Gateron Ink Yellow vs. KTT Rose

An in-depth look at the Gateron Ink Yellow and the KTT Rose switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

When it comes to selecting the perfect mechanical keyboard switch, two popular options that often come up are the Gateron Ink Yellow and the KTT Rose. Both switches fall into the linear switch category but offer distinct features that cater to different preferences. The Ink Yellow is characterized by its shorter travel, making it an excellent choice for those seeking a typing experience between that of a laptop and a standard mechanical keyboard. It boasts a pleasant smoothness and clackiness, making typing a satisfying experience. On the other hand, the Rose switches not only stand out due to their beautiful appearance but also offer a unique typing experience. The progressive springs used in these switches provide a substantial yet not heavy feel, reminiscent of bassy raindrops when typing. While these general points can help you make an initial decision, let's dive deeper into each switch's characteristics to help you determine which one is truly the best fit for your needs.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

60g

Actuation force

N/A

Bottom-out force

67g

Bottom-out force

63.5g

Pre-travel

1.50 mm

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Total travel

3.50 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

Yes

Stem construction

Partial box

Stem construction

Standard

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Proprietary INK blend

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

Proprietary INK blend

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Gold-plated

Spring

Progressive spring

Housing materials

The Gateron Ink Yellow and KTT Rose differ in their housing materials, which results in distinct sound profiles. The Ink Yellow utilizes a proprietary INK blend for its top housing, creating a pointed, high-pitched sound that is described as clacky. In contrast, the Rose features a polycarbonate top housing, which produces a sharper and crisper sound. This is because polycarbonate is a stiffer plastic, enhancing clarity and resonance. If RGB lighting is a priority, the Rose's translucent polycarbonate housing is particularly beneficial. While both switches offer a thin and higher-pitched sound, the Ink Yellow's top housing provides a slightly softer and less sharp tone compared to the Rose's polycarbonate.

When it comes to the bottom housing, the differences between the Ink Yellow and Rose become more apparent. The Ink Yellow incorporates its proprietary INK blend for the bottom housing as well, resulting in a pointed and relatively high-pitched sound profile. Similar to the top housing, it offers a satisfying clacky sound. On the other hand, the Rose utilizes a nylon bottom housing, which elicits a deeper and fuller sound. Nylon, being a softer plastic, absorbs more sound, creating a duller and rounder tone. This contrast in housing materials gives the Ink Yellow a more distinct and distinguishable sound, while the Rose offers a smoother and deeper sound.

Understanding the impact of top and bottom housings on switch sound and feel is crucial in assessing the differences between the Ink Yellow and Rose. When pressing down on either switch, the qualities of the bottom housing become more noticeable, as it greatly influences the bottom-out sound and feel. However, upon releasing a key, the sound profile is predominantly influenced by the top housing. Therefore, while the Ink Yellow and Rose offer different experiences due to their respective housing materials, the overall sound profile will feature similarities in terms of their thin and higher-pitched qualities, as well as their clacky nature.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch and the KTT Rose linear switch, there are some similarities and differences to note. The Ink Yellow has an actuation force of 60 grams, while the actuation force of the Rose switch is unknown. Both switches have a bottom out force of 63.5 grams, making them both fall into the medium-heavy category.

The actuation force of a switch is crucial when considering the force required to trigger a keystroke. In this case, the Ink Yellow requires 60 grams to activate, while the Rose switch's actuation force is not specified. However, their bottom out forces are quite similar at 63.5 grams.

The weight of a switch has several implications depending on personal preference and usage. Some individuals may prefer a lighter actuation force to type for longer periods or for extended gaming sessions. This makes the Ink Yellow a suitable choice for such users due to its lighter actuation force. On the other hand, those seeking a more substantial typing experience may opt for a switch with a heavier actuation force. Unfortunately, since the actuation force of the Rose switch is unknown, it is difficult to compare directly in this aspect.

