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Rocketbook Everlast – Reusable Notebook {review}

I was provided with the following product(s) to facilitate my review. As always, all opinions expressed here are entirely my own.

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over

I heard about the Rocketbook Everlast notebook just before Thanksgiving, and was immediately intrigued.  This is a notebook that can be reused over and over, that pairs with an app which captures the content and sends it to any of several cloud-based options.  It takes a little bit of getting used to, but it pretty much met my expectations, and is a fabulous option for a prefers-pen-and-paper type in today’s digital world.

What IS the Rocketbook Everlast?

The short version is that it’s  a wet-erase notebook.  The spiral-bound notebook is made of special plastic pages (plastic might not be the technically-accurate term, but in the vernacular, they’re plastic) that will accept the ink of any Pilot FriXion pen.  These are pretty great pens.  They come in several different styles and point sizes, and lots of colors, and they’re good enough quality that I already had a stash of them at home.

Pilot FriXion Point Erasable Gel Pens Extra Fine Point (.5) 3-pk Black/Blue/Red InksPilot FriXion Point Erasable Gel Pens Extra Fine Point (.5) 3-pk Black/Blue/Red InksPilot FriXion Clicker Retractable Erasable Gel Pens Fine Point (.7) Assorted Color Inks 7-pkPilot FriXion Clicker Retractable Erasable Gel Pens Fine Point (.7) Assorted Color Inks 7-pkPILOT FriXion Color Sticks Erasable Gel Pens 10-pack of Assorted Colors Black, Gray, Hunter Green, Blue, Purple, Magenta, Salmon Pink, Red, Orange, NavyPILOT FriXion Color Sticks Erasable Gel Pens 10-pack of Assorted Colors Black, Gray, Hunter Green, Blue, Purple, Magenta, Salmon Pink, Red, Orange, Navy

They say the pages feel like paper.  I personally think that’s an overstatement (although it’s the only thing I feel like they overstate).  They feel like you’re writing on vinyl or something (I think they’re actually nylon?) and it takes a little getting used to.  But it’s pretty similar to writing on regular paper.  The ink may take a moment to dry, but then it bonds to the paper and there’s no smudging.  It will stay put until you erase it.  (I’m right-handed, so I’m not sure if the initial wetness causes a problem for lefties.  If I think about it, I’ll have my little guy try writing in it to see how it works for him.)

The Design

The pages have a subtle dot grid design, which is nice because it makes it easy to write in a straight line, draw, create grids, etc.  I suspect this grid might help the app keep your page captures straight, but I’m not certain.  The bottom of the page has a series of icons, which are used by the app to “know” where you want a page capture to be sent.

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (icons)

The inside of the cover has a place to create a “key” for yourself of what each icon stands for.

Unpackaging the Rocketbook Everlast

The Rocketbook Everlast comes in several different sizes.  This is the “Executive” size.  I assume the packaging for the others is similar.  It comes in a foil sort of package, with a separate section at the right containing a pen.  This has an easy-tear notch, so it’s pretty easy to open.

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (pen packaging)

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (pen packaging)

I found this handy, but a little odd, to be honest, because the main packaging, as far as I can tell, does not have a tear notch; you have to open it with scissors.  (I guess maybe they were afraid people would try to remove the pen first and if they did that with scissors they might cut into the notebook.)  Here’s what comes in the package:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over

It’s the notebook itself, a black Pilot FriXion pen, and a microfiber cloth for erasing the pages.  And since you’d be checking out the package itself if you were in the store, here’s the back:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (instructions)

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (instructions)

When you flip open the notebook, you see this:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (interior)

(And that’s a set of further instructions.)

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (instructions)

Putting the Rocketbook Everlast to the Test

Having taken everything out of the package, the obvious next step is to test it out.  I tried a couple different pages, where I just wrote out a few phrases and drew a couple doodles as a test.  I tested the “smart titles” option, too, putting the name between double hashtags on the second page.  I used both the black pen included and several colored FriXion pens I already had on hand, to see how it handled the colors.

I found that thick spots of ink took longer to dry (as one might expect), and a little dot of ink got onto the facing page when I closed the notebook without letting it dry adequately first.

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (test writing)

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (test writing/drawing)

I wanted to know how well the scan worked, how well the handwriting recognition worked, etc.

