Electric Pencil Sharpener Reviews
We spent 16 hours looking at electric pencil sharpeners, scouring over user reviews, and researching features and functionalities, and we believe that the OfficeGoods Electric Pencil Sharpener is the best overall electric pencil sharpener out there.
- Best Overall: OfficeGoods Electric Pencil Sharpener
- Runner Up: X-Acto SchoolPro Electric Pencil Sharpener
- History of the Pencil Sharpener
- What Features are Important
- How We Selected
- Which Features We Reviewed
- What We Liked
- What We Didn’t Like
Electric Pencil Sharpener Buying Guide
History of the Pencil Sharpener
Were it not for two Frenchman; we would all still be sharpening our pencils the way that it was first done – with a knife. As this writing tool became commonplace – and necessary – in everyday life, Parisian mathematician Bernard Lassimone realized that he needed to make this process more efficient. So he applied for and received, the patent for his invention of the “taille crayon” or pencil sharpener. Over the next few years, this device was modified, and a few British men tried to improve upon the design, but their Styloxynon did not do the trick entirely. In fact, it was a bit more of a copycat model. Finally, the French reappear, this time with the arrival of Therry des Estwaux and his conical shaped device that allowed for a pencil to be inserted into, and then twisted. All sides where then whittled away at at once, making the overall process much more efficient and, to the point. We had to do it. This design today is known as a prism sharpener.
We now have a rather efficient way of sharpening pencils, and the demand for them is increasing by the minute as the pencil itself is now an integral part of daily lives. A gentleman known by the name Walter K. Foster applied for the first American patent on a pencil sharpener. His design improved upon the original conical design and was a template for mass production.
What Features are Important
When we began our research into electric pencil sharpeners, we had no idea what criteria we needed to measure with this tool. It seemed rather straightforward that you had a pencil, it needed sharpened, and they all did the job in relatively the same way. We were quickly corrected in our assumption.
An electric pencil sharpener does the job well but does not always work on all types of pencils. We all have our favorite pen or pencil, and that is because they are all made differently. Therefore, when choosing an electric pencil sharpener, you need to look at how it does the job for all those different types of writing utensils. Soft pencils, lead pencils, colored pencils, pastel pencils. And what is the size of the pencils that you will need to sharpen regularly? There are so many varieties that one might not first think about, so well, you get what we mean here. Looking even further into the equation is how you are using your electric pencil sharpener. Are you a teacher? A student? An artist? Those are all very important questions that need to be addressed before purchasing your sharpening tool of choice.
It is also important that one think about where they will use their electronic pencil sharpener because some models are powered by batteries and others by an electrical cord. If you don’t have access to an outlet or need to take your sharpener outside, one that operates on batteries would be a must have.
How We Selected
Our research into the electric pencil sharpening world was a bit overwhelming at first to understand if we needed criteria that we were overlooking, so we started with the power source. Of course, to be electric, you had to have a cord, but some did feature a battery power option as well. We also didn’t eliminate based on vertical or horizontal entry points, because it seemed that the vertical options were preferred for quick sharpening, but they did not offer the different sized openings for pencils.
Another feature we looked for was if it had an auto stop. Should you be using your pencil sharpening tool in a classroom, you will appreciate this feature. We already can imagine the children who zone out staring at their pencil dwindle down from 8 inches to 3 in a matter of minutes.
Some brand manufacturers did identify their range of products by ideal use type. For example, we liked how Bostitch gave a grade for either Commercial, School, Executive, or Personal use with a lettering system. However, not all manufacturers make that many models to have a need for such a system, so we did not want to eliminate a model based on that offering.
Which Features We Reviewed
Electic pencil sharpeners come with two choices for power – an AC power cord and batteries. Our top pick has a third option with a USB connection.
|X-ActoSchoolPro Classroom Electric Pencil Sharpener||Electric Power Cord|
|Bostitch SuperPro 6 Commercial Electric Pencil Sharpener||Electric Power Cord|
|Linkyo Electric Pencil Sharpener with Automatic Smart Sensor||Electric Power Cord|
|It’s All Good Portable Electric Pencil Sharpener||Electric Power Cord and Battery|
|OfficeGoods Electric & Battery Operated Pencil Sharpener||Electric Power Cord, Battery and USB|
Blade Direction – Vertical or Horizontal
Some people do not want the horizontal style because of the movement that can occur with this type of sharpening – you need to have a heavy base or good suction on the bottom. Some users like the vertical style for this reason, but you can lose out on the size variety option.
|Brand||Vertical or Horizontal|
|X-ActoSchoolPro Classroom Electric Pencil Sharpener||Horizontal|
|Bostitch SuperPro 6 Commercial Electric Pencil Sharpener||Horizontal|
|Linkyo Electric Pencil Sharpener with Automatic Smart Sensor||Horizontal|
|It’s All Good Portable Electric Pencil Sharpener||Vertical|
|OfficeGoods Electric & Battery Operated Pencil Sharpener||Vertical|
Multi Size Option
An electric pencil sharpener will have a standard size opening but may come with additional sized holes for other pencil types.
|Brand||Multi Size Option|
|X-ActoSchoolPro Classroom Electric Pencil Sharpener||Six different sized openings|
|Bostitch SuperPro 6 Commercial Electric Pencil Sharpener||Six different sized openings|
|Linkyo Electric Pencil Sharpener with Automatic Smart Sensor||Six different sized openings|
|It’s All Good Portable Electric Pencil Sharpener||Single size|
|OfficeGoods Electric & Battery Operated Pencil Sharpener||Single size|
What We Liked
We liked having a multi sized opening choice in our electric pencil sharpener, as we found with the models by Bostitch, X-Acto, and Linkyo models.
We liked being able to confidently use colored pencils like the Office Goods model allowed us to do.
What We Didn’t Like
While you can use both lead and colored pencils in these models, it is recommended that for every colored pencil you sharpen, you follow up with a lead or graphite pencil. The problem is that the wax in colored pencils can build up and jam your sharpener.
Most of the electrical pencil sharpeners on the market claim to have an auto stop, but we found that most of them were not consistent withwork. So while we wanted to test that feature, we could not verify that even if they were included, they would work.
Know what you are looking for. You may inadvertently order an electric pencil sharpener that doesn’t fit your needs and will inevitably end in disappointment. For example, the Linkyo model that we first looked at is identified as a model to be used by kids and for home use. That being said, it is probably not the model you want to go with if you should be looking for a classroom or work environment. So we found out that they do offer a classroom and pro option that you can choose at checkout and so we decided to look into the Classroom model which would compare more closely with the other models in our review. The classroom models tend to have multi openings, whereas the home and professional models have a single opening and are generally the vertical style. And always double check for colored pencil sharpening if those are among your tools that need to be put through the sharpener. You may need to consider keeping a separate model for those if necessary.