If you’re a streamer, gamer, or you’re just tired of hearing the clacking of keys as you play, you might want to look into softening your keyboard’s noise.
Here are 8 easy ways to make your gaming keyboard quieter:
- Use a desk mat.
- Add padding under the keys.
- Install silent ‘o rings.’
- Use mechanical lubricants.
- Use softer keycaps.
- Install silent switches.
- Type quieter.
- Get a new keyboard.
All of these are great ways to make your gaming keyboard quieter and are relatively easy to do. Read on to find out how to do these, and you’ll have a smooth, peaceful gaming experience.
1. Use a Desk Mat
A desk mat is the simplest way to lower the noise from your keyboard.
Sometimes, the noise doesn’t come from the keys themselves but from the vibrations of your keyboard against the surface of your desk. This can be annoying but also easy to fix. All you need to do is get a desk mat.
A desk mat is a thin mat made of foam material that you put underneath your keyboard on your desk. It absorbs the shock from typing and minimizes rattling and can also protect your desk from scratches, dents, and other damage.
Desk mats come in various colors and styles, so you can get one that’ll match any aesthetic. They can even feature characters and more significant landscapes.
These mats are also very inexpensive, they come in a variety of materials, and you can customize them as much as you need to. You can even put custom art or photographs on them.
This Aothia Leather Desk Pad Protector (available on Amazon.com) is a stylish and mature option that’ll fit any aesthetic. With fourteen color options and three different sizes, you can pick a desk mat that matches any of your needs.
2. Add Padding Under the Keys
If a desk mat isn’t your style or your keyboard isn’t moving around, you can always add padding under your keys. These cushion the individual keys and make them quieter.
There are several types of padding you can use to make your gaming keyboard quieter. Each one has its drawbacks and benefits. But any of the options can help with the noise levels of your keyboard, and they’re relatively easy to install.
All you need is a screwdriver, the padding, and time to install them properly.
Here are the most common padding options:
Foam padding is precisely what it sounds like. It’s a sheet of foam under your keyboard that cushions the keys and makes everything quieter.
It’s typically one large pad that you fasten underneath the keyboard. This is great if you have a fully connected keyboard and need to work with the system as a whole.
Another great aspect is that these pads aren’t costly. This GOKA Soundproofing Memory-Foam (available on Amazon.com) for Cherry MX mechanical keyboard is made of memory foam and will cushion your keys from the bottom.
You could even make the padding at home!
All you need is a sheet of flexible foam and some scissors, and you can cut a custom-sized foam pad. Make sure your keyboard doesn’t get too hot, though; too much heat could melt the foam if it isn’t industrial grade.
However, if you have keys that aren’t all connected, you should look into individual key padding as described below. You should also look into these options if you have only one or two keys that are particularly noisy and just need extra support.
Cotton or Microfiber Padding
Cotton or microfiber padding is another option that you can place under your keys as well. These are typically formed as small balls, masses, or fitted sheets attached to each of the keys. They cushion the key and also act as noise absorbers.
One drawback to this type of noise control is the fibrous nature of them both. Small bits of the materials can start coming loose and get into the mechanisms.
This video by Rhinofeed goes into detail about how to install and test microfiber padding:
All you have to do is remove the keycaps carefully, place the pads on the top of each switch, and put the cap back.
This method won’t entirely silence your keyboard, but if you want a quieter keyboard, this is a great place to start.
Gap padding is when you use a cut-out frame of padding to cushion keyboard keys. These are shaped to support the external rims of the keys.
This is a good option if your noise issue results from your keys hitting the base of your keyboard. However, this doesn’t help if you have other problems like excessive friction or bar issues, but we’ll talk more about that later.
The quickest way to install this padding is to remove all the keycaps and carefully fit the padding over the keyboard. Start adding the keycaps one at a time and keep adjusting the frame padding so it’s even and not visible.
3. Install Silent O-Rings
Silent o-rings are great, no-fuss options that anyone can install with enough time.
These little rings go over the actual bar your keys press and make them stop before they collide with the base. However, they’re small enough that they won’t stop your keyboard from working and won’t add too much weight to the board itself.
These make sure your keys aren’t going to ‘bottom out’ and slam against the keyboard frame. The slamming noise can be a big part of making your keyboard so noisy, and if you stop that, you can make it quieter.
Installing silent o-rings is another great inexpensive option. This ThreeBulls Clear Rubber O-Ring (available on Amazon.com) has 120 o-rings in four different colors. They’ll fit any mechanical keyboard you want to quiet down and blend in with your aesthetics too.
