The Schuyler Quentel: New King James Version

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The Quentel Reference Bible is the flagship edition from Schuyler, a relative newcomer to high-end Bible publishing that focuses on offering interior design and book blocks that rival the quality of their fine leather bindings. In my past coverage of 2014’s Quentel NASB and last year’s Quentel ESV, I have chronicled the establishment and fine-tuning of the format. Now Schuyler is releasing the Quentel in a new translation, the New King James Version, which means fans of the NKJV will now have to make a hard choice between this edition and the excellent Schuyler Single Column NKJV also featured on Bible Design Blog.

THE QUENTEL SERIES
For readers new to the Quentel series, here’s what you need to know: the Quentel uses a traditional double column page design by 2/K Denmark that locates cross references at the bottom of the page rather than between the columns, which is where you’re used to seeing them. This choice allows the columns to be as wide as possible — about 2.75″ — which they need to be, since the Quentel’s Milo typeface is seen at a generous 11 pt. size. This makes these editions very easy on older eyes. The Quentel is now printed in the Netherlands by Jongbloed on 36 gsm PrimaBible paper (opacity rating: 83%), which also helps with readability without adding quite as much bulk as the original NASB edition’s thicker pages. To make a long story short, the Quentel represents a very elegant culmination of classic Bible typography, printed and bound for a lifetime of use.

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One of the things that makes the Quentel so easy to recommend, in addition to the nice paper and the large type, is the fact that it’s now available in several different translations. There are a variety of good single column text settings these days, for example, yet I find myself recommending the Cambridge Clarion more than the rest because there’s one for readers of the KJV, the ESV, the NASB, and the NKJV (and an NIV on the way, if I’m not mistaken). Now the Quentel series has enough breadth to fill a similar niche. If you’re looking for a classic double column reference with generous type size and excellent quality, get a Quentel and you’re set.

WHAT ABOUT THE HINGE?
Another advantage of a growing range is that, as new runs are printed and new translations introduced, the Quentel format grows in refinement. As I’ve said in the past, these Bibles are boringly excellent when it comes to manufacture: Jongbloed’s printing and binding is so consistently fine that you take it for granted, which is the way it should be. My one complaint in the past has been the stiffness of the hinges used to attach the book block to the floppy edge-lined cover. “We’re working on it,” has been the response, and when I reviewed the Schuyler Caxton NLT, there seemed to be definite improvements. How do the hinges on the new Quentel NKJV feel? Loose enough to make me forget that there had ever been an issue.

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Above: The limp edge-lined cover puts up no resistance when opened. The raised section near the gutter is the “hinge,” and it doesn’t interfere with the Quentel opening flat the way past versions have.

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Above: The Quentel will open pretty flat at the title page, shown here, and by the time you get to Genesis it’s smooth sailing.

THE BINDING
My review copy is bound in dark brown goatskin, leather-lined in matching brown. This is the ideal combination for someone who wants to forego the basic black route without making a statement. The art-gilt pages and the wide ribbons in green, purple, and gold don’t exactly blend into the background, but the punch they add is subtle compared to the reaction you get with, say, a red or blue cover.

Like the other Quentel editions, this one features a limp cover stitched all around the edge for added strength. New to this edition, however, are the raised bands on the spine, reminiscent of the way Jongbloed styles the covers for Crossway’s Heirloom Legacy. The imprinting on the spine is gold, and there is a blind stamped Jerusalem cross on front.

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Above: A close-up of the imprinting on the spine. Elegant and nicely spaced.

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Above: The blind emboss allows a large and intricate decoration like the Jerusalem cross to remain subtle. A long thin cross in gold, as seen on prayer books, is quite nice, but gilding this design would give the Quentel too much bling for my taste.

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The imprinting is sharp, and I like the typeface. The scale of the stamped cross on front seems right in proportion to the cover’s size. To my eye, the only thing that seems ‘off’ is the Schuyler logo at the bottom section of the spine, which looks a bit too large and wide to me. It’s a minor point, but my preference is always to have a little breathing room on either side of the imprint.

Unlike paste-down bindings, which put boards under the leather, edge-lined covers like the Quentel’s are prized for their liquid flexibility. A rigid cover keeps the book block in line, whereas a limp one sets the paper free. You can curl an edge-lined cover up and bend it back without leaving any tell-tale creases — but that’s not the point. The point is that a cover capable of such feats feels a certain way in the hand. It’s slouchy and languid, the equivalent of curling up in your favorite chair instead of sitting ramrod straight at the table.

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Above: Flex the cover, not the spine. The Quentel opens flat, which is ideal for reading, and feels comfortable in the lap — though it is a handful.

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Above: The cover is folded in at the edges and stitched securely. Style points for the gilt line running all the way around the circumference.

Whether you want a limp binding on a larger Bible like this is the question. People divide over this point. Some feel that when you’re dealing with a bigger, thicker book block, it’s nice to have some rigidity to the cover for support. If you’re in that camp, edge-lined covers will drive you nuts. They’re about as girdle-like as a stretchy t-shirt.

Consider this, however. A big Bible with a rigid cover is going to function a bit like a dictionary. It’s great for the table-top, but awkward in the hand. With a flexible cover, you can fold back the side of the book you’re not reading for a handier package overall. This is the technique we all used for super-thick mass market paperbacks, which is why all the fantasy and romance novels in the secondhand shops have unsightly creases down their spines. Here’s a tip: you bend the cover, not the spine. This makes the book easier to hold without damaging the binding.

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Above: Proper technique illustrated. The spine remains flat and you curl back the cover. The Quentel will still take two hands to hold, but it’ll be a bit handier.

A SIZE COMPARISON
The Quentel’s cover dimensions are roughly 9.75″ x 6.5″, and it runs 1.75″ thick at the spine. Not huge, but there’s certainly some heft. The measurements are actually quite close to those of my original Crossway Legacy ESV, which was rebound for me by Leonard’s Book Restoration back in 2013. The two books offer an interesting comparison since their outer dimensions are so similar while their interior layout is anything but. Let’s take a look, because this will illustrate the different strengths of a traditional double column layout versus a more reader-oriented single column.

First, here are the two Bibles side-by-side. The Legacy in tan goatskin is on the left, and the Quentel in brown goatskin is on the right:

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Thanks to the fact that the Quentel is available in both black-letter and red-letter editions (more about that below), I was able to create an interesting interior comparison. Schuyler sent me a loose signature from the red-letter edition, which I tucked into the Legacy for a neat side-by-side comparison of the two layouts:

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The Quentel’s double column layout means that a book with 11 pt. type and cross references can be the same size as text-only single column setting with 9 pt. type. True, the Legacy has some room in the margin that could be sacrificed for slightly larger type, but the fact remains, double column settings are more efficient when it comes to fitting words on the page, which makes for a thinner book block. While the Legacy’s novel-like appearance makes for a more immersive reading experience, the Quentel might be more enjoyable for someone who struggles to scan smaller type.

RED-LETTER PITFALLS AND HOW TO AVOID THEM
If you’ve read Bible Design Blog much, you know I’m not a fan of red-letter Bibles. The tradition of setting Christ’s words in red doesn’t go back as far as most people think, and risks giving the impression that some words on the page are more authoritative than others. But red-letter editions are as American as apple pie, and you wouldn’t believe how many people, even knowing my thoughts, write in to ask, “Where can I find such-and-such an edition — but with red letters?” For those of you I can’t talk out of this not-so-traditional tradition, there is good news. The Quentel NKJV comes in both flavors, red-letter and black-letter.

