KTT Ash Gray vs. KTT Grapefruit

An in-depth look at the KTT Ash Gray and the KTT Grapefruit switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

If you're in the market for a new mechanical keyboard, two switches that are worth considering are the KTT Ash Gray and the KTT Grapefruit. The Ash Gray switch is known for its tactile response that strikes a perfect balance between a light touch and crisp actuation. With a delightful blend of tactile feedback, it offers a substantial yet unobtrusive experience. On the other hand, the Grapefruit switch stands out with its unique characteristics. This linear switch provides a soft and light type feel, accompanied by a deep, yet refined sound profile. Both switches have different qualities that may appeal to different users. The Ash Gray is easy to press, has a mild tactile feedback, and offers a neutral experience, while the Grapefruit switch is low-pitched, neutral, and polished. However, let's examine these switches in more detail to help you make a more informed decision on the best switch for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

38g

Actuation force

45g

Bottom-out force

53g

Bottom-out force

53g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

1.90 mm

Total travel

3.50 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

Yes

Stem construction

Standard

Stem construction

Standard

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Spring

18mm spring

Spring

Stainless steel

Housing materials

The KTT Ash Gray and KTT Grapefruit keyboards have similar housing materials, with both featuring top housings made of polycarbonate. This material creates a sharp, high-pitched, and crisp sound profile, thanks to its stiffness and resonant qualities. Additionally, the translucency of polycarbonate makes it ideal for switches that utilize RGB lighting. Consequently, users can expect a comparable sound experience when typing on either the Ash Gray or Grapefruit keyboards, as the polycarbonate top housing contributes to the overall sound profile in a similar way.

However, while the top housings are the same, the bottom housings of the Ash Gray and Grapefruit keyboards differ. The Ash Gray utilizes a nylon bottom housing, which elicits a deeper and fuller sound when typing. Nylon is a softer plastic that absorbs more sound, resulting in a duller and rounder sound profile. On the other hand, the Grapefruit features a nylon bottom housing as well, providing a similar sound experience to that of the Ash Gray. Thus, users can expect a similar deeper and fuller sound profile when typing on both keyboards due to the shared nylon bottom housing material.

When comparing the impact of the housing materials on the overall typing experience, it becomes apparent that the bottom housing plays a significant role in the bottom-out sound and feel. Since the bottom housing of the Ash Gray and Grapefruit keyboards is made of nylon, users will experience a similar sensation when pressing down on the keys. However, the top housing, which is made of polycarbonate in both keyboards, will influence the sound when releasing the keys. This distinction underscores the importance of both housing materials in contributing to the overall typing experience and sound profile of the keyboards.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Ash Gray tactile switch and the KTT Grapefruit linear switch, there are some notable differences. The Ash Gray has an actuation force of 38 grams, while the Grapefruit requires a slightly heavier 45 grams to trigger a keystroke. However, both switches share the same bottom out force of 53 grams, which classifies them both as medium-light switches.

Considering weight, some individuals may prefer the lighter option, such as the Ash Gray, as it allows for longer typing sessions without causing fatigue. This lighter actuation force can be beneficial for those who frequently use their keyboards for work or engage in extended gaming sessions. On the other hand, there are people who enjoy a more substantial typing experience and prefer a stronger push feel. For these individuals, the Grapefruit with its heavier actuation force may be more suitable.

Despite the differences in actuation force, both switches provide the same bottom out force. This means that when fully pressing the keys, users will experience a similar resistance and overall typing experience, regardless of whether they choose the Ash Gray or the Grapefruit. Therefore, individuals who prioritize the bottoming out sensation can expect comparable results from either switch.

In summary, the KTT Ash Gray tactile switch has a lighter actuation force of 38 grams, whereas the KTT Grapefruit linear switch requires a slightly heavier 45 grams. However, both switches share the same bottom out force of 53 grams, providing a similar resistance when fully pressed. The choice between the two will depend on individual preferences, with some opting for the lighter Ash Gray for longer typing sessions, while others may prefer the heavier push feel of the Grapefruit for a more substantial typing experience.

