Daler Rowney makes many types of sketchbooks. There are spiral bound, perfect bound and stapled versions. They come in varying sizes and paper weight.
The different product lines are:
The Ebony sketchbooks are designed for artists. They use 150gsm cartridge paper. There's also one with 180gsm black paper.
The sketchbooks come in sizes from A6 to A3, in both landscape or portrait formats.
A4 sizes and below have 122 pages including 2 behind the cover. The A3 size has 94 pages.
The hardcover is covered by canvas-like textured paper. After prolong usage the hardcover will become worn. It gets worn easily if you get it in and out of the bag often. My friend's sketchbook was worn out at the top and bottom edges of the binding. Those are the areas of contact when you put it into a bag.
The binding is great. It can be opened wide and flat. This is important when it comes to scanning. I'm using a Canon LiDE 210 scanner and it can't deal with surfaces that aren't completely flat and in contact with the glass of the scanner.
The 150gsm paper is thick enough to take light washes but warps slightly with water. Since it's not really watercolour paper, applying brush several times over the paper will damage it. It's better to wait for the paper to dry before applying another layer of wash.
As the paper surface is smooth, non-textured, water when applied generously, will sometimes glide on the surface instead of being absorbed. It's difficult to achieve flat washes.
The sketch on the right was drawn on the train while commuting to work. It's not easy to sketch with the sketchbook in hand because of the size. It gets tiring quickly while trying to get a firm grip. The spiral bound sketchbook might be better for those who don't have any surfaces to rest upon. All the sketches above, except the one on the watercolour box, are sketched while standing.
Overall, this is a quality sketchbook. It cost about the same as two pads of Fine Grain Heavyweight cartridge paper, also from Daler Rowney.
It requires more discipline when using sketchbook as compared to paper pads. You can't just tear off pages you don't like. It's good in the sense that it trains you to be more careful, more keen with your observation and to be more patient.
The sketchbook is sold at most art stores. You can find them also on Amazon.co.uk
Also check out other sketchbooks from Dick Blick Art Materials.