The hobbyist scene around mechanical keyboards has been wild to witness flourish with an abundance of custom builds, aftermarket keycaps, and non-traditional layouts. And we’ve seen the usual suspects like Corsair, Logitech, and Razer lean a bit more into that enthusiast space, branching slightly out from the typical gaming-style keyboards (and I’d say most have done away with the extravagant features and gaudy branding of yore). Cherry’s new wireless MX-LP 2.1 is a reflection of how the keyboard niche has evolved, because out of the box, it feels like the exact kind of compact keyboard I would’ve outfitted myself.

Cherry has been a pioneer in mechanical switches with the likes of the linear MX Reds and clicky MX Blues, and everything in between–if you’ve used a mechanical keyboard, chances are they had Cherry switches in them. The company also has its own line of keyboards, one of which we recently reviewed: the wireless Cherry KW X ULP. But while that was an ultra-low-profile and super-thin take on a mechanical keyboard, it didn’t exactly fare well for gaming. With the MX-LP 2.1, however, we have a low-profile keyboard that excels in almost every respect whether it be for typing in the workspace or competitive gaming, all packed in the bite-sized 65% form factor.

The Cherry MX-LP 2.1 mechanical keyboard.
The Cherry MX-LP 2.1 mechanical keyboard.
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The core of what makes the MX-LP 2.1 so great out of the box is the MX Speed Silver switches. These are smooth, linear-style switches similar to the MX Red but with a shorter actuation point and total travel distance–1.2mm and 3.4mm, respectively. This allows the keyboard itself to maintain a thinner profile without sacrificing the precision and feel of a proper mechanical switch. It also gives you that satisfying “thock” sound with each keystroke while also being noticeably quieter than my Keychron K4 and Razer Huntsman, even when hammering away and bottoming out. The buttery smooth feel and responsiveness made me a bit more excited to just type. But if I’m dropping $130 USD on a keyboard, it’ll be put to work in gaming.

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