Gateron Ink Yellow vs. Outemu Yellow Silver

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

Overview

When it comes to choosing the perfect mechanical keyboard switch, two options worth considering are the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver. Both switches fall into the linear switch category, offering a smooth and linear typing experience. The Gateron Ink Yellow stands out for its shorter travel, making it an ideal choice for users seeking a typing experience that falls between that of a laptop and a standard mechanical keyboard. With pleasant smoothness and clackiness, this switch is categorized as neutral, clacky, mild, and polished. On the other hand, the Outemu Yellow Silver, known for consistently producing excellent switches, features a light actuation force and a neutral sound profile. This switch is particularly favorable for gamers and typists who prioritize speediness and responsiveness. Its categorization as neutral suggests a versatile and adaptable switch. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond these generalities so that you can best decide on the perfect switch for your needs.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

60g

Actuation force

45g

Bottom-out force

67g

Bottom-out force

55g

Pre-travel

1.50 mm

Pre-travel

1.30 mm

Total travel

3.50 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

No

Stem construction

Partial box

Stem construction

Partial box

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

Plate (3-pin)

Spring

Gold-plated

Spring

Stainless steel

Housing materials

The housing materials of the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver switches have distinct differences. The Ink Yellow utilizes a proprietary INK blend for both its top and bottom housing. This blend creates a pointed and relatively high-pitched sound profile, which is often described as clacky. On the other hand, the Yellow Silver features a polycarbonate top housing, which creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile. The use of polycarbonate, being a stiffer plastic, enhances the clarity and resonance of the sound produced. Aesthetically, the polycarbonate top housing is ideal for RGB lighting enthusiasts due to its translucency.

In terms of the bottom housing, the Ink Yellow's proprietary INK blend and the Yellow Silver's nylon have contrasting effects on the sound profile. The Ink Yellow's bottom housing contributes to the overall clacky sound, as it is described as thin and higher-pitched. Meanwhile, the nylon bottom housing of the Yellow Silver elicits a deeper and fuller sound. The softer quality of the nylon absorbs more sound, resulting in a duller and rounder sound profile when typing on switches using this material.

While they have key differences, the impact of these housing materials on the switches can be seen in similar areas. When pressing down on the switches, the qualities of the bottom housing become evident in the bottom-out sound and feel. The bottom housing plays a significant role in shaping this aspect of the switch's performance. Conversely, the top housing influences the sound when the key is released, creating a distinct auditory experience. Therefore, both the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver provide unique sound profiles based on the characteristics of their respective housing materials.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch and the Outemu Yellow Silver linear switch, there are noticeable differences in weight. The Ink Yellow has a slightly heavier actuation force of 60 grams compared to the 45 grams of the Yellow Silver. Similarly, the bottom out force of the Ink Yellow is heavier at 67 grams, while the Yellow Silver requires 55 grams of force.

For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the Yellow Silver would be the more suitable choice as it has a lower actuation and bottom out force. This allows for smoother and faster keystrokes, making it ideal for longer typing or gaming sessions where fatigue may be a concern. On the other hand, individuals who enjoy a more substantial typing feel may find the Ink Yellow more satisfying. With its higher actuation and bottom out force, it provides a stronger push, giving a more tactile and responsive typing experience.

Overall, both switches offer different weight options, catering to different preferences. If someone is looking for a lighter typing experience, the Yellow Silver would be the better choice, while those seeking a heavier and more substantial feel would lean towards the Ink Yellow. It's worth noting that regardless of the switch chosen, both options provide similar results in terms of actuation and bottom out force, ensuring a reliable and efficient typing experience.

Travel distance

When comparing the travel distances of the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch and the Outemu Yellow Silver linear switch, it is clear that they differ in length. The Ink Yellow has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, while the Yellow Silver has a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that the Yellow Silver switch has a slightly longer travel distance compared to the Ink Yellow. In terms of preference, the choice between the two switches depends on personal preference and specific use cases. Gamers, for example, typically prefer shorter travel distances as it allows for faster response times. In this case, the Ink Yellow would be the more suitable choice. However, some individuals may find short travel distances to feel too abrupt and prefer a switch with more depth. For those seeking a switch with a more substantial travel distance, the Yellow Silver would be the better option. Ultimately, it is important to consider personal preference and the specific requirements of the desired application when choosing between these two switches.

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 Outemu Yellow Silver comes in at $3.40 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

In terms of sound, both the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver switches have a neutral sound profile. This means that they offer a moderate sound level that is suitable for most purposes, whether you're a beginner or an advanced user, and whether you plan to use them at home or at work. However, the Ink Yellow switch also has a clacky characteristic, which means that it produces a crisp, bright, and percussive sound when pressed. This can add an extra level of satisfaction for those who enjoy a more pronounced and tactile auditory feedback while typing. 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 used.

In terms of feel, the Gateron Ink Yellow switch offers a mild typing experience. This means that it provides a more gentle and approachable feel compared to switches with more pronounced characteristics. It falls within a safe, middle-ground zone that can be enjoyed by most users. Additionally, the Ink Yellow switch is also described as polished, which means that it has a smooth and refined finish. This results in a sleek typing experience with reduced friction and smooth key travel. The Yellow Silver switch, on the other hand, does not have any specific information regarding its feel characteristics. Therefore, if you choose the Yellow Silver switch, you can expect a neutral feel without any specific details mentioned.

Based on the available information, it can be concluded that both the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver switches offer a similar typing experience in terms of actuation force requirement and overall sound profile. However, the Gateron Ink Yellow switch provides a clacky sound characteristic, which can be appealing for those who prefer a more tactile and percussive auditory feedback. Additionally, the Ink Yellow switch offers a mild and approachable feel with a polished finish for smooth key travel. On the other hand, specific information about the feel of the Yellow Silver switch is not provided. Ultimately, your choice between these two switches will depend on your personal preferences in terms of sound and feel, as well as other factors such as price and availability.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you are looking for a typing experience that falls between that of a laptop and a standard mechanical keyboard, the Gateron Ink Yellow linear switch is a great choice for you. With its medium-heavy bottom out force of 67 grams and shorter travel, this switch offers a pleasant smoothness and clackiness that many typists enjoy. Additionally, its sound profile is described as neutral and clacky, producing a crisp and bright sound when pressed. On the other hand, if you prioritize speediness and responsiveness, the Outemu Yellow Silver linear switch may be the better option for you. With a medium-light bottom out force of 55 grams, this switch offers a light actuation force and a neutral sound profile. While there is no specific information provided about its feel, Outemu switches are known for their consistent quality and performance. Ultimately, the choice between the Gateron Ink Yellow and the Outemu Yellow Silver depends on your personal typing preferences and priorities.

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