08 April 2013

Filofax Fusion - Review

Thank you to Filofax UK and Ideas Network for sending me the review sample of the Filofax Fusion.

So 'Fusion' what comes in to your mind when you read that word? Atomic fusion, rock fusion, bringing things together may be.  Well the Filofax Fusion reviewed here in Personal size brings together practicality with a tough exterior and some neat design features, all wrapped up in to one organiser that is available at a fairly reasonable price.

The Filofax Fusion is new to the 2013 range... of those revealed so far, there's more to come... The Fusion is available in Personal size at £40 and A5 at £56 both in Blue or Black. I quite like the blue, it matches my 'man bag' !!!

The Fusion organiser joins the rest of the Fusion range of folders and bags so it's a useful addition to the range.

The outer cover is made of Polyester microfibre textile and black full grain leather with small grain texture exterior. The closure is made of leather too. The interior is also features black polyester lining, microfibre and leather trimming. Overall it's a nice product to hold, it feels rugged and fairly substantial.

The rings in the Personal size are the usual 23 mm offering, whilst the A5 boasts some nice big 30mm rings.

The Filofax Fusion to my eye looks fairly understated when you pull it out of the bag, looks simple in it's design when viewed from the front or from behind

Then you open it up:

In the front we appear to have some pockets, a slightly non-standard Filofax fill came with this sample, but according to the website you will get:
  • Black Filofax icon front sheet
  • Personal week to view 18 month diary, five language
  • Frosted ruler/page marker with black print
  • Coloured indices - red/grey/orange/blue
  • Red ruled paper
  • Grey ruled paper
  • Orange ruled paper
  • Blue ruled paper
  • White ruled paper
  • Addresses, five language
  • To do, five language
  • Top opening PVC envelope
  • Ruled notepad
Turning the pages to the back we see a ruled note pad, there is a full elasticated pen loop about a third of the way down the back cover, so it is out of the way of the strap closure. I've tested it even with a large pen (Pilot Frixion (0.7mm)) and it fits nicely and no issues with the pen interfering with tabs when closed.

Then I started to 'explore' the organiser a bit further, nice and obvious was the 'smart phone' pocket in the front cover, it's elasticated and is a decent depth. I don't own a smart phone myself so I used my iPod Touch for the next photos. The iPod touch is similar size to an iPhone but thinner of course.

It tucks in quite nicely, yet the organiser still closes perfectly. I also discovered that my British Passport (which I have to carry at all times here) fits in there nicely too.

The strap closure is a snug fit in the front and is quite a generous length so the organiser can expand and still be held closed.

As we are looking again at the front cover there are two more pockets on the front cover for business cards or train tickets.

Opening up the organiser again, there is a further full length pocket (shown here with a post card in it) in addition to the three card slots and phone pocket.

And turning over to the back cover there is a full length external exterior pocket, the contents are held securely in this pocket by the strap closure.

I'm going to give the Fusion a 'road test' for a few weeks to see how well it works in day to day use. Again thank you to Filofax for supplying this review sample.


  1. Thanks for the review. I think its pretty sharp. Love all the pockets-front, back and inside and the classic navy color. This would also make a great travel Filofax and ready to be tossed into a backpack, messenger bag or tote without much worry, kind of like the Ranger. I think they were smart to make the trim leather and not vinyl...definitely adds style.

  2. Thanks for the excellent review! I'm glad I saw the pictures along with your review. This is actually pretty sharp! I am usually such a leather snob--but I think it was really that I didn't care for vinyl trim, as Cheryl commented above. But could you tell us what color the rings are? They look almost gold tone to me!

    1. Sorry that's the lighting in the office, they are chrome not yellow or gold!

  3. This is one i may have to give a whirl, but seems I have trouble putting down my Holborn Zip.......((sigh)) I do like the color scheme and all the pockets too. Thanks for the review!

  4. Thanks for a great review, Steve. I like its understated & rugged style, & agree that it would be great for travelling. Also think it would be nice in leather in some different colours.

  5. I've liked this one from first sight :) It's awesome...even more awesome now. Thank for the review :)

  6. Filofax Germany describes it as "faux leather" (Kunstleder) though...

    1. Well UK says different:

      What ever it is made out of it's supple, strong and has the usual properties of leather. I've not done any DNA testing on it though!

  7. Great to see a new model that's not described as "chic", "designed to look cool on the catwalk" etc. It'll be much more at home with First Class passengers from Paddock Wood into Charing Cross! :)

    I'm not personally convinced about iPhone pockets. My A5 Flex has one and I've never used it. The new iPhone 5 would be a snug fit as it's a different size to older models like the iPod Touch and my iPhone 4

    1. I'm using that pocket for my passport rather than a phone or similar. I tend to keep my phone in the outside pocket of my bag, as I stand a better chance of hearing it there and being able to answer it!
      It was a Weekend Saver ticket by the way!! I guessed you might spot it! :-)

    2. I'd have no chance of hearing my phone if is resided in a binder! I have enough trouble now when it is in my bag! However if you were a guy and didn't have a bag, then it could be very useful.

