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How to Differentiate Between 3 Popular Types of Artificial Stone?

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Engineered stone is becoming increasingly popular in modern kitchen and bathroom designs. They offer a beautiful, durable, and easy-to-clean option while also allowing designers and homeowners greater flexibility with color, grain, and texture. In this rapidly growing market, artificial quartz, artificial marble and artificial solid surface solids are among the most popular choices.

However, to choose the right engineered stone for your needs, you need to understand their differences, pros and cons. This article will provide an in-depth comparison of engineered quartz, engineered marble, and engineered solid surface to help you make an informed choice.

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Table of Contents

I. Comparison between artificial quartz, artificial marble and artificial solid surface

Engineered quartz, engineered marble, and engineered solid surface are three common types of engineered stone that vary in composition, appearance, performance, and applications. Here’s how they compare:

Items
Artificial Quartz
Artificial Marble
Artificial Solid Surface

Ingredient

Mainly composed of natural quartz crystals, resins, pigments and additives. Its composition contains a high proportion of natural quartz, which makes it hard.

It is composed of resin, pigment and stone powder. Stone powder can be natural stone powder or synthetic. The purpose is to imitate the look of natural marble.

Composed of acrylic or polyester resin, natural mineral particles and pigments.

Manufacturing Process

Quartz stone is manufactured by mixing quartz crystals with resin and pigments and then subjecting them to a process of high temperature and pressure.

Artificial marble is manufactured by mixing marble particles with resin and pigments, followed by processes such as molding and curing.

Artificial solid surfaces are created by mixing resins, pigments and mineral particles, which are then injected, cured and processed.

Exterior

Typically exhibits even, consistent color and texture with a highly glossy appearance. Its colors and textures can be extensively customized.

Mimics the appearance of natural marble, with the grain and texture of marble, the texture may be softer and the color more uniform and varied. Color and texture can be controlled through design.

Typically has a uniform appearance without the texture of natural stone, but can be customized through pigment selection and design. The surface is smooth and suitable for modern designs.

Performance

Has high hardness, wear resistance and scratch resistance. Strong anti-fouling ability and easy to clean. Resistant to scratches and chemical attack.

Relatively hard, but not as hard as artificial quartz. Durable, but may be more susceptible to scratches and certain chemicals.

Has good abrasion, scratch and chemical resistance. The surface is usually non-porous and does not easily penetrate moisture.

Field of Use

It is often used in kitchen countertops, bathroom countertops, floors and other places where high wear resistance, aesthetics and hygiene requirements are required.

Suitable for kitchen and bathroom countertops, walls, floors, furniture and many other areas, especially projects that pursue the look of natural marble but have limited budgets.

Suitable for use on a variety of interior surfaces including kitchen countertops, wash basins, walls and more.

 

Customizability

Colors and textures can be customized to meet different design needs.

It has a certain degree of customizability and can be adjusted to meet specific design requirements through color and texture adjustments.

Color and appearance can be customized with relative flexibility.

II. Distinguish between 3 popular artificial stones: quartz, marble and solid surface

If you just look at the pictures, it is difficult to distinguish these 3 types of artificial stones, because each stone has stone patterns, rich colors, and beautiful appearance. Therefore, there is a need to have real materials to identify each type of artificial stone based on some specific properties and granite samples to test:

1. Weight

Solid surface engineered stone is significantly lighter than other stone materials.

2. Durability

Quartz is more durable than the other two types so hitting the edges of stone, solid surfaces and cultured marble with granite or hard materials has been found to chip but not quartz.

3. Rigidity

Use a sharp knife or granite edge to trace on the surface of the stone sample. The surfaces of artificial marble and solid surfaces are easily scratched, while quartz-based artificial stone has a hard surface and is therefore usually unaffected.

4. Water absorption rate

Pour water on the surface of the stone and cultured marble absorbs water much faster than the other two types.

5. Brightness

The surface of artificial marble and solid surface materials is smooth and shiny, with almost no texture, and is much more matte than quartz stone. Just tilt the rock sample surface and backlight it, and it will be very clear.

6. Waterproof ability

When there are substances that easily leave stains such as wine on the surface, even if the marble is wiped off, the stains will be clearly visible, while quartz stone and artificial stone will have almost no traces.

In short, artificial quartz stone has many outstanding characteristics, such as: not easy to chip, scratch-resistant, heat-resistant, easy to clean, easy to maintain, the surface of high-end stone is also antibacterial, healthy and safe.

Artificial marble is easily scratched and chipped, so it requires high construction technology and requires careful maintenance to maintain its original beauty. It is not affected by highly acidic foods.

The surface of solid surface materials is easy to bend and cut to increase the appearance, but its load-bearing capacity, wear resistance, and heat resistance are not very good. If it is used on kitchen countertops, be careful not to leave tools behind. Cooking takes place at high temperatures on the surface of the stone.

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III. Differences in composition, appearance and characteristics of quartz, marble and solid surfaces

Engineered stone is a surface material made from synthetic materials that is commonly used in applications such as kitchen countertops, bathroom countertops, and flooring. In the category of artificial stone, the three common types are quartz stone, artificial marble and solid surface.

1. Artificial quartz stone

● Ingredients

Artificial quartz stone is mainly composed of natural quartz crystals, resin and pigments. Quartz is a very hard mineral, making quartz stone highly wear-resistant and scratch-resistant.

● Appearance

Artificial quartz stone typically has a uniform grain structure that mimics the appearance of natural stone while providing a more uniform color.

● Features

Wear-resistant, scratch-resistant, antibacterial, not easy to discolor. Quartzite is popular for kitchen countertops due to its strength and durability.

2. Engineered marble

● Ingredients

Artificial marble is composed of natural marble particles, resin and other additives. The size and color of marble particles can be adjusted according to the manufacturer’s design.

● Appearance

The appearance of artificial marble imitates natural marble, but is generally more uniform and less prone to the texture irregularities of natural marble.

● Features

Compared with natural marble, artificial marble is stronger and easier to maintain. It can provide the high-end look of marble while avoiding some of the imperfections of natural marble.

3. Artificial solid surface

● Ingredients

Solid surface consists of acrylic or polyester resin, pigments and some fillers. The material is malleable and can be cut and formed into a variety of shapes.

● Appearance

Solid surfaces generally have a uniform, smooth appearance and are consistent in color. Due to its high plasticity, manufacturers can create a variety of designs.

● Features

The solid surface material is non-porous, easy to clean, and has good wear resistance. Due to its plasticity, seamless surfaces can be produced, providing more design flexibility.

In general, these three artificial stone materials are different in appearance, performance and use, and consumers can make a suitable choice according to their needs and budget when choosing.

IV. Conclusion

Choosing the engineered stone that best suits your needs requires considering factors such as wear resistance, aesthetics, customization, and budget. Hopefully the comparison provided in this article will help you make an informed decision and choose the ideal engineered stone to add a special touch of charm and functionality to your home decoration. If you still have any ideas about artificial marble, please feel free to contact us!

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