KTT Hyacinth vs. KTT Laurel

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

Overview

The KTT Hyacinth and KTT Laurel are two mechanical keyboard switches that offer unique features and benefits for users. The Hyacinth stands out with its design choice of a 3.5mm travel distance, aiming to provide a balanced tactile feedback, auditory experience, and user comfort by avoiding a hard bottoming-out experience. In contrast, the Laurel offers a medium-light linear switch experience, featuring a full POM housing, short travel, and long pole design that strikes a perfect balance of responsiveness and comfort. Both switches have their distinct sound profiles, with the Hyacinth categorized as 'Neutral', 'Silky', and 'Subtle', while the Laurel possesses a subtly low-pitched sound profile. However, let's delve deeper beyond these generalities to help you decide on the best switch for your specific preferences and needs.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

45g

Actuation force

43g

Bottom-out force

56g

Bottom-out force

50g

Pre-travel

1.90 mm

Pre-travel

1.80 mm

Total travel

3.50 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

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Spring

22mm spring

Spring

22m spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the KTT Hyacinth and the KTT Laurel differ significantly in terms of sound profile. The Hyacinth's polycarbonate top housing creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile. This is due to the stiffness of polycarbonate, which allows for a more clear and resonant sound. On the other hand, the Laurel's POM top housing produces a deeper and relatively more muted sound. This unique sound profile adds a pleasing touch to the typing experience. Despite these differences, both housings are translucent, making them suitable for use with RGB lighting.

In terms of the bottom housing materials, the Hyacinth utilizes nylon, while the Laurel uses POM. Typing on the Hyacinth's nylon housing elicits a deeper and fuller sound profile, thanks to the absorbent nature of nylon. The softer nature of nylon absorbs more sound compared to harder plastics, resulting in a duller and rounder sound. On the other hand, the POM housing of the Laurel also produces a deep and muted sound profile. This similarity in sound suggests that both housing materials contribute to a similar typing experience in terms of sound.

When considering the overall impact of the housing materials on the switches, it is important to note that the top and bottom housings play different roles. The bottom housing has a greater impact on the bottom-out sound and feel of the switch, while the top housing affects the sound when releasing a key. Therefore, even though the housing materials differ between the Hyacinth and the Laurel, the overall typing experience may be similar as the qualities of each housing material are split between the top and bottom of the switch.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Hyacinth linear switch and the KTT Laurel linear switch, there are some similarities and differences to consider. In terms of actuation force, the Hyacinth requires 45 grams of force while the Laurel requires slightly less at 43 grams. Both switches can be considered light to medium-light in this aspect. Moving on to bottom out force, the Hyacinth has a higher bottom out force of 56 grams compared to the Laurel's 50 grams. This means that the Hyacinth provides a slightly stronger push feel when fully pressed down, giving users a more substantial typing experience. However, it should be noted that both switches fall within the light to medium-light range in terms of bottom out force. If weight is a critical factor, the Laurel might be the preferred choice as it is slightly lighter, allowing for longer typing durations without strain. Overall, while there are differences in the actuation force and bottom out force between the two switches, both can provide similar results for users seeking a lighter typing experience.

Travel distance

Both the KTT Hyacinth and the KTT Laurel linear switches have the same travel distance of 3.5 mm. This means that when you press down on a key with either switch, you will experience the same distance of travel. In terms of their travel distance, these switches are identical and will provide similar results.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The KTT Hyacinth has an MSRP of $4.03 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Hyacinth for $3.75.

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.

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 sound profile of the KTT Hyacinth can be described as neutral, with a moderate actuation force requirement. This makes it suitable for most purposes, whether you are a beginner or advanced user, and regardless of whether you plan to use the switch at home or work. On the other hand, the KTT Laurel has a low-pitched sound profile, which means it produces a more bass-heavy and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches. It's important to note that the sound of a switch can also be influenced by other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps chosen.

When it comes to the feel of the switches, the KTT Hyacinth provides a silky typing experience, offering exceptional smoothness and minimizing resistance when pressing and releasing keys. It can be considered a subtle switch, which means it has a gentle resistance that is not too light but still maintains a light typing feel. The sound signature of the Hyacinth switch is not resonant, making it suitable for shared spaces. On the other hand, the KTT Laurel switch is described as snappy, meaning it is super responsive. This responsiveness is often achieved through longer or dual-staged springs, providing a typing experience that feels more alive.

In conclusion, the KTT Hyacinth and KTT Laurel switches offer different subjective qualities in terms of sound and feel. The Hyacinth provides a neutral sound profile and a silky, subtle typing experience, making it suitable for various purposes and shared spaces. On the other hand, the Laurel switch has a low-pitched sound profile, providing a more bass-heavy and mellow tone, and offers a snappy typing experience due to its responsiveness. The choice between the two switches ultimately depends on personal preferences and the desired typing experience. However, both switches promise high-quality and comfortable typing experiences.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you are looking for a medium-light switch with a focus on tactile feedback and user comfort, the KTT Hyacinth linear switch would be a great choice. With its 3.5mm travel distance and single-stage elongated spring, it provides a consistent force curve and avoids the hard bottoming-out experience commonly found in switches with longer stems. Additionally, the Hyacinth offers a neutral sound profile and a silky typing feel, making it suitable for various purposes, whether you're a beginner or advanced user, and whether you plan to use it at home or work.

On the other hand, if you prefer a lighter switch with a low-pitched sound profile and a snappy typing experience, the KTT Laurel linear switch would be the ideal option. Its 50-gram bottom out force and full POM housing provide a comfortable and responsive typing experience. The long pole design contributes to its low-pitched sound profile, giving you a more bass-heavy and mellow tone. The Laurel is perfect for those who prioritize a lighter touch and a subtle switch feel.

Ultimately, the decision between the KTT Hyacinth and the KTT Laurel will depend on your personal preferences and typing style. If you value tactile feedback, user comfort, and a silky typing feel, the Hyacinth is the way to go. But if you prefer a lighter touch, a low-pitched sound, and a snappy typing experience, the Laurel is the better choice. Consider your specific needs and select the switch that aligns with your preferences. In the end, both switches offer their unique features and can enhance your typing experience in different ways. So, choose the one that suits you best and enjoy the journey of mechanical keyboards.

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