The Difference Between ABS and PBT Keycaps

Keycap shape design varies, but the main difference is still in the material, mechanical keyboard in the main keycap material for ABS plastic and PBT material these two, in addition to nylon, silicone, etc. . Often use the keyboard friends have probably encountered this problem: most of the surface of the keyboard used for a long time is greasy and very slippery to use. The reason is a long time high frequency of use or is the keycap material.

PBT is a costly keyboard material, the chemical name for polybutylene terephthalate, the English name polybutylene terephthalate (PBT for short), belongs to the polyester series, and is made of 1.4-pbt butylene glycol (1.4-Butylene glycol) and terephthalic acid (PTA) or terephthalic acid ester (DMT ) polycondensation, and through the mixing process to make a milky white translucent to opaque, crystalline thermoplastic polyester resin. Together with PET, they are referred to as thermoplastic polyesters or saturated polyesters.

PBT has high heat resistance, toughness, fatigue resistance, self-lubrication, and low friction. Resistant to hot water, alkalis, acids, and oils, PBT is one of the toughest engineered thermoplastics, and it is a semi-crystalline material with very good chemical stability, mechanical strength, and electrical insulation properties, and thermal stability. These materials have good stability in a very wide range of environmental conditions.

ABS is the most common keycap material, its chemical name is acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene plastic, which is one of the five synthetic resins. Its impact resistance, heat resistance, low-temperature resistance, chemical resistance, and excellent electrical properties, but also has easy processing, product size stability, good surface gloss, easy to paint, coloring, but also surface spraying metal, electroplating, welding, hot pressing, and bonding and other secondary processing. Extremely strong plasticity reduces the difficulty of processing, and softer texture can provide a good finger feel. 

Although the ABS keycaps are easy to have oil stains, there are still high-end keyboards made of ABS. Coyres retains the original advantages of the ABS material, and uses the technology to make the surface of the keycaps frosted, so that it will always give the fingers a dry and refreshing texture. In ABS keycaps sprayed on a layer of wear-resistant material can greatly reduce the chances of oiling, of course, this layer of the material itself is also costly. in addition, some brands also use the piano baking process.  


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