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A hot-swap component (usually a key switch) inside a keyboard can be replaced without requiring de/soldering, or even disconnecting.
The Outemu ICE Cherry MX clone switch comes instead with a socket attached to each pin leg. These sockets are only compatible with these switches, and by chance a few other switches that share the same pin dimensions.
Some Invyr switches also have a type of hot-swap pins.
Hot-swap switch sockets
The sockets are surface-mounted on the _bottom_ of circuit boards, specifically designed to have sockets. Unlike Holtite or Mill-Max sockets they can not be retro-fitted onto PCBs made for soldering switches.
When inserting a switch, it is important the switch's pins are straight and that the switch is inserted straight. If not, the pins don't go in right and can bend, which damages the pins.
Because sockets are surface-mounted on the bottom of PCBs, a common source of damage is also that a solder-pad has been pulled off from wrong pressure from above. Some keyboards counter this by having a supporting piece of plastic under the socket, but that is still unusual.
Clone of Kailh sockets for Cherry MX.[Citation needed]
Similar to Gateron and Kailh sockets.[Citation needed]
Holtite sockets are small sockets that fit inside existing solder-holes in a PCB.
However, the sockets don't fit all PCBs (or even the all switch positions on some PCBs). On some PCBs the holes are too tight, and on other they are too wide. See the main article for a list of compatible PCBs.
The sockets are also not as durable as Kailh-sockets (and clones).
Available in a size for Cherry MX switches and in a size for 2-pin 3mm LEDs. Can be gold-plated or tinned.
Single sockets for mounting in PCB holes for Cherry MX switiches.
Similar to Holtite sockets but with a flanged top that prevents them from falling out when mounting but which raises the switch 0.64 mm over the PCB.
Like Mill-Max 0305 but the flange is thinner, which raises the switch slightly less.