Author Topic: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?  (Read 3853 times)

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Offline TripleT

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Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 01:19:55 »
Hi guys,

 I wanted to know why those GMK keycaps are so expensive? is it worth it to buy? its gonna cost like $150  for a base pack keycaps consist of 145 caps .

Regards,

Offline Handke

  • Posts: 113
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #1 on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 02:21:01 »
IMO worth

Chinese knockoffs, when offering similar quality, cost about 30% less, so not worth the risk.

I really like abs, it's very smooth, shiny, and not "slippery". I feel that pbt is way worse, because it's dry and shines anyway.

Offline TripleT

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #2 on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 02:33:50 »
 :)alright ,thx pal.

Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #3 on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 12:38:03 »
GMK are manufactured in Germany, so you are paying core EU wages, safety, environmental costs, shipping etc...

They also have the legacy of Cherry production, inheriting their ABS keycap production methods.

I don't think their methods are as automated as some other producers. Given that they had been using 1980s methods, I had read that there was a lot of hand-operation of the machinery. The higher human-factor in the production [including quality control, at least in theory] should increase keycap costs.

I strongly suspect that some of the newer manufacturers in China are looking at ways to mass-produce keycaps using highly-automated, large-scale computerized methods. Newer methods should be able to produce more keycaps per worker, more quickly, and eventually with more consistent quality. Maybe someone is going to figure all this out, and eat everyone's lunch.

[Because, historically, producing good-quality consistent double-shot keycaps has required a lot of human oversight, as it's easy to mess up the plastic formation process, apparently.]

Offline TripleT

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #4 on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 20:57:31 »
THX for the answer ,sir ,appreciate ! :)

Offline parlojama

  • Posts: 5
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #5 on: Mon, 17 January 2022, 21:41:55 »
The point of doubleshot ABS isn't that they won't shine, it's that the legends won't rub off with time like with pad printing. Dyesub pbt can achieve similar durability with slower shine but the tradeoff there is legends have to be darker than base key color (except for reverse dyesub which is rare). Neither of which replicates the color possibilities of double shotting, so that might be a self-explanatory answer on why GMK caps are so expensive, are they worth the money? No.

Offline Handke

  • Posts: 113
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 18 January 2022, 02:02:44 »
are they worth the money? No.

What does this mean. It's quite clear that gmk doesn't have a 50% margin, and that sets that offer a similar quality have a price that isn't much lower than gmk.
If it isn't worth to you, maybe you should stick with abs printed in a slum.

Offline aodioxp

  • Posts: 4
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #7 on: Tue, 18 January 2022, 03:59:14 »
Firstly, I am only comparing ABS double-triple shots here.
short answer is, yes, GMK is still king in the ABS game, worth the money and wait.
Now allow me to elaborate:
There are quite a few new ABS cherry style brands in China now. In my opinion, their prices matches their quality. I rank them by quality from high to low, Domikey, JTK, Aifei.
Domikey starts offering double shot and triple shot ABS cherry keycaps since 2021 and I have to say, they are very good quality keycaps. good material with thick walls. The surface is better than GMK IMO, and they changed the nasty injection port to the bottom of the keycaps which is sadly, still on the back of GMK ones. They are prices just below GMK ones with one major weakness: small legends tend to have various legend stroke differences, consistency is not good. Other than that, great keycaps.
JTK is second in the game here in China, but I do not like the touch of their surface treatment. Great legends, though. And JTK is notorious in delivering their keycaps on time, well, slightly better than GMK.
Aifei is the most sold ABS keycaps here simply because they are cheap knockoffs of the GMK ones. They sell by thousands because they are cheap yet the color of those keycaps matches perfectly to the GMK originals. The typing feel is miles away from GMK but they are also 1/8 the price of the original GMK.

In conclusion, if we put aside the 18-month lead time of current GMK sets, they are still worth the money as the best ABS keycaps you can buy right now. But other manufacturers are catching up fast, both in quality and in price.