  8. Thanks for the review Steve, I really like the look of this one. All the pockets would come in handy and it's nice to see a binder that isn't pretending to be leather. I think my husband would like this if I could convince him to become a planner!

  9. Thanks for this Steve. I really like the layout and pockets - especially the return to a notepad in the back. I'm not so keen on the fabric though - would probably end up looking a little too rugged for my taste! Hopefully if it is popular they will use this design in other binders, or indeed a different fabric. Still we can't all like everything can we?

    1. Hi Alison - assuming it's similar to the Logic Zip model, which was popular around 15 years ago, the microfibre material will be very hard-wearing and long lasting. My Logic A5 is still in excellent condition and a very study binder.

  10. Is the front closing strap easy to close? It looks fiddly and like it takes more think time than a snap.

  11. Although I wouldn't buy one of these binders, I actually like some of the features.

    The external pockets are well designed, and the strap seems to lay flat when opened and makes the binder easier to slip into a pocket when compared with the more traditional filofax fastener.

    But why is the "Fusion" (which is aimed at men) not made in the sizes that are perhaps more easily associated with men, namely the A4 and slimline variants?

    I might consider buying a couple of these in slimline size (so much easier for a jacket wearing guy to carry two slimlines than one personal), and I can easily see A4 versions of these being used "in the field" (in black though - blue is just being silly).

    Would I pay 40GBP? Certainly not, but I might buy two slimlines at 20GBP each if they were sold empty (ie no fill). Unfortunately, the "chique accessory" tag has probably irrevocably killed the market for guys at this price point. I do wonder how many guys they consulted, before they came up with this range.

  12. One thing I would advise Letts Filofax to consider, and particularly of binders made using "microfibre", is a silver based aintimicrobial solution.

    These solutions are popping up everywhere; notebooks, clothing, even interior surfaces in cars. It's cheap, can be an effective selling point, and would be a really smart move for binders made in microfibre for obvious reasons.

  13. I like Steve's mention of carrying his passport in the "iPhone pocket." I'm not someone likely to ever buy a standalone music player again - smartphones that with memory >32 GB are shortly availablye that will eventually make those products obsolete, IMO. I'm also not likely to place my phone in an organizer - hard enough answering when it's in a pants- or jacket-pocket.

    However, the half-flap pocket is convenient for paper we receive that are larger than the organizer, such as airline boarding passes and customs docs. They can be kept, sticking out the top but unfolded and securely held, in that kind of pocket. My Personal Guildford has been a marvelous travel companion in that regard.

    I'm curious to Tim's speculation, above - whether the fabric is the the Logic's? That would go a long way to allaying my concerns about durability.

    Timely review, Steve - thanks as well.

    1. Hello John - I think your question is whether the Fusion material is the same as the old Logic model. I'm not privy to a sample (and my nearest stockist is now many miles away), but close examination of Steve's photos compared with my Logic suggest the material is very similar.

      The Logic Zip had 11 pockets (in A5 at least)

  14. Of all the new Filofaxes we have seen recently, this is the only one I would consider buying, especially the A5 in blue. But, with funds in limited supply and a shelf full of leather Filofaxes currently not in use, I will wait until I have seen all of the new range before purchasing one.

  15. I think I like it! All those pockets are awesome.

  16. So lovely to see such thoughtfulness in design, function as well as form.I just love all those pockets, large rings in A5 and a strap with plenty room. I wonder if the material is the same as those on the Graphic Filofaxes,as I was disappointed by how easily those wore along the top seam and the material stained pretty easily too.If it were a different and more durable material then I think this could be popular.

  17. Thanks for the review. I actually ordered one of these, A5 size, and I'm waiting for delivery. Even more excited about it since reading your appraisal.

  18. I also admit to being a leather snob, but I did like this one. I much prefer well-made and aesthetically pleasing items made from obviously synthetic materials to the cheap imitation and bonded leathers.

    But for that money, I'm not sure I'd buy it.

  19. Steve and I are proud Man Bag Carriers!!!

  20. I just noticed that eBay have some A5 Fusions available for £39.99 with free P&P. Sounds like a bargain to me - I've ordered one.

  21. Just ordered an A5 Fusion in black to use instead of my A5 Cuban. Hope it's good, haha :D

  22. I received the Fusion as a Christmas gift (Navy Blue Persoanl), it being my first Filofax. So far, I love it. I've received quite a few compliments on it.

    It seems pretty rugged, the material is tough and though I have it pretty stuffed, the strap length is perfect.

    I have an A5 Original coming next week in purple patent, I am anxious to compare.