- 7″ x 10″ (Semi-B5)
- Lined Ruling (32/page)
- 6.5mm ruled, bright white paper with a spot for the date
- 34 sheets (68 Pages)
- Stitched binding with taped outer spine
- Many colors and sizes available
- $9.45 USD (!!!) for a 3-pack from JetPens
- Diamine Eau de Nil ink
- J. Herbin Liquid Ink Rollerball
- Various other ink / nib tests
Notes: Notebook reviews…I’m really not a huge fan of doing these, so this one is going to be quick. I was drawn in by the low price, high praise, and good design. That being said, I really like this notebook. A lot.
Appearance and Construction:
This notebook looks pretty awesome. The taped spine, the textured cover, and the silver frame/filigree on the cover all look great. I really love the poor English on the cover (Apica is a Japanese brand) that says: “Most Advanced Quality Gives Best Writing Features”. The notebook is bound with stitching, and I have no doubt it’ll hold up for the life of the notebook and then some.
Performance and Feel:
Does it work? Yes, you can write in it. Does it work with fountain pens? Very, very well. The paper is silky smooth, and bright white. The brightness of the paper shows off the true color of the ink that you’re using, and does so nicely. It’s a pleasure to write in, and the size and thickness are right for throwing in a bag or carrying around. B5 is probably my favorite paper size. It’s big enough to have all the room I could need, but it’s compact enough to not take up an entire desk. Ghosting and bleed through are very minimal (if at all) and writing on both sides of the page didn’t pose a problem for me.
Color & Ruling:
6.5mm rule x 32 lines per page is perfect for my small handwriting. The pages are nice and bright, which like I mentioned before, is great for showing off the true color of an ink. This notebook is shaping up to be one of my favorites.
Overall Thoughts and Recommendation:
The price to quality ratio here is exceptionally great. For a three pack of these notebooks, which each have 34 sheets of paper, it’s going to cost you under $10. This is an incredible value for three notebooks of this size and quality. The paper is FP friendly, and the notebooks are designed well too. The Apica CD line is available in many colors and sizes too. I highly recommend you check these out, it’s hard to be disappointed.
9 thoughts on “Apica CD Notebook CD15 (Semi-B5) – Notebook Review”
“The notebook is bound with stitching, and I have no doubt it’ll hold up for the life of the notebook and then some.”
I recently had reason to pull a couple of leaves out of a smaller CD11… or to try to. Deliberate damage takes a LOT of focused effort, so I think you’re bang on in your assessment.
I’ll make sure I have an x-acto blade around if I try to remove any pages, haha.
I actually prefer perforated pages in small/pocket notebooks. Usually I need to write something down to give to someone else. The Rhodia Unlimited line comes in pretty handy for that reason.
I’ve only tried the Premium Apica notebooks so far (fantastic), so it sounds like these are a great value. Thanks for the review!
I need to check those out!
I wonder what makes them “premium” over what the CD line has to offer. I’ll add them to my review list.
Thanks for reading!
Ed et al: the Premium notebooks are doubly awesome. Now, to start, let me say I love regular Apica notebooks. I use the A5 size with 7 mm line spacing, which is perfect for my style of writing. I just the other day started writing in my first ever Apica C.D. Premium Notebook. In the front it says, “Choose the paper like you would a good pen,” which actually makes sense in many ways.
And OMG, you gotta try the Premium! It is the smoothest, creamiest paper ever. I can’t believe 96 sheets are only $13.75. I also love Tomoe River, but this gives Tomoe River a run for its money. I can buy this paper for less than T.R. and get almost the same experience from it. Plus, if you like to write on both sides, there is no problem with that on the Apica Premium, unlike Tomoe River.
It is much thicker paper, more like the regular Apica notebook. And it is very, very smooth. Some might even say too smooth for some pens. If you have a super smooth pen that just kind of “floats” across most papers, it might not work well for you on this paper. But most of my pens write beautifully on the Premium paper. It is a creamy, off-white color, so maybe not good for testing or logging inks, but it gives a beautifully different look to ink colors. I like the variety of comparing ink colors on white vs. off-white papers. It does take a while for inks to dry, but in that process, it creates tons of shading when using inks so inclined. I haven’t tried a sheening ink on it yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see sheen as well from Robert Oster’s Fire & Ice or similar inks.
All in all, I really like the Apica Premium Notebooks. They are not very toothy; like I said, their paper is very, very smooth. But it’s a fun change from toothier notebooks, and very sweet to write on. Try one with some shading/sheening inks to see what you get. Ed, I’d love to see a review from you, to see if you concur, and to see what other results you might report.
I just got a few CD11s from the Goulets and I’m very happy with them. The paper, as you noted, is very fountain-pen friendly. Even with a wet pen, I can write on both sides of the pages with no bleed-through and minimal show-through. I’m also a fan of the look of these notebooks.
I was so surprised at how great they are for being at such a reasonable price. I’ll definitely be picking up more of these in the future. Thanks for reading!