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #8 on: Tue, 18 January 2022, 08:50:50 »
I wanted to know why those GMK keycaps are so expensive? is it worth it to buy?
Labor.
Making double shot caps is labor intensive, it's not as easily automated as a lot of other forms of manufacturing.

Are they nicer than other, cheaper caps, yes, but how much value is derived from that?
I use my keyboard/board for typing, not as a display piece so for me, they're not remotely worth it but they are for some people. I's no different than buying a Honda vs Mercedes. The Mercedes is nicer, but both can be nice, fast, safe and get you to work on time.



GMK are manufactured in Germany, so you are paying core EU wages, safety, environmental costs, shipping etc...

They also have the legacy of Cherry production, inheriting their ABS keycap production methods.
While not paying slave wages is good, none of that effects quality or makes it anything special, that's like paying extra for something for sentimental value.

And as for the slave wages, while there are places in China with super cheap labor other places are not nearly as bad as people make them out to be and cost of manufacturing can nearly rival U.S. cost of manufacturing (minus shipping fees). It's not always the big money saver it used to be, many companies still use it simply because China makes it extremely easy and convenient to do so. It's one stop shopping and bean counters love that, contrary to popular belief bean counters often care less about the cost itself and more about how much work it involves for them, this is why Apple can charge $1000 for a monitor stand, because some people would rather pay $1000 of someone else's money per stand than have to add another entry into Quickbooks. Who's gonna know? They're the bean counters, they're the only one who sees a detailed breakdown of how the money was spent.
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Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #9 on: Tue, 18 January 2022, 16:47:11 »
This is what I'm getting at.

China's wages are rising. They are delivering more value per worker, with growing skills and experience throughout the workforce.

China won't be able to compete in the future primarily on having lower wages. They will need to bring more of a technical-efficiency component to their production, which they are doing. Competing on absolute efficiency.

I think we'll be seeing that in keycaps, if we aren't already. As mentioned, Chinese manufacturers can only undercut GMK by a certain amount and still profit, since there is a baseline cost to produce decent keycaps. So they'll want to reduce that baseline cost via greater automation and substitution of human labour. If they succeed, then keycap costs will go down without relying on low Chinese wages.

Offline Leopard223

  • Posts: 219
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #10 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 04:19:05 »
Well I'm not too knowledgeable about it but if I had to guess.
1. It's produced on Germany, a strong economy country, it's not countires like China where the production and labor cost is low.
2. It's a high quality product, naturally it have a higher cost.
3. Afaik it's not GMK's main income, so in my eyes it's more of a "oh we're not really doing that but if the price is right" kind of thing.
4. Supply and demand, they're stacked for years upfornt, the demand is crazy, why would their price get lower any time soon?

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #11 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 08:33:17 »
3. Afaik it's not GMK's main income, so in my eyes it's more of a "oh we're not really doing that but if the price is right" kind of thing.
.


There's not enough work to justify the expense to automate it and the only way to get more work is to lower the price, as soon as you lower the price and get more work the profit margin is too low to pay for a dedicated machine and necessary floor space so the price goes up and work goes down and you're right back where you started.
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Offline hussar_name

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #12 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 11:34:39 »
Well I'm not too knowledgeable about it but if I had to guess.
1. It's produced on Germany, a strong economy country, it's not countires like China where the production and labor cost is low.
2. It's a high quality product, naturally it have a higher cost.
3. Afaik it's not GMK's main income, so in my eyes it's more of a "oh we're not really doing that but if the price is right" kind of thing.
4. Supply and demand, they're stacked for years upfornt, the demand is crazy, why would their price get lower any time soon?

Lol number 3

Gmk, probably part of a bigger group, generates 7 million a year in sales.

How many group buys are there, every year?

Let's say some stupid numbers:

50 GBS " 300 sets * 150 EUR = 2 250 000 EUR

So group buys are a big part of their revenue.

