Spectrum Noir Colored Pencils Review

Review Summary
4.0/5 Our Score
• Very easy to blend
• Excellent for practice
• Durable
• Wide range of colors
• Inconvenient packaging sets

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A versatile, hybrid colored pencil with a unique formula, Spectrum Noirs are a great choice for that transition from beginner to a more serious artist.
Color Intensity


The Spectrum Noir colored pencils are marketed especially for blending, a vital quality in any colored pencil brand. These pencils are made with a unique formulation and a revolutionary packaging system. Let’s take a look at what they’ve got to offer.

Spectrum produces a great line of colored pencils and their Noir version are exceptionally good for blending. A wax and oil hybrid, these pencils have a unique formulation that combines the blendability of oil with the control of wax.

Another unique feature of the Spectrum Noir line is the way they are packaged. Spectrum produces five sets of 24 colors, each pack containing a different range of colors. In other words, to get the full color spectrum (120 colors), you’d have to buy all 5 sets. On the other hand, each 24 pack is affordable and contains colors that are complimentary to each other. The idea here is to enhance the blendable features of the line and aid those who have trouble recognizing suitable color combinations.

What They’re Good For

This is an excellent set for beginners, especially those who are ready for a transition into premium grade colored pencils. While these would be considered artist grade, they are a perfect transitory set because of their unique core blend and the pre-selected color combinations of each blendable pack.

These colored pencils can also be viewed as a training pencil because while it may be inconvenient to buy five different packs to get the entire color collection (and they are not sold individually), each set contains colors that are complimentary to each other, which means that on top of honing your blending skills, you’ll get to practice color coordination.

Ratings Breakdown

Spectrum Noir colored pencils are highly blendable, have a creamy, rich lay down, and can withstand thick layering. Available in packs of 24 pencils only, the sets are quite restricted, however this set up also makes them some of the most affordable artist-grade pencils on the market.

Lightfastness 3/5

These are considered an artist-grade colored pencil and as such have good lightfastness. As opposed to a pure wax-based blend, the Spectrum Noir colors are longer-lasting, vivid, and fade-resistant. They are not however, the most lightfast colored pencils and like the inconsistency across different colors, their lightfast rating differs from pencil to pencil.

Sturdiness/ Durability 4/5

The hybrid wax/oil formula makes this pencil’s core especially durable, its wax content making the lead less brittle than a pure oil-based pencil and the oil allowing for a more blendable application with a more vivid finish. Each pencil comes in a sturdy wooden barrel, barren except for the color of the pencil stamped on the wood. As opposed to a pure oil-based color pencil, the Spectrum Noir line holds up well to sharpening, its hybrid formula allowing the lead to sharpen to a fine point. These are long-lasting pencils.

Binder/ Quality 4/5

The wax and oil combination is what make this pencil exceptional. While you get the durability of a novice-grade colored pencil, the semi-soft core make application very similar to a premium grade colored pencil. Made with finely ground pure pigment, and the intensity of its oil content, the finish is vibrant and strong.

Color Intensity 5/5

Each pack of Spectrum Noir colored pencils is made with a high-quality wax and oil core. The formulas are complimentary to each other and make for rich, vivid colors. Each set comes with a different set of colors, all ranging in intensity. Admittedly, the best option is the “essentials” pack because it contains a basic set of colored pencils, such as you would need to complete a drawing- it also has the best color intensity.

Value 4/5

Priced in the mid to high range, these are very affordable colored pencils and since you only have the choice of buying a set of 24 pencils, they can even be considered cheap.

Very durable and versatile, Spectrum Noir colored pencils are some of the most cost-effective colored pencils you can buy.

Final Verdict

A versatile, hybrid colored pencil with a unique formula, Spectrum Noirs are a great choice for that transition from beginner to a more serious artist.

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