The problem is, lots of red print can be a strain on the eyes, especially if the red verges into the realm of orange or pink, which can happen when the print impression is too light. If you’re going to print a red-letter edition, the trick is go dark, trending more toward blood red than cherry. Schuyler has already mastered the skill by using red to accent chapter numbers and other matter, so it’s not a surprise that they do red-letter right. All the red is shade darker than in past Quentels, which allows the red-letter words of Christ to be dark enough for the desired accent without calling too much attention to themselves. Since the chapter numbers and reference numbers are boldface, they appear darker than the red-letter text, which helps ease the dissonance of setting both Christ’s words and some of the apparatus in the same color.

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Above: Red-letter on the left, black-letter on the right. The red references at the bottom are bold, which gives them some contrast and helps avoid giving the impression that Jesus spoke the numbers, too.

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The only downside to the Quentel’s 11 pt. type is that fewer words per line in a justified column will sometimes create too much space between individual words. In the spread above, you may notice a few instances. This problem, like the propensity toward one-word lines at the end of a paragraph, is built into double column design — one of the trade-offs, you might say.

WRITING IN THE QUENTEL
The fact that I have a loose signature means I was able to do something I usually wouldn’t: test different writing tools on the actual page to see which ones perform best on the 36 gsm PrimaBible paper. I went through my desk and collected nine different instruments, a representative sample of the kinds of pencils and pens people tend to use when writing in their Bibles. Here’s what I chose:

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The Caran d’Ache Swiss Wood pencil (#1) leaves a medium-thick grayish line. The Lamy mechanical pencil (#2) has a thinner, darker impression, and it’s a little sharper and less smooth on the page. The Lamy ballpoint (#3) is pretty typical of the dry-writing genre — which isn’t the worst choice for thin Bible paper, to be honest. The smaller Kaweco brass ballpoint (#4) performs similar to the pressurized Space Pen insert, which is what I used to use all the time for writing in Bibles. The Pigma Micron (#5), with its archival ink, is often touted as the “correct” choice by discriminating Scripture annotators. The Karas Kustom Render K (#6) takes Pilot H-Tec C inserts, which leave a nice, thin line. While fountain pens aren’t recommended, I decided to give two of them a try: the Pilot Custom 74 (#7) features an Extra-Fine nib, and it’s a Japanese EF, much finer than a European nib of the same rating, while the Yard-O-Led Grand Viceroy (#8) has a custom-ground italic/stub nib that started life as a Broad, so it lays down plenty of ink. (Tim Girdler did the grind, by the way. I’m not sure if he’s still working on pens, but I love what he did with this one.) Last but not least, there’s my trusty Tombow highlighter (#9).

First we’ll examine at the front of the page, then flip it over to see the back. I went through Romans 8 and started underlining. The numbers in the margin correspond to the writing instruments listed above. Take a look:

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Both pencils did great. The lines don’t jump out the way the ink does, but they don’t damage the paper at all, and you can even erase them. If you’re worried about writing in your Bible, pencil is the way to go. Both of the ballpoints worked, too. The humble ballpoint doesn’t bleed through, just don’t press too hard. The Pigma Micron and the Pilot H-Tec C stand out more than the ballpoints, and the Pigma Micron actually lays down a thicker line. For an eye-catching accent, either one would make a good choice. Both fountain pens ran into trouble. The EF nib looks fine on the front of the page, though. The B nib is just too juicy for the paper. You can see the ink pooling and feathering at the end of the lines. Wait till you see what the back of the page looks like! I expected the highlighter to bleed through, but it didn’t.

Here’s the reverse of the page:

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Let’s distinguish between show-through and bleed-through. Show-through means you can see the impression of the writing on one side of the page when looking at the other. Bibles are notorious for show-through because of their thin paper, and the problem is more pronounced now compared to vintage India paper, whose rag content (apparently) allowed it to be thinner but more opaque. Bleed-through means the ink actually seeped through the paper. This is a common problem for wet inks like the kind used in fountain pens. The finish on many papers does not hold this kind of ink well. The page absorbs the ink, which gives the lines a feathery look, and in some cases the ink bleeds right through. Fountain pen users seek out paper with coatings that play well with wet ink, even though the drying time with such paper can be considerably longer.

The only pens that bled through the page were the two fountain pens, which isn’t surprising. I expected the B nib to bleed through, but when I was underlining with the EF, the lines looked so sharp that I let myself hope. Alas, 36 gsm PrimaBible is about as fountain pen friendly as a Field Notes journal — not so much. The good news is, with both the pencils there is no bleed-through and practically no show-through. The ballpoints have some show-through, but it’s not too bad, similar to the amount of show- through the printed page itself manifests. The Pigma Micron and the Pilot H-Tec C show through more, I think, but that’s probably because they are darker. This is Bible paper, folks, and hence fairly translucent. For me the most interesting result is the highlighter. Yes, it shows through, so there’s a sickly green cast to the reverse of the page. But it’s actually not terrible.

All this suggests that, if you want to write in your Bible, 36 gsm PrimaBible is a fairly accommodating paper. Unless you use pencil, you’re going to see your annotations through the page. As long as you steer clear of fountain pens, though, everything will be fine. Your marked up Bible won’t look pristine, but it won’t look like a mess, either. It will have the lived-in, customized appearance of a working tool — which is what it ought to be.

The Schuyler Quentel NKJV is available from EvangelicalBible.com in both black-letter and red-letter editions. The cover choices are dark brown, as pictured here, black, dark green, firebrick red, and imperial blue. The price is on the high end of the spectrum at $222, which is what happens when you combine fine quality and small print runs. The Quentel is a lifetime edition. If you want an elegant interpretation of the classic reference Bible design, that’s what this edition is all about.

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138 Comments on “The Schuyler Quentel: New King James Version

  1. Thanks for the review. I’m excited for this NKJV edition and am looking forward to seeing the red leather in person.

    • Red letter has always been an issue. I recall seminary professors commenting about this 40 years ago when I was in school. Not only is the principle questionable, there is also debate as to exactly which words are Christ’s and which are connentary by the evangelists. This is especially the case in John.

  2. “risks giving the impression that some words on the page are more authoritative than others.”

    This is such nonsense against red-letter bibles. I never even thought of such a silly thing until I read it here on this blog. It’s just a feature that people like. End of story.

    • Actually, it’s a real concern. You may not have experienced it, but I have. While it wasn’t the intent of the guy who came up with the idea, it is an unintended consequence. Design choices do impact how people experience the text.

      • Not to mention the entire Bible is the Word of God, the words of Christ. If you’re going to do “red letter” the whole Bible should be red letter!

        • From the Trinitarian bible society website: Many Bible publishers today distribute red-letter Bibles, with the words of our Saviour printed in red (or some other colour) while the rest of the text is in black. The Society holds to the position that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is all equally important, and that by the use of different colour text, the impression is given that some parts of Scripture are more important than others. Furthermore, it is very interpretative. In some passages we are unsure how much was spoken by Jesus. For example, in John 3 Jesus is conversing with Nicodemus. We know that Jesus is speaking in verses 10 to 13, but do His words continue to verse 15, or to verse 17, or to verse 21? In addition, should the words of the pre-incarnate Christ be included, or His words in Revelation? For these reasons we distribute only black-letter Bibles.

          • Red letters neither bother me nor excite me when it comes to a book block. On occasion I do find them useful in finding my spot though. I actually care more that the shade of the red is nice and deep instead of light and almost pink.

          • Quoting from an organization like TBS, who is in the ditch of extremism, is laughable. If they don’t know who’s speaking to who in the bible, they have serious comprehension problems.

