Fineliner vs Rollerball

By Irene Daraman Written by Irene Daraman Expertise: Technology, Learning, and Money Title: - Author and Freelance Writer Education: - Bachelor of Science in Nursing, University of La Salette Work Experience: - Registered Nurse with 10+ years of experience in BPO and healthcare industries - Management position in a Fortune 500 company, driving operational excellence and exceeding targets - Designing and implementing business plans and strategies to promote the attainment of goals, including financial (money matter), technology, and internal learning and development - Patient care coordinator in a California-based private practice - Experience as a personal injury medical records reviewer and demand letter writer in a Texas law firm - 5+ years of content/article writing experience, delivering engaging and informative pieces across various domains About: I am a Registered Nurse with 10+ years of experience in BPO and the healthcare industry. With a specialization in public and community nursing, I possess a deep understanding of patient care. Currently working in a management position at a Fortune 500 company, where I drive operational excellence and exceed targets. I am responsible for using technology at work, and driving learning and development. I am an expert in technology, learning, and money related topics from my corporate work experience. Public Profiles:
Updated on April 2, 2022

They say that “A good pen can lead to productivity”. When you have the right pen, writing becomes efficient and effortless. It is crucial to have a suitable pen for several reasons like using it to earn a living, to your profession, to pursue your career or even a little bit of comfort. There are a variety of pens to choose from, including rollerballs and fine liners. 

The fine liner uses a felt, fiber, or plastic tip to dispense the ink, whereas the rollerball uses a tiny ball at the tip to dispense its ink. Rollerball pens are used in writing and sending handwritten cards. Fineliners pens are preferred by artists and graphic designers for graphic designing, drawing, or sketching. 

Sakura Pigma Micron Pens in use

What is the difference between a Rollerball and a Fineliner?

There is not much difference between fine liners and rollerballs in terms of their main function- to write. But here are the main differences between fine liners and rollerballs in considering which pen is best for you: 

  1. The ink mechanism- The main difference between rollerballs and fine liners is the mechanism to dispense the ink. Fineliner has a cloth, felt, or velvet tip, while rollerballs have a ball in their tip to dispense the ink. 
  1. Ink type– Rollerball pens use water-based or gel-based ink, which is sharper and more vibrant. On the other hand, Fineliners use pigment-based ink, which sits on the paper rather than penetrating, which doesn’t bleed through easily. 
  1. Refills– Refill of fine liners does not last long as rollerballs. Rollerball refills can write approximately 30 to 250 A4 pages, while fine liners only last up to 17 A4 pages. Usually, their refills are interchangeable. 
  1. Uses– Rollerballs are best mainly in writing notes or note cards, while fine lines are best for graphic design, sketching, and coloring preferred by most artists. 

Are Montblanc Rollerball and Fineliner interchangeable?

Yes. Montblanc rollerball and fineliner refills are interchangeable except for LeGrand size refills. Both Rollerball and Fineliner refill suit the Montblanc Rollerball and Fineliner Meisterstück Classique, Starwalker, Bohème, Great Characters, and Limited Editions.

Can I put a Rollerball refill in a Fineliner pen?

Absolutely! Yes, you can put a rollerball refill to a fine liner pen because refills for both fine liners and rollerballs are interchangeable. However, some brands cannot interchange rollerball refills with fine liners, like Montblanc LeGrand size refills, which will not fit any other type aside from its original case.  

Are Fineliners better for writing than Rollerball?

Rollerballs are better for writing. It is the best and most practical option for writing cards and everyday writing. Fineliner is better than rollerballs in a specific area. If you are into graphic designing or sketching, Fineliners would be a better choice than rollerballs. Fineliners have a thinner, crisper line of cursive and are easier to write than rollerballs. It is smoother to use in sketching because it makes great fine lines and marks. There is less pressure when you use it because it is easy to apply. The only downside of a Fineliner is it doesn’t last longer than rollerballs.

Fineliner pen used for sketching

What lasts longer, Fineliners or Rollerballs? 

Rollerballs last longer than Fineliners. Rollerball can write approximately 30 to 250 A4 pages, while Fineliners only last up to 17 A4 pages. Fineliners dry out quicker than rollerballs, sometimes after a few heavy uses. However, the longevity of pens will depend on the chemistry of the ink used, the way it is stored, or the type of pen. Whether a pen is a Fineliner or a Rollerball, it is crucial to store your pen correctly so it wouldn’t bleed or dry out easily.

What pens do professional artists prefer, Fineliners or Rollerballs?

Professional artists favored Fineliners over Rollerballs. Rollerball is only recommended for everyday writing and not for the sake of the arts. Fineliners are often used for graphic designing, crafting, and sketching because it produces finer lines than any other type of pen. And because they have smaller nibs than any type, they are more suitable for artist works where accuracy and preservation are crucial. Fineliners can render the smallest details of art accurately and vividly.

When should I use Fineliner or Rollerballs?

Rollerballs are the most practical and recommended for everyday writing. It is best for handwritten cards or doodling. On the other hand, Fineliners are best used in artistry like graphic design, sketching, drawing, and many more.

Montblanc Rollerball vs. Ballpoint vs. Fineliner

Montblanc is one of the most prestigious pen brand of all time and choosing which type of pen to use is crucial because its price is relatively high. So, if you want to invest in this brand, it is paramount to know the difference between Montblanc Rollerball, Ballpoint, and Fineliner. 

Montblanc Fineliners are a rare collection, like the StarWalker and Marc Newson M collections. Montblanc Fineliner has a felt tip to dispense the ink, favored by most artists. The refills are interchangeable with Montblanc Rollerballs. Meanwhile, there is not much difference between Montblanc Rollerball and Ballpoint pen. They are both suitable for everyday writing. The only difference is their ink. The Montblanc Rollerball uses water-based ink, while Montblanc Ballpoint uses oil-based inks. Water-based is more vivid, vibrant, and sharper than oil-based inks. Therefore, Rollerballs have better writing output than ballpoints.

Montblanc 2 Fineliner Refills Mystery Black