If you suppose that they only make our group buys, and you "normalize" production of the base of only one product, you find out that for each set 50 EUR go to pay wages, so production cost is 50 EUR and distribution, delivery, middle men take the other 50 EUR.
« Last Edit: Wed, 19 January 2022, 11:51:54 by hussar_name »


Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #14 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 16:56:54 »
Revenue, Yes.
A big part of their profit, maybe, maybe not. (hint: probably not).

Run the numbers.
For that many employees, many being skilled labor, in Germany, and that kind of overhead, $7mil a year in sales is not a lot of money. That works out to $161K per employee, per year, but that completely ignores your lease, maintenance, production costs, utilities, machinery (any idea what it costs for a high end CNC mill or injection molding machine?)...  By the time you deduct a bunch of overhead and the CEO's pay, there's not going to be much left.


As for assuming 1/3rd, a perfect example of how flawed that can be is Apple.
In 2020 (according to their own yearly financial review which is public) Macbooks took up 50-55% of the R&D budget at Apple yet only generate 10% of their net income so even if you know how much in sales it generates it tells you nothing about the cost of doing business.
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Offline hussar_name

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #15 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 17:56:31 »
They have 50 workers, probably 50 k each? No CEO since it's a subsidiary.

Offline ideus

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #16 on: Wed, 19 January 2022, 18:00:35 »
Expensive labor and high overhead account for much of what you pay for GMK made products. There are double-shot keycaps manufactured elsewhere at lower costs. As far as personal experience the quality is OK. However, the Cherry legacy (legends, design, molds) makes GMK's a unique product that cannot be sourced anywhere else. Last year some batches show quality issues that do not match their prices, but the community is still eagerly consuming their products anyway, so that adds to the "take-it-or-leave-it" GMK attitude. So GMK is like an expensive hooker, but she is getting older and there are some other young, but not so sophisticated still street ones coming. Hehe.
« Last Edit: Wed, 19 January 2022, 18:02:44 by ideus »

Offline vutid

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #17 on: Mon, 24 January 2022, 23:06:07 »
nice colours, good qc, good quality
GMK Rave

Offline headphone_jack

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #18 on: Thu, 27 January 2022, 13:20:44 »
The name and momentum. People run GMK sets because that's what everyone else says is the best. In my experience though GMK tends to shine extremely quickly, light colored sets are *extremely* prone to yellowing, and their tooling is absolutely showing it's age. Even disregarding the quality of their keycaps as a designer they are extremely restrictive with what designs they allow, as no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run. This combined with the incredibly long wait times, not-amazing color matching, as well as the massive cost when compared to caps of equal quality means that GMK is, in my opinion, one of the worse keycap manufacturers today.

Offline Handke

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #19 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 02:12:56 »
The name and momentum. People run GMK sets because that's what everyone else says is the best. In my experience though GMK tends to shine extremely quickly, light colored sets are *extremely* prone to yellowing, and their tooling is absolutely showing it's age. Even disregarding the quality of their keycaps as a designer they are extremely restrictive with what designs they allow, as no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run. This combined with the incredibly long wait times, not-amazing color matching, as well as the massive cost when compared to caps of equal quality means that GMK is, in my opinion, one of the worse keycap manufacturers today.

The name... Nobody else offers scoops. That is one of the reasons.

Yellowing on new sets? Not noticed at all.

Shining? I like shined keycaps, they feel 10 times better than dry pbt.

"no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run" this is borderline crazy. Are you talking about using logos? That's right on their part, no logo os correct. But copyrighted materials and some symbols and "proprietary" color combinations are used everyday.

Offline headphone_jack

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #20 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 10:25:51 »
Quote
Yellowing on new sets? Not noticed at all.

281745-0" alt="" class="bbc_img" />
GMK Noel after 4 months of use.

Quote
Shining? I like shined keycaps, they feel 10 times better than dry pbt.

P R E F E R E N C E. I'd say the vast majority of people prefer unshined caps.

Quote
"no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run" this is borderline crazy. Are you talking about using logos? That's right on their part, no logo os correct. But copyrighted materials and some symbols and "proprietary" color combinations are used everyday.