        • If you’re going to be legalistic and critically irrational against having the words of your Saviour in red, we could also say that we aren’t under the old covenant, we live under the new covenant.

        • That’s not true the Bible also records lies and even words from Satan or devils. God merely states the lies but are not from Himself.

      • Lighten up people. Red letter is an aid to rememember and find passages more quickly that are traditionally attributed to Jesus. Red letter bibles should not be the only source for serious spiritual or scholarly bible study of the sayings of Jesus.

    • Agreed. Much ado about a personal preference. Thanks said, I take seriously pretty much all of what Mark has to say, even though I don’t ascribe to his preference for paragraph single column format. The double column just suits my eye scan limits better. But there’s so much more here.

  3. The Schuyler Quentel NKJV will put to shame the Cambridge Clarions. The KJV Clarions have such irritating show through it’s not worth the paper it’s printed on. Paper quality is everything. I’m glad to see a red-letter edition from Schuyler finally. They’re currently selling 3 times faster than the black-letter edition.

    • “Not worth the paper it’s printed on”? Ouch! I disagree, obviously. I use mine constantly despite having options with higher gsm, non-curling pages simply because it’s just so good in so many other ways. I can understand, though, if one takes a ‘single issue voter’ approach to paper, that the Clarion’s thinner page wouldn’t satisfy.

      The popularity of red-letter doesn’t surprise me. In a lot of ways, the world of print Bibles is *very* traditional, and your safest bet financially is always going to be old-style double column reference editions with the features American consumers expect. To me the question isn’t whether the changes we’ve introduced are popular, but whether they make good sense from a design perspective. My goal isn’t to stamp out bad and not-so-good design as it is to carve out a little room for better options.

      Oddly enough, because they tend to be more traditional, people who insist on red-letter Bibles today are often the last people who would *introduce* this innovation if it didn’t already exist. I’ve always wondered whether anyone in the denominational journals of the late nineteenth century was grousing about these new-fangled red letter editions.

      • I have been working a Clarion NKJV for a couple of years now. I like it, but agree, the paper is thin. I wish Cambridge would remove all the reference pages and make the paper that much thicker.

      • I really like My clarion. I find it a wonderful size and it’s my first real stab at single column text (minus the message remix). It really is much easier on the eyes to read and engross.
        As for thickness of paper, I just use a pencil in it to prevent show through.

      • ” I’ve always wondered whether anyone in the denominational journals of the late nineteenth century was grousing about these new-fangled red letter editions.”

        Are you on drugs? Or are you intentionally trying to turn away people and publishers from your blog?

        • Read the journals. They groused a lot about other things — the RV was covered — so it’s hard to imagine this wouldn’t have come up. This is the first I’ve heard of a connection between drug use and curiosity about reading old journals. It certainly puts the drug problem in a new light.

          • This conversation has me laughing out loud. I am enjoying everyone’s opinion. Mine is “can’t we just read the text, whether it’s red or black, and enjoy the heck out of it?”

            The reference to Mark possibly being on drugs was the funniest thing I have read today.

            Keep on, Mark! Love your stuff.

            Mike L.

        • Yeah I don’t think Mark realizes how he can sound pretty arrogant sometimes.

      • Replying with humor is so disarming, and when you add some publishing realities, historical context, you sound like the author of this wonderful book…fruits of the Spirit. Thanks, Mark

      • Mark,

        Another great review. I’ve always liked red letter editions. However, your review of this “not-so-traditional tradition” as you aptly said combined with the BDB comments ( seminary professors, John 3, and Old Covenant and New Covenant ) in between your comments ( unintended consequence, financial aspect, traditional people would not introduce red letter editions ) here sheds a new light on this feature.

        The financial aspect…..your words “the safest bet financially”…are you referring to the future value?

        The authoritative question and Richard’s comment, the entire Bible is God’s Word. Given these comments, one could make an argument for not underlining and or highlighting. Moreover, since Schuyler Bibles are constructed with quality materials and designed to last a few generations, Scripture highlighted by one family member may not be the preference of a future family member and much less, the color of highlighter used. Certainly a few considerations here.

        Finally, a very short list of comments appear to be harsh. Hope these people are not in the sales or negotiation profession. Your replies are so diplomatic and tactful…and certainly an example of how our Lord expects us to conduct ourselves while interacting with others.

        Mike

  4. Red letter for me is just harder to read, black print jumps off the page more and the darker the print the better. When it comes to premium Bibles the choices are limited for NKJV readers and based upon the review the Schuyler Quentel looks to be the best choice.

  5. I pre-ordered this very one (dark brown) months ago. I was recently told “It’s in the mail.” I can’t wait to get my hands on this beautiful Bible. As far as red letter goes… My wife’s been red letter all her Christian life. I on the other hand agree with Mark, it is super distracting to me. I’ve tried, but could never get used to it.

    • I never thought about it until I bought a Bible in England and discovered the ‘printing error’ — no red letters. “That’s an American thing,” they told me, and doing some digging I discovered it wasn’t even a very old one.

  6. As the owner of Schuyler Publishers and evangelicalbible.com I want to once again thank Mark for his dedication, determination and unrivaled skill in Bible design and innovation. Without a doubt Mark is the single most important player in the return of quality Bible production. thanks Mark!

      • Speaking of kind words, read some of Sky’s essay work under the “Apologetics” tab at Evangelicalbible.com. He has a way with concision and brevity that sharpen both edges of the sword. Good work.

  7. Red Letter Question: A few comments: Even more problematic is the red letter covering the entire Bible…quite a task. On another note and also interesting is the fact that demand for red letter is different depending on the translation. The NKJV has a strong demand for red letter whereas the ESV & NASB have a much lower demand. I would guess the NRSV has an even smaller demand still.

    • That’s interesting — and I think it tends to confirm my not-very-scientific hunch that ‘traditionalism,’ at least of a sort, plays a part in the choice (just as it might in translation choice).

      • What did you think of the ribbed spine? You might have already mentioned it in your review but I didn’t see it.

        • Nevermind, I reread and saw the raised ridges comment. Thanks for the excellent review Mark.

    • Sky,

      Thanks for your input here about the NKJV having a strong demand for red letter editions. I plan to place an order in a few days for a NKJV Quentel in Antique Brown. This will be another factor for consideration of red letter verses black letter prior to placing the order.

      Mike

  8. Thanks for the review Mark!

    Excellent work from one of my favorite mission-minded ministrys… er companys. 🙂

    I have Schylers single column NKJV and 2 Clarion NKJVs (one which I also had Leonard’s rebind in “Wild West 3” with my clans tartan ribbons from Scotland!).

    I’m excited for any great option for the NKJV which I’ve found to be a wonderfully faithful and transparent translation.

    I may purchase the Quentel just to have another NKJV with this level of quality but aside from a slightly better readability from the puplit there’s little else that draws me to it more than my Clarion.

    The Clarions verse numbers and headings are small and out of the way as much as their poetic or quotet text block are differentiated (excellent for focusing on just reafing Gods Word and not mans additions). I also prefer a single column over every other text block preferring verse by verse single column for preaching. The other deterrent with the Quentel is the lack of room for notes.

    My hope is that Schuyler will one day make a NKJV similar to the affordable and well crafted TBS Westminster KJV. There is still a real need for a robust, not so ornate, reference single column NKJV with space for notes, for Preachers and students who might rather not have something quite so fine on the dashboard or desk (assuming they could spend $222!).

    Thanks again and great work Schuyler!

    • My appologies for the typos… last time I do that on an iPhone, lol!

      • Having finished up at Texas State I understand well!