4. Use Mechanical Lubrication
Mechanical lubrication, like WD40 or a silicone-based mechanical lubricant, may also help. These will reduce friction and ease the typing noises.
All you need to do is put a single dot on the little bar your keys attach to. It doesn’t need to be significant at all and will distribute over time and use.
However, make sure to use this method in moderation. Too much lubrication could damage your device and put you in an even worse place. The oil could also start to clog the mechanisms and prevent you from typing at all.
5. Install Softer Keycaps
Soft or even squishy keycaps can absorb the force of typing and reduce your overall noise. The extra padding can also make it easier to type smoother and prevent you from slamming keys down.
These keycaps can also add a unique style to your keyboard and fit any aesthetic. You can get keycaps shaped like food, characters, or cat paws—the possibilities are endless!
You’ll need to take the time to install these keycaps, though, and make sure they work correctly, but they can help overall. Use a keycap remover to get them all off without breaking them or breaking your keyboard switches in the process.
This SYIDINZN’s Keycap Puller (available on Amazon.com) is an excellent choice because it has a keycap and switch remover in the same tool! It’s also a great deal because it doesn’t break the bank.
6. Install Silent Switches
Silent switches are one of the best ways you can make your keyboard quieter. While it’s the most complicated option on this list, it’s very effective.
It would help if you kept an eye on the price of these silent switches because they can get pretty expensive. But the money spent on them is an investment in your keyboard in the long run, so you want to get a good set of key switches that meet your needs.
There are a lot of YouTube tutorials out there explaining how to put silent switches on your keyboard, which are great resources because they’ll give you a visual example of what to do. You can even get specific tips with the model of keyboard you use!
Watch this video from TaeKeyboards as he goes through the process of installing and compares two different types of silent switches from Cherry MX, one of the best brands for silent switches in the market right now:
Switch and Click also has an excellent tutorial for hot-swappable mechanical keyboards. This video goes into detail about how to replace switches and talks about keyboard modding in general:
Keyboard modding is the process of changing all kinds of features about your keyboard to suit your needs, including changing your key switches.
To modify your keyboard in this way, you need a keycap remover and a switch remover.
7. Be More Gentle When Typing
Sometimes, the quickest way to reduce noise is to be more gentle with your keyboard.
Typing softer and not hitting keys at super high speeds during regular use can help in the long run. This also prevents the keys from hitting the keyboard frame and clacking even more.
If you’re gentle with your keyboard and don’t slam the keys, you can increase its lifespan. The keys aren’t under as much strain and will last longer.
You also reduce the risk of damaging your keyboard. Hitting your keys at high speeds could potentially damage the bars or other stopping mechanisms.
If you have a lot of noise that a desk mat helps with, typing more gently can also help with that issue. Roughly handling your keyboard can create all kinds of new noise.
8. Buy a New, Quieter Gaming Keyboard
As a last resort, you could always buy a new gaming keyboard. It’s the most expensive option on this list, so you shouldn’t take it lightly.
Keep an eye on the different varieties of gaming keyboards out there. Some come with options for silent use and also have a regular louder mode. Others offer different types of the same model that don’t make as much noise.
Try to buy your new gaming keyboard in-store, if possible. If you do, you get the chance to try them out and see how loud they are with regular typing movements. Many tech stores will have test displays that you can use.
It’s important to vet these new keyboards so that you don’t have to worry about noise in the future. Some keyboards can gain noise over the long term, though, so you should reach out to a sales associate and ask for any information about the potential noise.
If you need to buy online or aren’t in the area of a local tech store, you can look online. Below are two keyboards that are available on Amazon.com. Both are excellent choices if you choose to update your setup instead of repairing it, and they’re designed to be more silent than most others on the market.
The Redradon K502 is one of the best options available and has earned the Amazon Choice for gaming keyboards. It’s specifically designed to be quieter than other keyboards and still give a great gaming experience. It’s also waterproof and spill-resistant, and more affordable, so you can get it at any price point.
It’s a wireless keyboard and has Bluetooth capability while working with a variety of devices.
While it doesn’t have some of the flashier gaming keyboard features, it’s still an excellent keyboard, and the battery works for a long time. While it’s more expensive, you’re paying for a workhorse of a keyboard.
There are so many ways you can make your gaming keyboard quieter. The eight that we’ve included in this article are easy to execute, will improve your feedback noise, and give you a better play experience.
If you follow the tips outlined here, you’ll be able to modify your keyboard to fit your volume needs.