Paper Review: Endless Recorder Regalia vs. Cosmo Air Light

This post is an extension of Ana’s post last week. She started the overview – I will be continuing with a comparison of Regalia 80 gsm paper to Cosmo Air Light 83 gsm paper. If you haven’t read her review of the Endless Recorder notebook, you can find it here:

Paper Review: Endless Recorder (Regalia Paper)

Ana and I have been discussing the future of fountain pen paper lately – the changes in Tomoe River paper and the discontinuation of Cosmo Air Light paper have created upheaval in the fountain pen world over the past three years. Where are ink loving people to turn for comfort in these tumultuous times?

The best way to prepare for the future of fountain-pen friendly paper is to hoard several lifetimes-worth of paper in a giant warehouse… actually, no. Storing non-archival paper for too long isn’t the best idea, so we will need to turn to diversification instead.

This is what started our journey into new (for us) papers, one being the Endless Recorder notebook that uses Regalia paper. This paper is created in-house by Endless and is advertised as “Ink-Loving Regalia Paper” in the “World’s most ink-friendly notebook”. We shall see if these claims are true.

The A5 notebook comes with a hard, leatherette cover (I’ve actually found it is a touch flexible as well) and plenty of features that make it more pleasant and convenient to use as shown on the packaging.

Endless also claims that that is is distinguished by its “uncompromising attention to detail”.

Let’s start with the paper. I’ve made a test page to look closely at various ink characteristics. Here is the front of the page of the Regalia paper:

And the back of the same page:

I have copied some of these test inks on Cosmo Air Light paper:

And the back of the same page on Cosmo Air Light paper:

Shading: Regalia paper is the winner (See the first ink on each paper), showing a greater amount of shading.

Sparkle: This category is a tough call and it depends on what you want from sparkle inks. Cosmo Air Light shows a blinding amount of sparkle but the sparkle often spreads off of the ink and over to the rest of the page. Regalia shows sparkle very well, more middle of the road than Cosmo Air light, but the sparkle remains with the ink and doesn’t spread.

Sheen: Sheen is a close call, but the winner is Regalia paper.

Multi-Chromatic Show: Cosmo Air Light paper wins easily in the multi-chromatic (or dual-shading, chameleon, magic) ink category. Regalia doesn’t show much depth of color for inks with this characteristic.

Haloing: This is an incredibly difficult characteristic to show in a photograph. The best way I’ve found is to show the drop of water in the scribble with the test below. This is a tendency of ink to spread to the outside edges before the ink dries, a combination of the viscosity or perhaps the surface tension of the ink and the absorbency of the paper. It can be described as the crispness of the letter edges. Regalia wins this category by a narrow margin.

Ghosting: Cosmo Air Light paper is the winner, showing less ghosting on the back side of the page.

Bleeding: This is about the same on both paper types. The only bleeding (but not bleed-through) I saw was when I made multiple passes over the same area.

Feathering: None. Both papers win here with incredibly crisp letter edges.

There are several ways to buy Cosmo Air Light paper. The two companies that I purchase from are Galen Leather ($25 + shipping from Turkey or $32 from a US-based retailer for 288 pages of 75 gsm) or Musubi (~$25 US dollars + shipping from Singapore for 208 pages of 83 gsm). Compare the price to that of a Regalia notebook ($23.50 for 187 numbered pages + 16 perforated pages).

My take-away from this post is that I see great results from both types of paper – I’m disappointed only in the multi-chromatic shading aspect of Regalia. Regalia is in my current pile of testing notebooks, and I will continue to seek and test even more paper in the future.

Which type of paper from this review would you prefer?

DISCLAIMER: The items in this review were purchased by me. Please see the About page for more details. You can help support this blog by joining our Patreon.

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3 comments / Add your comment below

  1. How do you find the hand oil effect on Regalia? For me so far, way better than with Cosmo. On Cosmo, it was debilitating for me. Pens would not write at all in spots on the page. On Regalia, I just get some minor partial skipping. Same hands, same pens, same inks. This alone has been a huge plus for me with Regalia. Otherwise, I 100% agree about the shading too — Edelstein Moonstone’s shading looks ridiculously amazing/dramatic on Regalia. I do think there might be some binding issues with the Recorder notebooks? Not sure how to explain it; has felt like some pages are glued together, have to pull them apart at the base to get the book to lay flat..

  2. I ran across a post from someone who bought small notebooks with two Japanese papers I’d never heard of, and since Jacob fudefan says there are a lot of good papers I jumped at the chance to try them. The shop is Paper Penguin.

    1. Yes! Paper Penguin is stocking a wide array of notebooks that many may have only had the opportunity to sample in the Yamamoto Paper Sampler. Great reminder!

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