What are Rubber Keycaps? A Closer Look To Rubberized Keycaps

  • Keycaps 101
  • Posted by: carson-rutz
  • Aug 28, 2023

Wandering among various ultimate solutions to elevate your typing experience. We highly recommend you with rubber keycaps for its impressive specs. So what are rubber keycaps? In this article, we'll explore the numerous advantages of using rubber keycaps, offering insights into how they can enhance your overall typing performance.

1. What are rubberized keycaps?

Rubber keycaps are keyboard keycaps that have a rubber finish or coating on the surface. Compared to the typical plastic or ABS keycaps found on most keyboards, these keycaps are made to offer a distinctive tactile sensation and better grip.

Rubber keycaps can generally be categorized into two main types based on their shape and design: flat rubber keycaps and domed rubber keycaps.

Both types of keycaps are not only made from rubber or rubber-like materials, providing a softer and more cushioned feel but also tend to be quieter than typical mechanical switches.

Rubber gaming keycap set | amazon
Rubber gaming keycap set | amazon

However, while the flat ones have a smooth and flat top surface, the domed ones have a rubber dome underneath the keycap that collapses and springs back when pressed. 

Additionally, rubberized keycaps have a soft and slightly gripping texture that some users find enhances their typing experience with a gentler touch and improved tactile feedback.

The cushioned feel of the rubber coating may reduce finger fatigue during extended typing sessions. These keycaps are commonly used in specialty and gaming keyboards to increase comfort and accuracy for quick and precise keystrokes in gaming sessions.

However, it should be noted that rubberized keycaps could deteriorate more quickly than conventional plastic keycaps over time, and the rubber coating might become more prone to breakage or peeling. As a result, some users may take the durability of rubberized keycaps into account when selecting a keyboard.

Besides, there are several other types of keycap materials as well as profiles, production methods which would be described detailedly through this complete keycap guide.

2. Are rubber keycaps good?

Here are some factors to consider when evaluating rubber keycaps:

Hyperx rubber keycaps – hyperx
Hyperx rubber keycaps – hyperx

2.1. Durability

Rubber keycaps may offer good durability initially, with the rubber coating providing a soft and grippy surface. However, over time, the rubber material can deteriorate faster than traditional plastic keycaps, leading to potential breakage or peeling. This aspect might affect their long-term durability.

2.2. Tactile Experience

The main appeal of rubber keycaps lies in their unique tactile experience. The rubber coating provides a soft and slightly cushioned feel when typing, which some users find more comfortable and less fatiguing during prolonged use. 

The tactile feedback is different from traditional plastic keycaps, offering a softer and more rubbery sensation with each keystroke. Moreover, these keycaps usually provide excellent grip due to their non-slippery nature, which is better than other keycaps materials like ABS and PBT.

Impressive tactile feedback from rubber keycaps | one of zero
Impressive tactile feedback from rubber keycaps | one of zero

2.3. Sound

Typing on rubber keycaps tends to produce quieter typing sounds compared to standard plastic keycaps. The rubber material absorbs some of the impact and reduces the "clack" or "click" sound often associated with mechanical keyboards. 

As a result, rubber keycaps can be a good choice for users who prefer a quieter typing experience, especially in shared or quiet environments.

Not only can rubber keycaps perform a quiet typing experience, there are numerous other silent products that can cater for a shared environment. Moreover, the quietness mainly results from some specific switches, let’s consider them. 

2.4. Affordability

Rubber keycaps are generally more expensive than plastic keycaps such as ABS keycaps because they require more material and processing to produce. They can also be harder to find, as they are not as widely available as plastic keycaps. If you want to buy rubber keycaps, you may have to pay more or order them online

2.5. Compatibility

Rubber keycaps are compatible with standard mechanical switches such as Cherry MX, OEM, DSA, and SA stems. As a result, they ought to work with the majority of mechanical keyboards that permit keycap customisation. 

