7 Best Smart Reusable Notebooks for 2020
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In today’s increasingly paperless society littered with smartphones and tablets, smart notebooks may seem like a hard sell. But in fact, they represent an innovative merger of the old and the new. Hardly any tablet or smartpen can match the feeling of pencil on paper, but then it’s always great to have your notes in digital format as well.
That’s exactly what smart notebooks provide, plus you don’t need to change your notetaking or studying habits. And the productivity increases because you can quickly upload the notes to cloud services and have them available on multiple smart devices.
Keep reading to find out more about some of the best smart notebooks you can order today. There’s also a buyer’s guide at the end to help you make an educated choice.
Don't have the time read the entire review?
Here's a quick look at our top choices for the best smart notebooks:
|Rocketbook Smart Reusable Notebook||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Rocketbook Wave Executive||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Homestec Smart Reusable Notebook||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Rocketbook Fusion Smart Reusable Notebook||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Rocketbook Mini Smart Reusable Notebook||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Moleskine Evernote Smart Notebook||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
|Boogie Board Writing Tablet||CLICK HERE FOR PRICE|
What You Will Learn
- 7 Best Smart Notebooks: Reviews
- 1. Best Overall Choice: Rocketbook Core
- 2. Best Value for the Money: Rocketbook Wave Executive
- 3. Most Budget-Friendly: Homestec Smart Reusable Notebook
- 4. Best Smart Notebook for Scheduling Your Life: Rocketbook Fusion Smart Reusable Notebook
- 5. Best Pocket-Sized Smart Notebook: Rocketbook Mini Smart Reusable Notebook
- 6. Best Smart Notebook for Journaling: Moleskine Evernote Smart Notebook
- 7. Best Smart Notebook for Kids: Boogie Board Writing Tablet
- Buyer’s Guide
- Final Verdict
7 Best Smart Notebooks: Reviews
1. Best Overall Choice: Rocketbook Core
The launch of the Rocketbook took the Indiegogo community by storm with the backing of more than 42,000 people and over $2.7 million raised. Some would argue that the comical promotional video did the trick. But once you get down to the features, this smart notebook exceeds expectations.
The pages are made of polyester composite, but they act and feel like real paper. Each page features small guide dots and has a QR code and a set of icons for easier note sharing. How does it all work?
Write your notes using any pen from the Pilot FriXion line and the moment the ink dries it’d bond to the page, so there’s no chance of accidental smudges. When you want to share the notes, make sure to cross out the correct symbol at the bottom and the Rocketbook app automatically sends the notes to the designated service.
For example, the bell icon links to Dropbox, diamond to Google Drive, horseshoe to Evernote, and so on. It’s important to note that you assign symbols to a specific cloud-based folder. And as you scan the pages, the Rocketbook app also enhances the images for more vibrant notes. At the same time, the pages end up in the designated cloud folder.
After scanning, just grab a wet cloth and wipe the pages clean to get your notebook ready for the next draft. The Executive size in this review measures 6 x 8.8 inches, which gives you more than enough note-taking real estate and fits any backpack or messenger bag.
2. Best Value for the Money: Rocketbook Wave Executive
This is the notebook that opened a new chapter and started the trend of smart notebooks. It comes from Rocketbook, now a well-known manufacturer in the smart notebook industry, and it has all the features you need for better productivity.
The Waive has 80 pages with a dotted pattern on each one. The pages are made of durable acid-free paper and the cover features polypropylene binding which is tough enough to withstand microwave erasing. Pop the notebook inside your microwave with a cup of water and when the Rocketbook logo turns white, your notebook has been erased.
In addition, the Wave comes with Rocketbook’s app that utilizes machine vision to scan the pages and upload them to the cloud. Like its younger brother the Rocketbook Everlast, the Wave has symbols at the bottom of each page. Just cross out the symbol you assigned to a cloud service and your notes instantly end up in the right folder.
You can choose two sizes, Executive (6” x 8.8”) and Standard (8.5” x 9.5”), and there’s also a special pen station. Regardless of the size and pen station, the Waive ships with one Pilot FriXion pen.
