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If you have been in the hobby for a while, you have most likely heard of or even shopped at www,pimpmykeyboard.com and if you are new to the hobby… well, you will. Even if the name Pimp My Keyboard doesn’t ring any bells, you have probably considered at one point “GMK vs SA” or “DSA vs Cherry Profile”. SA and DSA are keycap profiles designed, sold, and manufactured by Pimp My Keyboard (a Signature Plastics Company). In reddit communities such as r/mechanicalkeyboards, “Pimp My Keyboard” and “Signature Plastics” are interchangeable when referring to the community favorite and are both often abbreviated “PMK” and “SP”. They are lauded for having some of the best quality keycaps on the market and are well known for manufacturing custom keycap colorways through group buys.
Note: Although I will refer to them as “PMK” here, the community tends to refer to their keycap profiles with “SP” for “Signature Plastics” or simply by the keycap profile such as “DSA” or “SA”.
How PMK compares to other brands
PMK produces top quality keycaps that rival other boutique keycap brands like GMK with the major difference being that they are more readily available and easier to purchase. PMK offers ready-made keycap sets in attractive colorways, making it easy for any newcomer to the hobby to experience boutique level quality without necessarily waiting through a long groupbuy process. Although a majority of PMK products are ready-to-ship, occasionally there will be exclusive colorways or new items launched as a groupbuy (Guide: Colorways).
Really, besides GMK and PMK there are only a small handful of notable keycap manufacturers that compare in quality and overall community approval. Most other brands available ready-to-ship are imitations and/or manufactured in China with slightly less quality control. You may find SA and DSA profile keycaps on Amazon (I even recommend a few in my other posts) but they are not produced by PMK. While that’s not entirely a bad thing, I personally would recommend going directly to www.pimpmykeyboard.com since it is only slightly higher in price and you are getting both authenticity and quality.
PMK sets itself apart by providing the custom mechanical keyboard community with the utmost quality, durability, and customer service. They are especially known for their double-shot keycaps having the most accurate and high quality machining which ensures that your keycaps last long and don’t have a single legend out of place. PMK also has impeccably accurate dye-sublimated keycaps as well that have stark contrast and minimal “fuzziness” that you may see with cheaper dye-sublimated keycap sets. As far as service goes, as a customer (and I have bought a LOT) any questions I had were addressed quickly and effectively and I have zero complaints there.
You can also expect new keycap profiles and colorways featured on their website as they continue to offer more options for us keebnerds. Notably, the DSS and SA-P keycap profiles were very recently released and with a great response in the community. I have had the pleasure to try both and they are a pleasure to type on. Read on for an in-depth review of SA-P “Snow Cap” keycaps from PMK!
Below is a video tour of the Signature Plastics Factory made by the community’s very own Ryan Norbauer who is known for making super high-end keyboards. For more info, check out his site here: https://shop.norbauer.com/[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMVnrINvrG0[/embedyt]
Review of Pimp My Keyboard’s SA-P “Snow Cap”
PMK was kind enough to send me the new SA-P Snow Cap keycap set. As with all of their keycap sets, they are great quality keycaps. For review purposes, I had these keycaps set up on my hand-wired 40% keyboard with Drop.com Holy Panda Switches and used this as my primary work and home setup for the past 3 months.
We will make some comparisons of single keycaps from different profiles. Below are a few photos I’ve taken of the Q key.
The matte texture on the SA-P keycap is very noticeable. I am personally a fan of the matte texture on this keycap and found it to be one of my favorite features of the set. Although it doesn’t have a huge impact on typing, the matte texture just feels great and elevates the typing experience.
Top row left to right: SA-P, SA, MT3
Bottom row left to right: GMK, DSA
On the topic of texture, a worthy comparison would be with GMK and MT3 profiles. GMK keycaps are sought after in the keyboard community for the slight matte texture of their ABS plastic material. Compared to GMK, the texture on SA-P keycaps is much more noticeable leaning more towards “gritty” than matte (but in a good way of course).
The SA-P profile keycaps are also much thicker than their close cousin SA profile. While the profile is the same, the thicker keycap walls made for some extremely satisfying “thock” sounds when I typed. THE THICC-ER THE THOCC-IER!
Overall, if you are looking for a clean, high-profile, and textured keycap set, you really can’t go wrong with SA-P. If you are interested in purchasing the keycap set mentioned in this review, please use my affiliate link or click on the image below: Shop SA-P Snow Cap