This is actually a more recent change. While I never ran into this issue myself, apparently GMK updated its copyright policy last year in response to the whole BLACKPINK debacle. While it isn't actually known exactly what the new terms are, the general gist is you need explicit permission from the copyright holder in order to get an inspired set approved for production. While I haven't been nearly as active in the KCD community as I once was, afaik this is still the precedent going forward. Not sure when we'll start to see the effects of this change (probably once the backlog finally dries up) but expect to see a lot more concept-inspired sets.
« Last Edit: Fri, 28 January 2022, 11:10:38 by headphone_jack »

Offline Handke

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #21 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 11:00:40 »
Quote
Yellowing on new sets? Not noticed at all.
Show Image
(Attachment Link) " alt="" class="bbc_img" />

GMK Noel after 4 months of use.

Quote
Shining? I like shined keycaps, they feel 10 times better than dry pbt.
P R E F E R E N C E. I'd say the vast majority of people prefer unshined caps.

Quote
"no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run" this is borderline crazy. Are you talking about using logos? That's right on their part, no logo os correct. But copyrighted materials and some symbols and "proprietary" color combinations are used everyday.

This is actually a more recent change. While I never ran into this issue myself, apparently GMK updated its copyright policy last year in response to the whole BLACKPINK debacle. While it isn't actually known exactly what the new terms are, the general gist is you need explicit permission from the copyright holder in order to get an inspired set approved for production. While I haven't been nearly as active in the KCD community as I once was, afaik this is still the precedent going forward. Not sure when we'll start to see the effects of this change (probably once the backlog finally dries up) but expect to see a lot more concept-inspired sets.


So I like shine, but I can't say it, because you don't like, yet you say that everybody is entitled to any opinion except mine which is motivated by feeling and not by the look of it. No super brilliant or shiny.

Offline headphone_jack

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #22 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 11:12:45 »
Quote
So I like shine, but I can't say it, because you don't like, yet you say that everybody is entitled to any opinion except mine which is motivated by feeling and not by the look of it. No super brilliant or shiny.

No, I'm saying that you are probably the outlier in thinking shine is a positive thing. I'm talking in general terms, so it made sense to treat it as a negative thing. I never said you couldn't like shine, I just said that the majority would probably feel differently.

Offline murpy

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #23 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 11:21:05 »
The name and momentum. People run GMK sets because that's what everyone else says is the best. In my experience though GMK tends to shine extremely quickly, light colored sets are *extremely* prone to yellowing, and their tooling is absolutely showing it's age. Even disregarding the quality of their keycaps as a designer they are extremely restrictive with what designs they allow, as no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run. This combined with the incredibly long wait times, not-amazing color matching, as well as the massive cost when compared to caps of equal quality means that GMK is, in my opinion, one of the worse keycap manufacturers today.
Interesting take. Just curious what other keycaps sets you own/have tried irl. I poured a **** ton of money into alternatives for gmk and was disappointed by almost all of them except CRP and DMK

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Offline _PixelNinja

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #24 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 11:31:10 »
In my experience though GMK tends to shine extremely quickly.

This is not related to GMK per se as much as it is related to the material, your body chemistry and frequency of use.

[...] They are extremely restrictive with what designs they allow, as no sets that are even inspired by copyright material get allowed to run.

Considering recent events and the community's tendency to give zero f***s about IP, I would not necessarily consider this a bad thing.

Offline headphone_jack

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #25 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 12:08:36 »
Interesting take. Just curious what other keycaps sets you own/have tried irl. I poured a **** ton of money into alternatives for gmk and was disappointed by almost all of them except CRP and DMK

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I don't own any GMK sets firsthand (yet, still waiting on Analog Dreams R2) but I do own some OG NOS Cherry doubleshots (as well as *extremely* well used Cherry doubleshots) and had the chance to try some new sets extensively at a meetup. I thought they had good texture and sounded really nice, but I could again see a lot of premature yellowing among the lighter colored ones and some shine on almost every single set I saw. Currently really enjoying the no-name Aliexpress dyesubs I have, but as I use them on Boba silents I can't really remark on the sound quality. I do enjoy the texture though, very fine grained. I also really like my MT3 set, very deep sound and excellent, grippy texture.

