Following a handful of big names in the component and peripherals market, Corsair announced that it has a pair of aftermarket keycap kits.
We knew the company was at least contemplating creating these kits, and it makes sense. Even as the overall mechanical keyboard market expands, there’s a growing divide between the gaming keyboard types and the DIY builders / typing enthusiasts. Aside from matters of taste, one of the key criticisms enthusiasts have about the gaming keyboards from big brands like Corsair, Logitech, and Razer is the ABS keycaps with lasered legends. It’s widely accepted that ABS plastic is inferior to PBT (not to mention thinner), and laser-ablated legends don’t hold up as well as doubleshot legends.
Doubleshot caps actually have two molds, one inside the other, with the interior mold providing the color of the legends. Thus, the legends basically don’t fade at all, because they're not printed or etched.
These new Corsair caps are PBT doubleshot, which will appeal to hardcore keyboard types, and what’s more, the legends are clear to allow for RGB backlighting--a feature that is not especially common on aftermarket doubleshot caps.
One may question why Corsair felt the need to make its own keycap sets; after all, there’s a robust market for keycaps of all kinds. Thus, it should follow that people who like Corsair keyboards but pine for better caps could just grab the ones they want and pop them on. But (for reasons we still don’t understand), Corsair employs a non-standard bottom-row layout, which makes finding aftermarket caps for its keyboards difficult. These new kits solve that problem for Corsair keyboard owners.
The sets come in white or black, and they’re full sets (104/105 keys) for “North American, British, and International English layouts.” Note that they won’t pair with the K68, and there are no caps for the additional macro keys found on the K95, K95 RGB, and K95 RGB Platinum. Further, because of Corsair’s oddball layout, these kits are going to work only with Corsair keyboards, so they’re a product exclusively for people who buy a Corsair keyboard and want a little upgrade in the keycap department.
Each set costs $50. They’re ostensibly available now, but both kits are listed as “out of stock” on Corsair’s site.
In any case, Corsair gets extra credit for a superb marketing tag: “Legends Never Fade.”