The App

I’m pretty UN-Smartphone-savvy, but I found that the app was not only easy to install, but also pretty easy to use.  Setting up your account initially requires only some basic information (like name and email address).  ALL scan options initially default to email, so even if you’re not knowledgeable enough to set up any other options (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.), you’ll be set.  If you do want to set up any of those other things, you can edit each of the “icons” one at a time to set up the destination for page scans with that icon marked.  I left most of mine set to email, and changed just one to Google Drive for the sake of experimentation. (You can’t see it in the photo, but the first of my pages has both of the first two icons marked.)

Scanning is surprisingly easy.  Being in a well-lit area helps, but then you just center the phone’s camera over the page and hold still while it finds and reads it.  It was all very intuitive.

Because of the way I had this set, both of my scans were emailed to me as PDFs, and one of them was also sent to Google Drive.  The Google Drive scan looks like this.  It picked up the color fairly well, although the darkest areas in the burgundy ink read as black or almost black.  There is a distinction of colors here, though.

Rocketbook Everlast capture

The PDF of the same file to my email looks similar.  The other scan didn’t preserve the color very well.

Rocketbook Everlast capture

It did, however, scan pretty clearly.  You might not want to depend on distinctions between colors, especially if your colors are very dark, but this would be a viable option for digitizing drawings you want to manipulate in Adobe Illustrator or something like that.  (Note that the dot grid that forms the page background does not come through in the scan.)

The handwriting recognition was a bit iffier – although still fairly impressive.  This is the transcription that was emailed along with the PDF:

Rocketbook Everlast capture

It seemed to handle all of my actual letters just fine — even the cursive ones.  It had a harder time with punctuation, though.  The question mark didn’t come through at all, and that arrow-and-closing-paren combination turned into a strange series of letters and numbers.  Those are pretty easy issues to live with, though.  It did better than most OCR software I’ve seen.

The biggest disappointment here is that the automatic title recognition simply didn’t work.  The software moved the double hashtag I had before the title (I’m not sure why), and didn’t pull the title from the page at all, using its standard title format instead.  (I like that it includes the date by default, and I like the format it uses for the date, because that’s easy to sort in a folderful of documents.)

Erasing the Page

Having captured the page to digitize it, the next thing to test was whether it really erases cleanly.  It does.  Although you might have to go over the page a couple times to remove all the ink if there’s a lot of it on the page.  To do this, you dampen part of the microfiber cloth (probably any soft cloth would work, but with the included one, you don’t have to track one down) and wipe the ink away.  When all the ink has been wiped off, use a dry section of the cloth to wipe the page dry.

This was my very first swipe:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (erasure)

You can see that the ink came off pretty easily, but since there was a lot of it, it smeared a bit and didn’t all come completely off the page with one swipe.  Just a tad more wiping, though, and that area came completely clean:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (erasure)

This is the same page after wiping everything from it:

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over (pages)

Just like new!  Now, they recommend that when the notebook is not in use, the pages should be kept clean.  I’m sure we’ve all seen dry erase boards after the ink has been left to sit for a while.  I don’t yet know how well these will wipe clean if there’s a long delay between writing on a page and cleaning it off.  I haven’t had reason to let mine sit for long yet.

Wrapping Up — and Where Can I Get One?

All in all, I’m pretty impressed with this.  Although the feel of the pages take some getting used to, I think this is an amazing solution to the problem of wanting to write in a more traditional notebook, but work with one’s writing in digital form.  Especially with the app, which worked beautifully for me.  (I should also note that I have a relatively old phone, a Samsung Galaxy S4, and a lot of apps are incompatible or glitchy with it.  This one gave me no problems at all.)

This truly might be the most amazing product I’ve encountered in the last several years.  It’s certainly a revolutionary one.

You can find the Everlast – in Letter size, Executive size (“half” size), or Mini (the kind you’d tuck in a shirt pocket) on the Rocketbook site.

Or, if you’d rather buy it while you’re already shopping for other things, you can find it on Amazon.

Rocketbook Everlast Reusable Smart Notebook, Executive SizeRocketbook Everlast Reusable Smart Notebook, Executive SizeRocketbook Pen/Pencil Holder (Pen Station)Rocketbook Pen/Pencil Holder (Pen Station)Rocketbook Everlast Executive and Mini Notebooks with 2 pens and 2 clothsRocketbook Everlast Executive and Mini Notebooks with 2 pens and 2 cloths

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over

Rocketbook Everlast -- the notebook you can reuse over and over

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Rocketbook Everlast – Reusable Notebook {review} is a post from: Titus 2 Homemaker


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This post first appeared on Titus 2 Homemaker - Hope And Help For The Domestic, please read the originial post: here

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