        The imagery came from a good friend of mine who grew up with Missionary Parents to Papua New Guinea who is working here in North Dakota in the oil patch (as am I). I was out in the field and when I met him he had his completely battered Bible wide open on the dashboard reading an A.W. Tozer book. I looked at him and asked.. “are you a Brother?” and this 25 year old sized me up and gave me a broad grin saying “I’m a lion for the Lord!”.

        We have since become good friends… so encouraged at what the Lord is doing. Bringing the David’s out from amongst the Sauls!

        Great to see Sky chime in as well. Truly appreciate the work and team there at EB.. wonderfully servant-hearted.

        ~C

    • Affordable options is another reason I’m grateful that Schuyler will be producing a hardcover option of their Canterbury KJV. I’d definitely buy the Quentel NKJV if there were more affordable options.

    • I’m interested in the Schylers single column NKJV and I would greatly appreciate some input on that particular edition. Is it easy to read from a pulpit? How much does it weigh? Also, I wonder, compared to the new quentel, is it small or larger? Also, do you like your single column NKJV? If so, what about it make it desirable. Thanks

      • This is in reply to Aaron’s post concerning Schuyler’s single column NKJV.

        I have this Bible in the dark blue and it is probably my overall favorite edition of the Bible. It is easy to read in my opinion, although I am not a minister. If I recall correctly, the type size is 10.5 point, and there is enough space between each line for good readability, along with enough white space on most pages to avoid that “wall of words in your face” look that some single column formats have. The printing is nice and dark, which my older eyes like and need. The paper quality seems fine to me. This edition is not totally line matched, with perhaps about half the pages line matched and half not, but there is not much ghosting imo. It doesn’t have cross references, but it does include some text footnotes, which I like. The quality seems superb and it lies flat nicely. It’s a black letter edition (I actually prefer red), and it has four nice ribbons. I don’t know exactly how much it weighs and I don’t have a way to accurately weigh it. I believe it’s probably slightly smaller and lighter than the NKJV Quentel, but I don’t have a Quentel for comparison. I’m a woman with small hands and I don’t find it too large and heavy, although I wouldn’t want it to be much bigger. I often carry it to church and to Bible study.

        I’m sorry I can’t provide more specific answers. Maybe someone else can and will.

        If you are interested in a single column format NKJV, I believe you would be pleased with this one. It’s a beautiful, easy to read edition. It’s my understanding that when all the current stock is gone, it will not be reprinted, so keep that in mind if you are at all thinking of buying one.

      • Hi Aaron,

        I can probably aid in a few of your questions as I have both the NKJV Single Column from Schuyler and the Clarion NKJV from Cambridge.

        One of the main reasons I am considering the Quentel is their reference section. I did not think I would miss this in the NKJV Single Column but found I truly did. I have found my Clarion to be one of the most well thought out Text Blocks I’ve used. The manner in which they allowed quoted texts to stand out and minimized headings and other features which might detract from just reading are all accomplished both gracefully and with obvious purpose. If Cambridge would simply come out with a larger version of the Clarion with room for notes I’d purchase it pre-order! 🙂

        The ghosting on the Schuyler NKJV has been an issue for me and one of the reasons I tend not to use it while preaching, though I enjoy the overall aesthetics, font size and choice. It is a very well constructed Bible (I own the 2nd Edition) and the Blue with Silver is one of the most beautiful color combinations I’ve come across… closer to Navy than Royal Blue.

        I’m sure the Quentel NKJV is every bit the same high level of craftsmanship the NKJV Single Column is… looking forward to comparing them!

      • Aaron, I received my NKJV Quentel earlier today, so I can now compare it to the Schuyler SC NKJV as to size. The footprints seem identical to me, but the Quentel might be ever so slightly thicker, but not much. Measuring with a steel tape, I get about the same measurements for each, about 1-1/2″ to 1-5/8″ thick depending on how hard I press each cover down. I don’t think there could be any more than about 1/8″ difference; hardly detectable. For size, the two are just about equal. Their outside measurements are about 9-3/4″ x 6-1/2 to 6-5/8″ (hard to know where to start measuring at the spine). I don’t have a sensitive scale, but the weights seem about equivalent to me. Beth may have posted both weights somewhere in this discussion; I can’t remember. (I think the Q is just under three pounds and the SC is probably similar.) I hope this helps.

        I’m going to post more details on my impressions of the Quentel at the end of this thread. I will say, I like the Quentel as well as the SC, and I really wasn’t expecting to! My SC is dark blue with silver, which I personally find more stunning and more unique than the brown with gold, but that’s simply personal color preference. I didn’t want to have two Schuyler NKJV’s in dark blue, so I ordered the dark brown for the Quentel, and it’s beautiful. Please read my post at the bottom if you want more details.

        It probably mainly comes down to whether you want the references or not, and whether you prefer single or double columns. The SC has 10.5 pt. type and is only about half line-matched, and the DC Q has 11 pt. type and is line-matched, and includes references. Both have decent-sized verse numbers within the paragraphs, but the Q’s seem slightly bolder to me. The SC is black letter, and the Q is available in black or red letter. Both of these Bibles are extremely, and equally, readable in my opinion.

        I hate to see the SC discontinued, but the Quentel is an awesome edition, too. We are blessed to have either one, much less both, from which to choose.

        • Aaron, I just saw below that the SC and the NKJV Q have the same footprint, and the SC weighs just slightly less than the Q. (2 lbs. 12.8 oz. vs 2 lbs. 15.2 oz, IIRC.) Beth has provided a lot of info on these–thanks, Beth!!

    • I’m jumping back in time and conversation here, but I note that the forthcoming Schuyler KJV will be offered exactly as you suggest, in a variety of cover options at sharply decreasing price points, but with the best quality paper and book block throughout.
      I am surmising that our ever creative Sky took this approach on the still most read English translation so one could have one to mark up, and one for the heirs to wonder if you ever opened your Bible! And he likely got a better price on a larger print run for this project. We are all grateful for the not coincidental appearance of Mark’s blog and Sky’s mission. SDG!

  9. What a bad week to have this distraction for those of us writing Good Friday/Resurrection Sermons! 🙂 As usual, your reviews are worthy of the text they represent. I agree with Sky and those with similar sentiments regarding your instrumental voice in representing our (the high quality Bible community’s) interests. Thank you for lending your talents to this and making the Quentel and other Bibles like her, a reality. Further kudos to Sky Cline and Evangelicalbible.com, who continue to raise the bar, both in their production and in their amazingly friendly service. I’ve ordered several Bibles with them and have had the same great experience each and every time! When I grow up, I hope to work for them on the West Coast! 🙂
    As it pertains to the Quentel, I can’t wait to hold my own copy, which at $222.00 is profoundly reasonable given the years that it will last beyond my own life, prayerfully in the hands of one of my children! It excites me to know that there will be a standard bearer for quality in their time that will lead them to further treasure God’s Word! Okay, back to that Good Friday message! 🙂

    • If my previous post intimated that I felt the price was not commiserate with the level of craftsmanship, my apologies, that was not my intent. I concur with the above post and have my progeny at heart as well with each purchase. So thankful that there is such craftsmanship available today. I would still love to see Schuyler venture into some of the “Circuit-Rider” territory that Crossway has with some of their releases.

