KTT Grapefruit vs. Cherry MX Brown

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

Overview

When it comes to mechanical keyboard switches, the KTT Grapefruit and the Cherry MX Brown are two popular options to consider. The Grapefruit is best known for its soft and light linear feel, accompanied by a "baritone" sound profile. On the other hand, the MX Brown switches are all about subtlety, providing a relatively light typing experience with gentle tactility and subdued audio feedback. The Grapefruit falls into the category of a neutral and polished switch, while the MX Brown is considered textured, bassy, and low-pitched. Choosing between these switches ultimately comes down to personal preference; however, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond generalities so you can best decide on the switch that suits you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

45g

Actuation force

45g

Bottom-out force

53g

Bottom-out force

55g

Pre-travel

1.90 mm

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

No

Stem construction

Standard

Stem construction

Standard

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Top housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Stainless steel

Spring

Stainless steel

Housing materials

The housing materials of the KTT Grapefruit and the Cherry MX Brown switches differ in terms of their impact on the sound profile. The Grapefruit utilizes polycarbonate for its top housing, which results in a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound. This is because polycarbonate is a stiffer plastic that allows for a more clear and resonant sound profile. In contrast, the MX Brown's nylon top housing produces a deeper and fuller sound. Nylon, being a softer plastic, absorbs more sound, creating a duller and rounder sound profile. In terms of aesthetics, the Grapefruit's translucent polycarbonate top housing is ideal for those who plan to use RGB lighting, while the MX Brown's nylon top housing has a more classic appeal.

When it comes to the bottom housing, both the Grapefruit and the MX Brown switches utilize nylon. As a result, they both elicit a deeper and fuller sound profile. Nylon, being a relatively softer plastic, absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics. This creates a duller and rounder sound when typing on switches with nylon housing. The impact of the bottom housing is more noticeable when pressing down on the switch and experiencing the bottom-out sound and feel.

Overall, while the housing materials for the top and bottom vary between the KTT Grapefruit and the Cherry MX Brown switches, their qualities can be compared and contrasted. The Grapefruit's polycarbonate top housing offers a sharper and crisper sound, suitable for those who prefer a higher-pitched profile. In contrast, the MX Brown's nylon top housing produces a deeper and fuller sound, appealing to those who prefer a classic switch. Both switches share the use of nylon for the bottom housing, resulting in a deeper and fuller sound profile when pressed. Whether one prefers the stiffer and clearer sound of the Grapefruit's polycarbonate or the softer and rounder sound of the MX Brown's nylon, both switches offer their unique qualities for different sound preferences.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch, there are some similarities and differences to note. Both switches have an actuation force of 45 grams, meaning that the force required to trigger a keystroke is the same for both options. This similarity ensures that users can expect a similar level of responsiveness and typing experience when using either switch.

However, when it comes to the bottom out force, there is a slight variation between the two switches. The Grapefruit linear switch has a bottom out force of 53 grams, while the MX Brown tactile switch has a bottom out force of 55 grams. This means that the MX Brown switch requires slightly more force to fully press down compared to the Grapefruit switch.

For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the Grapefruit switch may be the better choice, as both its actuation and bottom out forces are on the lower side of the scale. This allows for effortless typing and can be beneficial for longer typing sessions or gaming marathons. On the other hand, if individuals prefer a more substantial feel and enjoy a stronger push when typing, the MX Brown switch may be more suitable, as its slightly higher bottom out force provides that extra resistance.

Ultimately, the decision between these two switches will depend on personal preference and the desired typing experience. Whether one prefers the lighter actuation and bottom out forces of the Grapefruit switch or the slightly heavier forces of the MX Brown switch, both options offer a medium-light typing experience and can be great choices for different typing styles and preferences.

Travel distance

Both the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch have a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key with either of these switches, you will feel the key travel 4 mm from the top to the bottom. Therefore, in terms of travel distance, you can expect similar results from both switches. Neither one is shorter or longer than the other since they have the same travel distance.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

For 10 switches, the KTT Grapefruit comes in at $3.41, whereas the Cherry MX Brown comes in at $4.00.

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

In terms of sound, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch offers a baritone-like sound profile that is neither fully bass-heavy nor deep. It has a low-pitched sound, which is characterized by a more mellow and bass-heavy tone compared to higher-pitched switches. The sound produced by the Grapefruit switch is neutral, meaning it falls within a moderate actuation force requirement and a moderate sound profile. This makes it suitable for most intents and purposes, whether you are a beginner or advanced user, and whether you plan to use it at home or work. 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.

On the other hand, the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch is known for its subtlety in sound. It offers a relatively light typing experience with gentle tactility and subdued audio feedback. The MX Brown switch has a low-pitched sound, similar to the Grapefruit switch, characterized by a more bass-heavy and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches. It can be described as "bassy," offering a deeper and richer sound profile during key presses. The sound produced by the MX Brown switch resembles the depth and richness associated with bass tones.

When it comes to feel, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch is described as polished, indicating a smooth and refined finish. This results in a sleek typing experience with reduced friction and smooth key travel. The polished nature of the switch can be attributed to the materials used and/or factory lubing. On the other hand, the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch is described as textured or scratchy. This implies that the switch has noticeable friction when pressed. Some users may prefer a subtle texture, while others may prefer a smoother, friction-free typing experience. Therefore, the MX Brown switch offers a more tactile feel compared to the Grapefruit switch, which focuses on a polished and smooth experience.

In conclusion, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch offer different subjective qualities in terms of sound and feel. While both switches have a low-pitched sound profile, the Grapefruit switch is described as having a more neutral tone, whereas the MX Brown switch offers a deeper and richer bass-like sound. In terms of feel, the Grapefruit switch provides a polished and smooth typing experience, while the MX Brown switch has a more textured, scratchy feel. Depending on individual preferences, one can choose between the softer and light feel of the Grapefruit switch or the gentle tactility of the MX Brown switch to enhance their typing experience.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you are looking for a soft and light typing experience with a unique sound profile, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch is the way to go. With its medium-light bottom out force of 53 grams, these switches offer a smooth and refined finish, resulting in a polished typing experience. The Grapefruit switches also have a neutral sound profile, providing a moderate and mellow tone during key presses. Whether you are a beginner or advanced keyboard user, the Grapefruit switches are suitable for both home and work environments.

On the other hand, if you prefer a relatively light typing experience with subtle tactility and subdued audio feedback, the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch is a great choice. With a similar medium-light bottom out force of 55 grams, these switches offer a textured feel with noticeable friction when pressed. The MX Brown switches have a low-pitched sound profile, providing a deeper and richer tone during key presses, resembling the depth and richness associated with bass tones.

Ultimately, the decision between the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Cherry MX Brown tactile switch comes down to personal preference. Consider whether you value a sleek and polished typing experience with a unique sound profile or prefer a textured feel with subtle tactility and bass-heavy sound. Both switches offer a medium-light bottom out force, making them suitable for most intents and purposes. It's important to try out different switches and determine which one feels more comfortable and enjoyable for your typing needs. In the end, the right switch for you is the one that enhances your typing experience and brings satisfaction to your daily keyboard use.

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