K390 Vs. M390 Knives: Main Differences and Features

Are you in a bit of a rush? Struggling between the fight of K930 vs M930 knives? Don’t worry; you have landed in the right place.

We will help you get good insights about both knives so that you can find the perfect one for yourself.

Let’s start our journey by learning about the common features and differences of the K390 vs. M390 knives to determine which one best meets your needs.

A Quick Comparison Table

Edge RetentionExcellent (2.47% Carbon, 9.00% Vanadium)Excellent (1.9% Carbon, 4% Vanadium)
Corrosion ResistanceDecent, semi-stainless steel, with only 4.25% of chromiumExcellent, stainless, with 20% chromium
Wear ResistanceExcellent, with 9% of Vanadium4% Vanadium
Hardness64-65 HRC60-62 HRC

Key Differences Between K390 And M390 Knives

K390 vs. M390 Knives

Determining the best fit of knife for yourself is not rocket science.

But if you do want to make sure to check all its possible features and decide which one to choose, make sure to know about the 4 main features of a knife – its toughness, its capability to resist corrosion, its sharpness, and last but not the least it’s edge retention.

This might sound a bit confusing to you right now. But we have the perfect guidelines for you to get a better knowledge about these features of both knives.

Let’s have a brief discussion on how these features are essential while purchasing knives for yourself and the differences between K390 and M390.

  • Toughness

Toughness determines the ability of the knives to resist while being fractured. As for the toughness of knives K390 and M390, both have a decent marking. Out of 10, K390 gets 6, whereas M390 gets an 8.

The performance of M390 proves to be better in case of having more toughness or ability to resist. Read another article on the differences between N690 and M390 knives to learn more about it.

You should always look out for knives that have more strength. Because durable knives last longer and you also want to make good use of the purchase.

  • Corrosion Resistance

Sometimes steels are seen getting rusty due to the presence of iron in the environment. The rust makes the knives defective and might also be detrimental for you to use.

That is why before buying knives, you should check their corrosion resistance.

In terms of corrosion resistance, M390 is better than K390 because M390 is stainless-steel with 20% chromium in it, whereas K390 is semi-stainless with only 4.25% chromium in it.

The point for M390 is 8, and K390 is 3 in case of corrosion resistance.

  • Sharpness
K390 knife
K390 Knife

Comparing the sharpness of both knives is needed to see which one is more efficient. In order to measure the sharpness of any knife, you need to try it out first to see if you can cut objects easily with it.

Shopkeepers would give you the option to check this practically before buying the knife. So, make sure to check the sharpness.

The easier it is to cut, the easier it is to sharpen, and the more convenient it is.

As for K390 and M390, once again, M390 would be a better option for its sharpness.

It is usually a bit harder to sharpen the K390 knives compared to the M390 knives.

So, M390 wins the battle here.

  • Edge Retention

Edge retention is a factor that shows how much a knife is durable. To actually see if the edge retention of any knife is good or not, the amount of some of its components needs to be seen.

Mainly carbon and vanadium amount in the steel is observed.

Other components also play vital roles in enhancing the durability of the steel but primarily, these two components act as the leading indicators to find out which knife has the better edge retention.

From the quick chart of differences, we find out that the components to determine edge retention are more in K390.

Again, the hardness of K390 is about 64-65 HRC, and M390 is 60-62HRC. A knife with a Rockwell Hardness Scale rating of 58-62 will generally hold an edge better than a blade with a lower HRC rating.

Quick Summary Of The Differences

  • The toughness of M390 is more than K390 knives.
  • K390 knives are semi-stainless, and M390 knives are totally stainless.
  • It is easier to sharpen M390 than the K390.
  • The hardness of K390 is about 64-65 HRC, and M390 is 60-62HRC.

Common Similarities of K390 And M390 Knives

M390 Knife
M390 Knife

Although the knives have different features to compare, they also have similarities.

Let’s see what kind of similar features these knives have.

  • Hardness

The hardness scores of both the knives are pretty close, and both are above 60 HRC. Although the edge retention of M390 is slightly better than K390.

Both the knives work excellent when you are cutting about anything in the kitchen and on things that are too hardcore for knives.

  • Fragility

Although the fragility of both can be compared, both the knives are quite fragile.

Both the knives are around 22 ft-lbs at 60 RC, which might not be as strong as a knife at 50 ft-lbs at 60 RC.

However, they can be made stronger by thickening their blade.

  • Carbides Range

Carbides make the knives stronger to function.

In both K390 and M390 knives, carbides range from about 15% to 17%, which is a good number for knives to be durable for an extended period.

Which One Is Better?

After all these comparisons of factors, components, and measurements, you might want to know which would be the better option between these two.

As much as we can tell, both knives are undoubtedly good options for you. But since it’s impractical to buy both, we would suggest you purchase M390 knives.


The reasonings are given below:

  • Reason – 1: It Has More Strength

M390 is definitely tougher or durable than K390 as it scores a perfect 8 in toughness. Also, its components are more durable than that of K390.

Simply put, it is stronger than the K390 knives, and to keep using knives for a long period, you need to buy a strong one.

  • Reason – 2: It is Stainless

M390 is totally stainless, having 20% chromium in it, whereas K390 knives have semi-stainless steel. Stainless steels are always preferred more than semi-stainless steels.

That is why we suggest you stick with M390 as it is completely stainless.

  • Reason – 3: It is Easier to Sharpen

Usually, things like knives should be sharpened properly as it is used to cut or chop things.

For example, in a butcher shop, it is very important to have sharp knives as it makes it easier to cut the meats.

Although you might not need very sharp knives all the time, it is always better to keep one.

When compared, M390 is easier to sharpen. It takes a lot of time for K390 knives to get sharpened.

And it is also very time-consuming.

Final Words

So that’s all about the features of M390 and k390. A thorough discussion about both the knives have been made.

So, it should be easier for you now to determine which knife to buy between K390 and M390.

Have a nice day at the knife shops! We hope you find a good one.

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