas para personalizarlo.

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#16
Octopuss
Yes I fully agree with that statement. It was very well thought out and very educational. My day is so much more brighter now.
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#17
bug
Octopuss
Yes I fully agree with that statement. It was very well thought out and very educational. My day is so much more brighter now.
He's just expressing his preference, not exactly educational. But yeah, bonus points for Spanish in an English forum.
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#18
Octopuss
I don't have the slightest effing idea what the hell all that klingon meant :D
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#19
ZoneDymo
Octopuss
I don't have the slightest effing idea what the hell all that klingon meant :D
odd to be proud of that....
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#21
Tartaros
I suppose the pins will coincide with the rest of the Cherry line, I want to take apart my Corsair keyboard and put these ones as soon as they are available with caps and probably will have my dream low profile mechanical keyboard.

@Octopuss

It's spanish, I think he sees the page through google translate or something and thinks it's a spanish site.

"Corsair K70 Mk2 RGB Perfil bajo. Tengo el teclado que menciono y me gustan bastante los interruptores de perfil bajo, lo único malo es que no se obtienen muchas teclas para personalizarlo."

means

"I have the Corsair K70 low profile keyboard you mention and I like quite a lot the low profile switches, the only bad thing is there aren't many keycaps to personalize it"

I'll pm him about this xD
Posted on Reply
#22
hdsonch
hdsonch
Corsair K70 Mk2 RGB Perfil bajo. Tengo el teclado que menciono y me gustan bastante los interruptores de perfil bajo, lo único malo es que no se obtienen muchas teclas para personalizarlo.


Sorry guys, the google translator played a bad move on me. I wrote in English and I don't know why my answer was translated. (If I read the page on some occasions in my language, Spanish).

Thanks Tartaros!
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