But usually, rubber keycaps do not come as full sets, but as a set of 8 or 18. You should also check the size and layout of your keyboard before buying rubber keycaps, as they may not match with your existing keycaps.

3. Are rubber keycaps good for gaming?

Rubber keycaps can be a good option for gaming, catering to specific individual preferences and gaming styles. Their soft and grippy texture offers improved control and precision, particularly beneficial for gamers requiring quick and accurate keystrokes in fast-paced gameplay.

Additionally, the rubber material dampens the typing sound, creating a quieter gaming experience suitable for shared environments or late-night gaming.

However, potential drawbacks include concerns about durability, as rubber keycaps may not be as long-lasting as traditional plastic keycaps.

You can check out these 10+ best gaming keycaps to upgrade your gaming experience.

Hyperx rubber keycaps gaming accessory kit | datablitz
Hyperx rubber keycaps gaming accessory kit | datablitz

4. Are rubber keycaps good for typing?

Rubber keycaps can be good for typists as some following advantages.

  • Reduced Noise: Rubber keycaps tend to be quieter than conventional plastic keycaps, making them a good option if you prefer a more tranquil typing experience, especially in quiet settings or shared spaces.
  • Comfort: Some keyboard users may find rubber keycaps to be more pleasant, especially after prolonged typing sessions. Finger fatigue can be decreased by the additional tactile input, which can offer a soft, ergonomic touch.
  • Improved Grip: If you have a tendency to slide or slip off keys when typing, the rough surface of rubber keycaps may offer an improved grip, which may aid in typing accuracy.

However, some people may dislike rubber keycaps for typing, as they can make the keys feel sticky or mushy. They can also make the keys harder to press, which can slow down your typing speed or cause errors. Rubber keycaps may not be suitable for everyone, so you should try them out before buying them.

A black rubber keycaps set | matrix keyboard
A black rubber keycaps set | matrix keyboard

5. Rubber Keycaps vs Regular Keycaps: What’s the difference?

Rubber keycaps and regular keycaps (PBT or ABS) are two different types of keycaps that have different characteristics. Rubber keycaps are made of rubber material, while regular keycaps are made of either PBT or ABS plastic.

In terms of feel, Rubber keycaps stand out with their soft and grippy texture, offering a cushioned feel and secure grip during typing and gaming. On the other hand, PBT keycaps have a rougher texture that feels more solid and durable, while ABS keycaps feel smooth and develop a greasy shine over time .

In terms of look, rubber keycaps usually come in bright colors and have a matte finish. They can add some flair and contrast to your keyboard, especially if you use them for specific keys such as WASD or arrow keys. However, rubber keycaps do not have good font quality or RGB shine-through capability, so they may not look as sharp or vibrant as regular keycaps.

Rubber keycaps vs regular keycaps | dygma
Rubber keycaps vs regular keycaps | dygma

Regular keycaps can have various designs, colors, and fonts, and they can also support RGB lighting effects. PBT keycaps are known for their vibrant colors that do not fade over time, while ABS keycaps can develop a greasy shine over time.

In terms of sound, rubber keycaps excel in noise reduction, making them popular for quiet environments. Regular keycaps' noise levels vary with the material and switches used.

When it comes to durability, rubber keycaps are less durable than regular ones, wearing down faster and needing more care. Their rubber coating may peel, fade, or get dirty over time, impacting their look and performance. Regular keycaps are more durable and resistant to wear, especially PBT keycaps which are the strongest and most durable type of plastic keycaps. PBT keycaps do not fade or get shiny over time, unlike ABS keycaps which can develop a greasy shine with use.

