Cherry MX Brownvs. Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring
When it comes to choosing a mechanical keyboard switch, two popular options to consider are the Cherry MX Brown and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring. The Cherry MX Brown switch is known for its subtlety, offering a light typing experience with gentle tactility and subdued audio feedback. On the other hand, the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switch is recommended for those seeking a tactile switch with medium tactility. It features a lower actuation and bottom-out force, providing a very approachable tactility. Additionally, it boasts a deep and thocky sound profile. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond these generalities so you can best decide on the best switch for you.
By the numbers
$4.00 per 10 switches
$3.57 per 10 switches
Top housing material
Top housing material
Bottom housing material
Bottom housing material
20mm single-stage spring
The housing materials of the Cherry MX Brown and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches exhibit notable differences in their sound profiles. The MX Brown's nylon top housing contributes to a deeper and fuller sound, creating a duller and rounder sound when typing. This is due to nylon's softer nature, which absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics. In contrast, the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring's polycarbonate top housing produces a sharper and crisper sound, thanks to its relatively stiffer plastic composition. Polycarbonate's clarity and resonance enhance the overall sound profile of the switch, making it ideal for those who prioritize a clearer and more resonant typing experience. Additionally, the polycarbonate top housing's translucency proves advantageous for users interested in RGB lighting, as it allows for better light diffusion.
When it comes to the bottom housing of these switches, the differences persist. The MX Brown's nylon bottom housing adds to the deeper and fuller sound profile, aligning with its top housing. This softer plastic effectively absorbs sound, further contributing to a dull and round sound when bottoming out keys. Conversely, the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring's polycarbonate bottom housing complements its polycarbonate top housing, reinforcing the switch's overall sharp and crisp sound profile. The stiffer nature of polycarbonate ensures a more pronounced and higher-pitched sound when keys are bottomed out, appealing to users seeking precision and clarity in their typing experience. Aesthetically, the clear polycarbonate bottom housing complements the transparent top housing, maintaining a unified and visually pleasing appearance.
While the housing materials of the Cherry MX Brown and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring differ, both switches offer distinctive advantages. The MX Brown, with its nylon construction, provides a deeper and fuller sound experience that some users may prefer for its softer and more muted typing feel. On the other hand, the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring's polycarbonate housing delivers a sharper and crisper sound, resulting in a more pronounced and precise typing experience. However, there are also similarities between these switches. Both housing materials excel at sound absorption, albeit to different extents. Therefore, users can expect comparable results in terms of sound reduction and a rounder sound profile when typing on switches that use either nylon or polycarbonate housings.
When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring tactile switch, we can see that both switches have a similar bottom out force of 55 grams, which indicates a medium-light resistance. However, there is a slight difference in the actuation force between the two switches. The MX Brown requires 45 grams of force to trigger a keystroke, while the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring requires 48 grams. Although this difference is minimal, it may be noticeable to individuals who prefer a lighter or heavier key press.
For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the MX Brown would be a suitable choice as it has a slightly lower actuation force. This lighter weight allows for longer periods of comfortable typing, making it ideal for office use or extended gaming sessions. On the other hand, individuals who prefer a more substantial push feel for a satisfying typing experience might opt for the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring. Although the actuation force is slightly higher, the negligible difference ensures that both switches provide a medium-light resistance overall.
In summary, the actuation force and bottom out force of the MX Brown and Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches are comparable, with the only notable difference being the slightly higher actuation force of the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring. Ultimately, the choice between the two switches depends on personal preference, whether one prefers a slightly lighter or heavier keystroke feel.
Both the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring tactile switch have a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key equipped with either of these switches, you will experience the same level of feedback and overall travel distance. Therefore, if you are looking for a similar typing experience in terms of travel distance, both of these switches will provide equal results.
Shadow (Ink) Single Spring
Which switch is more bang for your buck?
The Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring has an MSRP of $4.50 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring for $3.57.
The Cherry MX Brown comes in at $4.00 per 10 switches.
Here at Milktooth, we offer the best prices on switches (on average, 27% lower the competition). In addition, we offer free shipping on orders over $49.00. We also offer free returns and exchanges, so you can shop with guaranteed satisfaction.
That said, while price is an important piece of the puzzle, our opinion is that you should ultimately pick the option that most suits your unique preferences since you’ll be using these switches for years to come. In other words, finding something perfect for you is, in our view, the most important criteria.
Not sure what switch is best for you?
Take a short quiz and we'll suggest some great switches for you to try at homeBegin the switch quiz
When it comes to sound, the Cherry MX Brown and the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring offer different experiences. The MX Brown switches have a bassy and low-pitched sound profile, which adds a deeper and richer tone to key presses. On the other hand, the sound profile of the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches is not specified in the provided information. It is important to note that the sound of a switch is also influenced by other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used. Therefore, the MX Brown switches are known for their bassy and low-pitched sound, while the sound profile of the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring remains unknown.
In terms of feel, the MX Brown switches provide a textured or scratchy experience. This means that there is noticeable friction when pressing the keys, which can be preferred by some users but not preferred by others who prefer a smoother and friction-free typing experience. On the other hand, the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches offer a bouncy feel. This means that the keys have a lively sensation and provide a spring-like or elastic feedback when pressed, giving a rebound effect.
In conclusion, the Cherry MX Brown switches offer a subtly tactile experience with gentle tactility and subdued audio feedback. They have a bassy sound profile and provide a textured or scratchy feel. On the other hand, the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches have a medium level of tactility, lower actuation and bottom-out force, and a deep and thocky sound profile. They offer a bouncy feel. While the MX Brown switches have a specific sound profile and feel, the information provided about the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches does not include details about their sound profile. However, based on the available information, it can be inferred that the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switches would offer a tactile experience with a different sound and feel compared to the Cherry MX Brown switches.
Try switches before you buy them
We understand that finding the perfect keyboard switches can be a challenging and time-consuming process. This led us to design Milktooth's try at-home program that allows you to sample and test different switches in the comfort of your own home, ensuring you make the right choice for your typing preferences.
You can try 10 switches at home for 5 days, and your switches come pre-installed on switch testers. Of course, you’re more than free to install them into your own board to try as well for the most representative typing experience.
Gone are the days of going through countless forums and reviews to find the ideal switches. Now, you can experience the tactile feedback, actuation points, and sound profiles firsthand, empowering you to make an informed decision without any pressure or time constraints.
We understand the importance of finding the perfect typing experience, and our try at-home program eliminates the risk of making a costly mistake. Experiment with different switch variants, test them in various typing scenarios, and fine-tune your keyboard to match your individual preferences.
The try at-home program costs only $15, which includes shipping both ways. By trying before you buy, you can make the most informed purchasing decision possible. Simply click the "try at home" button on any given switch webpage to get started.
To sum up, if you are looking for a mechanical keyboard switch with a subtle tactile feel and subdued audio feedback, the Cherry MX Brown switch is an excellent choice. With a medium-light bottom out force of 55 grams, it offers a relatively light typing experience. On the other hand, if you prefer a switch with a medium level of tactility and a deep, thocky sound profile, the Aflion Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switch is highly recommended. It features a lower actuation and bottom-out force, making it approachable and comfortable to use. Additionally, the Shadow (Ink) Single Spring switch provides a bouncy and elastic feedback sensation, giving you a lively feel and rebound when pressed. Ultimately, your choice between these two switches will depend on your preferences for tactile feel and sound profile.