Gateron CM vs. Jwick Splash Brothers

An in-depth look at the Gateron CM and the Jwick Splash Brothers switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

When it comes to choosing a mechanical keyboard switch, there are a multitude of options available that can greatly impact your typing experience. Two switches worth considering are the Gateron CM, a linear switch, and the Jwick Splash Brothers, also a linear switch. The Gateron CM switches break away from conventional polycarbonate housings with their full nylon housing, resulting in a richer and deeper sound signature. With an impeccable factory lube job, these switches offer an effortlessly smooth typing journey, evoking a sensation of gliding gracefully with each keystroke. Furthermore, the CM switches feature a lengthened, dual-staged spring, providing a bouncy typing experience. On the other hand, the Jwick Splash Brothers switches, named after the dynamic duo of Steph and Klay, offer a unique linear "speed" switch option. These switches feature a shorter activation combined with a long pole stem, resulting in a satisfying typing feel. Additionally, the Splash Brothers switches provide a creamy sound signature. Both switches offer their own set of qualities and characteristics that can enhance your typing experience. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond generalities so you can best decide on the perfect switch for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

55g

Actuation force

N/A

Bottom-out force

63.5g

Bottom-out force

48g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

1.00 mm

Total travel

3.60 mm

Total travel

3.50 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

Yes

Stem construction

Standard

Stem construction

Partial box

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Nylon

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Dual-staged 20mm lengthened gold-plated spring

Spring

Extended long spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the Gateron CM and the Jwick Splash Brothers switches have distinct differences that contribute to their sound profiles. The CM switch utilizes a nylon top housing, which results in a deeper and fuller sound due to the softer nature of nylon. The nylon absorbs more sound, creating a duller and rounder sound profile. In contrast, the Splash Brothers switch features a polycarbonate top housing, which produces a sharper and higher-pitched sound. The stiffness of polycarbonate contributes to a clear and resonant sound profile. Additionally, the polycarbonate top housing is especially beneficial for those utilizing RGB lighting, as its translucency enhances the aesthetic appeal.

When it comes to the bottom housing, both the CM and Splash Brothers switches employ nylon as their material of choice. This material is known for eliciting a deep and rich sound profile. The softer nature of nylon absorbs more sound, resulting in a dull and round sound quality. As a result, both switches offer a similar sound experience in terms of their bottom-out sound and feel, thanks to the shared nylon bottom housing.

Overall, the choice of housing material in the Gateron CM and Jwick Splash Brothers switches plays a significant role in their sound profiles. While the CM switch with its nylon housings offers a deeper and fuller sound, the Splash Brothers switch with its polycarbonate top housing presents a sharper and crisper sound. However, when it comes to the bottom housing, both switches employ nylon, leading to a similar sound experience. It is essential to consider these distinct housing materials to meet individual preferences for sound and aesthetic elements.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Gateron CM linear switch and the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch, it is evident that there are some notable differences. The Gateron CM has an actuation force of 55 grams, which indicates the force required to trigger a keystroke, while the Jwick Splash Brothers's actuation force remains unknown. On the other hand, the Gateron CM has a bottom out force of 63.5 grams, indicating the force required to press the key all the way down. In contrast, the Jwick Splash Brothers has a bottom out force of 48 grams. Thus, it can be inferred that the Gateron CM is slightly heavier in terms of both actuation and bottom out forces compared to the Jwick Splash Brothers, making it more suitable for those who prefer a stronger push feel. However, both switches have their advantages; individuals who enjoy lighter switches may find the Jwick Splash Brothers more conducive for longer typing sessions or extended gaming periods. Ultimately, selecting between the two switches depends on the user's personal preference and desired typing experience.

Travel distance

The Gateron CM linear switch and the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch have slightly different travel distances. The CM has a travel distance of 3.6 mm, while the Splash Brothers has a travel distance of 3.5 mm. Although the difference may seem minimal, it can still impact the typing experience. Both switches fall within the range of shorter travel distances, which are becoming increasingly popular, especially among gamers who prioritize faster response times. If you prefer a more responsive feel, the Splash Brothers with its slightly shorter travel distance may be the better option. However, for those who enjoy a deeper key press, the CM switch with its slightly longer travel distance could provide a more satisfying typing experience. Ultimately, the choice between the two switches will depend on individual preferences and typing styles.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Gateron CM has an MSRP of $4.80 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the CM for $4.25.

The Jwick Splash Brothers comes in at $2.49 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

Starting with sound, the Gateron CM linear switch offers a bassy, thocky, and low-pitched sound profile. This means that the switches produce a deeper and richer sound during key presses, resembling the depth and richness associated with bass tones. The sound can be characterized by a deep "thud" or a soft "knock" when the key is pressed and released. On the other hand, the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch is described as having a neutral sound profile. This means that it has a moderate sound that is suitable for most intents and purposes, whether you are a beginner or advanced user, and whether you plan to use the switches at home or work. It is important to note that the sound of a switch is also influenced by factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used. However, if you are looking for a similar sound experience to the Gateron CM linear switch, you can expect a creamy sound signature from the Jwick Splash Brothers switch.

Moving on to feel, the Gateron CM linear switch offers a buttery, polished, creamy, and frictionless typing experience. These qualities imply a smooth and fluid keystroke experience with reduced friction, resulting in a seamless, effortless, and uniform typing sensation. The keys glide effortlessly under your fingers, providing a silky sensation that enhances your typing experience. On the other hand, the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch has a mild, snappy, bouncy, subtle, and polished typing feel. This means that it offers a more gentle typing experience with a middle-ground zone, suitable for most users. The switches are super responsive, thanks to longer or dual-staged springs, which adds a lively and rebounding feel to each key press. Similar to the Gateron CM switch, the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch also has a polished finish that results in smooth key travel and reduced friction.

Considering all the available information, the Gateron CM linear switch stands out for its rich and deep sound signature, along with its buttery and polished typing feel. The full nylon housing of the CM switch delivers a unique sound experience, combined with an impeccably smooth typing journey. The lengthened, dual-staged spring of the CM switch adds to the bouncy typing experience. On the other hand, the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch offers a neutral sound profile with a creamy sound signature, and a mild and snappy typing feel. While there are differences between these two switches, they both provide smooth and refined typing experiences with reduced friction. Choosing between the two will ultimately depend on your personal preferences for sound and feel.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you prioritize a medium-heavy bottom out force and a switch with a rich, bassy sound profile, the Gateron CM linear switch is the perfect choice for you. With its full nylon housing and impeccable factory lube job, you can expect an effortlessly smooth typing journey and a bouncy typing experience thanks to its lengthened, dual-staged spring. The CM switch offers a buttery, polished, and creamy feel, providing a seamless and uniform typing sensation. Its sound signature is characterized as bassy, thocky, and low-pitched, delivering a deeper and richer sound during key presses.

On the other hand, if you prefer a lighter bottom out force and a switch with a more neutral sound profile, the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch is the ideal option for you. These switches offer a great typing feel with their shorter activation and long pole stem design. They produce a creamy sound signature and are described as mild, snappy, bouncy, and subtle in terms of feel. The Splash Brothers switches are super responsive and provide a gentle typing experience with a safe, middle-ground sound and feel that would be approachable to most users.

Ultimately, your choice between the Gateron CM linear switch and the Jwick Splash Brothers linear switch will depend on your personal preferences for bottom out force, sound profile, and typing feel. Both switches have their own unique characteristics and qualities that cater to different typing preferences. Consider your desired typing experience and sound profile when making your decision.

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