Leuchtturm Master Review

  • Where to buy: Leuchtturm [Slim] [Classic]
  • Price: £18.95 (slim); £20.95 (classic)
  • Size: A4+
  • Page count: 121 (slim); 232 (classic) (both inc. 8 perforated sheets at the back)
  • Paper weight: 100gsm
  • Layout: Dot, plain, grid & lined
  • Recommend?: If you need an oversize notebook and somewhere to store a couple of loose sheets then this is great, but in terms of paper quality (I rather adore the layout), there are better options.

I have been using this notebook for my academic studies for almost a month now.

I was itching to get it, and more so to use it. I swear by the A5 notebooks, so for me this seemed like an obvious choice. I thought that I would trial it this year before moving off to university.

Leuchtturm Master 1917 size comparison to A4 Rhodia and A5 Leuchtturm Bullet Journal
Size comparison of the Leuchtturm 1917 Master with my Rhodia A4 notebook (left) and Leuchtturm A5 (right)

Organisation is important at A-level, and essential at university. So a notebook that does that for you?! Sign me up! The use of a contents page drove me to choose this notebook. I can flip through and see what page it was that I studied plant transport or benzene. The contents page is something I love in Leuchtturm notebooks and is very useful. Sure, you can do that with any notebook. But not every notebook is A4+ size. As a result you can get so much more on a single sheet. It also means that the nifty pocket at the back of the notebook is able to hold normal A4 sized pieces of paper.

A4 sized pocket to hold loose sheets of paper at the back of the notebook
A4 sized pocket
Leuchtturm 1917 contents page
Contents page – great for organisation!

There are 129 lines to write things in the contents page and 121 pages (including 8 individual (109-121) that can be perforated). This is brilliant, because the A5 versions have 78 lines but 249 pages……

The paper is ivory. Personally I prefer an ice-white paper… But I know that when getting a Leuchtturm, so I can’t complain. It does well with making the colour pop.

Writing sample to show how the colours appear on the Leuchtturm ivory paper
Glycolysis.. Interesting stuff.. You can (I hope..) see the contrast between the grey (Montblanc Oyster Grey) and teal (Robert Oster Deep Sea) inks and how it pops. Side note – mitochondria are my favourite organelles..

In terms of quality… I don’t think that this paper is as good as the A5. I notice show through on my A5 and I do not mind this because I am using these notebooks for journalling, and I think it adds some personality. But I notice this has bleed through. I don’t really want this in an academic notebook..

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The layout of the page is great. At the top you can add the date and a title and the margin is a nice feature, too. They definitely made this with the intention of a business application in mind. The actual writing space is quite far down, as opposed to directly below the title space on other notebooks. As a lefty overwrite, I REALLY value this aspect.

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Pelikan M800 with Pelikan Edelstein Aquamarine. I don’t think the ivory paper takes away from the colour of the ink.

To finish off – I also love the archival nature of Leuchtturm notebooks. These notebooks are really useful for school notes, journals and the such like. You have the ‘name tag’ on the front, a sticker for the spine (which is something pretty damn awesome and thoughtful, right?) and you also have the contents page at the front. I use this for my Master, my A5 for bullet journalling, but not so much for my standard journal. Though, I have been thinking in hindsight that I should start adding certain moments to the contents page like “the time I took that test” or “the day I got a promotion”. Because I have 4 other journals and I literally have no idea where the content lies… That being said, some people might enjoy the option of flicking through and reading all these other memories. So each to their own, but I suppose it would be nice to have that option. Equally, it wouldn’t be that difficult to make a contents page of yourself. But for the lazy, including myself, amongst us, this is great.

Pros:

  • Lots of space to write
  • Archival!
  • Lots and lots of pages
  • Hardcover
  • Contents!!!!
  • Pages are already numbered
  • Folder at the back for holding a few pages – even A4 size
  • Ribbons so that you can hold your page

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Paper quality isn’t fantastic compared to A5 sizes
  • While it’s great you have the folder at the back, it can only hold a few loose sheets

Thanks for reading!!

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Written review – Pilot Capless <M> and Caran d’Ache Hypnotic Turquoise ink.