Differences between ABS and PBT keycaps in gaming keyboards

When it comes to choosing the perfect keyboard, there are many issues that can influence your choice: the type of switch, the layout, the lighting, the configuration options and, to a lesser extent, there are those who take into account the type of keycap: ABS or PBT. If you want to know more about this feature, this post is for you

What are PBT and ABS

pyros speed teclas ABS gaming

To really understand what the implications of choosing PBT or ABS keycaps are, it is important to understand what each type consists of. We are really talking about types of materials, used not only to manufacture keycaps, but also other components and parts of peripherals and so on

When we say ABS, we mean Acrylonitrile Butadiene Butadiene Styrene, although I'm sure that, like us, you've stayed the same. It is somewhat ironic about this material since it is supposed to be a material classified as weak, with respect to its molecular structure, however, it is very strong and durable, so its usefulness is greater than it might seem in essence

On the other hand, we have PBT, Polybutylene teraflalate, another piece of name that, to most, doesn't explain much. The primary difference between it and ABS material is that PBT is harder, but the feel when pressing a keycap made of this material is difficult to describe, many describe it as "gritty". In addition, it is less impact resistant, and is more expensive to use in manufacturing than ABS

Differences between the two materials

A few years ago, the popular belief was that ABS was more fragile and PBT harder, and therefore more resistant to manufacture keycaps, but over time, the gaming industry has been opting for the use of ABS. This has many advantages, starting with the cost, which allows keyboards (or other peripherals) to be made without a large outlay for the user

keycaps abs pbt gaming

As an added benefit, ABS is more resistant to wear and shock, so in the case of keyboards specifically for gaming, it is great, as it is common to use certain keys much more than others, and yet, with ABS, these should have a considerable life. On the other hand, they're likely to withstand more than one tilting, something extra to take into account

As for less relevant, but interesting features, ABS keys can be manufactured with more striking colors, while the PBT manufacturing process does not allow the use of striking or luminous colors. This does not really influence their usefulness, but in the gaming world, we know that many gamers enjoy marking their keycaps with other colored keycaps, although this can also be done with illumination

which one is better?

chronos keycaps blancas y negras

Actually, none is better or worse, it will simply depend on the use you are going to give it, or the features that are more in line with your preferences. Although, we opt for ABS as preferred material and better options for our keyboards, mainly because its resistance is greater, and gives very good results in gaming keyboards. It is also true that the feel and sound when pressing are usually more suited to the tastes of most, as they are much softer than those of PBT keycaps and, therefore, if you want to enjoy the feeling that provides a particular switch, with ABS keys this will be much more faithful

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