I am surprised that I cannot find any flat mechanical keyboard. Is there any technical reason for that, or the market is just too small?

The mechanical keyboard I use has an actuation point at 2mm (but the travel distance of the keys is set to 4mm…), so I don't see any technical hurdle to manufacture a flat mechanical keyboard but maybe I am missing something?

  • Could you define what you mean by "flat keyboard"?
    – IQAndreas
    Nov 20, 2014 at 3:57
  • Ultra thin keyboard. Nov 20, 2014 at 3:58

2 Answers 2


They do exist. They are just hard to find.

I love mechanical keyboards, but they are too high, which forces you to place your hands/wrists at a very unhealthy angle.

Here is a flat mechanical keyboard (the "Rapoo KX"): http://www.pcworld.com/article/2860856/rapoo-kx-review-the-mechanical-keyboard-enthusiasts-tiny-traveling-companion.html

Company's website: http://www.rapoo.com/ProductShow.aspx?PType=CHTi%2f0TqNIc%3d&PID=uCupl3PJuVw%3d

There is also a discussion about them here:




  • Thanks a lot. I have no idea why someone downvoted your answer. One downside of the Rapoo KX is that they use their own mechanical keys, which have a higher actuation force than some Cherry MX such as Cherry MX red. Are you aware of any other flat mechanical keyboards with lower actuation force? Apr 26, 2016 at 16:12

If you ever take apart a laptop, you will notice that although thicker than non-mechanical keyboards, they can still make mechanical keyboards to be quite thin. The following keyboard (the one in my primary laptop) uses scissor-switches, which although I don't have the exact dimensions for, would estimate results in a keyboard thickness of about 8 mm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ci0kNZvoqKQ

There is one problem, though: the aluminum plate on which everything is fastened does give a bit when bent. "Flexible" and "mechanical keys" don't go well together; a mechanical keyboard inside of a backpack getting slightly bent is more likely going to get permanently damaged than a membrane keyboard. (In fact, since membrane keyboards are happily bent, you can even create keyboards that roll up, something that would be impossible with mechanical keyboards)

If you want to use a scissor-switch keyboard as an external keyboard, the primary hurdle would be securing this aluminum plate in such a manner that it doesn't bend, which would require a plastic enclosure, adding to the thickness of the keyboard.

And in the end, most mechanical keyboards (or at least the ones I would take apart as a child) use the exact same principle as a membrane keyboard, but instead having each switch covered by a "plastic mechanical shield" that gives different feedback when depressed. So if you want to make a keyboard as thin as possible (and cheaper!), just remove the mechanical plastic bit entirely.

  • Keep in mind, I'm not an engineer; I'm just a computer repair guy familiar with broken keyboards.
    – IQAndreas
    Nov 20, 2014 at 4:33
  • I would imagine flat mechanical keyboards exist, this is simply what I believe is the primary motivation to why they aren't commonly manufactured.
    – IQAndreas
    Nov 20, 2014 at 4:40

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