KTT Ash Gray vs. KTT Semi Mute

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

Overview

When it comes to choosing a mechanical keyboard switch, the KTT Ash Gray and KTT Semi Mute offer distinct advantages for different preferences. The Ash Gray switch is designed to provide a tactile response that is both substantial and unobtrusive. With a light touch and crisp actuation, this switch offers a delightful blend of tactile feedback without overwhelming sensation. On the other hand, the Semi Mute switch, despite its silent operation, is specially crafted for those who value a noise-free environment while typing. With a linear actuation and advanced dampening technology, the Semi Mute switch provides a comfortable and gratifying typing feel. Both switches have their unique qualities and purposes, making it essential to delve deeper beyond generalities to determine which switch is the best fit for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

38g

Actuation force

43g

Bottom-out force

53g

Bottom-out force

58g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

1.60 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

Polycarbonate

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Spring

18mm spring

Spring

15mm spring

Housing materials

The KTT Ash Gray and the KTT Semi Mute both utilize polycarbonate for their top housings. This material creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile in both switches. The stiffer nature of polycarbonate enhances the clarity and resonance of the sound produced. Additionally, the translucency of polycarbonate allows for greater compatibility with RGB lighting, making it an ideal choice for those who want to illuminate their keyboard.

However, when it comes to the bottom housings, these two switches differ in material. The Ash Gray features a nylon bottom housing, while the Semi Mute utilizes a polycarbonate bottom housing. Nylon is known for producing a deeper and fuller sound profile due to its softer nature. It absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics, resulting in a duller and rounder sound. On the other hand, the polycarbonate bottom housing of the Semi Mute contributes to the overall sharpness, higher pitch, and crispness of the sound produced.

In terms of functionality, the difference in top and bottom housing materials means that the qualities each material brings to the switch will be divided between the top and bottom. The bottom housing plays a significant role in the bottom-out sound and feel when pressing down on the switch, while the top housing impacts the sound when releasing a key. Despite these differences, both switches aim to deliver high-quality sound profiles and offer unique experiences to the user.

Weight

When comparing the KTT Ash Gray tactile switch and the KTT Semi Mute linear switch, there are notable differences in their actuation force and bottom out force. The Ash Gray has an actuation force of 38 grams, which is slightly lighter than the Semi Mute's 43 grams. Similarly, the Ash Gray has a bottom out force of 53 grams, while the Semi Mute requires a slightly heavier 58 grams. This means that the Ash Gray provides a slightly lighter and more effortless keystroke activation compared to the Semi Mute. For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the Ash Gray would be a suitable choice as it allows for longer periods of comfortable typing, making it suitable for work or extended gaming sessions. On the other hand, the Semi Mute offers a more substantial and satisfying push feel, which some users may prefer for a more tactile typing experience. Ultimately, the choice between these switches depends on personal preferences regarding the desired force required to trigger keystrokes.

Travel distance

When comparing the travel distance of the KTT Ash Gray tactile switch and the KTT Semi Mute linear switch, it is clear that there is a difference in their distances. The Ash Gray has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, while the Semi Mute has a slightly longer travel distance of 4 mm. In terms of traditional standards, 4.0 mm is considered the most common travel distance, while 3.0 mm is on the shallower end. However, with the rise in popularity of gaming, shorter travel distances have become more prevalent. Gamers often prefer shorter travel distances as they offer faster response times. For those seeking responsiveness, the Ash Gray with its shorter travel distance would be the ideal choice. On the other hand, some individuals may find short travel distances to feel too abrupt. If you prefer a deeper and more substantial key press, the Semi Mute with its longer travel distance would be the recommended option. Overall, choosing between the two switches depends on personal preference and the desired experience while typing or gaming.

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 Semi Mute has an MSRP of $3.97 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Semi Mute for $3.55.

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

When it comes to sound, the KTT Ash Gray switch is considered to have a neutral sound profile. It produces a moderate sound that is suitable for most purposes, whether you're a beginner or advanced user, and whether you're using it at home or work. On the other hand, the KTT Semi Mute switch is designed to provide a muted sound experience. It produces softer and quieter sound compared to regular or clacky switches, making it ideal for those who value a noise-free environment and undisturbed typing during late-night sessions. However, it's important to note that the sound of a switch can also be influenced by other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps chosen.

In terms of feel, the KTT Ash Gray switch offers an easy-to-press experience. It has a light actuation force, requiring minimal force to activate the keys. This makes typing effortless and comfortable, reducing finger fatigue during extended typing sessions. Overall, it provides a responsive and low-impact typing feel. On the other hand, the KTT Semi Mute switch is described as buttery in terms of feel. This implies a smooth and fluid keystroke experience, offering a seamless, effortless, and uniform typing sensation. Both switches fall into the mild category, which means they offer a gentle typing experience that is approachable to most users and stands in a safe middle-ground zone.

In conclusion, the KTT Ash Gray and KTT Semi Mute switches offer different subjective qualities. The Ash Gray provides a tactile response that is both substantial and unobtrusive, with a light touch and crisp actuation. It offers a pleasant blend of tactile feedback without being overwhelming. The Semi Mute, on the other hand, prioritizes a noise-free environment with its completely silent operation. It provides a comfortable and gratifying linear typing experience, featuring advanced dampening technology. While they have distinct characteristics, both switches offer a gentle and approachable typing experience. Depending on your preference for sound and feel, you can choose between the neutral and muted qualities of the Ash Gray and Semi Mute switches respectively to achieve similar results.

Conclusion

In closing, if you are looking for a tactile switch with a light touch and crisp actuation, the KTT Ash Gray switch would be a great choice. It offers a delightful blend of tactile feedback that is not overwhelming but far from unnoticed. Additionally, it has an easy-to-press feel, requiring minimal force during key presses, making typing effortless and comfortable. The Ash Gray switch is also described as having a neutral sound profile, suitable for most intents and purposes.

On the other hand, if you value a noise-free environment and desire undisturbed typing, especially during late-night sessions, the KTT Semi Mute switch would be a suitable option. Despite being named "Semi Mute," these switches operate completely silently. They feature a linear actuation and advanced dampening technology, providing a comfortable and gratifying typing feel. The Semi Mute switch is described as having a muted sound profile, minimizing the noise typically associated with mechanical keyboards.

Ultimately, the choice between the KTT Ash Gray and KTT Semi Mute switches depends on your preferences for tactile feedback, typing experience, and noise level. Consider whether you prioritize a light touch with crisp actuation or a noise-free typing environment. With these factors in mind, you can make an informed decision on which switch is best for you.

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