Which Pen Would You Prefer to Write: A Fountain Pen or a Ballpoint Pen?

Which Pen Would You Prefer to Write: A Fountain Pen or a Ballpoint Pen?

The art of writing down your ideas on a piece of paper dates back hundreds of years. However, in today’s technology-based world, people prefer their computers, and physical writing with a pen has decreased. Still, EDC pens play a major role in the lives of students as well as workers in different industries.

In earlier times, the most commonly used one was the fountain pen working on a liquid-based ink. With time, ballpoint pens came out which were less messy and wrote for a longer period. Both options have their pros and cons and in this blog, we’ll read about which is the better option between a ballpoint and a fountain pen.

Working on Ballpoint & Fountain Pens

Most pen fanatics prefer the fountain pen which features a nib separated with two tines. The nib attaches to a reservoir that has the ink cartridge. Gravity pushes the ink down through the feed to the nib in the right volume so that there is no spill. One has to apply pressure while writing so that the ink disperses properly onto paper.

Ballpoint pens use a fast-drying, oil-based ink. Their trade value was over $3.1 Billion globally in 2022, showing they are a hot-selling product. This type has wide use across many industries right from post offices to schools, offices to banks, etc. Ball pens have a socket that disperses ink at the pen’s head and their reservoir features a plastic cartridge.

Working on Ballpoint & Fountain Pens

Difference Between Fountain & Ballpoint Pens

Several things differentiate these two types of pens. An EDC ballpoint pen uses thick ink that lasts a longer time but leads to scratchy writing. Conversely, fountain pens work with liquid-based ink that allows smooth writing but the ink takes time to dry completely.

As the fountain pen came out first, pen enthusiasts prefer it and it also helps in beautiful handwriting. However, ballpoints are long-lasting and help write on different surface types. A fountain pen’s nib breaks down if you use it on rough surfaces or write in the wrong way. A ballpoint pen is versatile as you can write in any direction and it doesn’t break easily.

Which Pen to Use for Writing - a Fountain or a Ballpoint Pen?

There are several differences between the two options and you must make your choice depending on your needs. Older people will say that a fountain pen is better, but the younger generation will choose ball pens because of their ease and versatility.

Your choice will come down to purpose and why you are using the pen. Further, we compare both types of pens across different categories -

Which Pen to Use for Writing - a Fountain or a Ballpoint Pen

Writing Smoothness

The best EDC fountain pen wins in this category as it uses liquid ink that flows smoothly onto paper. You just need to press the pen’s nib lightly and ink will flow easily allowing smooth, better handwriting. Ball pens use oil-based ink which is thick and requires higher pressure to write. As a result, it is not smooth to write with and fountain pens are better.

Depth & Color

As compared to a ball pen, fountain pens release more ink leading to vivid, and clear lines. The depth and color of the ink come better on paper with a fountain pen. Ball pens come close but cannot recreate the quality offered by a fountain pen.

Ink Cartridge Period

A ballpoint pen wins this category as you can just write around 8 to 12 pages with a single fountain pen cartridge. In a ball pen, the cartridge lasts longer and you can measure its writing capacity in distance. A bolt action pen is also great for this category as its nib goes up ensuring its ink does not dry off quickly.

Line Quality

The quality of the line you can draw also depends a lot on the type of paper you use. If using 80+ gsm, high-quality paper, then the best EDC fountain pen will always deliver better line quality. However, on low-quality paper, its ink will bleed and ruin the script. Ball pens work equally on every type of paper ensuring a consistent line quality.


When it comes to comfort and convenience, an EDC ballpoint pen takes the win. The ink cartridge does not leak, lasts for longer periods, and dries off quickly on paper. You can write on different surfaces with it and it performs consistently. It is the better option if you have to write regularly and across different paper types.


Both the fountain pen as well as a ballpoint pen are quite popular around the world and have their own benefits and drawbacks. Most enthusiasts use fountain pens as they allow for better handwriting and ink has better depth. Those who are into calligraphy or line art prefer this option.

On the other hand, people who have to write a lot in their daily routine prefer a ballpoint one. It is really versatile, can write on many surfaces, and lasts longer than a fountain one. Therefore, your choice of EDC pens between these options will depend on your needs and requirements.

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