Travel distance

The KTT Ash Gray tactile switch and the KTT Grapefruit linear switch have different travel distances. The Ash Gray has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, while the Grapefruit has a travel distance of 4 mm. In terms of traditional travel distances, the Grapefruit falls within the more common range of 4 mm. On the other hand, the Ash Gray offers a slightly shorter travel distance of 3.5 mm. This shorter travel distance may cater to gamers or individuals who prioritize faster response times. However, some people may find shorter travel distances to feel too abrupt. Therefore, if you prefer a more responsive typing experience, the Ash Gray switch may be the better choice for you. However, if you prefer a switch with a more hearty depth, the Grapefruit switch's longer travel distance may suit your preferences better. Overall, the choice between the two switches ultimately depends on individual preferences and typing style.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The KTT Ash Gray has an MSRP of $3.00 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Ash Gray for $2.55.

The KTT Grapefruit comes in at $3.41 per 10 switches.

Here at Milktooth, we offer the best prices on switches (on average, 27% lower the competition). In addition, we offer free shipping on orders over $49.00. We also offer free returns and exchanges, so you can shop with guaranteed satisfaction.

That said, while price is an important piece of the puzzle, our opinion is that you should ultimately pick the option that most suits your unique preferences since you’ll be using these switches for years to come. In other words, finding something perfect for you is, in our view, the most important criteria.

Typing experience

The KTT Ash Gray tactile switch is known for providing a tactile response that is both substantial and unobtrusive. When typing on these switches, you will experience a delightful blend of tactile feedback that is not overwhelming but far from being unnoticed. Unfortunately, the sound profile of the Ash Gray switch is unknown.

On the other hand, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch offers a soft and light typing feel. These switches have been described as having a "baritone" sound profile, which means they produce a deep, yet not bass-heavy tone. As with the Ash Gray switch, the sound profile of the Grapefruit switch is also influenced by other factors such as the keyboard and keycaps used.

In terms of feel, the Ash Gray switch is easy to press, offering gentle resistance during key presses. They require minimal force to activate, making typing effortless and comfortable. This low-impact typing feel helps reduce finger fatigue during extended typing sessions. The Grapefruit switch, on the other hand, is described as polished, indicating a smooth and refined finish that results in a sleek typing experience. This is due to either the materials used or factory lubing, which reduces friction and provides smooth key travel.

In conclusion, the subjective qualities of the KTT Ash Gray tactile switch and the KTT Grapefruit linear switch differ in terms of sound and feel. While the Ash Gray switch offers a tactile response and easy-to-press feel, the Grapefruit switch provides a soft and light typing experience with a polished finish. However, since the sound profile of the Ash Gray switch is unknown, it is difficult to directly compare the two switches in terms of sound. Nonetheless, both switches offer unique qualities that can enhance the typing experience.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you are looking for a mechanical keyboard switch with a medium-light bottom out force of 53 grams and a tactile feedback that is substantial yet unobtrusive, the KTT Ash Gray switch would be an excellent choice for you. This switch offers a light touch with a crisp actuation, providing a delightful blend of tactile feedback without being overwhelming. Additionally, the Ash Gray switch is described as easy-to-press, offering gentle resistance during key presses and reducing finger fatigue during extended typing sessions. It also has a mild typing experience, which will be approachable to most users.

On the other hand, if you prefer a linear switch with the same medium-light bottom out force of 53 grams, the KTT Grapefruit switch would be a great option. These switches have a unique "baritone" sound profile, offering a low-pitched and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches. This can provide a soothing and satisfying typing experience. The Grapefruit switch is also described as polished, meaning it has a smooth and refined finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel.

Ultimately, the choice between the Ash Gray and Grapefruit switches depends on your preferences. If you enjoy a tactile feedback and a light touch, go for the Ash Gray switch. If you prefer a linear switch with a low-pitched sound profile and a polished typing experience, the Grapefruit switch is the way to go. Consider your typing style, sound preferences, and desired typing experience to make the best decision for your needs.

Mentioned in this article