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Iroshizuku Asa-Gao- Blue Or Purple? Have You Used It?

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That Jet Pens swab looks like "hydrangea." Wonder if they got it wrong.

To me Asa-Gao is a "bluer" royal blue.

Not as eye-searing as the Blue that Shall not be Named.

If you don't need great water resistance, Asa-Gao has pretty much everything else in an ink. Even decent fade resistance if I recall correctly.

Imagination and memory are but one thing which for diverse reasons hath diverse names. -- T. Hobbes - Leviathan

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If you have used it, what colour is it? Or what colour is it on different papers/ inks?

I use a dozen or more different blues. In my head, I have them sorted more or less by where they would fall on the spectrum, though the matter is muddled by the color being dark or light. I used to think Asa Gao was purplish, but I find this perception to be highly variable depending on 1) how long I have been using purple-leaning blues to the exclusion of green-leaning blues and 2) how bright and wavelength-rich the ambient light is. Anyway, I think of Asa Gao as very slightly purple-leaning. If you would like less purple leaning, Diamine Royal Blue is a favorite of mine. If you would like more purple leaning, then Diamine Sapphire Blue is also a favorite. Visconti Blue is very similar in color to Asa Gao, though a bit darker.

Edited by mhosea

I know my id is "mhosea", but you can call me Mike. It's an old Unix thing.

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  • 4 months later...

Can I ask the same question slightly differently? does the colour of the Asa Gao ink match the colour that appears on the purplish label on the bottle? I just received my bottle and was a bit surprised when I saw the colour on the paper label which is decidedly purple and not royal blue. I have looked at dozens of renditions online of the colour but what with cameras and monitors I don't know which is truest. However, everyone who owns it has both the bottle and the ink and might be able to compare the two.


Scared to open the bottle until I am relatively sure I will like it....

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Unfortunately, I don't have a bottle anymore (sold it) to compare the color of the label to the ink. I do have a sample of the ink left. What inks to you have in the Royal Blue viscinity and where you want Asa Gao to be? I might be able to scan something that will enable you to compare to something you already have, or at least speak to the relationship between the two. For example, both Sailor Ultramarine and Montblanc Royal Blue are significantly more purple than Asa Gao. IIRC, Diamine Sapphire Blue is also noticeably more purple, but I'll have to double-check that. Diamine Royal Blue is less purple. Personally, I think of Asa Gao as far more blue than purple, but this is a subjective thing and depends a lot on what you personally think of as a middle-of-the-road blue.

I know my id is "mhosea", but you can call me Mike. It's an old Unix thing.

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Depend on your light source. It is vibrant, saturated medium blue in general but I detect a good amount of purple hue under the golden light bulb. Very fun blue ink.

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I had a bottle and sold it because it was a too purple for me. You may like it, however.

Walk in shadow / Walk in dread / Loosefish walk / As Like one dead

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I've been testing out a sample if it this week. To me Asa Gao is royal blue with a slight purple tinge. If you put it next to a true purple ink, it's definitely blue.


I have a Pilot Varsity in blue, and I actually find the shade and hue to be similar, but Asa Gao has much more character and shading.

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Personally, I don't see much purple in Asa-gao (although I've never seen much in BSB either...).


However, in a wet nib, Asa-gao is a really nice rich blue. It'll probably be one of the only plain blues in my collection.

So many inks, so little time...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Check out some of the CRVs from Napalm. He often writes back to me with Asa-Gao and it is a wonderful comparison.

Fountain pens are my preferred COLOR DELIVERY SYSTEM (in part because crayons melt in Las Vegas).

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Ink comparisons: The Great PPS Comparison 366 Inks in 2016

Check out inks sorted by color: Blue Purple Brown Red Green Dark Green Orange Black Pinks Yellows Blue-Blacks Grey/Gray UVInks Turquoise/Teal MURKY

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