Judging by the build quality and smart features, this is among the best notebooks you can get. But it is in the upper price range and it only comes in one color. These are small compromises to make for top quality, though.
3. Most Budget-Friendly: Homestec Smart Reusable Notebook
This smart notebook from HOMESTEC is not only affordable, but it can be used up to 500 times, saving you money with every notebook you don't buy. It also comes with two free erasable pens, and a set of sticky tabs, for a complete package in one purchase. Reusable notebooks are not only better for your budget, but they are better for the environment as well, so it's a smart investment.
The Homestec Smart Reusable Notebook is a full-size, 8.7 x 11.2 inch notebook, with 40 lined pages. The pages are erasable with the included erasable pens, or with erasable pens from other companies. Capture your notes, drawings, lists, and thoughts with a compatible app, store them safely with your favorite cloud service, and then re-use each page up to 500 times. Pages erase easily with a pen eraser, or with a hair dryer.
The Homestec Smart Reusable Notebook comes with two erasable pens and a pack of sticky tabs. It is compatible with CamScanner and Newyes Note apps, which turn your notebook images into pdfs for easy storage.
4. Best Smart Notebook for Scheduling Your Life: Rocketbook Fusion Smart Reusable Notebook
Rocketbook packed a whole lot of features into this smart notebook that is a main contender for the top spot in this review. It is actually more than just a notebook—it’s a handy time-management tool that increases your productivity and helps you stay on top of things.
Aside from the standard dot-grid pages, the Fusion comes with lined pages, which is a real draw for most journaling enthusiasts. It also comes with a task list, monthly and weekly calendars, a goal-setting template, and task and ideas lists.
As with any smart Rocketbook, this notebook allows you to scan and save your writing in the cloud service of your choice, ensuring that none of your data is ever lost, even in the case of accidental earsures from the notebook
Fusion has 42 reusable pages and comes with a Pilot Frixion pen and a microfiber cloth.
It is by far the most versatile smart notebook in the Rocketbook line. However, it is also one of the pricier ones.
5. Best Pocket-Sized Smart Notebook: Rocketbook Mini Smart Reusable Notebook
Nothing beats a pocket writing notebook when it comes to logging your to-do lists, ideas, and bursts of creativity. The Rocketbook Mini is all of these and then some.
The notebook allows you to record tons of information while you’re on the go. And once you’ve saved it to the cloud, the writing on the pages can be erased with a damp cloth.
It is quite useful when traveling, and for those whose professions require them to jot down a lot of details, such as waitstaff, medical personnel, and journalists.
The mini has 48 reusable pages, and there are eight colors you can choose from. A Frixion pen and a microfiber cloth are included in the purchase.
The price is a bit steep for a notebook this size. However, when you factor in the fact that it is reusable, this notebook actually helps you save more in the long run.
6. Best Smart Notebook for Journaling: Moleskine Evernote Smart Notebook
Moleskine is renowned for their premium journal notebooks, so naturally, you’d expect that a smart notebook from them would also give you that luxurious writing experience. And in many ways, it does.
This notebook works like a regular Moleskine. The dotted-line pages are great for heavy note-taking or daily journal entries. However, the fact that it is a smart notebook ensures that even if it gets damaged, your notes are safe in digital storage.
The notebook comes with the proprietary Moleskine Notes app. With a Moleskine Pen+, you can transfer your handwritten notes from the page to screen in real time, courtesy of its NCODED technology.
It also comes with a set of smart stickers that are quite helpful in tagging and organizing notes. This feature works when you take a picture of your notes using the Evernote camera. These colorful stickers automatically assign a category to your notes when you’re saving them to your Evernote account. This is available for both Android and iOS.
A large pocket is provided, ideal for storing the stickers. Further, purchasing this notebook gives you a three-month premium subscription to Evernote.
The only drawback is that the notebook is only available in black.
7. Best Smart Notebook for Kids: Boogie Board Writing Tablet
The Boogie Board is so much more than a smart notebook. It combines the functions of a notebook, a whiteboard, a blackboard, a fridge grocery list, a wall calendar, and more. The natural writing experience is just as intuitive as writing on paper, but it's infinitely reusable and saves trees with every use.
