KTT Grapefruit vs. Gateron Oil King

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

Overview

The KTT Grapefruit and the Gateron Oil King are both linear mechanical keyboard switches, but they possess unique characteristics that set them apart. The Grapefruit switches are renowned for their soft and light touch, providing a tarty linear feel that is accompanied by a "baritone" yet not fully "bass" deep sound profile. In contrast, the Oil Kings offer a buttery smoothness that is reminiscent of snapping a dark chocolate bar, delivering a sound profile that is creamy, silky, and bassy. While these general descriptions serve as a starting point, it is essential to delve deeper into each switch's specific traits to determine the best fit for your preferences.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

45g

Actuation force

55g

Bottom-out force

53g

Bottom-out force

65g

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

Yes

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

Proprietary INK blend

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Stainless steel

Spring

Color coated

Housing materials

The housing materials of the KTT Grapefruit and the Gateron Oil King switches differ in terms of their sound profiles. The Grapefruit features a polycarbonate top housing, which creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound. This is due to polycarbonate being a stiffer plastic that produces a clear and resonant sound. In contrast, the Oil King's nylon top housing elicits a deeper and fuller sound. Nylon is a softer plastic that absorbs more sound, resulting in a duller and rounder sound profile. Therefore, while the Grapefruit offers a more distinct and precise sound, the Oil King provides a richer and fuller sound experience.

Moving on to the bottom housings, both switches utilize nylon as the housing material. Nylon is known for generating a deeper and fuller sound profile. It absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics, which creates a duller and rounder sound. Hence, the bottom housings of both the Grapefruit and the Oil King would offer a similar typing experience in terms of sound. The nylon bottom housings contribute to a deep and resonant sound, providing a satisfying typing feel for users of both switches.

It is worth noting that the Grapefruit's top housing is made of polycarbonate, while the Oil King's proprietary INK blend bottom housing is specially designed by Gateron. The INK blend produces a pointed and relatively high-pitched sound, described as "clacky." This suggests that the top housing of the Grapefruit will have a greater impact on the sound when releasing a key, while the bottom housing of the Oil King will have more influence on the sound and feel when bottoming out a key. Therefore, users can expect subtle variations in sound and feel between the two switches, particularly when it comes to the actuation and release of keys.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Gateron Oil King linear switch, it is evident that they offer different experiences for users. The Grapefruit switch has a lighter actuation force of 45 grams, while the Oil King requires a slightly heavier 55 grams. Similarly, the Grapefruit has a bottom out force of 53 grams, whereas the Oil King has a higher bottom out force of 65 grams.

For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the Grapefruit switch would be a suitable choice as its actuation and bottom out forces provide a medium-light feel. This lighter weight allows for longer typing sessions without causing excessive strain or fatigue. On the other hand, users who desire a more substantial typing experience might lean towards the Oil King switch. The heavier actuation and bottom out forces of the Oil King provide a medium-heavy feel, giving a stronger push and a more satisfying keystroke for those seeking a greater tactile feedback.

Although the actuation and bottom out forces differ, it is important to note that both switches fall within the medium range. This means that users can expect similar results in terms of responsiveness and performance. Ultimately, the decision between the Grapefruit and the Oil King will depend on individual preferences and the desired typing experience.

Travel distance

The KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Gateron Oil King linear switch both have a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key equipped with either of these switches, you will experience the same 4 mm travel distance. Therefore, in terms of travel distance, you can expect similar results from both switches. Neither one is shorter or longer than the other; they offer an equal distance of travel for a satisfying typing experience.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

For 10 switches, the KTT Grapefruit comes in at $3.41, whereas the Gateron Oil King comes in at $6.50.

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 and the Gateron Oil King both exhibit low-pitched tones. The Grapefruit offers a "baritone" sound profile, while the Oil King has a "bassy" sound profile reminiscent of a dark chocolate bar snapping. This means that the Grapefruit has a more mellow and moderate sound, whereas the Oil King provides a deeper and richer sound during key presses. Keep in mind that the sound of these switches can also be influenced by other factors such as the keyboard and keycaps used.

In terms of feel, the KTT Grapefruit is described as having a polished switch, resulting in a smooth and refined typing experience. This is due to either the materials used or factory lubing, which reduces friction and ensures smooth key travel. On the other hand, the Gateron Oil King offers a creamy, silky, and buttery typing experience. These switches have lubricant applied at the factory and are made with specific materials that enhance smoothness and minimize resistance. Typing on the Oil King switches feels like gliding effortlessly across the keys, with each keystroke seamlessly melting into the next.

Taking into account the available information, the KTT Grapefruit linear switch and the Gateron Oil King linear switch differ slightly in sound and feel. The Grapefruit has a softer and lighter feel, while the Oil King provides a buttery smoothness. In terms of sound, the Grapefruit offers a "baritone" profile and the Oil King exhibits a "bassy" sound reminiscent of snapping dark chocolate. Nevertheless, both switches provide low-pitched tones. If you are looking for a switch with a moderate actuation force requirement and a neutral sound profile suitable for most purposes, the Grapefruit can be a good choice. However, if you prefer a switch with a deeper and richer sound and a silky, creamy typing experience, the Oil King would be a great option. Overall, both switches offer unique qualities that can enhance your typing experience.

Conclusion

To wrap up, if you're looking for a lighter and smoother linear switch with a softer sound profile, the KTT Grapefruit switches are a great choice. With a bottom out force of 53 grams, they provide a medium-light typing experience. These switches are known for their soft and light feel, as well as a "baritone" sound profile. On the other hand, if you prefer a slightly heavier switch with a rich and deep sound profile, the Gateron Oil King switches are the way to go. With a bottom out force of 65 grams, they offer a medium-heavy typing experience. These switches are famous for the buttery smoothness they provide while typing, along with a sound profile reminiscent of snapping a dark chocolate bar. Overall, both switches offer excellent performance, but the choice ultimately comes down to your personal preference for weight, sound, and smoothness.

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