I’m going to cut to the chase and give my opinion before I even start on this review of the Platinum Procyon ($52.80): I don’t like it. After reading Jaclyn’s review, I thought for sure I would enjoy the pen but at every turn, I was annoyed. Let’s start with the price point compared to the other pens in the Platinum line-up.
There is Platinum’s entry fountain pen, The Preppy, which, for all intents and purposes, has exactly the same nib. The Preppy is about $5. The Procyon is about $50. Sure, the Procyon is metal barreled and the Preppy is inexpensive clear plastic. So, yes, the Procyon looks more professional. The next pen in the Platinum fountain pen family is the Prefounte. It’s also translucent plastic but in pleasing “grown-up” colors, with the same nib and costs about $10. Next, is the Plaisir which now competes with a metal body and the same Preppy nib. It’s under $20. So, why is the Procyon $50?
The pen shipped in a large plastic clamshell box with the pen strapped under an ultrasuede band on it’s ultrasuede bed. When the tray is lifted out, there is ONE cartridge included. ONE! At $50, I was expecting a converter for the price. That seems fair, right? The Pilot Metropolitan, which is also metal comes with a converter at $20. It’s not the best converter, to be fair, but at least Pilot includes one!
This also make me ask myself, “Why did Platinum bother putting this pen in a big box if not to have room to include a converter?” Since they didn’t, this is clearly WAY over packaged. I get itchy about over-packaged pens.
A plus is the minimal branding, just under the clip. The matte finish on the barrel is also a pleasing texture.
My next point of contention is the color. Which, despite all my efforts photographs better than it looks in person. These photos show a lovely citron yellow color. It’s a lie. The pen is a powdery pale dirty yellow. If dirty butter yellow is your jam, then I apologize for grousing about the color. However, I find the color extremely indecisive.
Maybe it will help to show the Pantone Color of the Year for reference?
Pantone’s chosen yellow is more golden. It is, IMHO, a more appealing color.
The close-up of the nib shows that the nib is the same or at least looks and feels the same as the Preppy nib. I would include a side-by-side photo but I cannot find my Preppy for comparison.
When writing, the Procyon does have a bit of friction, even on the smooth Rhodia paper I used for testing. This is actually a plus for me but may be a negative for others. Even with the decent-sized M nib, it wasn’t scratchy, just toothy.
In terms of weight and size, the Procyon is comparable to other lower-priced pens. Due to the metal construction, it is heavier than some but decently weighted.
When compared to other pens, with similar looks, size or price point, the Procyon is comparable to the TWSBI Eco and Lamy Safari/AL-Star in terms of size. In terms of price however, the Procyon remains higher. The TWSBI ECO is a piston filler (no converter needed) and even with the need to purchase a converter, both the Lamy Safari and AL-Star are cheaper.
Compared to metal barrel pens, there is one more point of contention with the Procyon — it’s a twist cap. Every other metal barrel pen I own under $75 is a snap cap. The comparably priced Caran d’Ache 849 fountain pen, is a snap cap and take non-proprietary cartridges and converters. The durability of a metal pen lends itself to being an EDC but without the snap cap, I did not find myself reaching for this pen throughout my day. I would skim over it for all the snap cap pens shown above instead. Besides the Procyon, only the TWSBI Eco and Sailor ProColor are twist caps. For short, quick writing like an addition to my to-do list or grocery list, I much prefer snap caps. Sure, the twist cap is going to keep my ink wet for a year, according to Platinum but as it stands right now, it will be the pen that sits on my desk for a year without being used so the ink will need to stay wet.
The Procyon does post and is about 155mm (approx 6″) when posted which is similar in length to the Traveler, the Metropolitan and the ProColor. Capped, its 140mm (5.5″) and uncapped its 120mm (about 4.75″).
Despite Jaclyn’s convincing post, I just don’t think the Procyon has a place in my pen collection. I love Platinum pens in general but this pen either needs to have better options, include a converter and more interesting colors or the price needs to drop to be competitive with other pens with a similar build quality. As it is, I feel like I got fleeced buying this, especially since I will have to invest in a converter for $7 to continue using this pen. I suggest buying one of the many less-expensive options or saving your pennies for a Platinum 3776 which is genuinely worth the price.