It comes with templates for a variety of uses, and notes can be locked or erased with the touch of a button. The Boogie Board is a great way to keep kids busy, support learning and lessons, or simply replace the paper lists and planners around the house.
The Boogie Board Writing Tablet is an LCD writing tablet with a hard, stable surface that's easy to write on, even when you aren't near a desk. Using the board is simple and intuitive, with pressure-sensitive pens that write thicker lines with pressure, erase naturally with the eraser end, and create vivid images that are easy to see and read.
The tablet has a semi-transparent surface that can be used for copying and tracing from paper templates. The included templates include a lined sheet, a dot grid, a blank surface, and a planner format to stay organized.
The tablet has exact-erase, clear, and lock buttons so you can keep your designs or toss them. It also has anti-slip feet and a magnetic pen channel to keep the pen and tablet together. Even better, this smart tablet never needs charging, and has a replaceable battery that lasts for 5 years.
The Boogie Board Writing Tablet comes in 8.5 x 11 letter size, or in 5.5 x 7.25 notebook size. The free iOS and Android Blackboard app lets you capture, save, and share your notes. The Boogie Board is made by US-based Kent Displays and is backed by a money-back guarantee.
Smart notebooks should be built to last, and some manufacturers even go out on a limb and say it’s the last notebook you’ll ever need. In reality, it might not be the last notebook you’ll ever need, but there are features that make some smart notebooks more durable.
You need to look up the cover, binding, and pages materials. In general, smart notebooks come with plastic or reinforced cardboard covers and there are models with faux leather covers. For all intended purposes, plastic works best, though faux leather and cardboard can withstand some wear and tear as well.
You can’t go wrong with a wire binding and there are models like the Elfinbook 2 which feature durable plastic binding. Either way, the page material is the one that makes the real difference. Most models feature fine-grain paper specially designed for wet wiping.
But if you want something that can really withstand heavy use, you might want to go with polyester composite pages.
Pen recommendations vary based on the smart notebook. However, most popular brands advise against using anything other than the Pilot FriXion. That said, the FriXion line of pens are gel pens loaded with thermo-sensitive ink, which makes it easier to erase.
Smart notebooks usually come at standard A5 (5.8” x 8.3”) and B5 (6.9” x 9.8”) sizes. Some manufacturers also offer the so-called executive size which is just a fraction larger than A5 at 6” x 8.8”. In addition, you can also get a mini smart notebook from Rocketbook which is about half the size of the executive model.
With this in mind, the final choice here boils down to your preferences and note-taking needs. For most people, A5 is just the right fit because you get more than enough writing/drafting real estate without being too big for storage.
Number of Pages
The number of pages starts as low as 36 and goes up to 100. Since you are buying a smart notebook, the pages can be wiped 500 times or more so the number of pages is not that important. It’s better to focus on the notebook quality and page material.
For example, the Rocketbook Everlast has only 36 pages but it’s arguably among the most durable, so you might not need more pages.
Keeping your smart notebook clean is really simple, all you need is a damp cloth and your notes are gone in a few quick swipes. However, there are creative ways to remove your notes. As indicated, most smart notebooks can be cleaned with heat sources, such as a hairdryer or a microwave.
Yes, you’ve read it right, some smart notebooks are microwave-ready. But remember that you’ll also need a water source and follow the manufacturer's instructions to the T. And if there’s no suggestion that a model is microwave-ready, you may not want to push it.
Smart Notebook App
Aside from materials and durability, the app is one of the most important features. And a quality smart notebook comes with its own app that allows for smarter scanning and uploads to cloud services like Google Drive, Dropbox, Evernote, etc. In addition, some apps have a built-in PDF to Word converter, which can be a lifesaver if you need to edit the documents.
On the other hand, CamScanner is an app that should work with any smart notebook and it offers similar features to many proprietary apps. But you’d have to account for in-app purchases to get all the features, so it’s still best to get a smart notebook that comes with an app.
In the end, among all the best smart notebooks, the Rocketbook Core came out on top for its durability, appealing design, and premium materials. Plus, the intelligent features make scanning and sharing notes a walk in the park. However, it also comes at a premium price.