If you’re planning on having a custom mechanical keyboard, you need to choose a case first. When choosing such a case, wooden and aluminum cases are the one’s you’ll stumble upon.
So, what are the differences between wood vs aluminum keyboard case?
The primary difference is the sound profile. Wood has a deeper and slightly quieter sound. But an aluminum keyboard creates a crispy sound. However, aluminum keyboards are priced less compared to wooden keyboards. Other than that, aluminum keyboards have better variety, portability, and availability.
Well, that’s not all as there’s a still lot to talk about and compare. You should research thoroughly before going with one of them.
Let’s find out which one is more suitable for you!
Wood vs Aluminum Keyboard Case: Basic Differences
Mechanical keyboards used to be made with a plastic case at first. But as it became mainstream, custom cases began to pop up. Soon there were wooden cases and a lot of different plastic cases.
After that, acrylic keyboard cases began to get famous. But aluminum is the one that gained popularity really fast. There are a couple of reasons behind that.
Soon people started to get confused when choosing a keyboard case. On one side, there were nice wooden cases. On the contrary, there were supporters of aluminum keyboard cases claiming they were better.
This isn’t just limited to keyboard cases. Even keyboard plates have different options. Thus it’s quite common to compare brass against polycarbonate keyboard plates.
Talking about all of the differences at once will make the comparison messy. That’s why we’ve decided to give you a heads-up before the actual comparison.
Here, we have made a little chart and compared wood and aluminum keyboard cases-
|Aspects||Wooden Keyboard Case||Aluminum Keyboard Case|
|Price||$70 – $150||$60 – $90|
|Clicking Sound||Deeper & Quieter||High Pitched|
|Variety||Less Options||More Options|
|Portability||Easily portable||Have to handle with care|
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After going through the table, which keyboard case are you liking more? If you are still undecided then let’s get into a more detailed comparison.
Wood vs Aluminum Keyboard Case: Detailed Comparison
If you haven’t reached a decision yet, that’s totally fine. Both of these keyboard cases have pros and cons in almost every sector.
That’s why we have elaborated on each aspect and compared them head to head. Simply read through all the factors and you’ll reach a conclusion in no time!
Budget is something to consider when you build a custom keyboard case. If the budget is not planned, you might overspend.
Wooden keyboards are quite rare on the market these days. Because of that, they’re quite expensive. It also needs to be cut, polished, and maintained which further increases the price.
You can find some great wooden keyboards from $70 to $150 price range.
On the other hand, aluminum cases have a lot of options. Because of the competition, the price naturally goes lower.
Generally they can be bought for around $60 to $90, on different online sites.
Winner: Aluminum keyboard cases are cheaper so it comes out as the winner.
If you desire some wooden keyboards cases, get them before they are out of stock. I’ve curated some of the wooden keyboard cases that are available online. Otherwise, you might have to build one for yourself.
|GH60 Solid Wooden Case for Mini Mechanical Keyboard||Zebra Wood||Order Today!|
|GK64 Keyboard kit Wooden Case||Walnut||Order Today!|
|GH60 DZ60 Wooden Mechanical Keyboard Case||Bamboo Wood||Order Today!|
Choose whichever you like more and that’ll kickstart your project!
But if these all are expensive for you then you can also make your own wooden keyboard case.
Follow this video tutorial to turn a wood block into a brand new keyboard case.
Among all the categories, sound is the one that matters the most. Using a mechanical keyboard is all about the feeling. And that special clicking sound plays a big role in it.
Let’s start with the wood keyboard case sound. Wooden keyboards, compared to aluminum keyboards have a deeper sound. Here, listen by yourself-
It’s also much quieter when you compare it with the aluminum one. If you’re looking for that deep and heavy tactile sound, then wood is best.
There are also switches you need to think about. If you prefer Cherry MX Red or Speed switches, it may be too quiet. But Cherry MX blue and brown are louder and great for typists.
When put in a wooden case, Cherry MX blue and brown create a deeper sound than general. The sound itself will get thicker which is a plus for typists.
Before moving into the aluminum cases let’s check out the Cherry MX switches. You’re obviously going to need them while making a custom keyboard. So, why don’t you add them to your cart right now?
