This post was most recently updated on April 29th, 2023
Mechanical keyboards are a first choice for many professionals who spend a lot of time typing on a computer, such as writers, programmers, and gamers. However, they are also highly beneficial for music production and audio editing.
In this article, we will explore why they are ideal for these fields and provide guidance on how to choose the right mechanical keyboard for your needs.
Table of Contents
They are designed with individual switches under each key, which provides tactile feedback and a higher degree of responsiveness compared to standard keyboards. There are various types of mechanical switches available, such as Cherry MX, Kailh, and Gateron, each with different levels of actuation force and feedback. For music production, switches with a higher actuation force, such as Cherry MX Greens, can provide a more satisfying typing experience and improve accuracy.
Examples of specific tasks in music production where a mechanical keyboard is helpful to include:
- Writing and editing lyrics.
- Typing out notes and chords.
- Entering commands in music production software.
- Using shortcut keys for common functions, such as copy and paste.
Mechanical keyboards are known for their durability and reliability, making them an ideal choice for music production environments where heavy usage is common. Regular keyboards may fail due to prolonged use, whereas mechanical keyboards are designed to last for years without any issues. They are built with high-quality materials that can withstand the rigors of daily use, including spills and drops.
Examples of situations where a regular keyboard may fail, but a mechanical keyboard will not include:
- Spills from drinks or other liquids.
- Drops or impacts that can damage the keyboard.
- Heavy usage over extended periods of time.
Mechanical keyboards can be customized for different preferences, such as different keycaps and layouts. Custom keycaps can be used to improve the typing experience by providing a more comfortable and personalized feel. Different layouts, such as full-size, tenkeyless, and 60%, provide flexibility in terms of workspace and typing style.
Examples of specific customizations that may be helpful for music production include:
- Custom keycaps with music symbols or notes.
- Layouts with function keys for music production software.
- Different switch types for a more customized typing experience.
They can also contribute to the overall aesthetic of a music production setup. Backlit keycaps and RGB lighting can be used to improve the look of a keyboard and add a visual element to the workspace. There are various keyboard designs available that are popular in the music production community, such as Cyberpunk and Robot Taisen.
Mechanical keyboards provide greater precision and accuracy in audio editing compared to regular keyboards. The tactile feedback and responsiveness of mechanical switches aid in precise movements, such as adjusting audio levels and scrubbing through audio tracks. This can be especially helpful for audio editors who need to make fine adjustments to audio tracks.
Examples of specific audio editing tasks where a mechanical keyboard is helpful to include:
- Adjusting audio levels.
- Scrubbing through audio tracks.
- Using shortcut keys for common audio editing functions.
- Entering timecode or markers for audio tracks.
One of the biggest advantages of mechanical keyboards is the ability to program macros and assign specific functions to individual keys. This can greatly speed up workflow in audio editing tasks by allowing users to quickly access commonly used functions and shortcuts. For example, a user could program a macro to automate the process of adding a specific effect to a track, saving time and effort.
There are many different types of macros and programmable keys that can be useful for audio editing, depending on individual needs and preferences. Some keyboards come with dedicated macro keys, while others allow users to program any key on the keyboard. Examples of specific macros and programmable keys that may be useful for audio editing include volume control, transport controls, and shortcut keys for specific editing tools.
Mechanical keyboards also offer ergonomic advantages over regular keyboards. Many of them are designed with ergonomic features such as split designs, wrist rests, and adjustable angles. These features can help reduce strain and fatigue during long editing sessions, leading to increased productivity and comfort.
Examples of specific ergonomic features that are common in mechanical keyboards include adjustable feet to change the angle of the keyboard; wrist rests to support the wrists during typing, and split designs to allow for more natural hand positioning. These features can be especially important for audio editors who spend many hours each day using a keyboard.
When choosing a mechanical keyboard for music production or audio editing, one of the most important considerations is the type of switch used. Different switch types have different characteristics in terms of tactile feedback, actuation force, and sound. For example, some switches are designed to be more tactile and provide more feedback when typing, while others are quieter and require less force to actuate.
The best switch type for a particular user will depend on individual preferences and the specific tasks being performed. Some popular switch types among music production and audio editing professionals include Cherry MX Brown, Cherry MX Red, and Kailh BOX White.
Another important consideration when choosing a mechanical keyboard is the layout. There are many different layouts available, including full-size, tenkeyless, and 60% layouts. Full-size keyboards include a number pad, while tenkeyless keyboards omit the number pad to save space. 60% of keyboards are even smaller and omit many keys beyond the letters and numbers.
The best layout for a particular user will depend on individual preferences and workspace limitations. For example, users with limited desk space may prefer a tenkeyless or 60% keyboard to save space.
The final consideration when choosing a mechanical keyboard is the keycaps. Keycaps can be made from a variety of materials, including ABS plastic, PBT plastic, and even metal. Different materials can affect the feel and sound of typing. Keycaps can also be customized with different designs and colors to suit individual preferences.
When choosing keycaps, it’s important to consider individual preferences and budgets. Some popular keycap designs among music production and audio editing professionals include DSA profile and Cherry profile keycaps.
Mechanical keyboards offer many benefits for music production and audio editing professionals. These keyboards provide tactile feedback, durability, customizability, and ergonomic features that can help improve productivity and comfort during long editing sessions. When choosing a mechanical keyboard, it’s important to consider switch type, layout, and keycaps to ensure the best fit for individual preferences and needs.