Keycaps are an essential part of any computer keyboard. They protect the keyboard’s circuitry and also provide a comfortable, textured surface for your fingers to rest on.
Most keycaps are made from ABS or PBT plastic, although some are made from metal or silicone. Over time, keycaps can become dirty or faded, so it’s essential to know how to clean them properly.
This will explore the different types of keycaps available and what each one is used for. We will tell you how to replace them if needed.
So, whether you are curious about keycaps or looking to add some personality to your keyboard. We’ve all it covered. Let’s read.
Basics of Keycaps
As we mentioned, keycaps are the removable caps covering critical switches on a keyboard. They come in different types of shapes, sizes, and materials. Keycaps can be made from ABS, PBT, or POM plastic.
They can also be made from metal, wood, or even glass. The most common type of keycap is the ABS keycap.
Sizes of Keycaps
Keycaps come in many different sizes. The most common size is 1u, the size of a standard letter key on a keyboard. Other sizes include 1.5u, 2u, and 2.75u. The size of the keycap will determine its row on the keyboard.
For example, a 1u keycap will be on the first row of the keyboard, while a 2u keycap will be on the second row.
Different Keycap Profiles
Keycaps have three main profiles: OEM, Cherry, and SA. OEM is the profile used by the keyboard’s manufacturer. Cherry is the most common aftermarket keyset profile.
SA (short for “spherical allover”) is a less common but increasingly popular keyset profile. Each profile has its own unique look and feel.
OEM profile keys are typically lower than other profiles. They have a flat surface with little to no contouring.
The keycaps are also spaced further apart, making them more challenging for some people to reach. However, OEM keysets are often less expensive than other options.
Cherry profile keys are taller than OEM keys and have a contoured surface. This contouring makes them more comfortable to type on and provides a more secure grip.
Cherry keys are also spaced together, which can be an advantage for people with smaller hands.
SA profile keys have a spherical top with a concave surface. This unique shape provides a comfortable typing experience and makes the keys easier to identify by touch.
SA keysets are also slightly taller than Cherry keysets, which can be an advantage for people who have difficulty reaching lower keys.
KAM profile keys have a uniform surface that is comfortable to type on and provides a more secure grip.
KAM keysets are also taller than Cherry keysets, which can be an advantage for people who have difficulty reaching lower keys.
KAT profile keys have a flat and sculpted surface with a contoured edge. This unique design provides a comfortable typing experience and makes the keys easier to identify by touch.
KAT keysets are also slightly taller than Cherry keysets, which can be an advantage for people who have difficulty reaching lower keys.
MT3 profile keys have a sculpted surface that is comfortable to type on and provides a more secure grip.
MT3 keysets are also taller than Cherry keysets, which can be an advantage for people who have difficulty reaching lower keys.
Which Profile is Right For You?
There is no “right” keycap profile. It all comes down to personal preference. If you’re unsure which profile you prefer, it’s a good idea to try out several different types before deciding.
You must consider your hands’ size when choosing a keycap profile. People with larger hands may find that taller keysets are more comfortable, while people with smaller hands may prefer shorter ones.
Different Types of Keycap Materials
Keycaps are typically made from one of three materials: ABS, PBT, or POM.
ABS (acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) is the most common type of keycap material. ABS keycaps are typically cheaper and more widely available than other keycaps.
They’re also easier to manufacture, which makes them a popular choice for mass-produced keyboards.
However, ABS keycaps are not as durable as PBT or POM keycaps and tend to develop a shine over time.
ABS is the most common material for keycaps. It’s a durable plastic that is easy to mold and print on. However, ABS keycaps are prone to shine and can develop a “greasy” feel.
PBT (short for “Polybutylene Terephthalate”) is a more rigid, more durable plastic that doesn’t succumb to shine as quickly as ABS.
You’ll find PBT keycaps on high-end mechanical keyboards because of this property. They have a rougher texture than ABS and a deeper sound profile.
PBT is a more expensive plastic that is harder to mold but doesn’t suffer the same issues as ABS. PBT keycaps are more resistant to shine and don’t develop a greasy feel.
However, they are more brittle and can be more challenging to print.
POM is a plastic similar to PBT in terms of durability and printability. It is also resistant to shine and has a rougher texture. However, POM keycaps are more expensive than both ABS and PBT.
Some high-end mechanical keyboards come with metal keycaps. These keycaps are typically made from zinc alloy or aluminum.
Metal keycaps are more durable than plastic keycaps and have a premium look and feel. However, they are also more expensive.
Silicone keycaps are a relatively new type of keycap that is made from silicone rubber. They are designed to provide a softer, more comfortable typing experience.
