Blog Post Brass And Copper Difference

The large spectrum of commercial metals has rocked the manufacturing sector. This dispute arose because customers can't identify metals apart. When differences are small, this happens.

Copper and brass can be confused. Copper and brass seem similar when side-by-side. There's a slight colour difference, but it takes experience to tell them apart. Understanding them may be crucial for a successful project to avoid using the wrong option.



Humans have used copper since it was originally discovered and fashioned. This is because copper is natural. This pure metal was used to make tools, swords, and ornaments. Unlike manufactured brass, it's pure and can be worked instantly. Copper alloys can be used by themselves or mixed with other alloys and otherwise pure metals.

Pure copper is soft, flexible, and has good thermal and electrical conductivity. It's been used as a structural and alloying agent for millennia.


Brass is a copper-zinc alloy. This metal is often mistaken for copper. Brass has tin, iron, aluminium, lead, silicon, and manganese among other metals. Additional metals add unique features. Brass' zinc content increases its strength and ductility over copper. Brass is more pliable and stronger with additional zinc. Depending on the amount of zinc, it might be red to yellow.

Brass is decorative because it resembles gold. In addition, its sturdiness and workability make brass a popular material for manufacturing musical instruments.


Copper vs Brass

Element Composition

Elements distinguish the two metals. Copper, a pure base metal, has a high electrical conductivity. Similar to silver and gold in electron structure.
Brass is a copper-zinc alloy.

Corrosion Resistance

Corrosion can distinguish both metals. These two non-iron metals don't rust. Copper oxidises over time, forming a green patina. This prevents copper surface corrosion.

Electrical conductivity

Different metals' electrical conductivity is often misunderstood. In electrical applications, substituting brass for copper shows this mistake.
Copper is the benchmark for electrical conductivity. Copper measurements are relative. Copper is 100% conductive and has no electrical resistance. Brass, a copper alloy, is 28% as conductive as copper.

Thermal Conductivity

A material's thermal conductivity measures its heat-conducting ability. Thermal conductivity varies by metal and is significant for high-temperature applications. Pure metals' thermal conductivity remains constant with temperature, whereas alloys' rises.

Melting point

Liquid metals are more formable. When a project requires formability, this will help choose between copper and brass. Copper melts at 1084°C (1220°F) whereas brass melts between 900°C and 940°C. Variable elemental makeup affects Brass' melting point.


Hardness is a material's resistance to localised deformation caused by indentation of a flat metal surface under a preset stress. Brass is stronger than copper.   Zinc makes brass stronger and more ductile.


Water's specific gravity (1.0) can be used to compare metal weights. Both metals' specific gravity is evaluated as a proportion of density. Copper is indeed the heaviest.


Durability is a material's capacity to perform without extensive repair or maintenance over its half-life. Both metals are durable in their particular applications. Copper flexes more than brass.


Brass is more weldable than copper. Except for lead-based alloys, all brass alloys can be welded. Brass is easier to weld with less zinc.   Cast brass is hardly weldable.


Brass and copper prices vary by grade. Copper is usually more expensive than aluminium. Brass is less pure than copper. This lowered its price.

Which is better copper or brass?

Both copper and brass have their unique properties and applications, and the choice between them depends on the specific needs of the application. Copper is best for electrical and plumbing applications, while brass is best for decorative and wear-resistant applications.

Is brass more expensive than copper?

The cost of brass and copper can vary depending on a variety of factors, including market conditions, supply and demand, and the specific alloys and grades of each metal. Generally speaking, brass is more expensive than pure copper because it is an alloy made of copper and zinc, which is a more expensive metal than copper. The price of brass can also vary depending on the specific type of brass, as there are many different types of brass with varying proportions of copper and zinc, as well as other additives. Overall, the cost of brass and copper can fluctuate, so it is best to consult current market prices and specific supplier information when comparing the costs of these metals.

Legate Metals is a well-known supplier of brass and copper. We guarantee quality and next-day delivery. We provide a number of services, including custom design, in-house coating, and a call-off facility. Our experts can advise you on the best material to use for your product. Please contact us if you have any questions.