Rubber Keycaps ABS Keycaps PBT Keycaps
Material Soft rubber material ABS plastic PBT plastic
Texture and Feel Soft and grippy surface texture, improved grip and a unique tactile sensation A consistent and sharp tactile feel A mild and consistent tactile feel
Durability Deteriorate over time More durable and resistant  Most durable and resistant
Sound Quieter typing sound Crisper and louder typing sound Quieter and lower-pitched typing sound
Compatibility May not be compatible with all keyboards More universally compatible  More universally compatible 
Ergonomics Softer and more ergonomic touch Glossy , vibrant appearance, have fingerprints and develop a shine Matte finish, don't show wear and shine 
Price Range Lower to mid-range price category Budget-friendly to premium price points Budget-friendly to premium price points

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In summary, rubber keycaps and regular keycaps have different pros and cons that may appeal to different users. Rubber keycaps are more comfortable, quiet, and grippy, but they are also less durable, less aesthetic, and less compatible with RGB lighting. Regular keycaps are more durable, more aesthetic, and more compatible with RGB lighting, but they are also less comfortable, louder, and slipperier. Ultimately, the choice of keycaps depends on your personal preference and needs.

6. What are the best rubberized keycaps?

Here is the list of some top rubber keycaps that capture keyboard enthusiasts’ hearts.

Keycap Set Features Price
Tai-Hao Rubber Keycap

Tai-hao rubber keycap
Tai-hao rubber keycap set
  • Material: Rubber /ABS
  • Total Keys : 23 Keys ( Q, W, E, R, A, S, D, F, Z,X,C,V ,Four arrow keys  1~6+Novelty Key
  • Profile: OEM Profile
  • Compatible with Cherry MX Switch Types
  • Made in Taiwan
VULTURE Rubber Keycaps

Vulture rubber keycaps
Vulture rubber keycaps
  • Material: Double shot Rubber
  • Total Keys : 18
  • Profile: OEM Profile
  • Compatible for gaming mechanical keyboards
Ducky Rubber Keycap

Ducky rubber keycap
Ducky rubber keycap
  • Material: Doubleshot Rubber shine-through
  • Total keys: 31 keys 
  • MX and clones Compatible
HK Gaming Rubber Keycaps Set

Hk gaming rubber keycaps set
Hk gaming rubber keycaps set
  • Material: Doubleshot PBT, Rubber
  • Total keys: 23 keys (ESC, 1-6 numbers, Q W E R, A S D F, Z X C V as well as the 4 arrow keys)
  • MX, Gateron, Kailh Compatible

You can consider these best rubber keycaps which can bring users a complete strange and unique typing experience.

Bottom Line

After scrolling throughout this article, I believe you have your own answer for the first sentence: What are rubber keycaps? These items offer a unique and distinct typing experience that can be advantageous for certain individuals and scenarios. For those seeking a comfortable, quiet, and potentially more durable typing experience, rubber keycaps can be an excellent choice. As the keyboard market continues to offer diverse options, rubber keycaps stand out as a unique avenue for enhancing the way we interact with our devices.


1. How do rubber keycaps feel?

Rubber keycaps have a soft and slightly grippy texture due to the rubber coating on the surface. This provides a unique tactile feel that can be described as "squishy" or "rubbery."

2. Are rubber keycaps compatible with all keyboards?

Rubber keycaps may not be compatible with all keyboards, as they might have different keycap sizes and mounting mechanisms.

3. Are rubber keycaps suitable for gaming?

Yes, rubber keycaps can be suitable for gaming. The soft and grippy texture can provide better control and precision during gaming sessions. Additionally, the noise reduction can be advantageous for gaming in shared environments.

4. Are rubber keycaps worth it?

Yes if users would prefer reduced noise, improved grip, and comfort for typing process.

5. Are rubber keycaps cheap?

Rubber keycaps can be considered cheap. In fact, they are generally affordable compared to more premium keycap materials.

6. Are rubber keycaps comfortable?

Yes, this product is comfortable for some typists and gamers due to their soft and cushioned feel.

7. How do rubber keycaps sound?

Rubber keycaps produce a quieter typing sound compared to traditional plastic keycaps.