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Gamakay Crystal VS. Bumblebee VS. Phoenix Mechanical Switches Shootout: Smooth Criminals!

Gamakay Crystal VS. Bumblebee VS. Phoenix Mechanical Switches Shootout: Smooth Criminals! 23

Gamakay, famous for producing budget-friendly mechanical keyboards, has entered the mechanical switch market with their lineup of linear switches, namely the Phoenix, Crystal and Bumbleblee. Available as switch options for their latest LK67 keyboards or as a standalone purchase, they retail for US$16.99 for a box of 35. 

Gamakay Linear Switches

Gamakay Mechanical Switches Shootout: Crystal VS Bumblebee VS Phoenix

Gamakay was kind enough to send us a few boxes of sample switches for review. All three Gamakay switches are linear, with the Phoenix being the silent type. They all feature a 3-pin design and are factory-lubricated. Here are the specifications of each switch lineup: 

Gamakay Phoenix Silent Linear Switch Specifications

Switch TypeSilent Linear
Travel Distance3.30mm
Pre-Travel2.00 ± 0.6mm
Actuation Force40 ± 10gf
Minimum Trigger Force35gf Min
End Force45gf Max

Gamakay Crystal Linear Switch Specifications

Switch TypeLinear
Travel Distance4.00mm
Pre-Travel2.00 ± 0.6mm
Actuation Force45 ± 10gf
Minimum Trigger Force30gf Min
End Force65gf Max

Gamakay Bumblebee Linear Switch Specifications

Switch TypeLinear
Travel Distance4.00mm
Pre-Travel1.30 ± 0.6mm
Actuation Force45 ± 10gf
Minimum Trigger Force35gf Min
End Force65gf Max

Typing Characteristics: Gamakay Phoenix

Gamakay Mechanical Switches Shootout: Crystal VS Bumblebee VS Phoenix

The Gamakay Phoenix switch has the lightest actuation and end force among the three. It features a yellow box type stem sandwiched between a clear top and a bright red bottom housing. Stem wobble was minimal and the bottom of the stem was dampened to cancel out the bottom-out noise. 

Marketed as a silent linear switch, the Gamakay Phoenix is perfect for office use and I managed to daily drive this without disturbing my colleagues at work, especially after tormenting them with my old Cherry MX Blue switch keyboard for months. 

As the bottom of the stem is dampened, bottoming out feels rather squishy and “thock-less”. In fact the dampening is so well done, you could hear the audible scratchiness of the switch instead. The lubricant applied was too light to my liking, and I would recommend relubing the Phoenix switches yourself if you cannot stand scratchy switches. 

Typing Characteristics: Gamakay Crystal

Gamakay Mechanical Switches Shootout: Crystal VS Bumblebee VS Phoenix

As the name suggests, the Gamakay Crystal is completely transparent, safe for the spring and pins. It reminds me of the Everglide Aqua King V3 switches but with a box-shaped stem. I love the clear design especially on an RGB keyboard as light refracts off each switch, illuminating the entire board. There is slightly more stem wobble compared to the Phoenix but overall it is still a solid performer in this regard. 

Typing on the Crystal felt light at first, followed by a sharp increase in tension as I approached the end of my downstroke. Perhaps it is due to the clear materials, the switches have some slight scratchiness, however they are mostly inaudible. Relubing the switches and stem might improve the overall smoothness. Nevertheless, the resulting “thock” is satisfying to hear without being too loud. 

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Gamakay Crystal VS. Bumblebee VS. Phoenix Mechanical Switches Shootout: Smooth Criminals! 24

Typing Characteristics: Gamakay Bumblebee

Gamakay Mechanical Switches Shootout: Crystal VS Bumblebee VS Phoenix

Here I saved my favourite of the three for last. The Gamakay Bumblebee houses a grey box-shaped stem between a clear top and yellow bottom housing. Stem wobble is the most apparent of the three but still pretty good. 

While testing all three switches, I keep leaning towards the Bumblebee mainly due to how it feels to type. The Bumblebee is smooth with the least amount of pre-travel. It is the heaviest of the bunch and it does feel like so, albeit in a more linear fashion. Each downstroke feels consistent with a smooth increase in tension, followed by a deep, crisp bottom out “thock”. 

Conclusion

Gamakay Mechanical Switches Shootout: Crystal VS Bumblebee VS Phoenix

Retailing at US$16.99 for 35 pieces, the Gamakay linear switches are affordable and are great performers in this price bracket. You get good performing switches with little to minimal stem wobble that are factory-lubricated. Granted, some of the switches could use a bit of re-lubing, but that is pretty much down to personal preference.

If you want to learn more about Gamakay linear switches, head over to their official store, or grab yourself a box at their Official AliExpress Store.

Written By

Chief Content Developer at The AXO

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