Season 3 Finale – Top Pens

The sun is out. The garden needs to be watered and weeded. The dog needs to go swimming at the dog park. And I hate to miss the short Seattle summers sitting alone in a padded room and talking to a camera…even about fountain pens. That can, sadly, mean only one thing: It’s time to wrap up Season 3 of The Pen Habit.

It has become something of a tradition to wrap up the end of my season by picking my top pens. This year, I’ve expanded the lists a bit. Instead of picking my top 5 pens, I’ve expanded it to my top 10…because who can limit themselves to only five?  I have also created separate lists for Daily Writers (pens that aren’t too expensive, and are great for day-t0-day carry) and “budget” pens (pens under $100). My only rules were that I could only include pens which I had reviewed and that a pen could only appear on one list.  Aside from that, I cheated all over the place!

I cover this in the video above, but allow me to include it here as well.  I would like to offer many thanks to the wonderful folks who make Season 3 possible. First, to all of my sponsors, a HUGE thank you. Fontoplumo, La Couronne du Comte, Pen Chalet, and Penworld have all been terribly supportive by advertising on the blog. And many thanks also to Goldspot Pens, Goulet Pens, Pen Chalet, Peyton Street Pens, Hieronymus, Franklin-Christoph, Kenro Industries, and Vanness Pens for providing pens for review.

And, of course, I wouldn’t be able to invest as much time and energy into The Pen Habit were it not for the tremendous support that I receive from many, many individual contributors, whether you donate via PayPal or Patreon, or just let me borrow your pens for reviews.

That should about do it for Season 3! I will be around on and off over my hiatus, doing a few non-review videos and some written  blog posts. Make sure to follow me via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram for updates on when I return, and subscribe to the YouTube channel to be notified when new videos start back up again.  Thanks again, and have a great summer!  (Or winter, if you’re in the southern hemisphere!)


The links below will take you to the review of the pen. The timecode is to help you navigate the video above if you want to jump ahead.

Top 5 Daily Writers (2:35)

5. Delta Fusion 82: (3:05)
4: Edison Collier: / Edison Menlo: (4:32)
3. Platinum 3776 Century: (6:02)
2. Diplomat Aero: (7:38)
1. Franklin-Christoph Model 02 Intrinsic: (8:44)

Top 5 Pens under $100 (10:45)

HM: Asa Pens Daily 3-in-1:
HM: PSP Ranga Zayante:
5. Pilot Prera: (12:31)
4. Jinhao x450: (13:07)
3. Karas Customs Ink: (14:15)
2. TWSBI Eco: (15:01)
1. Faber-Castell Loom: (16:03)

Matt’s Top 10 Pens

10. Nakaya Decapod: (17:50)
9. Wahl-Eversharp Decoband: (25:34)
8. Visconti Homo Sapiens Bronze Age: (20:21)
7. Delta Dolcevita Federico Stantuffo: (21:56)
6. Newton Pens Sumpter: (22:59)
5. Waterman’s Ideal No. 7: (24:00)
4. Visconti Divina Elegance: (26:48)
3. OMAS Ogiva Celluloide: (28:06)
2. Aurora Optima Auroloide: (29:55)
1. Classic Pens LB5: (31:09)

Wrap-up (33:59)

  • Conner

    Thank you so much for all you do for the pen community Matt! I enjoy your reviews so much. See you in September!

  • Federico Figueroa

    Thank you, may I suggest to try to squeeze some of the big boys from Faber Castell next season? The Intuition seems like a great contender for this list 😉

    Again, thanks a lot, I enjoy your work very much.

  • Pascal Leers

    Glad to see that “my” Omas Ogiva Celluloide” is still in the top 5. (I love that pen ! Even if I had some problems with it, in the beginning. I won my heart all over again. Omas replaced my sprung nib just in time. As the company went down just a couple of month’s later.)As for the classic pens. La couronne du Comté stil has red, green and white for sale.

  • Marek K.

    I am right now awaiting delivery of Model 02 in Italian Ice from Franklin-Christoph, with Medium Stub nib. This will be most probably my personal number 1.
    With F-C Terra Firma ink… 🙂

  • Justin DeGuzman Maramba

    I’m surprised that the Bexley Equipoise didn’t make it into the list ,with how much you loved the nib.
    Nevertheless, it’ll be exciting to see you again in September, especially after you may have picked up more things after the Pen Shows. Thank you for your work.

  • Michael Mehall

    Fun! Thanks for the review. I always enjoy them.
    So, the Stipula fell off the list huh. Interesting. I have had my eye on a rainbow red (without actually trying).

  • Denise

    I will eagerly await your return, as I always enjoy your reviews of anything you review!

  • skindoc

    What great taste you have! I own seven of your top 10 pens. Hope you have a great summer.

  • inotrym

    Have a great summer, Matt. Enjoy some time off and we´ll see you again in September. Maybe give us a teaser for next season sometime? 🙂

  • Jo-Anne Teal

    I’m slightly giddy that I actually have one of the pens you’ve named! My TWSBI Eco brings me happiness each time I use it, and my coworkers love to see the ink swirling around inside it. I watched your Eco review quite a few times before deciding to purchase it. Thank you, Matt, for such thoughtful, high-quality videos. Look forward to next season. In the meantime, have a fantastic summer!

  • Lez Cartwright

    Have a good time during the summer, get some sunshine.
    Thank you for your dedication and interest in the hobby / obsession.
    Best wishes as always

  • Clifford Hughes

    Matt, thank you for season three. Entertaining and informative as always. The thoroughness and detail of your reviews is mind-blowing. Everything is so well judged – neither too long or short, too hot or cold – like baby bear’s porridge they are just right. In particular you have taken ink reviewing to a new level that cannot be matched by other reviewers – not even the great SBRE Brown himself.
    If non fountain-pen users (or pen virgins, as I call them) were introduced to our hobby by only your videos, I’m sure the sales of fountain pens would take off into the stratosphere.
    I look forward to season four (and I’m sure I speak for all your viewers here) we miss you because we’ve come to think of you as a friend.

  • Ted

    Pen Habit show hole…NOOOOOooooooo…

  • Chris

    Thanks, Matt, for a very comprehensive set of lists. I was particularly pleased to see the Platinum 3776 Century make your Daily Writers list. I have the same two as you and I use them regularly. Great nibs. Just one little thing: it’s pronounced Chartruh, not Chartrey, no acute accent on Chartres. Sorry, but I’m a French speaker. See you in September, have a healthy and peaceful summer.

  • Joe

    Nice shirt, man. I dig it.. I hope someday I can afford one of those in your top ten.

  • Tom Tonkin

    Hi Matt,

    Thank you for all that you do. I am a pen newbie and enjoy your clear and honest reviews. It has helped me purchase my Edison Collier and I look forward to your next seasons. Have a great summer.

  • Alex Asenov

    Brilliant video! Loved it.

  • Alex Asenov

    But what are Luke The Dog’s top 10 favorite pens?

  • ec

    I’ve watched many of your reviews on YT; thanks for all you do! This is my first visit to the website and I’ll be back. Enjoy your summer; prayers that you find the job meant for you.
    I actually have three of the pens on your lists, and I like them a lot: TWSBi Eco, Platinum Century 3776, and I think (?) one of the Jinhao 450’s. Now I’m going to take a look at the Loom.
    Many thanks, and keep up the good work.