In the history of pens, hybrid ballpoints are a relative newcomer, ostensibly combining the fast-drying properties of ballpoint pens with the smooth writing experience of rollerball or gel ink pens. But how well do these hybrid ink pens actually perform? It turns out that Pilot’s hybrid, the Acroball, does a pretty good job.
Like most ballpoint pens, the Acroball’s ink dries immediately on standard papers and writes very noticeably smoother; similar to the uni-ball Jetstream, another hybrid ballpoint pen I’ve reviewed. But compared to the Jetstream, the Acroball’s ink is slightly darker and doesn’t seem to skip nearly as often. The Acroball is also comfortable to hold, and its white and grey color scheme stands out nicely, even though its all-plastic design looks a bit cheap.
Though it can’t quite reach the smoothness and color-richness of gels and rollerballs, the Pilot Acroball is definitely one of the best options for people looking for a no-smear pen. You really might as well just throw out all your ballpoints and get one of these.
- Well Appointed Desk compared the Acroball, Jetstream, and two other hybrids. She ranked Acroball the worst of the four because it smeared on postcard paper. In my comparison, both the Acroball and Jetstream both did poorly – click here for the picture.
- Cult Pens has a good guide on hybrid ink pens.
- Pen Paper Ink Letter has a review with tons good of pictures.