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Aflion Blue Skyvs. Durock T1

An in-depth look at the Aflion Blue Sky and the Durock T1 switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

When it comes to mechanical keyboard switches, two popular options are the Aflion Blue Sky and the Durock T1. The Blue Sky is a linear switch, while the T1 is a tactile switch. Both switches have their own unique qualities that cater to different preferences. The Blue Sky is best known for its long pole stem, offering a crystal clear linear typing experience. It provides a sparkling sound profile and an exquisitely smooth pushing feel. On the other hand, the T1 is renowned for its comfort during typing. With a medium bump when pressed down, it offers a satisfying tactile feedback reminiscent of rain falling on a window. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond these generalities so you can best decide on the perfect switch for you.

By the numbers

Blue Sky
T1
BrandAflion
CategoryLinear
BrandDurock
CategoryTactile

$6.00

$4.07 per 10 switches

$5.50

$4.90 per 10 switches

Technical specifications

Actuation force

50g

Actuation force

N/A

Bottom-out force

60g

Bottom-out force

67g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Total travel

4.00 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

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

15mm spring

Spring

Gold-plated

Housing materials

The Aflion Blue Sky and the Durock T1 share a common housing material in their polycarbonate top housing. Polycarbonate is known for creating a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile in switches. This is due to its stiffness, which enhances clarity and resonance. Additionally, the translucent nature of polycarbonate makes it ideal for switches with RGB lighting. Therefore, both the Blue Sky and the T1 will deliver similar results in terms of sound profile and visual appeal when it comes to their polycarbonate top housing.

In contrast, the Blue Sky features a nylon bottom housing while the T1 also utilizes nylon for its bottom housing material. Nylon is a popular choice for switch housings as it contributes to a deeper and fuller sound profile. Thanks to its softer nature, nylon absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics, resulting in a duller and rounder sound. Therefore, both the Blue Sky and the T1 will provide a similar typing experience, with a focus on enhancing the sound quality through the nylon bottom housing.

When considering the impact of the different housing materials, it's important to note that if a switch has different materials for the top and bottom housings, the qualities of each material will affect different aspects of the overall switch experience. Pressing down on the switch will primarily involve the bottom housing as it influences the bottom-out sound and feel. On the other hand, the sound produced when releasing a key will be more influenced by the top housing. This means that while the Blue Sky and the T1 share similarities in their housing materials, their specific design choices in terms of housing distribution may lead to slight variations in sound and tactile feedback when typing.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Aflion Blue Sky linear switch and the Durock T1 tactile switch, there are some notable differences. The Blue Sky has an actuation force of 50 grams and a bottom out force of 60 grams, which can be considered medium in terms of weight. On the other hand, the T1's actuation force is not specified, making it unknown, but it has a bottom out force of 67 grams, which is medium-heavy.

The difference in actuation force means that the Blue Sky requires a lighter touch to trigger a keystroke compared to the T1, although the exact force for the T1 is not provided. This can be advantageous for those who prefer a lighter feel when typing, allowing for longer periods of comfortable use, particularly for work-related tasks or extended gaming sessions.

However, for individuals looking for a more substantial and stronger push feel during typing, the T1 might be a better choice. With its heavier bottom out force, it offers a more satisfying tactile experience and a greater sense of key depression.

It is worth noting that both switches fall within the medium to medium-heavy range, so they could provide similar results for individuals who are not specifically seeking extreme lightness or heaviness in their switches. Ultimately, the decision between these switches will depend on personal preference and the desired typing experience.

Travel distance

Both the Aflion Blue Sky linear switch and the Durock T1 tactile switch have the same travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key, you will feel the switch travel 4 mm from the top to the bottom. Therefore, both switches will provide a similar experience in terms of the distance you feel when typing.

Sound tests

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Aflion Blue Sky has an MSRP of $6.00 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Blue Sky for $4.07.

The Durock T1 has an MSRP of $5.50 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the T1 for $4.90.

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.

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Typing experience

In terms of sound, the Blue Sky linear switch offers a high-pitched and crisp sound when pressed. This switch produces a sharp and clear sound profile, which may be preferable for those who do not enjoy the richer and bass-heavy sound profiles of other switches. On the other hand, the T1 tactile switch has a low-pitched sound reminiscent of rain falling on a window. This switch provides a more mellow and bass-heavy tone compared to the Blue Sky. However, it's important to note that the sound of a switch is also influenced by factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used.

