Kuretake is a Japanese company that makes stationary products and they make a lot of markers under the Zig product line. And under Zig, they have pigment markers such as Fabricolor, Painty FX and Posterman.
Here are the features for each.
- For writing on cloth
- Zig Fabricolor markers with 14 colours
- Zig Fabricolor TWIN markers with 30 colours
- Water-based inks
- Opaque, non-bleeding
- Permanent after ironing
- Fine or brush tip. No chisel and broad
- Dries to matte surface
Zig Painty FX
- Alcohol-based inks
- Xylene free
- Works on metal, glass, plastic, wood and more
- Opaque, quick dry, low odour
- Tips sizes 1.5mm, 2mm, 5mm chisel
- Dries with low gloss surface
- 14 colours
- Works on glass, plastic, metal, wood and stone
- Opaque, lightfast and produce a chalk look
- Water resistant after drying
- Erasable with Zig Posterman Cleaner
- 17 colours, water-based ink
- Tip sizes from ultra fine, fine to chisel and extra broad
Zig marker pricing is usually quite competitive and reasonable.
So each marker has its own characteristic. Zig Fabricolor and Posterman use water-based inks while Zig Painty FX uses alcohol-based inks. Some caps have removable replacement tips secured onto it. Nice.
This is the opacity test.
The Zig Fabricolor is noticeably more opaque compared to the Zig Painty FX. Unfortunately, I only have white for Zig Posterman so I can't say much, but it looks opaque enough.
And these are the UNI Posca (left) and UNI Paint markers for comparison. UNI Posca performs very similarly to Zig Fabricolor, while the UNI Paint markers performs similarly to the Zig Painty FX. There are 66 colours in the UNI Posca range so that's a lot more colours compared to Zig Fabricolor.
Here's how the markers behave or work with watercolour applied on top.
It seems like all three Zig markers repel water slightly.
The UNI markers work nicely with watercolour.
Zig Fabricolor and Posterman use water-based inks and will leave streaky edges. The ink will dry with a matte finishing.
Zig Painty FX uses alcohol-based inks and produces sharp edges. The ink dries with a low gloss finishing.
The inks are said to be lightfast but I did not test for the lightfast quality since it's very time consuming. There's also no pigment information provided. If you want to use these markers to create art that will be exposed for long periods of time, make sure to test the lightfast quality first (and let me know).
Here's a watercolour sketch drawn with markers applied on top.
The Zig Fabricolor markers are definitely very opaque and nice to work with. They have good covering ability.
On the left are dots created by the UNI Paint markers, and right the UNI Posca markers. The UNI Paint markers use oil-based inks and the inks are absorbed into the paper rather than remain on top, hence the lack of opacity.
Lamp posts on the left were drawn with Zig Painty FX and they aren't as opaque compared to those on the right drawn with Zig Fabricolor.
The white strokes were created with Zig Fabricolor and Posterman.
I don't have much to say about Zig Posterman since I only have that ultra-fine tip in white.
Zig Fabricolor is very comparable in quality compared to UNI Posca markers. I would recommend them for use on rougher surfaces, e.g. paper, because water-based inks leave streaky edges on smooth reflective surfaces. The ink is very opaque and has good covering ability.
Zig Painty FX can work on more surfaces. It works great on reflective surfaces since the strokes dries with sharp edges. The ink dries with a low gloss and the colour does not seem as vibrant compared to Zig Fabricolor under certain light conditions, e.g. under reflections.
These Zig markers work great on top of watercolour but not below. Whereas UNI Posca markers work great on top and below watercolour. This could matter depending on how you create your art. I usually use opaque markers are the last stage to add details or overlapping elements so it's not an issue for me.
I like the Zig Fabricolor markers. They perform well and comparable to the UNI Posca markers I've been using for years.