Everglide Crystal Violet vs. TKC Kiwi

An in-depth look at the Everglide Crystal Violet and the TKC Kiwi switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

The Everglide Crystal Violet and TKC Kiwi are both tactile mechanical keyboard switches that offer unique features to enhance your typing experience. The Crystal Violet switches are renowned for their light operating force of 45g, providing a relaxed and gentle tactile typing feel. Additionally, these switches have a pleasantly mellow sound profile, leaning towards the lower-pitched spectrum, creating a subtle and non-intrusive auditory experience. Their use of ABS in the housing adds to the overall comfortable feel. On the other hand, the TKC Kiwi switches are designed to provide a medium to medium-strong bump at the top of each key press, delivering a satisfyingly snappy typing experience. These switches are also lightly factory lubed, ensuring a smooth and effortless typing experience straight out of the box. While the Crystal Violet offers a more creamy and mild feel, the Kiwi provides an accented and polished typing experience. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond generalities so you can best decide on the best switch for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

45g

Actuation force

43g

Bottom-out force

55g

Bottom-out force

67g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

N/A

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

ABS

Top housing material

UHWMPE

Bottom housing material

ABS

Bottom housing material

UHWMPE

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Gold-plated

Spring

Gold coated spring

Housing materials

When comparing the housing materials of the Everglide Crystal Violet and the TKC Kiwi, one notable difference is the material used for the top housing. The Crystal Violet utilizes ABS, which is commonly found in keycaps but relatively rare for switch housings. This results in a relatively low-pitched sound profile when typing on switches with ABS top housings. On the other hand, the Kiwi employs UHWMPE, a newer material for switch housings. This material produces a very bright sound signature and offers resonant clacks when typing on switches with UHWMPE top housings. Therefore, the Crystal Violet will provide a lower-pitched typing experience, while the Kiwi will deliver a brighter and more resonant sound.

Moving on to the bottom housing, both the Crystal Violet and the Kiwi utilize ABS material. While ABS is commonly used in keycaps, it is relatively rare for switch housings. Consequently, both switches will exhibit a relatively low-pitched sound profile when typing. However, the differences in the top housing material will influence the overall sound experience, as mentioned earlier. The impact of the bottom housing on the bottom-out sound and feel will be similar for both switches, as they both utilize ABS for the bottom housing. Therefore, the typing experience in terms of feel and sound will largely be determined by the top housing material in both switches.

In summary, the key difference between the Everglide Crystal Violet and the TKC Kiwi lies in the material used for the top housing. The Crystal Violet utilizes ABS, resulting in a relatively low-pitched sound profile, while the Kiwi utilizes UHWMPE, providing a bright and resonant sound signature. Both switches share the use of ABS for the bottom housing, contributing to a similar low-pitched sound profile when typing. However, the impact of the top housing material will be more pronounced in determining the sound when pressing and releasing keys. Ultimately, the choice between the Crystal Violet and the Kiwi will depend on the desired sound profile and typing experience.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Everglide Crystal Violet tactile switch and the TKC Kiwi tactile switch, there are some notable differences. The Crystal Violet has an actuation force of 45 grams, while the Kiwi has a slightly lighter actuation force of 43 grams. Both switches fall within the medium-light range, offering a comfortable typing experience.

However, when it comes to the bottom out force, the Crystal Violet requires 55 grams of force, while the Kiwi has a heavier bottom out force of 67 grams. This means that the Kiwi provides a more substantial typing experience, suited for those who prefer a stronger push feel.

In terms of weight, the Crystal Violet can be considered lighter with its lower bottom out force. This makes it a favorable choice for individuals who desire a lighter switch to type on for extended periods, making it suitable for work or long gaming sessions. On the other hand, the Kiwi, with its higher bottom out force, appeals to those seeking a more substantial and satisfying typing experience.

In conclusion, while both switches offer a tactile feedback, the Crystal Violet is lighter with medium-light actuation and bottom out forces. The Kiwi, on the other hand, is slightly lighter in terms of actuation force but heavier in terms of bottom out force, providing a more solid and substantial typing experience. As a result, those who prefer a lighter switch may find the Crystal Violet more appealing, while individuals who enjoy a heavier keystroke will gravitate towards the TKC Kiwi.

