I cannot honestly say that I was surprised to see the Amazon Basics Fountain Pen pop up on my shopping suggestions. Amazon has been producing its own brand of goods for some time now; including everything from simple housewares to full-size memory foam mattresses. So naturally, because of who I am as a person, I picked up a fine-nibbed fountain pen just to check out. Let’s take a look.
The Amazon Basics fountain pen is a metal-bodied snap-cap pen with a smooth metal grip section and a polished glossy finish throughout. You can choose between a medium or fine steel nib, and the pen ships with three short international-size cartridges of black “Amazon Basics” ink. The pen has a retail price of $9.99, making it easily accessible for users who want to take their first steps into the world of fountain pens.
Right out of the box, the pen writes well. The fine nib performs well with standard and coated paper stock, and I experienced no scratching, skipping, or hard starts during regular use. The Amazon-branded ink cartridges perform about as well as any ‘default’ black ink, leaving dark opaque lines.
In terms of style, it’s a basic black pen. There is a simple Amazon logo on the clip, and no engraving or markings on the nib apart from the size indicator. If simple aesthetics are your thing, this is a good pen for you.
On paper, the Amazon Basics Fountain Pen checks all the boxes of a ‘good’ product; it writes well, it’s easy to use, and the price is very reasonable for what you’re getting.
So do I recommend buying this pen? I don’t think so.
The pen itself is fairly unremarkable, but my opinion goes beyond that. You see I, like many of you reading this, am a huge pen nerd. When I’m shopping for a pen, it’s not just about the mark it makes on paper, or what features I’m getting for the price. It’s also about who made it, how long the company has been around, or what inspired the design and materials. While Amazon has produced (or more likely rebranded) a decent but generic-looking pen, it really lacks soul. This is a pen that was created to be sold. It is the result of trend analysis, profit calculation, and volume negotiation. While I am absolutely ecstatic that fountain pens are becoming main-stream enough form Amazon to throw money at the category, the result is ultimately a hollow product.
Will this pen write and perform well? Yes.
Is it worth the $9.99 price tag? Sure.
Is this a pen that I’ll keep on my desk? Does writing with this pen bring me joy? When the ink dries, will I care to refill it?
In this pen hoarder’s opinion, your money would be better spent elsewhere.
Disclaimer: This product was purchase at full retail price by The Poor Penman. All opinions stated are my own.