Table of contents
Before we begin, it is worth calling out that this is an opinion piece by the author, but based on feedback from players & arcade operators. Button weight has been a hot topic for the longest time, and even today, players are torn on what the right set up is. The “meta” has changed over the years. If you are able, you should try out various configurations and find the best option that works for you.
This article was originally written in May of 2021. Updated on February 19, 2023 (50N -> 40N springs, D2MV -> VX switches).
Assuming you are using Sanwa buttons,
Popular choices are:
- D2MV-01-1C3 (old default for Lightning Model, discontinued as of early 2022)
- VX-01-1C23 (new default for Lightning Model as of 2022)
This is the set up I recommend to most players. 40N springs can be obtained from various manufacturers, although Sanwa springs are recommended for Sanwa buttons for best fit.
50N springs are fine too, although they are harder to come by. 60N is a little too heavy.
If you play a lot of high level SP 12s, or insane BMS, or if you mainly play DP, you’ll most likely prefer the light setup.
Other buttons (Samduck-sa, and no name Chinese buttons) will have a different feeling even with the same switch and spring. Here, we will only talk about Sanwa buttons, which is the standard.
Why are 50/40 and 50/20 configurations recommended?
- This is close to the official Lightning Model default, which is 50/50.
- Almost all Lightning Model cabs in America are 50/50. Most Lightning Model cabs in Japan are 50/50.
- 40N springs are recommended over 50N springs because:
- In arcade settings, 50N springs wear out quickly and feel closer to 40N than 50N.
- Sanwa’s 40N springs are easier to find than 50N springs.
- Other than Sanwa, manufacturers do not make 50N springs, but they usually make 40N.
- Many players prefer the tactile feel of 40N springs when combined with 50g switches.
- Compared to 50/20, it provides sufficient feedback when released, making it easier to time, handling jacks, and so on.
- Compared to 50/40, it requires significantly less force to push down, making it ideal for extremely high density charts or DP players.
- It is not too light; the 50g switch still provides sufficient amount of tactile feedback.
- Most cabs in Korea are 50/20.
25g switches (such as D2MV-01-1C2) are also commonly used, but here, I’m recommending the 50g switches. This is because lighter switches have a shorter life span and require more maintenance.
While Omron claims on the spec sheet that they have identical electrical and mechanical lifespan, the guaranteed lifespan is far, far shorter compared to how much abuse it takes inside a IIDX controller. So the claimed lifespan on the spec sheet is meaningless in our context.
But if you ended up getting 25g switches anyway, they are totally fine. You can achieve a similar feeling by matching the total actuation force, which can be done with slightly heavier springs. For example, 25g switch + 60N Springs is very similar to 50g switch + 20N springs, although advanced users can probably tell the difference. The biggest difference comes from the tactile feeling; 50g switches have a much more prominent clicky feeling than 25g.
Refer to parts page.