Offline murpy

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #26 on: Fri, 28 January 2022, 12:28:58 »
Interesting take. Just curious what other keycaps sets you own/have tried irl. I poured a **** ton of money into alternatives for gmk and was disappointed by almost all of them except CRP and DMK

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I don't own any GMK sets firsthand (yet, still waiting on Analog Dreams R2) but I do own some OG NOS Cherry doubleshots (as well as *extremely* well used Cherry doubleshots) and had the chance to try some new sets extensively at a meetup. I thought they had good texture and sounded really nice, but I could again see a lot of premature yellowing among the lighter colored ones and some shine on almost every single set I saw. Currently really enjoying the no-name Aliexpress dyesubs I have, but as I use them on Boba silents I can't really remark on the sound quality. I do enjoy the texture though, very fine grained. I also really like my MT3 set, very deep sound and excellent, grippy texture.
Hmmm I see. I've bought GA, MW, NKPBT, EPBT, DMK, CRP, Cheap Ali dyesubs, GMK and I've tried various other sets during meetups. I still think GMK is at the top quality wise, but their QC seems to have been going downhill recently. CRP and DMK are close contenders that I will continue to buy. As for the rest I was pretty let down by their quality when compared to GMK etc. While GMK is far from perfect I think it's still close to the top when compared to other manus

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« Last Edit: Fri, 28 January 2022, 12:32:06 by murpy »

Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #27 on: Tue, 01 February 2022, 14:02:40 »
I find this whole discussion fascinating for a number of reasons.

One thing that sticks out to me, though, is some people say 'GMK isn't worth it, you're just paying more for the name, just buy cheap clones.'

If the clones are getting the job done for you, that's good news. It's just that the low-priced clones often really fail to meet the standards established by GMK [declining as they are]. The clone keycaps may have 1) worse legends 2) less overall consistency in shape 3) twisted stems that really throw off the angle of a keycap 4) worse, more harsh surface texture 5) more errors in packaging, such as duplicates and missing keys 6) fewer options between normal, scooped, and barred keys 7) inability to choose kits, 8) really-bent spacebars and modifiers.

Don't get me wrong - I have an Aifei set, and it is great for the price. But it has some errors that most GMK wouldn't. So I don't think people should say that the clone sets are just as good but for a lower price. For some people's use cases, the clone sets may not in-fact be adequate. A big question is, can the more affordable manufacturers [e.g. JTK] up their quality while still costing less?

Offline LASERman Projects

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #28 on: Wed, 02 February 2022, 06:50:29 »
I just would like to suggest to not get hyped for GMK as your first ever keycap set, get couple average keycaps.
There is growing market of very good in-stock caps (i.e. Cherry at NK) you may find totally satisfying without the wait and price for GMK.

Offline ideus

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #29 on: Wed, 02 February 2022, 13:56:54 »
I just would like to suggest to not get hyped for GMK as your first ever keycap set, get couple average keycaps.
There is growing market of very good in-stock caps (i.e. Cherry at NK) you may find totally satisfying without the wait and price for GMK.


Thank you for the link. However, the NK's prices look similar to GMK's, if not higher.

Offline HungerMechanic

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Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #30 on: Wed, 02 February 2022, 14:48:08 »
Yeah, that's the problem. People say GMK is overpriced, but where are the just-as-good but lower-priced keycaps that you can point to?

I don't know, maybe Domikey is getting there. I agree that NK's Cherry PBT are a viable PBT alternative for the colorways that they offer [when in-stock].

Offline Leopard223

  • Posts: 219
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #31 on: Sat, 05 February 2022, 11:19:33 »
Drop has some serious discounts on some GMK sets if you're looking to try a set.