In conclusion, while both the Gateron Ink Yellow and KTT Rose linear switches have similar bottom out forces, the Ink Yellow is lighter in terms of actuation force. This makes the Ink Yellow a potential option for individuals who prefer a lighter keystroke. However, without knowing the actuation force of the Rose switch, it is challenging to determine how it directly compares.

Travel distance

The Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, while the KTT Rose linear switch has a travel distance of 4 mm. In terms of travel distance, the Rose has a slightly longer distance compared to the Ink Yellow. The 4.0mm travel distance of the Rose falls within the more traditional range, providing a sense of familiarity to users. On the other hand, the 3.5mm travel distance of the Ink Yellow offers a slightly shorter distance, which is favored by gamers as it allows for faster response times. Those who prefer a more responsive typing experience may opt for the Ink Yellow. However, some individuals may find shorter travel distances to feel too abrupt, in which case the longer travel distance of the Rose would be more suitable for a deeper typing experience. Ultimately, the choice between the two switches will depend on individual preferences for travel distance and desired typing experience.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Gateron Ink Yellow has an MSRP of $7.50 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Ink Yellow for $7.35.

The KTT Rose comes in at $3.01 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 Gateron Ink Yellow switch offers a neutral sound profile with a moderate actuation force requirement. It produces a pleasant clacky sound that is crisp, bright, and percussive. On the other hand, the KTT Rose switch has a low-pitched sound profile, resulting in a more bass-heavy and mellow tone. It also falls under the neutral category in terms of actuation force and sound profile. However, it offers a unique experience of hearing bassy raindrops when typing. It is important to note that the sound of the switches can also be influenced by other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used. Both switches provide enjoyable and pleasing sound characteristics, with the Ink Yellow offering a clackier tone and the Rose offering a bassier tone.

In terms of feel, both the Gateron Ink Yellow and KTT Rose switches offer a mild typing experience. This means that they provide a gentle typing experience without any extreme tactile feedback or heaviness. They are suitable for most users, as their qualities fall within a safe, middle-ground zone. Additionally, both switches have a polished finish, resulting in a smooth and refined typing experience. Reduced friction and smooth key travel can be expected from both switches due to either the materials used or factory lubrication. Overall, the Ink Yellow and Rose switches offer a comfortable and approachable typing feel.

Considering the available information, the Gateron Ink Yellow and KTT Rose switches have some similarities in subjective qualities. Both switches offer a neutral sound profile and a mild typing experience. They provide a smooth and refined typing experience due to their polished finish. However, the Ink Yellow switch is characterized by a shorter travel, providing a typing experience that falls between that of a laptop and a standard mechanical keyboard. On the other hand, the Rose switch uses progressive springs, resulting in a uniquely substantial typing experience without being heavy. If you are looking for a linear switch with similar characteristics, either the Gateron Ink Yellow or KTT Rose switch would be a suitable choice, depending on your preferred sound profile.

Conclusion

Bringing it all together, when deciding between the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch and the KTT Rose linear switch, it ultimately depends on your personal preferences and typing style. If you prefer a shorter travel and a typing experience that is between that of a laptop and a standard mechanical keyboard, the Ink Yellow is the switch for you. It offers a pleasant smoothness and clackiness. On the other hand, if you appreciate a uniquely substantial yet not heavy typing experience with a mellow and bass-heavy sound, the Rose switch is a great choice. It features progressive springs that create the feeling of typing on bassy raindrops.

In terms of sound, the Ink Yellow switch has a neutral and clacky profile, producing a sharp and snappy sound when pressed. This makes it suitable for most purposes whether you are a beginner or advanced user, and whether you plan to use it at home or work. The Rose switch, on the other hand, has a low-pitched and neutral sound profile, offering a more bass-heavy and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches.

When it comes to feel, both switches provide a mild typing experience that is approachable to most users. They also have a polished finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel.

In summary, if you prioritize a shorter travel and a laptop-like typing experience, the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch is the way to go. However, if you desire a uniquely substantial, yet not heavy, typing experience with a mellow and bass-heavy sound, the KTT Rose linear switch is the perfect choice. Consider your personal preferences and typing style when making your decision. Happy typing!

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