Silicone keycaps are also more durable than plastic ones and less likely to develop a shine. However, they are more expensive than both ABS and PBT keycaps.
Double Shot Keycaps
Double shot keycaps are made from two pieces of plastic molded together.
This construction method is more expensive but results in a more durable keycap and is less likely to develop a shine. Doubleshot keycaps are also available in various colors and designs.
Artisan keycaps are handmade and can be made from a variety of materials. They are usually more expensive than mass-produced keycaps but offer a unique look and feel.
Artisan keycaps are often made from resin, which can be cast in various colors and designs. However, they may have imperfections that make them unsellable because they are handmade.
Rubber keycaps are designed to provide a softer, more comfortable typing experience.
They are also more durable than plastic keycaps and are less likely to develop a shine. However, they are more expensive than both ABS and PBT keycaps.
Pudding keycaps are a great way to add style and personality to your keyboard. They’re also durable, straightforward to use, and easy to clean, so you won’t have to worry about them getting dirty or fading over time.
If you want to make your keyboard stand out, pudding keycaps are a great option.
Are Custom Keycaps Worth It?
Custom keycaps are a great way to add a personal touch to your mechanical keyboard. They can also help you achieve a unique look different from everyone else’s.
However, custom keycaps are typically more expensive than mass-produced keycaps. They are also usually made from lower-quality materials, so they may not last as long.
Custom keycaps are worth it if you’re looking for a unique mechanical switch keyboard that no one else has. However, if you want a good-quality keyboard with no frills, you may want to stick with mass-produced keycaps.
How To Clean Your Keycaps
We will tell you the straightforward steps of how to clean your keycaps :
Step 1: Remove the keycaps from your keyboard. You can do this by gently pushing up on the bottom of each keycap with a small flathead screwdriver or a keycap puller.
Step 2: Soak the keycaps in warm soapy water for 30 minutes. This will helps to remove any dirt or grime clinging to the keycaps.
Step 3: Scrub the keycaps with a soft-bristled brush to remove any stubborn dirt or grime. Be sure to scrub under the keycaps as well.
Step 4: Rinse the keycaps with clean water and let them air dry completely.
Step 5: Reattach the keycaps to your keyboard. Make sure they are firmly attached and that there are no loose keycaps.
So, That’s all what you need to know about keycaps. We personally suggest you to use metal keyacaps with mechanical feel. When you hear the feedback of your press you’ll love typing.
In the end, we would like to say that cleaning custom keycap sets is a critical task, and it should be done regularly to maintain the look and feel of your keyboard. Choose your best & enjoy typing.
Thanks for Listening to us.
What Should Keycaps Do?
Keycaps are the removable caps that cover the keys on a keyboard. They come in different types of shapes and sizes, and each one is designed for a specific key on the keyboard.
The most common type of keycap set is the domed keycap, which has a convex surface that is easy to grip. Many keycaps also have a textured surface to help prevent your fingers from slipping.
In addition to their functional role, keycaps can also be used to add a personal touch to your keyboard. You can find keycaps in a wide range of colors and materials, so it’s easy to find a style that matches your personality.
Whether you’re looking for something functional or aesthetic, keycaps are essential to any keyboard.
Do Keycaps Make a Difference?
A keyboard is one of the most useful tools for a computer user, so it’s essential to have one that feels comfortable and suits your needs.
One of the things that can affect how comfortable a keyboard is to use is the keycaps. Keycaps are the plastic covers that go over the top of the key switch.
They come in different shapes, sizes, and materials and can make a big difference in how a keyboard feels to use.
For example, if you type a lot, you might prefer smooth and easy-to-press keycaps. Or, if you’re looking for a keyboard that’s more comfortable to use for long periods, you might want to consider ergonomically shaped keycaps.
There are also aesthetic considerations, like backlighting compatibility and color scheme. So whether you’re looking for a more comfortable keyboard or just want one that looks cool.
Can Any Keycaps Fit Any Keyboard?
While there are some standardized keycap sizes, there is no guarantee that anyone keycap will fit any keyboard.
The best way to ensure that a keycap will fit a particular keyboard is to check the specifications for that keyboard. Most manufacturers will list the compatible keycap sizes in the product description.
Otherwise, measuring the distance between the centers of the screw mounting holes on the keyboard is also possible. This measurement is typically known as the pitch.
Once the pitch has been determined, it is simply a matter of finding keycaps with the same pitch.
While it is possible to use other sizes of keycaps, it is not advisable, as they may not sit flush with the keys or may cause difficulties when typing.
Ultimately, using the correct keycap size for a given keyboard is always best.
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