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.
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.
Most of the keycaps on the market are made of ABS engineering plastic. This material is slightly lower hardness so wear resistance is poor, some high-end brands use other materials to avoid the appearance of oil stains as much as possible. Compared to other materials, ABS engineering plastic is overall low cost. Extremely strong plasticity reduces the difficulty of processing, and softer texture can provide a good finger feel, but the disadvantage is also obvious, is poor wear resistance.
Although the ABS keycaps are easy to have oil stains, there are still high-end keyboards made of ABS. 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, but this surface reflection and wear resistance are general performance.
PBT is a more 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.
PBT keycaps are beautifully colored and highly reversible.
PBT material keycaps wear resistance is quite good, its higher wear resistance in the keyboard and even embodied in a very long time not having oil stains also got a lot of senior players to love. Such a strong hardness, in terms of feel, will be slightly harder, but the infestation pattern, high color reproduction, and not easy to lose color. Its innate light color is more suitable for white and other keyboard processing, prefer light-colored mechanical keyboard friends can pay more attention.