KTT Grapefruit vs. KTT Laurel

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

Overview

When it comes to the world of mechanical keyboard switches, there are numerous options available, each with their own unique features and qualities. Two switches that stand out are the KTT Grapefruit and the KTT Laurel, both of which are linear switches. The KTT Grapefruit is known for its soft and light feel, offering a "baritone" though not yet "bass" deep sound profile. It falls into the category of low-pitched, neutral, and polished switches. On the other hand, the KTT Laurel boasts a medium-light linear switch experience, striking the perfect balance between responsiveness and comfort. With its full POM housing and short travel, it provides a snappy typing experience accompanied by a subtly low-pitched sound profile. Each switch has its own distinct qualities, catering to different preferences. 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

53g

Bottom-out force

50g

Pre-travel

1.90 mm

Pre-travel

1.80 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Total travel

3.50 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

POM

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

POM

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Spring

Stainless steel

Spring

22m spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the KTT Grapefruit and KTT Laurel switches have distinct characteristics that result in different sound profiles and aesthetics. The Grapefruit features a polycarbonate top housing, which creates a sharper and crisper sound profile. The translucency of polycarbonate makes it ideal for RGB lighting, adding a visually appealing element to the switch. In contrast, the Laurel has a POM top housing, which produces a deeper and slightly muted sound. While both materials contribute unique qualities to the sound profile, the Grapefruit's polycarbonate housing creates a higher-pitched and more resonant sound compared to the Laurel's POM housing.

In terms of the bottom housing material, the Grapefruit utilizes a nylon housing, while the Laurel employs POM. The nylon housing in the Grapefruit results in a deeper and fuller sound when typing. The softer nature of nylon allows it to absorb more sound, creating a rounder and somewhat duller sound profile. On the other hand, the Laurel's POM bottom housing also contributes to a deeper sound but is relatively more muted. Both materials offer a unique and pleasing sound experience, but the nylon bottom housing in the Grapefruit may provide a slightly fuller sound compared to the Laurel's POM housing.

It is important to note that the qualities of the top and bottom housing materials are evident in different aspects of the switch's operation. When pressing down on a switch, the bottom housing has a more significant impact on the bottom-out sound and feel, influenced by the characteristics of the material used. Conversely, the sound when releasing a key is more influenced by the top housing. Although the housing materials may differ between the Grapefruit and Laurel, their overall purpose is to enhance the typing experience and produce satisfying sound profiles, showcasing the efforts put into designing high-quality switches.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the KTT Laurel linear switch, there are some noticeable differences. The Grapefruit has a slightly heavier actuation force of 45 grams compared to the Laurel's 43 grams, resulting in a slightly stronger initial push required to trigger a keystroke for the Grapefruit. Similarly, the Grapefruit has a bottom out force of 53 grams, while the Laurel has a lighter bottom out force of 50 grams.

Considering weight as a factor, those who prefer a lighter typing experience may lean towards the Laurel switch as its actuation and bottom out forces are both lighter. This allows for longer periods of typing without causing fatigue. On the other hand, individuals who prefer a more substantial typing experience with a stronger push feel may opt for the Grapefruit switch with its slightly heavier actuation and bottom out forces.

It is important to note that while the differences in force between the two switches are relatively small, they can still be perceptible to users who have a preference for a certain level of resistance. Additionally, if one prefers a force between 43-45 grams for actuation and 50-53 grams for bottom out, both switches would yield similar results in terms of force requirements.

Travel distance

The KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the KTT Laurel linear switch have different travel distances. The Grapefruit has a travel distance of 4.0 mm, making it the longer of the two. On the other hand, the Laurel has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, making it slightly shorter. 4.0 mm is a more traditional travel distance, while 3.5 mm is a bit shallower. Shorter travel distances are often preferred by gamers who want faster response times, as it allows them to actuate the keys more quickly. However, some individuals may find shorter travel distances to feel too abrupt. For those who prefer a more substantial key press, the Laurel with its longer travel distance would be the better choice. Both switches will provide a different typing experience, so it ultimately depends on personal preference and the desired level of responsiveness.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The KTT Laurel has an MSRP of $4.42 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Laurel for $3.95.

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

When it comes to sound, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch offers a unique experience with a soft and light feel. While it is not yet considered "bass" deep, the switch provides a "baritone" type sound profile that adds depth to your typing experience. On the other hand, the KTT Laurel linear switch has a subtly low-pitched sound profile. Both switches fall into the low-pitched category, which means they have a more mellow and bass-heavy tone compared to higher-pitched switches. However, it is important to note that the sound of a switch can also be influenced by other factors, such as the keyboard board and keycaps used.

When it comes to feel, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch stands out with its polished construction. This indicates a smooth and refined finish, resulting in a sleek typing experience. The materials used and possibly factory lubing contribute to reduced friction and smooth key travel, making it a pleasant switch to type on. On the other hand, the KTT Laurel linear switch is described as snappy. This means that the switch is highly responsive, likely due to longer or dual-staged springs. The typing experience on the Laurel switch feels more alive and energetic.

In conclusion, the KTT Grapefruit and Laurel switches offer distinct qualities in terms of sound and feel. The Grapefruit switch provides a soft and light feel with a "baritone" type sound profile, while the Laurel switch strikes a balance between responsiveness and comfort with its snappy feel and subtly low-pitched sound profile. Both switches offer their own unique typing experiences, allowing users to choose based on their personal preferences. However, it is essential to consider other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used, as they can also influence the overall sound and feel. If similar results are desired, both switches fall into the low-pitched category, indicating a more mellow and bass-heavy tone compared to higher-pitched switches.

Conclusion

To wrap up, if you're looking for a switch with a soft and light feel, along with a subtly low-pitched sound profile, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch is the way to go. With a bottom out force of 53 grams, it provides a medium-light typing experience. The Grapefruit is best known for its polished finish, resulting in smooth key travel and reduced friction. On the other hand, if you prefer a lighter switch with a similar low-pitched sound profile, the KTT Laurel linear switch with a bottom out force of 50 grams may be more suitable for you. The Laurel switch strikes the perfect balance of responsiveness and comfort, and its snappy feel makes the typing experience feel more alive. Ultimately, the choice between the Grapefruit and the Laurel would depend on your preference for weight and sound, with both switches offering their own unique advantages.

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