Offline murpy

  • Posts: 11
  • Location: Canada
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #32 on: Sat, 05 February 2022, 16:40:24 »
Yeah, that's the problem. People say GMK is overpriced, but where are the just-as-good but lower-priced keycaps that you can point to?

I don't know, maybe Domikey is getting there. I agree that NK's Cherry PBT are a viable PBT alternative for the colorways that they offer [when in-stock].
I agree that what NK is doing with their PBT sets is good, instock and in certain gmk color ways. Touching on the quality of the caps for a minute, I have a set and I think they aren't great. Blurry/inconsistent legends and several of my modifiers had some warp to them. At the price they're selling at I would've expected more

Sent from my ONEPLUS A3000 using Tapatalk


Offline LASERman Projects

  • Posts: 89
  • Location: Kent, UK
  • Soldering is my native language.
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #33 on: Sun, 06 February 2022, 17:31:52 »
Thank you for the link. However, the NK's prices look similar to GMK's, if not higher.
GMK Taro > $200
PBT Taro < $100
See kit coverage when comparing prices please.

Offline headphone_jack

  • Posts: 27
  • Location: Philadelphia, PA
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #34 on: Thu, 10 February 2022, 11:31:55 »

"The standards established by GMK"
AliExpress on the left, GMK on the right.
282445-0
282447-1

And these are all recent, both of these were posted this week!

Offline butre

  • Posts: 38
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #35 on: Thu, 10 February 2022, 12:39:36 »
I never cared for gmk.  I don't much like OG cherry doubleshots either.  the molds weren't all that great to begin with and a few decades of abuse hasn't been kind to them.

my go to keycap company is domikey.  no problems with warping or flashing unlike gmk, none of the swirling you get out of signature plastics, and they're not a bunch of low effort clones like the aliexpress brands.  if I want something a little cheaper I'll go tai hao, which are excellent but I'm not the biggest fan of their profile offerings.

Offline HungerMechanic

  • Posts: 1138
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #36 on: Thu, 10 February 2022, 19:21:44 »

"The standards established by GMK"
AliExpress on the left, GMK on the right.

And these are all recent, both of these were posted this week!

When I say "the standards established," I mean in the past-tense. I don't think GMK still lives up to those standards.

Domikey is rapidly making headway as a decent producer of ABS at a potentially lower price-point.

Offline Leopard223

  • Posts: 219
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #37 on: Fri, 11 February 2022, 06:57:32 »
When I say "the standards established," I mean in the past-tense. I don't think GMK still lives up to those standards.

Domikey is rapidly making headway as a decent producer of ABS at a potentially lower price-point.
I've taken a look at the clone sets this week and some of the recent molds are pretty impressive for their price, according to their claims they're 90% PBT (with the legend being ABS), colors are probably not accurate but they're not bad either, legends and modifiers might not be perfect yet but the Alphas are much better, significatly more even and bolder, and the modifiers are not that bad either.

It's a question of moral, and GMK GB sales are definitely not going to be affected by this, but for the avreage consumer who couldn't care less it's a vastly better deal, they're dirt cheap, quality, PBT and their free shipping takes a month, it's a no brainer to get one of those sets this days if I'm being honest.

Offline atkins

  • Posts: 9
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #38 on: Tue, 15 February 2022, 03:08:47 »
GMK Keycaps are hand carved by bearded Bavarians in leather shorts from ABS plastic gathered by Dwarves from the deep mines in the Bavarian Alps.

Offline HungerMechanic

  • Posts: 1138
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #39 on: Tue, 15 February 2022, 13:58:22 »
When I say "the standards established," I mean in the past-tense. I don't think GMK still lives up to those standards.

Domikey is rapidly making headway as a decent producer of ABS at a potentially lower price-point.
I've taken a look at the clone sets this week and some of the recent molds are pretty impressive for their price, according to their claims they're 90% PBT (with the legend being ABS), colors are probably not accurate but they're not bad either, legends and modifiers might not be perfect yet but the Alphas are much better, significatly more even and bolder, and the modifiers are not that bad either.