Travel distance

The travel distance of a switch is the distance it travels from the top to the bottom when pressed down. In the case of the Everglide Crystal Violet tactile switch and the TKC Kiwi tactile switch, both switches have a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key fitted with either of these switches, you will feel the key travel a distance of 4 mm. Therefore, both switches offer a similar experience in terms of the travel distance.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Everglide Crystal Violet has an MSRP of $7.08 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Crystal Violet for $4.19.

The TKC Kiwi comes in at $8.00 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 subjective qualities of the Everglide Crystal Violet tactile switch and the TKC Kiwi tactile switch can be compared in terms of sound and feel.

In terms of sound, both the Crystal Violet and the Kiwi switches are described as having a low-pitched sound profile. This means that they produce a more bass-heavy and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches. Additionally, both switches are described as having a neutral sound profile, which means they have a moderate actuation force requirement and a moderate sound profile. This makes them suitable for most intents and purposes, whether you are a beginner or advanced typist, and whether you plan to use them at home or work. It is important to note that the sound of the switches can also be influenced by other factors such as the choice of keyboard and keycaps.

In terms of feel, the Crystal Violet is described as having a creamy and mild typing experience. Creamy switches offer a smooth and buttery sensation, as if gliding your fingers effortlessly across the keys. The switches are likely factory-lubed or made with specific materials to provide this silky feel. Mild switches offer a more gentle typing experience compared to those with more pronounced characteristics, and the Crystal Violet switches fall into this safe, middle-ground zone. Additionally, the Crystal Violet switches are described as stepped, meaning they have a two-stage feel with some pre-travel and/or post-travel.

On the other hand, the Kiwi switches are described as stepped, accented, and polished. Stepped switches also have a two-stage feel, similar to the Crystal Violet switches. Accented switches provide a medium amount of tactility that is not overwhelming but still prominent. The Kiwi switches are likely to have a substantial bump at the top of each key press. Polished switches, like the Kiwi, offer a smooth and refined typing experience with reduced friction and smooth key travel.

In conclusion, both the Everglide Crystal Violet and the TKC Kiwi tactile switches offer a low-pitched sound profile, making them produce a more bass-heavy and mellow tone. They also share a neutral actuation force requirement, making them suitable for a wide range of users and environments. In terms of feel, both switches have a stepped sensation, providing a mild and approachable typing experience. The Crystal Violet switches have a creamy feel, allowing for smooth and effortless typing, while the Kiwi switches have an accented and polished feel, offering a prominent yet refined tactility. Overall, both switches provide unique qualities that would enhance the typing experience, and while the specific details differ, you can expect similar results in terms of sound and feel.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you value a lighter operating force and a relaxed and stepped tactile typing experience, the Everglide Crystal Violet tactile switch would be a great choice for you. These switches have a bottom out force of 55 grams, which is medium-light, providing a gentle and comfortable feel. The Crystal Violet switches also offer a pleasantly mellow sound profile with a lower-pitched spectrum, creating a subtle and non-intrusive auditory experience. Additionally, the use of ABS in their housings contributes to their unique sound and feel.

On the other hand, if you prefer a medium-strong bump at the top of each key press and a more immersive sound profile, the TKC Kiwi tactile switch would be a suitable option. With a bottom out force of 67 grams, which is medium-heavy, the Kiwi switches deliver a satisfyingly snappy typing experience. These switches are also lightly factory lubed, ensuring a smooth and effortless typing right out of the box. Furthermore, the Kiwi switches have a sound profile that enhances the overall typing experience.

Ultimately, the choice between the Everglide Crystal Violet and the TKC Kiwi switches depends on your personal preferences regarding operating force, tactile experience, and sound profile. Consider whether you prefer a lighter or medium-heavy force, a gentle or more pronounced tactile feel, and a mellow or immersive sound profile. Both switches offer unique characteristics that can enhance your typing experience, so choose the one that aligns with your preferences and typing style.

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