SP-Star RedBlue vs. Jwick Taro

An in-depth look at the SP-Star RedBlue and the Jwick Taro switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

If you're in the market for a mechanical keyboard switch, you may want to consider the SP-Star RedBlue and the Jwick Taro switches. The RedBlue is a linear switch that offers a medium-light typing experience. Its sound profile is higher-pitched, giving it a distinctive sound. On the other hand, the Taro switch is a tactile switch that provides a snappy and medium-level tactility while producing acute and crisp clacks. The Taro switch also has a cozy and subdued color scheme. Each switch has its own unique characteristics, making them suitable for different preferences. However, let's dive in a bit deeper beyond generalities so you can best decide on the right switch for you.

By the numbers

Technical specifications

Actuation force

N/A

Actuation force

N/A

Bottom-out force

57g

Bottom-out force

67g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Total travel

4.00 mm

Total travel

3.70 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

No

Stem construction

Standard

Stem construction

Partial box

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

Polycarbonate

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Gold plated

Spring

Stainless steel

Housing materials

The housing materials of the SP-Star RedBlue and the Jwick Taro share several similarities. Both switches utilize polycarbonate in their top housing, which creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile. The stiffness of polycarbonate contributes to a clear and resonant sound production. Additionally, the translucency of polycarbonate is ideal for switches with RGB lighting, as it allows the light to shine through for an aesthetically pleasing effect. Therefore, users can expect similar results in terms of sound and visual appeal when using either the RedBlue or the Taro switches.

However, when it comes to the bottom housing, the RedBlue and the Taro switches differ in materials. The RedBlue features a polycarbonate bottom housing, while the Taro utilizes nylon. The polycarbonate bottom housing of the RedBlue contributes to a sharper and crisper bottom-out sound and feel when pressing down on the switch. In contrast, the nylon bottom housing of the Taro elicits a deeper and fuller sound profile, creating a slightly duller and rounder sound when typing on the switch. Therefore, users may experience a variation in the overall sound and tactile feedback between the two switches due to the differences in their bottom housing materials.

It is important to note that the impact of the housing materials is not solely limited to sound and feel. The top housing of both switches affects the sound when letting go of a key. While the polycarbonate top housing of the RedBlue contributes to a clearer and more resonant sound upon key release, the same can be expected with the polycarbonate top housing of the Taro. Therefore, users can expect similar sound characteristics when releasing a key with either the RedBlue or the Taro switches, thanks to the shared polycarbonate top housing material.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the SP-Star RedBlue linear switch and the Jwick Taro tactile switch, it is important to consider weight as a factor. The RedBlue switch has an actuation force of unavailable grams, while the Taro switch also has an actuation force of unavailable grams. This means that the force required to trigger a keystroke is unknown for both switches, resulting in similar results. However, when it comes to bottoming out, the RedBlue switch has a force of 57 grams, which is considered medium-light. In contrast, the Taro switch has a bottom out force of 67 grams, making it medium-heavy.

The difference in bottom out force allows users to choose their preferred typing experience. For those who prefer a lighter switch, the RedBlue switch would be an ideal choice as it allows for longer typing periods and is suitable for work or extended gaming sessions. On the other hand, individuals who enjoy a stronger push feel and a more substantial typing experience may opt for the Taro switch with its heavier force. Overall, while the actuation forces of both switches are unknown, the RedBlue switch is lighter in terms of bottom out force, while the Taro switch is heavier.

Travel distance

The travel distance of the SP-Star RedBlue linear switch is 4 mm, while the Jwick Taro tactile switch has a travel distance of 3.7 mm. Comparing the two, it is clear that the RedBlue has a slightly longer travel distance than the Taro. A travel distance of 4 mm is considered to be more traditional, providing a balanced feel when pressing down on a key. On the other hand, the Taro's travel distance is slightly shorter at 3.7 mm, making it suitable for gamers who prioritize faster response times. When it comes to responsiveness, opting for the switch with the shorter travel distance would be ideal. However, for individuals who prefer a more substantial depth to the key press, the switch with the longer travel distance would be a better choice. Overall, both switches offer different travel distances, allowing users to choose based on their personal preferences and requirements.

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The SP-Star RedBlue has an MSRP of $5.80 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the RedBlue for $5.40.

The Jwick Taro has an MSRP of $5.50 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the Taro for $4.25.

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 SP-Star RedBlue linear switch and the Jwick Taro tactile switch differ in terms of sound and feel.

The RedBlue linear switch is best known for its low-pitched sound profile. Low-pitched switches typically feature a more bass-heavy and mellow tone compared to higher-pitched switches. However, it is also described as neutral, meaning it has a moderate actuation force requirement and a moderate sound profile suitable for most intents and purposes. Additionally, the RedBlue switch has a thocky sound, producing a deep, rich, and satisfying sound when pressed. This makes it a great choice for those who enjoy a deeper, more pronounced sound while typing.

On the other hand, the Taro tactile switch has a neutral sound profile similar to the RedBlue switch. It is also described as neutral, making it suitable for various user preferences and environments. The Taro switch, when used, produces acute and crisp clacks, giving it a snappy and satisfying sound. While not much specific information is provided about the sound of the Taro switch, it seems to offer a pleasant auditory experience for typists.

Moving on to feel, the RedBlue switch is described as mild and polished. It offers a gentle typing experience with qualities that stand in a safe, middle-ground zone. The polished finish of the switch results in smooth and refined key travel, reducing friction and enhancing the overall typing experience. This combination of mildness and polish ensures that the RedBlue switch is approachable to most typists.

Contrastingly, the Taro tactile switch is described as buttery and stepped. The buttery feel of the Taro switch suggests a smooth and fluid keystroke experience, providing effortless and uniform typing sensations. Additionally, the stepped characteristic of the switch means that it has two stages in its tactile feedback. This results in a more subtle tactile bump compared to hypertactile switches. The Taro switch offers users the ability to feel some pre-travel and/or post-travel, adding a distinct tactile sensation to each keystroke.

Taking into account the available information, the RedBlue linear switch and the Jwick Taro tactile switch offer different sound and feel experiences. The RedBlue switch has a low-pitched, thocky sound and a mild, polished feel. On the other hand, the Taro switch provides a neutral sound profile with acute and crisp clacks, combined with a buttery, stepped feel. Each switch caters to different preferences, with the RedBlue switch offering a deeper and more pronounced sound and a gentle, polished typing experience, while the Taro switch provides a snappy and satisfying sound and a smooth, fluid keystroke experience. If you are looking for a similar typing experience, either switch can be considered based on your sound and feel preferences.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you prefer a medium-light typing experience and a higher-pitched sound profile, the SP-Star RedBlue linear switch would be a great choice for you. These switches offer a safe middle-ground feel, providing a gentle typing experience with a smooth and refined finish. On the other hand, if you enjoy a medium-heavy bottom out force and a snappy, medium-level of tactility, along with acute and crisp clacks, the Jwick Taro tactile switch would be more suitable for you. These switches are described as buttery, providing a smooth and fluid keystroke experience, and also offer a stepped feel with some pre-travel and/or post-travel. Ultimately, the decision between the two switches depends on your personal preferences for typing experience, sound, and feel.

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