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Durock T1vs. Gazzew U4

An in-depth look at the Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 switches—which one is the best fit for you?

Overview

The Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 are both mechanical keyboard switches renowned for their tactile feedback. The T1 switch offers a comfortable typing experience with a medium bump and a sound reminiscent of rain falling on a windowpane. It falls under the categories of 'Stepped', 'Low-pitched', 'Neutral', 'Accented', and 'Polished'. On the other hand, the U4 switch provides a sharp and exhilarating tactile bump, accompanied by a plush, felt-like bottom-out sensation. Its sound profile is whisper quiet, making it ideal for those who prefer a subdued typing experience. While these general descriptions provide a glimpse into the nature of each switch, let's delve deeper into their unique characteristics to help you determine the ultimate switch that suits your preferences.

By the numbers

T1
U4
BrandDurock
CategoryTactile
BrandGazzew
CategoryTactile

$5.50

$4.90 per 10 switches

$6.50 per 10 switches

Technical specifications

Actuation force

N/A

Actuation force

45g

Bottom-out force

67g

Bottom-out force

65g

Pre-travel

2.00 mm

Pre-travel

N/A

Total travel

4.00 mm

Total travel

3.60 mm

Factory lubed

Yes

Factory lubed

Yes

Stem construction

Standard

Stem construction

Standard

Stem material

POM

Stem material

POM

Top housing material

Polycarbonate

Top housing material

Proprietary Gazzew blend

Bottom housing material

Nylon

Bottom housing material

Proprietary Gazzew blend

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Mount type

PCB (5-pin)

Spring

Gold-plated

Spring

Stainless steel 14mm Korean spring

Housing materials

The housing materials of the Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 differ in several ways. The T1 features a polycarbonate top housing, which creates a sharper, higher-pitched, and crisper sound profile. This is because polycarbonate is a stiffer plastic, resulting in a more clear and resonant sound. Additionally, the translucency of polycarbonate makes it ideal for switches with RGB lighting. On the other hand, the U4 utilizes a proprietary Gazzew blend top housing, also known as "boba plastic," which offers a rich and deep sound profile due to its softness. This softer plastic provides a unique sound experience that enhances the typing experience.

In terms of the bottom housing, the T1 incorporates a nylon material that produces a deeper and fuller sound profile compared to other harder plastics. Nylon is a relatively softer plastic, which absorbs more sound and creates a duller and rounder sound sensation. In contrast, the U4 utilizes its proprietary Gazzew blend for the bottom housing as well, delivering a rich and deep sound profile thanks to its softness. This material enhances the impact and bottom-out sound and feel of the switch, complementing the qualities brought by the top housing.

Although the housing materials of the Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 differ, it's worth noting that both switches aim to provide an enhanced typing experience. They achieve this through their distinct housing materials, focusing on creating unique sound profiles. While the T1 emphasizes the sharper and crisper sound with its polycarbonate top housing and nylon bottom housing, the U4 stands out with its soft "boba plastic" blend for both the top and bottom housings, delivering a rich and deep sound experience. Both switches offer unique benefits and cater to different preferences, but ultimately aim to enhance the overall typing experience for users.

Weight

When comparing the actuation force and bottom out force of the Durock T1 tactile switch and the Gazzew U4 tactile switch, there are notable differences. Firstly, the actuation force of the T1 switch is unavailable, while the U4 switch has a lighter actuation force of 43 grams. This means that the U4 switch requires a lesser amount of force to trigger a keystroke compared to the T1 switch. However, when it comes to the bottom out force, the T1 switch is heavier with a force of 67 grams, while the U4 switch has a slightly lighter 62 grams of force.

Considering the weight factor, those who prefer a lighter typing experience for extended periods may opt for the U4 switch with its lower actuation force. This makes it suitable for individuals who use the keyboard for work or engage in lengthy gaming sessions. On the other hand, for those who prioritize a stronger push feel and desire a more substantial typing experience, the T1 switch with its heavier bottom out force may be the preferred choice. It should be noted that while the actuation force for the T1 switch is not available, it is likely to provide a similar or slightly higher resistance compared to the U4 switch, given its heavier bottom out force. Ultimately, the choice between these switches would depend on the user's personal preference for a lighter or heavier typing experience.

Travel distance

The Durock T1 tactile switch has a travel distance of 4.0mm, while the Gazzew U4 tactile switch has a travel distance of 3.6mm. Both of these switches have different travel distances, with the T1 being slightly longer than the U4. The 4.0mm travel distance of the T1 is a more traditional option, offering a deeper feel when you press down on a key. On the other hand, the 3.6mm travel distance of the U4 is slightly shorter, which is preferred by gamers who value faster response times. If you prioritize a more responsive typing experience, the U4 with its shorter travel distance would be a suitable choice. However, if you prefer a more substantial key press with greater depth, the T1 and its longer travel distance would be more suitable. Ultimately, the choice between these switches depends on individual preferences and the desired typing experience.

