In 2008, Derwent announced a new graphite pencil line, the Onyx.
According to Derwent, the Onyx “… is made from smooth dark graphite and delivers dense, rich, jet-black tones, darker than a Graphic 9B. Due to its non-crumbly texture, the 4mm wide core is capable of sharpening and holding a fine point.”
After some testing, I have to conclude that Derwent’s claims are absolutely correct and without exaggeration. Yet experiencing the pencil doesn’t explain the mystery of the formula.
The pencil is round with an 8mm diameter and a 4mm core. It comes in two grades, “Medium” and “Dark”.
The Dark version is capable of a very wide range of shades. The claim about pressure is correct – the dark rich tones seem to appear in reaction to pressure. Of course all pencils do that to some extent, but the Onyx is somehow different – with light pressure, it gives no signs of being a super dark pencil.
Additionally, the claim about holding a point is correct – it has a much stronger point than typical soft grade pencils.
The Dark Onyx on the left, and the Derwent Graphic 9B on the right:
I have to admit amazement. Presumably, Derwent have used very different ingredients (or process) to create this wonder of a pencil.
Definitely worth a test. Have you tried it?