      ~C

  10. A.W. Tozer book—If you like this writing checkout Mt Zion Bible Church Chapel Library. A divine ministry that provides the deepest classic evangelical literature known for free. They have a huge warehouse library that gives away amazing books and booklets on Christ for God’s sake. Get on the mailing list for the “Free Grace Broadcaster” a quarterly booklet that is topical in nature containing 8 or so writings on a different topic each time. Like modesty, Hell, Communion and Union with Christ, The Blood and the Cross etc….
    Mt Zion Bible Church/Chapel Library
    Address: 2603 W Wright St, Pensacola, FL 32505
    Phone:(850) 434-0058
    Hours: Open today · 9AM–5PM

    • Will do Jeff, thanks !
      I’m a voracious reader and there is not much left to place on my Library (or in my iPad).

  11. Mark, and excellent review. I love the fact that you bring to my attention, features that I wouldn’t otherwise notice. This will be my second Quentel, and though I’m a ‘bible-marker’, I haven’t bought myself to annotate a Quentel yet. Probably wont either.

    What I love so much about the Schuyler brand (this will be my 4th) is the fact that (as Mark highlights) they’ve created the design for the block and the cover. It truly feels like a product designed from the ground up. Apple told me for years that my software and hardware should be made by the same people, perhaps Schuyler are to bible publishing, what Apple are to tech.

  12. Ford, Chevy. Ginger, Mary Ann. Apples, Oranges.
    Amusing to me that people will argue red letter vs. black. To me it is all about personal preference such as art or music.
    Maybe we should all agree on two things here. Mark has given us another fantastic review!
    Second, the word of God is beautiful in any color!

    P.S. I opted for a dark brown……….red letter!
    Have a Blessed day!

    • Well, I don’t think it’s all relative and simply a matter of taste, but I do agree that it’s a fantastic review. As to your second point … I want to believe, but there are some Cambridge covers from the 1970s that test my faith.

      • I’ve got one of those 70s model Cambridge KJV, Turquoise 8vo refs. India paper, English Hand Grained Morocco Leather Lined. Beautiful quality bible.

        • It’s dated 15 N 76 at the bottom of the last page in a Revelation 22 (how you date some Bibles)

    • I’ve got notice of the shipment of my new black, red letter. I can’t wait. My 8th bible from Evangelicalbibles.com.

      • Received mine Saturday and it’s wonderful. The size and weight is perfect (I have large hands). I got the Black Red Letter version. In my opinion is perfect. Congratulations to Sky for an excellent product, if I can dare call God’s word that, I intend no disrespect. If you’re undecided, get one. The NKJV is a fluid read and retains the respectful prose of the Authorized Version. The maps are excellent as well.

        Now the new edition of the KJV that’s coming this fall …

  13. On a quick aside: Where did you get your book stand? I’m in the market for one.

  14. A new lurker, here: I’m trying to decide on a “reading Bible” in NKJV or NASB (probably). How much does this tome weigh? That’s a metric I can rarely get a good bead on on the Web; reviews never mention it. “Shipping weight” is irrelevant (although it provides me with an upper-bound). My Bible with the best print is a KJV study bible, but it gets heavy after a while.

    I assume that a Clarion would weigh quite a bit less than this Schuyler?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Yes, the Clarion is both smaller and lighter. I don’t have the relative weights, but I’ll see if I can get them. For reading, the Clarion’s single column layout and smaller size are advantages … so long as you don’t *need* the larger type.

      • Thanks for the intel. I don’t have many leather Bibles for comparison with the beauties you review, and the nearest Christian bookseller storefront mostly sells Holman products, so I’m trying to triangulate my selection based on what I can scrape off the Web. I still have my go-to Bible as a teenager, a leather Oxford Scofield, which remains my lightest Bible — but it’s gotten a little delicate in our old age, and I’d prefer somewhat larger print. Alas, I find most of the typefaces I encounter these days to be downright ugly, so I was happy to land my KJV study Bible from Nelson.

        And thank you for this blog of yours!

    • Fr. Symeon, a Goatskin Clarion weighs approximately 1 lb. 12 oz. The Quentel NKJV weighs approximately 2 lbs. 15 oz. Hope that helps!

  15. Great review, as usual, Mark! Two points…Why is high rag content India paper unavailable anymore…two–Could these Bibles be distributed through the larger Bible store chains? The “traditionalists” you mentioned are often older and not computer literate. They tend to shop locally and in person. I often encourage my parishioners to invest in at least one quality Bible just for themselves or a loved one, and a number have taken me up on it. God bless….Steve

    • Nicholas Gray, the former head of R. L. Allan said the demise of rag content was the result of EU regulations.

      The problem with shopping locally now is that no one stocks quality editions (not that they were plentiful back in the day).

      • Interesting indeed.. how does that change the feel of the paper? I had a Schofield Study Bible years back that I kept purely for the pages. It was my first high quality goatskin Bible I bought while at Moody but the actual pages had the most solid robust but silky feel to it. It was also the first Bible I owned that had the pages cut convex vs. concave.

        I’d love to tell you what gsm the Schofield was etc. but my house burned down in Hawaii several years ago! So thankful for the good lessons learned through that, but I do miss some of my Bibles & Journals :).

  16. Sounds like Schuyler shrunk their Quentel to the size of an ESV Single Column Legacy which is quite a feat, considering the starting point was the huge NASB Quentel. Can someone tell me if the NKJV Quentel is smaller than the ESV Quentel?

      • Thanks Beth–wondering if there will be a 2nd or 3rd edition ESV Quentel with similar features to the NKJV–spine hubs and 4 mm thinner? Sounds like you’ve perfected the Quentel with the NKJV.

        • The next printing of the Quentel ESV will be thinner (we’re set to use the same 36 GSM paper as the NKJV), but it will not have raised spine ridges. Due some time this summer.

          • Beth, how does the NKJV Quentel compare with Schuyler’s single column NKJV (2nd printing) as far as size and weight? I love my beautiful blue SC NKJV, but have had my eyes on the Quentels from the beginning and keep talking myself out of ordering one. The NASB Quentel’s heft scared me away and my fear’s not totally gone, I’m afraid.

            My two most expensive Bibles are the Schuyler SC NKJV and an Allan NKJV, both lovely in their own ways. I may have to have the Quentel. (“Bertrand Effect”) After all, I have three children who will inherit my Bibles. 🙂

            Although this is laughably premature, do you consider the new NKJV Quentel to likely be the “ultimate Quentel”? Could a second printing possibly be improved in any way? Smaller, lighter? How much room for improvement is there?? Each Quentel, so far, seems better and more beautiful than the last! Should I go for it now? Oh me.

            I just have to add my appreciation to Schuyler and EB for their wonderful presentations of God’s word. You’re now alone in the number one spot in my book. A premium quality binding deserves a text block of equal quality. (Ahem, you-know-who.) Many, many thanks!

          • cec, the Single Column NKJV and Quentel NKJV have the same footprint. The Quentel is just a few millimeters thicker. The SC weighs 2 lb, 12.8 oz, and the Quentel 2 lb., 15.2 oz.

            It really is premature to declare this the “Ultimate Quentel” but so far, we do believe it to be our best edition yet. Now if we could just get it to brew coffee…

            😉

          • Oh, I forgot to add, Beth and Sky:

            And thanks for offering the NKJV Quentel in a choice of black letter and red letter editions! Some people have such strong feelings on this detail that a choice of the two is truly showing care for your customers.

            (When–I’ve stopped saying “if”– I order, it will be for the red letter.)

          • Beth, thanks for the very helpful info re the size and weight of the NKJV Quentel vs the SC NKJV.

            If the next printing does brew coffee, I guess I’m hanging on to my coffee maker, because I gave in and ordered the brown, red letter Quentel yesterday! I can’t wait to see it!

            I was tempted to order the beautiful blue again, but those pretty ribbons lured me to the brown. I now have three premium-bound NKJV Bibles and am still looking for a nice, very readable NASB. Oh well…

            If the NASB Q slims down a little more someday, who knows what might happen.