When it comes to feel, the Blue Sky linear switch offers a mild and polished typing experience. With a gentle typing feel, this switch falls within a safe and middle-ground zone, making it approachable for most users. Additionally, the Blue Sky switch has a smooth and refined finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel. On the other hand, the T1 tactile switch has a stepped and accented feel. This means that the T1 provides a medium amount of tactility, neither overwhelming nor subtle. The T1 switch also has a polished finish, ensuring a sleek and smooth typing experience.

Taking all the available information into consideration, the Blue Sky linear switch and the Durock T1 tactile switch offer distinct subjective qualities in terms of sound and feel. The Blue Sky provides a high-pitched sound and a gentle and polished typing experience, while the T1 offers a low-pitched sound akin to rain and a stepped and accented feel. It's important to understand that personal preference plays a significant role in choosing the right switch. If you are looking for a linear switch with a clear sound and smooth feel, the Blue Sky may be the better choice. On the other hand, if you prefer a tactile switch with a mellow sound and medium tactility, the T1 would be a suitable option. However, it's worth mentioning that if you prefer similar results, you may opt for the Blue Sky switch with sound dampening materials and lube to achieve a more subdued sound profile and a smoother feel, similar to the T1 switch.

Try switches before you buy them

We understand that finding the perfect keyboard switches can be a challenging and time-consuming process. This led us to design Milktooth's try at-home program that allows you to sample and test different switches in the comfort of your own home, ensuring you make the right choice for your typing preferences.

You can try 10 switches at home for 5 days, and your switches come pre-installed on switch testers. Of course, you’re more than free to install them into your own board to try as well for the most representative typing experience.

Gone are the days of going through countless forums and reviews to find the ideal switches. Now, you can experience the tactile feedback, actuation points, and sound profiles firsthand, empowering you to make an informed decision without any pressure or time constraints.

We understand the importance of finding the perfect typing experience, and our try at-home program eliminates the risk of making a costly mistake. Experiment with different switch variants, test them in various typing scenarios, and fine-tune your keyboard to match your individual preferences.

The try at-home program costs only $15, which includes shipping both ways. By trying before you buy, you can make the most informed purchasing decision possible. Simply click the "try at home" button on any given switch webpage to get started.

Conclusion

In closing, if you are looking for a linear switch with a smooth and crystal clear typing experience, the Aflion Blue Sky switch is a great choice. With its moderate bottom out force of 60 grams, it offers a comfortable typing experience without being too heavy. The Blue Sky switch is best known for its long pole stem, which contributes to its smooth push feel and sparkling sound profile. This switch is also described as having a high-pitched sound, which produces a sharp and crisp sound when pressed.

On the other hand, if you prefer a tactile switch that provides a comfortable typing experience with a medium bump, the Durock T1 switch is a fantastic option. With a slightly heavier bottom out force of 67 grams, it offers a more tactile feel without being overwhelming. The T1 switch is known for its resemblance to the sound of rain falling on a window, creating a soothing atmosphere while typing. It is also described as having a low-pitched sound, which adds a bass-heavy and mellow tone to your typing experience.

Both switches have a moderate actuation force requirement and a moderate sound profile, making them suitable for most intents and purposes. However, the Blue Sky switch offers a more gentle and polished typing experience, thanks to its mild characteristics and refined finish. The T1 switch, on the other hand, provides a stepped and accented tactile experience, giving you a prominent amount of tactility without being overwhelming or subtle. Additionally, both switches have a polished finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel.

Ultimately, when deciding between the Aflion Blue Sky linear switch and the Durock T1 tactile switch, it comes down to your personal preference for sound and feel. If you prefer a linear switch with a sparkling and high-pitched sound profile, go with the Blue Sky. If you prefer a tactile switch with a low-pitched sound profile and a comfortable medium bump, the T1 is the way to go. Consider your typing preferences and choose the switch that suits your needs best.

Mentioned in this article

Blue Sky

Blue Sky

BrandAflion
CategoryLinear

$6.00

$4.07 per 10 switches

Try the Blue Sky switches
T1

T1

BrandDurock
CategoryTactile

$5.50

$4.90 per 10 switches

Try the T1 switches