Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) vs. TKC Tangerine

An in-depth look at the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

The Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine are two mechanical keyboard switches that both offer a smooth and buttery typing experience. The Milky Yellow Pro is a classic budget switch that excels in both gaming and typing. With its low, "thocky" sound and satisfyingly thick resistance, it is a versatile choice for all-purpose use. On the other hand, the Tangerine is a premium switch that takes typing to the next level. Its incredibly smooth feel and the rare use of UHWMPE housings contribute to a luxurious typing experience. While both switches share a buttery smoothness, the Milky Yellow Pro leans towards a bassy, low-pitched sound and textured feel, while the Tangerine offers a higher-pitched clack and a polished sensation. However, let's dive further for a more detailed comparison to help you determine the best switch for your needs.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

50g

Actuation force

N/A

Bottom-out force

62g

Bottom-out force

62g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

N/A

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

Nylon

Top housing material

UHWMPE

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

UHWMPE

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Stainless steel

Spring

Gold coated spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine switches offer distinct characteristics that affect the overall sound profile and typing experience. The Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) utilizes a nylon top and bottom housing, which results in a deeper and fuller sound profile. The nylon material is known for being softer and absorbing more sound, creating a duller and rounder sound when typing. On the other hand, the Tangerine switches feature a UHWMPE top and bottom housing, a newer material that provides a very bright sound signature. This material produces resonant clacks when typing, offering a lively and vibrant typing experience.

While the top and bottom housing materials differ between the switches, the qualities they bring to the switches are split between the two components. When pressing down on the switch, the characteristics of the bottom housing become prominent, influencing the bottom-out sound and feel. The nylon bottom housing of the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) contributes to a deeper and fuller bottom-out sound, enhancing the overall typing experience. In contrast, the UHWMPE bottom housing of the Tangerine switches may provide a slightly different bottom-out sound, potentially offering a brighter and more pronounced impact.

On the other hand, the top housing material influences the sound when the key is released. The nylon top housing of the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) absorbs more sound, resulting in a softer and more muted release sound. This can contribute to a more subdued and refined typing experience. In contrast, the UHWMPE top housing of the Tangerine switches provides a bright and resonant release sound, which may offer a more energetic and lively typing feel.

In summary, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine switches showcase different housing materials that influence the overall sound profile and typing experience. The nylon housing of the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) creates a deeper and fuller sound, while the UHWMPE housing of the Tangerine switches produces a brighter and more resonant sound. Despite the differences, both switches offer unique and enjoyable typing experiences, catering to individual preferences and desired sound characteristics.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) linear switch and the TKC Tangerine linear switch, there are both similarities and differences to consider. In terms of weight, the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) is the lighter option with an actuation force of 50 grams and a bottom out force of 62 grams, which falls into the medium range. On the other hand, the actuation force of the TKC Tangerine switch is unknown, but it shares the same bottom out force of 62 grams.

For those who prefer a lighter typing experience, the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) would be a suitable choice. Its lower actuation force allows for effortless keystrokes, which can be beneficial for extended periods of typing or gaming sessions. On the other hand, for those who prefer a more substantial and tactile typing experience, the TKC Tangerine switch might be a better fit. While we do not know the exact actuation force, the shared bottom out force of 62 grams suggests a similar level of resistance during typing.

Ultimately, the decision between the two switches will depend on personal preference and typing style. Both switches offer a medium range bottom out force, ensuring a satisfying typing experience for users. Whether one prefers the lighter actuation force of the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) or the unknown actuation force of the TKC Tangerine, these switches provide a range of options for both efficient and engaging typing.

Travel distance

The Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) linear switch and the TKC Tangerine linear switch both have a travel distance of 4 mm. This means that when you press down on a key with either switch, you will feel the same distance of travel from the top to the bottom. Therefore, the travel distance of both switches is equal, providing similar results in terms of the tactile experience of typing or gaming.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) has an MSRP of $2.33 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) for $2.30.

The TKC Tangerine comes in at $6.30 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

Taking into consideration the provided information, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine linear switches have distinct qualities in both sound and feel.

Starting with sound, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) is characterized as having a bassy and low-pitched sound, resulting in a deep and rich profile during key presses. Additionally, it is described as producing a thocky sound, which can be equated to a satisfyingly deep "thud" or soft "knock" when the key is pressed and released. On the other hand, the TKC Tangerine offers a high-pitched sound, producing a sharp and crisp sound when pressed. If one prefers a more rich and bassy sound, the Milky Yellow Pro may be the better choice.

Moving on to feel, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) is said to offer a buttery and textured experience. The term "buttery" implies a smooth and fluid keystroke, providing a seamless and effortless typing sensation. However, it is also mentioned that these switches may have noticeable friction when pressed, which can be preferred by some users while others prefer a smoother, friction-free typing experience. On the other hand, the TKC Tangerine is described as frictionless, offering an extremely smooth and effortless typing experience with minimal resistance or friction. It is also mentioned that the Tangerine switch has a polished finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel.

In conclusion, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) and the TKC Tangerine linear switches have varying subjective qualities in terms of sound and feel. The Milky Yellow Pro provides a deep and rich sound profile with a satisfyingly thick resistance and a buttery and textured typing experience. On the other hand, the Tangerine switch offers a high-pitched sound with an incredibly smooth feel, featuring a polished and frictionless finish. Ultimately, choosing between the two switches will depend on personal preferences for sound and typing experience. It is important to note that the sound and feel of a switch can also be influenced by factors such as the keyboard board and keycaps used.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you are a budget enthusiast looking for a versatile switch that excels in both gaming and typing, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) is the way to go. It offers a satisfyingly thick resistance and a low, "thocky" sound, making it a perfect all-purpose switch. On the other hand, if you prioritize a smooth typing experience with a high-pitched clack, the TKC Tangerine is the switch for you. With its UHWMPE housings and incredibly smooth feel, each keystroke becomes a pleasure to type. Ultimately, the Gateron Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) is known for its deep and rich sound profile, while the TKC Tangerine produces a sharp and crisp sound. In terms of feel, the Milky Yellow Pro (KS-3) offers a buttery and textured typing sensation, while the Tangerine provides a frictionless and polished experience. Therefore, consider your preferences and requirements in terms of sound and feel to make an informed decision between the two switches.

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