Today we’re looking at a JWK switch that has kind of flown under the radar, the FFFF Linear. Interestingly the FFFF features a full nylon housing, deviating from the more common nylon and polycarbonate combination. The housing material is pretty much the only thing that keeps this from being a JWK recolour. The housing matches the Alpaca v1 mold, although JWK will probably update these with the latest mold at some point. The FFFF comes with a gold-plated spring that is only available with a weight of 62g.
These switches do come factory lubed, and while they aren’t as smooth as the Alpacas or Tangerines, they have a great stock sound. Alpacas and Tangies can sound somewhat thin and high-pitched before lubing, but with the FFFF you’re getting a very nice sound right off the bat. This is a switch I can see myself using stock. Note that the FFFF supports through-hole LEDs, so SMD LEDs will largely be obstructed.
I think the sound profile is the main thing we need to look at here, as we basically already know this is the Alpaca v1 mold with a full nylon housing, so the housing tolerances and stem wobble (or lack of it) will be on point. The first thing to note is that the FFFF is a much quieter switch. It doesn’t have that bright sound of an Alpaca or Tangerine and I found it to be more muted. In terms of pitch, they definitely have a deeper sound, especially stock, but I wouldn’t say they offer more thock. So it basically sounds like a deeper pitched, muted Alpaca or Tangerine. Even though I liked the lower pitch, I did find these switches a little bit dull in sound. They just didn’t have that nice pop you get with a typical JWK linear. As always, sound is subjective so take what I say with a pinch of salt.
In the comparison below, it is fairly clear that the Alpacas sound a lot brighter and more poppy, whereas the FFFFs have more of a muted sound. Both sets of switches are lubed and filmed (Krytox 205g0 & Deskeys 0.3mm films).
Keep in mind that I only tested on the GMMK Pro (Aluminium plate) and KBD67 Lite (polycarbonate plate), and these switches should sound even better on a brass plate. In terms of performance, the FFFFs are right up there with Alpacas after applying lube. A really smooth and consistent keystroke, as we’ve come to expect from JWK. The switches also feel muted to type on, if that makes sense. It’s like you want to hit the switch a little bit harder.
As far as aesthetics, the FFFF features a a yellow and black housing with a milky white stem. Some people call this the cheese switch. I really like this colourway but you’re going to have a hard time finding a matching case or keycaps!
So overall the FFFF brings that top notch JWK quality to the table, and that already makes it an excellent switch. The main consideration is going to be what kind of sound you’re looking for. If you’re looking for a more muted JWK switch, then the FFFF is the way to go.