The switch of a keyboard is a very personal choice when building a custom keyboard, in my opinion. While some like switches with a deep, thocky sound profile, others (like myself) prefer switches with a clacky, higher-pitched sound signature.
If you’re the latter, then you’d want to check out the SP-Star Luminous Cyber switch. Not only is it a clacky linear switch with very little stem wobble, it also has a unique all-polycarbonate housing…that glows in the dark. I’ve used it for quite some time now, and it is easily one of my favourite linear switches.
What It Is
There are two switches in the SP-Star Luminous series: this Cyber colourway with a light green housing and black stem, as well as the Starry Night version with a blue housing and yellow stem. Beyond the different colour scheme, these two switches are identical to each other.
Both SP-Star Luminous switches are linear switches with a 62g gold plated spring. Unlike most switches in the market, both the top and bottom housing of the Luminous are made of polycarbonate, which likely contributes to its clacky sound profile. These two switches also have a five-pin design.
Aside from that, the Luminous also has some light factory lubing out of the box, so it does feel quite smooth right off the bat.
Pricing wise, I got the Luminous Cyber from Keys on Shopee. I purchased 100 units, so I basically paid RM2.50 per switch. This puts it in the same price range as more premium switches such as the Cobalt POM, and it certainly performs like one – more on that in the next section.
The Good Stuff
Thanks to the light factory lube, the SP-Star Luminous Cyber is quite smooth out of the box. The downstroke does have a slight bit of scratch to it, but once I’ve lubed it with some Krytox 205g0, it’s just as smooth as the best linear switches in the market.
I’m also impressed with the lack of wobble on the stem of the Luminous Cyber. This makes for a very, very stable typing experience, and not many switches can compete with it in this respect. In fact, it’s very comparable to the Gazzew Bobagum; a silent linear switch with very little stem wobble too.
Of course, there’s also the clacky sound profile of the Luminous Cyber, which reminds me quite a bit of the NovelKeys Cream – minus the scratch of course. Compared to the Cream, the Luminous isn’t quite as loud either. The acoustics of a switch is a subjective matter, but if you like a clacky sound signature, you won’t be disappointed with this switch.
What lends to the clacky sound profile of the Luminous Cyber is its all-polycarbonate housing. The housing of a typical MX-style switch has a polycarbonate top with a nylon bottom for a more solid bottom out. The fact that the Luminous has an all-polycarbonate housing instead is what gives it such a clacky sound profile.
Oh, as its name suggests, the Luminous Cyber glows in the dark as well. Yes, once the switch is installed on a keyboard with keycaps on, it won’t be visible, but it’s still a unique feature. I mean, just look at how nice it looks in the dark.
The Bad Stuff
While I love the clacky sound profile of the SP-Star Luminous Cyber switch, I’m sure there are folks that do not share my sentiment. If you want a switch that thocks instead of clacks, you’d be better off with a different option, such as the Cobalt POM with its long stem pole.
Other than that, in its stock form, the Luminous Cyber does have some leaf noise; it definitely needs to be lubed to eliminate this leaf ticking. While you got the switch opened up for lubing, consider filming it as well. Even though it has very little stem wobble, the top housing does move slightly with some applied pressure.
Last but certainly not least is the asking price of the Luminous Cyber. A couple of local sellers on Shopee do carry the switch, but retailing at around RM2.65 per switch – RM2.50 if you get a minimum of 100 units from Keys – it’s not a budget-oriented switch.
That being said, you do get your money’s worth with the Luminous Cyber.
Is It Worth It?
If you want a switch with a clacky sound profile, very little stem wobble, and a unique housing that glows in the dark – yes, I consider this a selling point – then the SP-Star Luminous Cyber is absolutely worth it. You do need to lube and film the switch to bring out its full potential, but once you do, it’s easily one of the best linear switches in the market now.
SP-Star is not quite as popular as more established switch manufacturers like JWK and Gateron, but I do think it has what it takes to be one of the top brands if it keeps producing switches like the Luminous series. Who knows, maybe it will put out a thocky switch in due time – I’ll be keeping a close eye on SP-Star’s future releases.