Choose the Right Substrate to Start Your Keypad/Panel Project

Label:Keypad/Panel, Online Pricing, PET, Acrylic

Jun 22, 202122802

Choose the Right Substrate to Start Your Keypad/Panel Project

When you need to make a front panel, there is a question that is unavoidable:what kind of substrate is suitable and right for my project? Some people say that the PC is the best, and some people say that the acrylic is more high-end. Some people even think that the thicker the substrate, the better. 

So, what is a suitable substrate for you?

The Difference in Substrates

In JRPanel, we provide 3 options: PC, PET and Acrylic. Next, we will introduce the difference between the three substrates in detail.

1. PC (Polycarbonate)


High impact resistance. Heat-resistant, cold-resistant and aging resistant. Resistant to weak acids and weak bases. The light transmittance is 78%, and the temperature resistance range during use is -30~90℃.

PC (Polycarbonate)

Scope of Application:

This substrate has the widest application range and can meet the requirements of most membrane switch panels.

2. PET (Polyester)


Good strength and toughness, excellent tensile strength. High temperature resistance, anti-aging. The light transmittance is 89%, and the temperature resistance range is -10~120℃.

PET (Polyester)

Scope of Application:

It is suitable for products with higher environmental requirements or digital tubes.

3. PMMA (Acrylic)


The light transmittance is the best among the three materials. It is brittle, soluble in organic solvents, and not flame retardant. Easy to be scratched. The light transmittance is 92%, and the temperature range is 10~60℃.

Scope of Application:

It is suitable for making transparent and flat objects. Can be used to make 3mm thick sheets.


Regardless of thickness and other conditions, the order of the three material properties from strong to weak is:

◇ Strength: PET>Acrylic>PC

◇ Softness: PC>PET>Acrylic

◇ Light transmittance: Acrylic>PET>PC

◇ Wear resistance: PET (matt)>PC (matt)

How to determine the thickness of the substrate?

On the online pricing page of JRPanel's official website, you will see:

pricing page

When you choose the thickness of the substrate, you need to pay attention to the "total thickness" of the material. You need to consider the groove for panel installation in advance, so that the total thickness of the panel is approximately equal to the height of the groove, so as to ensure the flatness of the final device surface.

(Note: the total thickness does not include the height of the embossed buttons)

If your buttons need to be embossed, it is recommended to choose a substrate with a thickness of less than 0.25mm. JRPanel does not currently support embossing operation on panels thicker than 0.25mm.


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