Next in the series of Kokuyo Campus notebooks, today we take a look at another High Grade notebook. This particular notebook has Kokuyo’s MIO paper in it. An acronym for Mobile Ideal Original, MIO paper is thin, lightweight and portable. Although it says it is ideal for use with gel ballpoint pens, something tells me it will also work great with fountain pens.
Similar to all other Campus notebooks, this one is pretty basic. It has cardstock covers, a glue binding with silver trim and not much else. I do like the glossy bits on the otherwise matte cover. They give it a bit of “fancy” that the other Campus notebooks don’t have. I’m curious to see how this lightweight paper handles fountain pens, so let’s get to it!
- Pages: 160 (80 sheets)
- Paper Weight: 60gsm
- Binding: Glue
- Page Style: Lined (6mm, 7mm)
- Size: A5, B5
Ink-handling characteristics (A table with the following properties can be found at the bottom of this post)
- Sheen: Low
- Shading: Average
- Bleeding: Low
- Ghosting: Average
- Feathering: Very Low
- Dry Time: Fast
- Page/Date space in top margin
- Top and bottom margins
- Divider marks on top and bottom margin
This notebook has a glued spine, so I don’t expect it to open and lay flat immediately. Fortunately, it does lay flat quite easily with just a bit of pressure. The cover is a flexible card stock, so it needs some support underneath it when writing. The lack of extras doesn’t really affect this notebook, as I’d say it is mainly meant for taking notes.
This paper is nice to write on. It’s kind of strange… the description on Jet Pens (which I assume comes from the manufacturer) says that it is smooth but “has just the right roughness to give the writer good feedback while writing”. When I think of roughness, I think of something like Midori MD that has feedback. This paper has more of a resistance that I’d say is a lot closer to Mnemosyne paper.
As with any thin paper, you may want to think twice about writing on both sides of a sheet. The ghosting is pretty strong with most of the inks that I used. I also experienced a bit of bleed through with heavy ink applications. With Platinum Carbon Black, I even had some bleed through onto the next page. It does show a bit of sheen and some shading, but the main reason to use this paper is the great dry times. There are notebooks out there with similar dry times and better overall performance (such as Clairefontaine Basic and the Profolio Oasis Summit), but this is one of the least expensive on a cost-per-sheet basis.
The Kokuyo Campus MIO notebook is not a fancy or flashy notebook, but it does fill a niche in the world of fountain-pen-friendly notebooks. With its thin paper, faster dry times and low cost per sheet, I’d guess that these notebooks will appeal to many fountain pen users. While there is better paper out there if you want to show off the qualities of your inks, that’s not what you purchase this notebook for. The only drawback that may keep people from flocking to this notebook is the amount of ghosting you’ll see with the thin paper. If ghosting doesn’t bother you and cost is an issue, this notebook should be at the top of your list.
If you’d like a bit more information about how I test papers and notebooks, I wrote an article about my paper rating system.
Kokuyo Campus High Grade (MIO) Notebook
Fountain Pen Love Overall Rating
Pros: Good paper, inexpensive per sheet
Cons: Thin paper is prone to ghosting and bleedthrough with heavy ink applications
Value Rating: 3.57 Stars, Cost per A5 sheet: $0.08
Who this notebook is for: Anyone who wants good paper in a notebook that is very inexpensive (per sheet).
Upgrade to this notebook from: Kokuyo Campus Notebook
Upgrade from this notebook to: Kokuyo Campus CYO-BO