It's a question of moral, and GMK GB sales are definitely not going to be affected by this, but for the avreage consumer who couldn't care less it's a vastly better deal, they're dirt cheap, quality, PBT and their free shipping takes a month, it's a no brainer to get one of those sets this days if I'm being honest.

When you say 'clone sets,' are you referring to the Chinese semi-PBT sets on AliExpress, or are you talking about larger ABS operations like Domikey?

I have experience with one of the AliExpress clone sets, and it came with a bent spacebar. Also, one of the keycap stems on the alphas is warped somewhat.

I was able to find a substitute spacebar, but the one keycap still sticks out. If this were my only set, these could be show-stopping bugs. I have encountered bent spacebars with GMK, 9009 R3, but Omnimech fixed the problem with replacement spacebars.

It's sad that QC is becoming increasingly comparable between GMK and the cheap clone sets on AliExpress, but in my experience GMK sets still ship with fewer show-stopping errors than the cheap clones.

Domikey is probably another story entirely. It has its own designs, not just clones, and QC is said to be noticeably above the cheap clone sets.

Offline Leopard223

  • Posts: 219
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #40 on: Tue, 15 February 2022, 21:31:30 »
When you say 'clone sets,' are you referring to the Chinese semi-PBT sets on AliExpress, or are you talking about larger ABS operations like Domikey?

I have experience with one of the AliExpress clone sets, and it came with a bent spacebar. Also, one of the keycap stems on the alphas is warped somewhat.

I was able to find a substitute spacebar, but the one keycap still sticks out. If this were my only set, these could be show-stopping bugs. I have encountered bent spacebars with GMK, 9009 R3, but Omnimech fixed the problem with replacement spacebars.

It's sad that QC is becoming increasingly comparable between GMK and the cheap clone sets on AliExpress, but in my experience GMK sets still ship with fewer show-stopping errors than the cheap clones.

Domikey is probably another story entirely. It has its own designs, not just clones, and QC is said to be noticeably above the cheap clone sets.
I'm talking about the semi-PBT ones the "like GMK" ones, didn't know Domikey is a clone maker I thought they're a legit vendor.

I've got a set from one of the 2 large clone makers, it was pretty nice quality but yeah not perfect too, thing is with them is that the quality can be very good but the QC is not.
Spacrbars are straight as an arrow (not that it matters with PBT at those price points), legends are crisp (as far as dye-sub allows) and pretty even, but I did have some issues, the F and J had blurry legends, and the enter keycap didn't latch on the stabilizers.

They've sent me new keycaps when I contacted them, twice since the replacement had the enter keycap missing and the other had their stem weirdly longer making them higher, later I've found out my spacebar is larger than usual, meaning it can scrape against keycaps in some angles and won't fit tight cases (I've used other spacebar so I didn't notice).

They can definitely reach high level of quality, maybe not high end but very good for the vast majority, but they're not really interested in this, clone makers just want easy money.

Offline granola bar enthusiast

  • Posts: 234
  • Location: USA
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #41 on: Wed, 06 April 2022, 16:20:55 »
i would say they are far from worth it but they are the best out there atm

Offline rcaldejr

  • Posts: 9
Re: Why are those GMK keycaps so expensive?
« Reply #42 on: Thu, 07 April 2022, 11:02:19 »
Perhaps a different point of view, but I am new to this hobby. I've only purchased one GMK set so far and that is GMK Grand Prix.

The keycaps themselves are nice, but for what I paid and for how long I waited to get these, there is absolutely nothing that stands out as fantastic for me. I have a botanical knock off from Amazon that I paid a third of the price for that I actually like the quality/sound of better, but I am using my GMK set because I love the way they look.

Although I did not have any issues with warping like some people have, just the cost:wait ratio isn't worth it to me. I had actually forgotten I had ordered them and had to regain my interest back in them after they were delivered.

That being said, unless there's an absolutely stunning color way that I can't find anywhere else, I won't buy GMK again.