I mentioned in my recent Top 5 pens update that I am going through of a bit of standard pen renaissance. Gel ink pens are in heavy use, and drawing pens, lead by the Staedtler Pigment Liner 0.1 mm, are seeing a ton of action as well.
Over two years ago I reviewed the 0.3 mm Staedtler Pigment Liner and for some reason it didn't stick with me. I think I was in a "Sakura or bust!" phase for quite some time, and that led to me dismissing other pens without a second look. I kept seeing the Staedtler pop up in other places though (Matt Gemmell's review for one) and felt like I needed to give it another look.
I went with the 0.1 mm tip size this time around and it feels right. More right than before. Why that is is hard to answer. For one, it is nice to hold. Drawing pens aren't necessarily known for having great barrels, but the Staedtler improves one area where the Sakura Pigma Micron gets points taken away: The grip section on the Pigment Liner has a much less severe drop off than the Micron. I dealt with it in the Micron because I liked the performance of the pen, but once I got the Staedtler back in my hand I realized how much better it felt to write with.
When the .01 mm tip hits the page it feels sturdy and sharp, which is key for this type of pen. The edge of the lines on drawing pens have to be clean for me, and the Pigment Liner delivers in that area. The ink is archival, and Staedtler also claims the cap can be left off the pen for 18 hours without drying out the tip. I will not be testing that claim out.
So how do you differentiate between two pens like the Staedtler Pigment Liner and Sakura Pigma Micron that are so similar across the board? I don't think you need to. They are both excellent pens that fill many needs for many people. Sure, there are tiny nits to pick between the two - like the grip section - but they are so similar just grab one and go. Right now, I am grabbing the Staedtler more often.
(JetPens is an advertiser on The Pen Addict and I received this product at no charge.)