            I need to stay away from Bertrand’s pages!

          • cec, the 2nd Edition Quentel NASB is only about 1 mm thicker than the NKJV. Not likely to slim down any more, as it already has the same paper as the NKJV. Enjoy your new Quentel! (That’s the one I chose for my personal copy. 🙂 )

      • Beth, thanks so much for your continuing helpful information here.

        If I like my NKJV Q half as much as I think I will, I’m now seriously considering an order for the second printing of the NASB Q. I keep flip-flopping as to which is my second-favorite translation–the ESV or the NASB. I have Crossway’s calfskin Heritage ESV, which I like (mine was finished much more nicely than the one Mark received and reviewed), but I’m still seeking a nice NASB for extended reading.

        Can you recap here how the second or later printings of the ESV Q and the NASB Q (and perhaps the future KJV Q) compare with the NKJV Q as to their features? You’ve already provided the info that the latest NASB Q is just one mm thicker than the NKJV Q with the same paper, and that the newest ESV Q will be slimmed down as well. It’s my understanding that all of them now have the nicer leather liners. What about the presentation pages, maps, and red accents? Many thanks!

        • cec, all of the current Quentels have calfskin liners except the Antique Marble Brown ESVs and first edition NASB. (Only Black is left.) The current ESVs and NASBs don’t have the new maps yet, but the ESVs will with the new printing late this year. We don’t have another printing of the NASBs on the schedule at this time, but it won’t likely be this year. The presentation pages and red accents are the same in all but the first edition Quentel NASB.

          • Thanks again, Beth, for your patience and very helpful information! I received my NKJV Quentel earlier today, and it is absolutely awesome! Schuyler just keeps hitting it out of the park.

            I’m trying to decide between the Allan reader’s NASB (less heft and thankfully has a Jongbloed text block) and the 2nd ed. Quentel NASB (in all its awesomeness). My bank balance needs to recover a bit, anyway. 🙂 I’ve also ordered a Schuyler KJV in purple last week–you had me at “sale.” Keep up the good work!

  17. This bible looks wonderful. I received the NASB Quentel as a gift when it first came out but it’s just too big for my liking. The font is too big, the book too big, and that hinge is so stiff.
    It is very well built but I just don’t like it. Unfortunately 🙁
    Thank you Mark, your review is really good!

  18. Well I have been waiting for over a year for this bible and it’s finally arriving this coming Tuesday. Although I have several black letter only bibles, this one is coming with red letters. I’m glad it’s a bit smaller than the Quentel ESV and the Brown looks great. I agree with Mark – if you are going to have a “colored cover” the dark brown is unique but not a statement.

    I just can’t move away from an essentially byzantine text to a critical text. The majority of manuscripts along side the geographical closeness to Antioch and then there is the problem of the major three older scripts that don’t agree with each other? Anyway, an updated language is needed since translation is about communicating clearly and understanding what’s being communicated. Hence the purchase of the Quentel NKJV.

    Having the Clarion and actually having pages completely curl up while preaching, I must agree with
    the commenter who also didn’t like this bible, regardless of the version. Perhaps if you just read it, but if you study a page for any significant time, the pages just will not cooperate.

    As far as single column verses double, I don’t want my bible to read like a novel. Close proximity of words in a verse help me to visually see it all and more easily remember, but that’s just me. I always read with a view to meditate and remember – to think slowly and carefully on the words. Not that others don’t, but it’s having them in a close cluster of words helps me visually.

    I have always enjoyed the reviews Mark and they have helped me decide on bibles. I think you are very fair in your assessments. Thanks!

  19. Another excellent Bible review on what sounds like another outstanding edition from Schuyler. Thanks Mark. I always love your reviews.

  20. Just wanted to comment on the comparison between the Legacy’s single column layout and the Quentel’s double column layout because I think you have a bit of a typographical blind spot when it comes to this issue.

    When I started reading this blog a couple years ago, I was reading the Bible almost exclusively on my smartphone because something about printed Bibles turned me off to them despite the fact that I generally prefer printed books over e-books. You argued that the double column layout made the Bible feel more like a reference book and less like, you know, a book. I was convinced that this was the main thing getting in the way of my reading pleasure. That is, until I purchased two single column Bibles, the ESV Reader’s Bible and the Legacy, which share two problems to a different extent.

    The first problem, obviously more prevalent in the Reader’s Bible, is thin paper. I say thin rather than transparent, because I think the feel of paper matters as well. No matter how opaque onion skin paper is, I hate the way it feels when I turn a page. The second problem, more prevalent in the Legacy, is too many words per line. You rightly point out, “fewer words per line in a justified column will sometimes create too much space between individual words,” but this effect can be significantly lessened using professional software to adjust hyphenation and justification settings. On the other hand, having too many words per line makes for very uncomfortable reading, especially at small font sizes, although most readers are unaware of this. But do a side by side comparison of otherwise identical text at twelve words per line and seven words per line, and the difference in readability will be striking.

    This brings me to the benefit of columns. Your claim that “double column settings are more efficient when it comes to fitting words on the page” is only half true. Simply increasing the number of columns can have this effect where you have a lot of line breaks, like in poetry, but everywhere else, you’ll end up with the same or even fewer words per page. When it comes down to it, more columns just reduces the width of each line, which allows you to comfortably reduce the font size, which is really what fits more words on the page. This is something that any single volume book with a large amount of text or illustrations can benefit from, including novels.

    By the way, there’s one thing that a lot of double column layouts get wrong, namely, gutter width. We know that larger margins can do a lot to improve readability by cushioning the text, but this is especially important when the margin has text on both sides. For some examples of double columns done right, look no further than the first printed book, the Gutenberg Bible, and the recently published Harry Potter book one illustrated edition.

    • If my “blind spot” is that I don’t realize thin paper can detract from readability, or I don’t realize simply waving the single column wand isn’t a panacea (especially re: words per line), well … I have actually written about both of these concerns time and again during the blog’s long history.

      I’ve also gone into detail about why double column settings allow more words to be fitted on the page. I do appreciate you spelling it out, but again, this is less a case of me throwing out half-truths and, thanks to my blind spots, not knowing any better, and more my relying on an accurate shorthand to keep from having to repeat every explanation in every post.

      One last thing: I know people think “software can fix that” when it comes to spacing problems in narrow columns, but the fact is, the reason you see this in a Bible like the Quentel is that nobody’s shown the designers at 2K how InDesign works. There are challenges inherent in double column justified text (just as there are in single column) and they aren’t fixable, even by software. If the solutions were that simple, the problem would be … well, fixed.

      • Blind spot was a poor choice of words. I know you’ve talked about thin paper and the mechanics of single column vs double column. I can count on one hand the blogs I read regularly and yours is at the top of the list. You sparked my interest in typography and book design and helped me to think more about the way I read the Bible, so I have a lot of respect and appreciation for your work.

        What I meant was that regarding single column vs double column, I think you tend to overemphasize aesthetics and personal preference, and underemphasize readability, which is much less subjective. Yes, you admitted that the Quentel is more readable than the Legacy, but you attributed this purely to font size. I would argue that line length has a larger affect on readability than font size. And the point I was trying to make was that the main purpose of double column settings is to decrease line length, not to fit more words per page. That’s the purpose of decreasing the font size. Of course, these two things are typically used in conjunction.

        It sounds like you prefer single column mainly because it looks more like a novel, but the thing is, most novels are single column because they’re comparatively short. Should we treat the Bible like a dictionary or textbook? No. We should treat it like a really long book or collection of books. Because that’s what it is.

