The main benefit of using a tactile switch keypad is that operators can feel when they're pressing down on a button. Embossing can help with this, as well, even if you decide not to utilize tactile switches.
Another way to make it easy for operators to find your switches - tactile or not - is with backlighting. It's also a very stylish way to differentiate your equipment from competitors. Switches with backlighting give a modern look that is very impressive when compared to equipment that lacks it.
We can use three different methods to backlight a custom keypad, depending on our client's unique needs.
Light Emitting Diodes (LED)
LEDs are extremely popular for their affordability, but they don't lack when it comes to serving as effective indicator lights, either. These lights also give off very little heat and are well-known for their long operating lives.
You can choose from a wide range of LED colors, too, including:
We can even offer different intensity levels. This is especially helpful if your equipment will be used outside, as sunlight can otherwise make it difficult to tell if switches on your custom keypad have been pressed or not
Electroluminescent (EL) Lamps
EL lamps rely on substances called phosphors, which convert electrical energy into light. This highly efficient process minimizes the amount of power required and any waste that would come about as a result of heat or infrared emissions. They also emit very uniform levels of backlighting.
Most companies choose EL lamps for their custom keypads when their backlit buttons won't be left on for long periods of time. That's because phosphors often decay with prolonged use. They also require a DC to AC inverter and don't support as many colors as LEDs.
Finally, there is fiber optic lighting to consider. Typically, this option consists of at least two layers of woven fiber-optic cloth that can emit light. At one end, fibers are bundled into a ferrule and connected to one or more sources of LED light.
Fiber optics are another cost-effective method of creating extremely uniform backlighting across an entire membrane keypad design. The very thin fibers involved are also conducive to all kinds of different design types.
Talk to an Expert About Tactile and Non-Tactile Switches
Choosing between a tactile and non-tactile switch for your company’s equipment is an important decision. It will have a huge impact on how intuitive operators find your machines.
Of course, even after you decide on tactile or non-tactile, you still have a lot of other decisions to make in order to ensure your switches work as effectively as possible.
So, don’t take any chances. Our team of designers and engineers has experience in a number of different industries. They’ll take the time to understand exactly what your unique machines need before they make their recommendations based on what else they know about your field.
For a free, no-obligation quote and to learn more about how we can help your company, call us today at352-383-8142 or fill out this simple form.