Product Spotlight: Dry Erase Markers

Most offices have some kind of dry-erase board in them.  If you have a board, you need something to use to write on it (duh) and there are seemingly a gazillion brands and styles of dry-erase markers on the market.  And every manufacturer will, of course, tell you that its product is the best one.  

Are the qualities of the marker really that important, you ask?  Why do I feel the need to write an entire blog about them?  Aren't they really all the same?  To answer those questions, I think that which one is the best is really just a matter of personal preference, but there are a couple out there that have specific characteristics that I feel make them stand out over the others and I'd like to share them with you today.

First, there is the Magic Marker Dry-Erase Marker by Bic.  

Bic markets this as a low odor marker that writes smoothly and erases easily.  That's no big deal - every other manufacturer in this category offers the same thing.  Sanford, Avery, Quartet - they all have them.  But their low odor markers still have too much odor for me.  This Bic Magic Marker is so low odor that I actually have to put it up to my nose and sniff to be able to smell it.  With the other guys, like the Expo marker, I can still smell it just by taking the cap off.  The Bic Magic Marker has a see-through label that lets you monitor the ink supply and see when it's running low.  Again, not a unique concept - Quartet has that as well.  Bic has an anti-roll cap - so does Quartet.  The Bic marker doesn't ghost.  Lot of other brands say the same thing.

So why do I like the Bic marker so much?  Because I can get everything I like all in one package.  It comes in 2 versions - tank style and pen style.  I prefer tank style and one of the things I like about the Bic tank style is that it feels good in my hand.  Usually I like the larger size markers and this one is medium size - larger diameter than most pen styles but not as large as other competitors - but still feels good in my hand.  The anti-roll cap is not as big and clunky as the Quartet one, so I like that as well.  When I combine those pluses  with the non-ghost, easy writing,  and ink monitoring - it's a win win for me.  It comes in black, bluered and green as individual markers or you can get a 4-pack, a 12-pack with lots of fun colors, or a kit that includes an eraser and cleaner.

The other marker that I want to show you today is the Pilot V Board Master dry-erase marker.  This one is totally unique to the market because it is refillable.  Yup - refillable.  You purchase the marker and when it runs low, get a refill tank, pop it in and you're good to go.  Pilot says they can be refilled up to 4 times. (I guess the tip must wear out after that point.)  They come in individual colors (black, blue and red) or as a 5-pack that also includes orange and green.  Unfortunately, orange and green are not available separately - I wish they were. With 91% recycled content, the V Board Master is one of the most eco-friendly whiteboard markers on the market.  And to all the other manufacturers that say their ink removes easily - check out this video:

Is that cool or what?  Now remember, this is a dry-erase marker - you don't have to use water like they were doing in the video. 

I like the feel of this one also.  It's the larger size that I normally go for.  I have large hands and the smaller ones are hard to hold.  Like the Bic, it writes smoothly and erases cleanly.  The ink lasts a long time.  I've had one of these on my board (along with the Bic) for a long time and I haven't had to refill it yet.  And the colors are vibrant.  

I give them both a big thumbs up.