Sound tests

Price comparison

Which switch is more bang for your buck?

The Durock T1 has an MSRP of $5.50 per 10 switches. At Milktooth, we are able to pass on savings to our customers and offer the T1 for $4.90.

The Gazzew U4 comes in at $6.50 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.

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Typing experience

When it comes to sound, the Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 switches offer different profiles. The T1 has a low-pitched sound, which gives it a more bass-heavy and mellow tone. In contrast, the U4 produces a muted sound, resulting in a softer and quieter typing experience. Both switches have a low-pitched tone, which adds a bass-heavy and mellow quality to the sound. However, it's important to note that the sound of a switch can also vary depending on other factors such as the keyboard and keycaps used.

Moving on to the feel of the switches, the T1 provides a stepped and accented tactile experience. The stepped design gives it a two-stage feel, with some pre-travel and/or post-travel sensation. This creates a mild tactile bump that is neither overwhelming nor subtle, offering a good balance between tactility and comfort. Additionally, the T1 has a polished finish, resulting in reduced friction and smooth key travel.

On the other hand, the Gazzew U4 offers a sharp tactile experience. This means that it has a high feedback intensity, with a distinct and prominent tactile bump felt with each keypress. This sharp tactile feedback can be exhilarating for typists who prefer a more pronounced tactile experience. However, it's important to note that the U4 switches do not have a description for the other feel aspects mentioned for T1 (stepped, accented, and polished).

In conclusion, the Durock T1 and the Gazzew U4 switches offer different subjective qualities. The T1 provides a comfortable typing experience with a medium bump and a low-pitched sound reminiscent of rain falling on a window. It has a stepped and accented feel, along with a polished finish for reduced friction. On the other hand, the U4 offers a sharp and exhilarating tactile bump, with a plush and felt-like bottom-out sensation. It has a muted sound profile that is whisper quiet. Both switches have a low-pitched sound, but the feel and sound profiles of these switches differ, allowing users to choose based on their preferences. Ultimately, the choice will depend on the individual's typing style and personal preference.

Try switches before you buy them

We understand that finding the perfect keyboard switches can be a challenging and time-consuming process. This led us to design Milktooth's try at-home program that allows you to sample and test different switches in the comfort of your own home, ensuring you make the right choice for your typing preferences.

You can try 10 switches at home for 5 days, and your switches come pre-installed on switch testers. Of course, you’re more than free to install them into your own board to try as well for the most representative typing experience.

Gone are the days of going through countless forums and reviews to find the ideal switches. Now, you can experience the tactile feedback, actuation points, and sound profiles firsthand, empowering you to make an informed decision without any pressure or time constraints.

We understand the importance of finding the perfect typing experience, and our try at-home program eliminates the risk of making a costly mistake. Experiment with different switch variants, test them in various typing scenarios, and fine-tune your keyboard to match your individual preferences.

The try at-home program costs only $15, which includes shipping both ways. By trying before you buy, you can make the most informed purchasing decision possible. Simply click the "try at home" button on any given switch webpage to get started.

Conclusion

To sum up, if you're looking for a tactile switch with a medium-heavy bottom out force and a comfortable typing experience, the Durock T1 would be a great choice for you. It offers a medium bump when pressing down, providing a satisfying tactile response. Additionally, the sound profile of the T1 is low-pitched, giving it a mellow and bass-heavy tone.

On the other hand, if you prefer a tactile switch with a medium bottom out force and a sharp and exhilarating tactile bump, the Gazzew U4 would be the better option for you. The U4 also has an unexpectedly plush and felt-like bottom-out sensation, adding to the overall typing experience. Moreover, the U4 has a muted sound profile, making it whisper quiet and minimizing the noise typically associated with mechanical keyboards.

In terms of feel, the T1 has a stepped and accented tactile feel, providing a medium amount of tactility that is neither overwhelming nor subtle. The T1 is also polished, resulting in a smooth and refined typing experience. On the other hand, the U4 has a sharp tactile feel, with a strong and crisp tactile bump that can be felt distinctly with each keypress.

Ultimately, the choice between the Durock T1 and Gazzew U4 switches depends on your personal preferences. If you prioritize a comfortable typing experience, a mellow sound profile, and a polished feel, the T1 would be a great fit for you. However, if you prefer a sharp and exhilarating tactile response, a muted sound profile, and a switch with intense feedback, the U4 would be the better choice. Both switches offer unique features and qualities, so it's important to consider your specific needs and preferences when making a decision.

Mentioned in this article

T1

T1

BrandDurock
CategoryTactile

$5.50

$4.90 per 10 switches

Try the T1 switches
U4

U4

BrandGazzew
CategoryTactile

$6.50 per 10 switches

Try the U4 switches