KTT Laurel vs. KTT Pine

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

Overview

If you're in the market for a mechanical keyboard switch, you may be deciding between the KTT Laurel and the KTT Pine. The Laurel is a medium-light linear switch known for its balanced responsiveness and comfort, featuring a full POM housing, short travel, and long pole design. It also offers a subtly low-pitched sound profile. On the other hand, the Pine is a medium-heavy linear switch that prioritizes a smooth and effortless typing experience with its polished, factory-lubed finish. Its translucent, forest green color gives it a unique aesthetic appeal. The Pine is also characterized by a bassy and buttery feel, with a low-pitched sound profile. Both switches have their strengths, making the decision a matter of personal preference. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond generalities so you can best decide on the best switch for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

43g

Actuation force

45g

Bottom-out force

50g

Bottom-out force

58g

Pre-travel

1.80 mm

Pre-travel

1.90 mm

Total travel

3.50 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

POM

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

POM

Bottom housing material

Polycarbonate

Mount type

Plate (3-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

22m spring

Spring

15.5mm gold-plated spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the KTT Laurel and the KTT Pine, namely POM and polycarbonate, exhibit distinct characteristics that result in different sound profiles and aesthetic effects. The POM top housing of the Laurel creates a deeper and relatively more muted sound profile, giving it a unique and pleasing quality. On the other hand, the polycarbonate top housing of the Pine produces a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile. Additionally, the translucency of polycarbonate makes it ideal for switches with RGB lighting, adding an aesthetic appeal to the Pine.

Similarly, the bottom housings of the Laurel and the Pine, both made of POM and polycarbonate respectively, play a significant role in determining the sound and feel of the switch. The POM bottom housing of the Laurel contributes to its deep and muted sound profile, enhancing the overall experience. In contrast, the polycarbonate bottom housing of the Pine generates a more clear and resonant sound profile due to its relatively stiffer plastic composition. The impact on the bottom-out sound and feel is more pronounced with the bottom housing, further distinguishing the sound characteristics of the two switches.

It's important to note that if a switch features different top and bottom housings, the qualities brought by each housing material will be divided between the top and bottom of the switch. When pressing down on either the Laurel or the Pine, the qualities of the respective bottom housing will be felt in the bottom-out sound and feel. Conversely, the top housing will have a greater influence on the sound produced when releasing a key. Despite these differences, it's clear that both the Laurel and the Pine offer unique and pleasing sound profiles, albeit with varying degrees of depth and sharpness.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the KTT Laurel linear switch and the KTT Pine linear switch, some noticeable differences can be observed. The Laurel boasts a relatively lighter actuation force of 43 grams, meaning it requires a lighter touch to initiate a keystroke. In comparison, the actuation force of the Pine is slightly higher at 45 grams, making it marginally heavier to activate. Moving on to the bottom out force, the Laurel requires a force of 50 grams to fully bottom out, while the Pine necessitates a slightly larger amount of 58 grams. This indicates that the Pine switch provides a more substantial typing experience due to its higher bottom out force.

Considering the weight aspect, those who prefer a lighter typing experience may find the Laurel switch more suitable for their needs. Its lower actuation and bottom out forces enable longer typing sessions without causing fatigue or strain. On the contrary, individuals who enjoy a more forceful keystroke may opt for the Pine switch. Its slightly higher actuation and bottom out forces provide a stronger push feel and a more substantial typing experience. Both switches offer distinct advantages depending on personal preferences. However, if lighter or heavier forces are desired, the Laurel and Pine switches may not provide the intended results due to their similar actuation and bottom out forces.

Travel distance

When comparing the travel distance of the KTT Laurel linear switch and the KTT Pine linear switch, there is a noticeable difference. The Laurel has a travel distance of 3.5 mm, while the Pine has a slightly longer travel distance of 4 mm. The Laurel falls into the category of shorter travel distances, which is preferred by gamers seeking faster response times. On the other hand, the Pine offers a slightly more significant depth, which may be preferred by those who enjoy a more substantial feel when pressing down on a key. Although both switches offer distinct travel distances, it is essential to consider personal preferences and the level of responsiveness desired when choosing between them.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

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.

The KTT Pine has an MSRP of $4.60 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Pine for $4.15.

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 Laurel linear switch offers a subtly low-pitched sound profile. This means that the sound produced by these switches is more bass-heavy and mellow, providing a pleasant and soothing auditory experience during typing. On the other hand, the KTT Pine linear switch is described as having a bassy sound profile, characterized by a deeper and richer tone. This lower frequency range resembles the depth and richness associated with bass tones. Therefore, while both switches have low-pitched qualities, the Pine switch may offer a slightly deeper and more pronounced sound. Keep in mind that the sound produced by a switch can also be influenced by other factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used.

In terms of feel, the KTT Laurel linear switch is known for its snappy response. This means that the switch is highly responsive, often due to longer or dual-staged springs, which enhance the typing experience and make it feel more alive. On the other hand, the KTT Pine linear switch is described as buttery and creamy. This implies a smooth and fluid keystroke experience, where each key press feels seamless, effortless, and uniform. The Pine switch achieves this smoothness through a polished, factory-lubed finish, minimizing friction and providing a silky sensation. Overall, while the Laurel switch offers a snappy response and the Pine switch provides a buttery and creamy feel, both switches aim to make typing a highly enjoyable and comfortable experience.

In conclusion, the KTT Laurel linear switch and the KTT Pine linear switch have their own unique qualities in terms of sound and feel. The Laurel switch offers a subtly low-pitched sound profile, providing a bass-heavy and mellow tone, while the Pine switch has a bassy sound profile, characterized by a deeper and richer tone. In terms of feel, the Laurel switch is snappy, offering a highly responsive typing experience, while the Pine switch is buttery and creamy, providing a smooth, effortless, and uniform keystroke sensation. Both switches prioritize comfort and responsiveness, and while they may differ slightly in subjective qualities, they aim to deliver an excellent typing experience. Depending on your personal preferences, either switch will provide similar results in terms of overall satisfaction.

Conclusion

In conclusion, when deciding between the KTT Laurel and the KTT Pine linear switches, it ultimately comes down to your personal preferences and typing style. If you prefer a lighter switch with a medium-bottom out force and a subtly low-pitched sound profile, the Laurel would be a great choice for you. The Laurel's full POM housing, short travel, and long pole design provide a balanced and comfortable typing experience.

On the other hand, if you prefer a medium-heavy switch with a buttery smooth feel and a deeper, bassy sound profile, the Pine would be more suitable for you. The Pine's polished, factory-lubed finish minimizes friction for smooth key travel, resulting in an effortless typing experience. The creamy sensation and uniform typing sensation make the Pine switch ideal for those seeking a seamless and fluid keystroke.

Overall, both the Laurel and the Pine switches offer unique features and qualities that cater to different preferences. Consider your desired key feel and sound profile when making a decision, and remember that trying out different switches firsthand can provide valuable insight into which switch suits you best. Happy typing!

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