        I chose my words carefully when I said the effect of too much space between words can be lessened using software. Lessened, not eliminated. Speaking from experience, tweaking hyphenation and justification settings can work magic on narrow columns. The designers at 2K have done an admirable job with this. Once mitigated, this is not nearly as much of a problem for readability as too many words per line or onion skin paper.

  21. Thank you for passing along this thought. I have much difficulty reading the references in Allans Sovereign Bible; although the text size is acceptable.Please consider that the same eyes reading the text, NEED to see the references! I look forward to purchasing two or three Schuyler Canterbury K.J.V.s and I trust this will not be an issue. God Bless, and thanks much!

  22. How do the new maps measure up against the Oxford maps that were found in past editions of the Quentel?

    • Mark, I wish you would have commented on the maps since they were designed by Schuyler with Dr. Beitzel as the editor-in-chief. We tried to design them with practical considerations in mind as well as using the latest technology to show relief.

  23. Ok. You all have covered most of the bases, including which writing instruments are best to desecrate this beautiful piece of Bible art. So please help me, I’m really liking using the stick on tabs for quick location of books of our Bible. I just can’t imagine doing that to a Quentel. I am considering buying a second ESV Omega for just that, and no, I am not made of $$$$. Any other ideas? I’ve thought of having ribbons added by Leonard’s or another rebinder. That might work for most applications, except for listening to someone like John MacArthur, or James Boice. Aren’t they gifted?

  24. I think with this NKJV Quentel, Schuyler has perfected the design of the Quentel line. With the raised hubs and the trimmed down size due to the 36gsm paper (which originally started out with the giant NASB Quentel with 45 gsm paper), the NKJV Quentel is the best so far. Now NKJV lovers have an amazing edition of the Bible. I have an ESV Quentel 2nd edition and am very happy with it, so I probably won’t be buying the NKJV Quentel, but it sure is tempting!

    I would like to see pictures and hear about the new maps used in the NKJV Quentel though.

  25. I’ve had the Bible for a week now and been reading it every day. This is definitely the nicest reading Bible I’ve ever had. It’s too big to preach with for me and since it doesn’t have wide margins, I wouldn’t use it as a study Bible, but it is perfect for just the pure pleasure of reading the Word. That’s why I bought it. The font is sharp and crisp. The line matching and opacity of the paper makes the text pop right out, uncluttered, and nicely spaced. I even like the separation between the textual variant references and the cross references. It makes scanning quickly to those areas and back to the text very easy. The numbers for the verses stand out making it easy to find verses, and the number and letters for the references are there if you need them, but are inconspicuous enough to not detract at all from the text. Everything is very well thought out. The leather is nice, the binding and and raised hubs are nice, the ribbons, etc. Everything about it is classy. It’s a Bible that sits there and just begs to be read, and once you open it, it’s hard to put it down. I can read for quite a while with no stain or fatigue on my eyes/brain.

    The only problem I have is the red letter. First of all the shade of red is beautiful. It’s a deep red, not pinkish. Very easy to read and again contributes to the overall classiness. However, unfortunately, there is a printing error in that the red color is inconsistent. Particularly in Mark and Luke, there are pages where the red is a shade lighter as though the printer was running out of ink. There is no consistent pattern to it, but there is a difference. It does bother me because if find it more difficult to read the lighter shade of red. It takes away from the reading experience and is a distraction for me. I’m wondering if all the red letter Bibles are like this or only some of them (mine included). I’ve had this problem with a Cambridge Bible in the past and Baker Books replaced if for me with one that was not afflicted with this problem. I’m tempted to send this one back to Schuyler for one that doesn’t have this problem, but I don’t know how many Bibles are like this. It really only seems to be in Mark and Luke. If it weren’t for the inconsistent red print, this would be 5 star Bible. Maybe I’ll give them a call on Monday and see what they can do.

    God Bless,
    David

    • Beth,

      Has there been a reply to David’s question / concern on the red letter edition print being lighter in Mark and Luke? Maybe I missed it. If not, please advise if this is a problem with all the red letter editions, or only a few. Do you have the red letter edition? If so, is it noticeable in your copy? I’m currently undecided on red verse black. If the red letter is lighter in Mark and Luke in all copies, this would certainly be a deciding factor. Thanks!

      Mike

      • Mike, I’m not Beth, but I saw your post in my email notifications and was curious, too.

        I’ve looked at several passages in my NKJV Quentel tonight, and “perhaps” some of the red print is slightly lighter in some places in Mark and Luke. I say perhaps, because I can’t totally convince myself it’s not some kind of optical illusion, even eyeing them as nearly side by side as I can. I say that because in general, the pages that are mostly printed in red, such as the last part of Matt 10 and the first part of Matt 11 on facing pages, do appear extremely dark red. Mark 4’s and Luke 11’s pages likewise look just as dark red to me. Much shorter passages in red on other pages, such as Mark 14: 48-49 and 14: 62, appear slightly lighter to my not-perfect eyes, which could be at least partially due to the contrast between the red and the larger amount of black print surrounding it–or maybe not. Objectively, black is a little easier on the eyes than red. (What a waffling non-answer!)

        In any case, I could not detect any variation within a single page or on facing pages, of the ones I checked, and the print that might appear slightly lighter is not what I’d call light. It’s easy to read, so I don’t find it problematic for me personally. I had never noticed any difference.

        I only spot checked, and in artificial light at night. I’ll look again in daylight and post if my perceptions change much. I’m interested in what others see in their copies, and in the comments of those more knowledgeable about how our eyes perceive.

        While I grew up with red letter editions of the KJV in the dinosaur days and still like red letter editions, it’s not a big deal to me one way or the other. Most of my Bibles are black letter editions. I do greatly appreciate having both options available in Schuyler’s NKJV. To each his own.

        • CEC,

          Thank you for your investigation, comments and input. Your explanation certainly makes sense. From your description, I tend to think it is perception and the fact that black is darker than red. I’m no expert in printing, but I’ve noticed in many cases with modern copiers, black ink signatures almost always copy better than blue ink signatures…and even that varies depending upon the shade of blue ink.

          When all is said, red letter verse black letter really does not matter…..all God’s Word. However, I do have a deferent perspective after reading Mark’s reasons for preference, followed by all the other comments. Since I will be buying a Canterbury, I may well get the NKJV Quentel in red letter…..or maybe I will order a black letter too.

          • …oooppppssss……spelling error….different perspective ( instead of deferent perspective )…..

      • Thanks for jumping in, cec! 🙂

        Mike, cec’s answer pretty well covers it. Is it possible that some red letter pages have a barely perceptible difference in the depth of color? Yes, as the pages are printed at different times and perhaps on different presses. As cec notes, the red will also look different depending on the level of black ink around it. A customer did return a red letter edition because he thought the print was uneven. Three sets of eyes in our office couldn’t agree on what they saw. If it’s that hard to see, it’s not defective. (Of course, if you don’t like the Bible for any reason, you may return it provided it is in new condition.) That said, black ink will always be easier to read than red ink, no matter how dark the shade of red. If you have vision problems, you may want to stick with black letter.

  26. I received my NKJV Quentel earlier today, and just WOW!

    After opening the outer shipping carton, my first thought was, “The box sure is big.” Then I opened that box and thought, “This Bible is beautiful!”

    I sound like a broken record, but I would not want this Bible to be one bit bigger or heavier. (Yes, I said that about the NKJV SC, too, and this one exceeds it just a tiny bit.) That said, it’s not all THAT huge. Placed beside my ESV Study Bible, there’s a significant difference especially in thickness. I’d say this is a large hand-held Bible.