You can choose any of these and that’ll do great in whatever case you pick!
On the contrary, aluminum cases create a high-pitched sound. This is totally the opposite of wooden keyboard cases.
As for switches, Cherry MX blue will be really loud on aluminum cases. On the contrary, Cherry MX brown switches might be a great middle-ground.
Source: Furious Paul
If you want quieter sound in an aluminum case, you’ll have to choose Cherry MX red. They’ll be considerably quiet. Gateron switches will be even quieter.
Winner: Depends on the preference. For deeper and heavy sound, pick the wooden case. For crispy and high-pitched sound, pick an aluminum case.
Weight & Durability
Weight is a factor when choosing a custom aluminum keyboard case or a wooden case. For longevity, durability is also a fair concern.
For example, many users often wonder why their mechanical keyboard spacebar stop working. It’s directly related to durability which is why you can’t ignore it.
The aluminum case tends to be heavier than the wooden keyboard. But it’s possible to get heavier wooden cases that depend on the wood itself.
The wood keyboard case TKL is one of the lightest keyboard cases. It’s smaller and easier to carry and is a great custom wooden keyboard case.
As for durability, aluminum deserves some applause. Because, unlike wood, it doesn’t show wear and tear easily. For durability, aluminum is the best pick.
On the contrary, wood needs to be maintained. There’s a chance of the wooden case becoming warped. These are some downsides that you need to consider.
You can also make a DIY wood keyboard case by yourself. There’s a lot to know about DIY mechanical keyboards but it’s doable.
Winner: Aluminum case wins this round for being lighter and more durable than the wooden one.
Most of the users that make DIY keyboards use the aluminum case as the base. I’ve talked about this with almost 8-9 people before customizing mine. And here are the best aluminum keyboard cases that are available on the market.
|NPKC’s GH60 Anodizing Aluminum CNC Case||Order Right Now!|
|YMDK’s Anodized Aluminium case||Order Right Now!|
|N/C Anodizing Aluminum CNC Case||Order Right Now!|
Choose whichever you prefer and get started!
Variety & Availability
Variety and availability are two categories that you can’t really ignore. More variety gives you a lot of different options. While less availability makes it harder to gather all the materials.
When it comes to variety, wooden keyboards suffer a lot. There isn’t enough variety as they’re not that common. Because of that, there are only selective types of wood.
These limit your choices and leave you with fewer options.
On the contrary, aluminum cases are available in different colors and coatings. They’re also available everywhere which makes them easier to customize.
If you want to have multiple options to choose from, aluminum keyboard cases are better.
Winner: Aluminum cases win the round!
Final Verdict: Which One Should You Get?
If you haven’t made a decision yet, that’s fine. We’ve given our verdicts to assure you even further.
If you’re looking for crispy sound under budget, aluminum keyboard cases are better. You get a lot of options which is nice to have.
But if you want deeper and heavier clicking sounds, pick wooden cases. They can be a little hard to find, but they’re manageable.
We would pick the aluminum keyboard cases as it’s easier to find and customize.
What aluminum is used for keyboards?
6061 aluminum is mainly used for building keyboards. Especially the body and the cases. It was chosen because of the high anti-corrosion materials. It’s also incredibly strong and well-machinable. Since keyboards have constant contact with human skin, these are important factors to consider.
Does the keyboard case change the clicking sound?
Yes, the keyboard case can effectively change the clicking sound of the keyboard. But there are more factors responsible for the sound. They are mounting styles, keyboard plates, and design elements. Different switch types are also responsible for creating a louder or quieter sound.
What is a 65 keyboard?
A 65 keyboard or a 65% keyboard is quite similar to the 60% keyboard. The only difference is the inclusion of the arrow keys. If you want to save some space, a 65% keyboard is a great choice. They’re also really great for portability and traveling as they’re really small in size.
That was all we could gather and explain on wood vs aluminum keyboard case. We’re hopeful that this comparison has helped you understand the differences better.
To get a better idea, you can go to a store and try them yourself. Listening to the clicking sounds on different YouTube videos also helps a lot.
Finally, have a nice day!