    What I love about this Quentel:
    The supple dark brown cover, the brown leather liner, the art gilding, the quality paper, the nice 11 pt. type, the line matching, the good-sized verse numbers, the excellent readability, the red accents, the ribbons, the choice of black or red letter editions and the nice shade of red in the RL edition, and even the double columns, along with most everything else about it. I’ve tried to convince myself, ala M.B., that a single column text is much easier to read than double column, but honestly I don’t think it is if the font sizes are similar. I’ve read most of the day, switching between the two a good bit, and I think this edition is every bit as readable as my SC NJKV with 10.5 pt. type, maybe even slightly more so–and I love that one. Perhaps the absolute ideal column width would fall somewhere between these two, but both are extremely readable and easy on the eyes.

    What I would wish for if everything were possible in a perfect world:
    A slightly smaller footprint and less weight, but still with at least 10 to 10.5 pt., nice dark type. (I know, I know.) I’d trade a little bit of opaqueness for this as well. (The paper feels and looks great, though.)
    At least verse numbers to go with the textual/translation notes. The references have red chapter and verse, of course, but the notes don’t, and that makes it more difficult to match them with the applicable verses. I actually use the notes more than I use the references, so verse numbers for the notes would be helpful to me.

    If I was forced at gunpoint to come up with more improvements:
    A fourth ribbon, in brown, to go along with the gold, purple, and green ones. I don’t need this; but the SC has four ribbons. No big deal. The ribbons are beautiful!
    The presentation page is totally plain, which doesn’t really matter one bit, and is much better than the “loud” ones in the original Quentels. Just…plain.

    That’s it. The cover looks and feels wonderful, as does the brown liner. The stitching and gilt line looks great. This Bible lay almost totally flat right out of the box, so I’m not seeing any hinge or other problem at all. No crinkling, no squeaks, just wonderful. The ribbons are very evenly spaced. The gold gilding looks smooth and thick, and the art gilding under it is a nice salmon, slightly coppery color that looks better with the brown cover than pure red would. The raised bands on the spine are nice but aren’t too pronounced. One surprising thing is the back of the title page only states that it is “printed” by Jongbloed in the Netherlands, not “printed and bound” there.

    I’m not very knowledgeable about Bible maps, but there have been questions posted so I will try to supply some details. The maps are not glossy and they look very attractive, with mostly soft colors. There are 16 pages of them (8 double sided), but a few span two pages so there are 12 maps listed. There is also a map index.
    The maps are:
    World of the Patriarchs
    Israel’s Twelve Tribal Allotments (2 facing pages)
    Route of the Exodus
    Kingdom of Saul, David, and Solomon
    Divided Kingdom
    Israel’s United and Divided Kingdoms (chart of kings and prophets and dates)
    Assyrian and Babylonian Empires
    Persian and Greek Empires
    Ministry of Jesus (2 facing pages)
    Jerusalem and the Passion of the Christ
    Apostles’ Early Ministry
    Missionary Journeys of Paul, with inset of Paul’s Journey to Rome (2 facing pages)
    Roman Empire and Early Christianity

    The maps seem to have a lot of detail and show relief. The map index is the front and back of a page and a little over half of a third page.

    There are several thick blank pages in front and back, which I could do without in the interest of thinness, unless they are necessary to the binding. There is a Contents page and Preface to the New King James Version. The Concordance is in three columns with good white space between, with red accents.

    I’m more pleased with the Quentel than I expected. This edition is really a beautiful presentation of God’s word!

    • cec, glad to hear you are so pleased with your new Quentel! Would you mind posting this as a customer review on our website? Just click the Review tab on the individual product page of the Bible you purchased. We’d appreciate it. Thanks! Enjoy your new Bible! 🙂

      • Beth, I will be glad to do that. And I am enjoying it immensely! Many thanks for the effort and workmanship y’all put into producing your Bibles.

        Again, thanks for your patience and helpfulness. Sometimes it’s hard to make decisions when you can’t see the actual product in your hands. I always have a zillion and one questions and you always provide answers!

        • Beth, CEC’s review reads suspiciously like your prearrival publicity emails, only it’s longer than Genesis One! I just got mine in green, and have only had time to read John and Romans, so I haven’t taken note of all this other detail. Nice knowing it’s all you said and more. It reads REALLY GOOD.LOL.

          • Long or short, we love reviews, Frank! You could even write, “It reads REALLY GOOD” on our website. 😉 Enjoy your new Quentel!

          • I shall. And I am enjoying the Word in its shiny new vehicle. Fp

          • Frank, I assure you the thoughts are all mine, not EB’s publicity, and I could have written more. I type faster than I talk! I find reviews immensely helpful to me, and I like to return the favor.

            If I’d left out the map info, it would have been shorter than Gen 1, LOL
            .
            I hope you enjoy yours as much as I’m enjoying mine, and please try to think of more than four words for your review. 🙂

  27. I’m really surprised anyone would recommend the Clarion. It was a lemon from the beginning. Especially the KJV Clarion. You can now get notetaker/journaling bibles with good opaque paper and print for under $30. Or you can get the Clarion with cheap, irritating, show-thru paper for over $100, plus the printing isn’t even that good.

    • I have access to, let’s just say, a lot of Bibles, and I use this lemon almost weekly for teaching, have had one rebound and am thinking of having another one done, despite the 20s GSM paper being less opaque than the 30s GSM that seems to be the sweet spot. The reason I use and recommend this lemon is that the layout is fantastic and the form factor is quite handy. As an all-around edition for reading, study, and teaching (available in a variety of translations) the Clarion is hard to beat right now, and will be until the higher spec paper competitors start making more compact single columns. Maybe I just have a taste for citrus, but your feelings about the Clarion don’t ring true to my experience.

      • Mark, I would have to agree that “lemon” is too strong a word, even though the Clarion would be hard on my eyes (a personal thing). I hope my comments about it, or any other editions, did not offend anyone. Anything I post is just my personal opinion, and you know what they say about those. 🙂

        We are truly blessed to have so many wonderful choices of not only good English translations but different presentations of the Bible. Any one of them is a treasure, much less the many that are available for different needs and purposes.

        I will be forever grateful to you and this website for making me aware of the wonderful presentations of God’s word that are available, IF you know where to look. I’ve long since justified paying the prices for these premium presentations, while still knowing that it’s the content, not the presentation, that’s priceless. I may not carry a Michael Kors purse, but I’m acquiring several quality bound Bibles to use and pass on to my children and grandchildren one day. Bless you and keep up the good work!

        • Amen, with a tip of the cap to William Tyndale, the Oxford martyrs, and all the others murdered for obeying God’s command to spread the gospel by translating God’s book into the common language. Our opportunities to have His Word served up in public with these beautiful, semi custom bindings and book blocks is not to be taken for granted. That’s a weak way to end this homily of gratitude, but it’s sincere. Great work, BDB and Evangelical Bible.

      • Thanks for your helpful comments on the clarion I am thinking of purchasing one, l love my SNKJV single column second edition but find it too big for preaching can you tell is the paper on the clarion as thin as the Pitman thank you for all the help on the subject of quality bibles

    • I’m in the same citrus loving area with Mark. I have 2 and purchased the lower priced Calf-Split purposefully to have it rebound by Leonards. This is my daily reader. I also have the Schuyler NKJV SC (2nd Edition) and they are apples and oranges (in keeping with the theme 🙂 ).

      The SC Schuyler is much larger and though in some ways easier on the eyes, my Clarion is easier to preach from due to the layout and text block (not to mention very little ghosting).

      I believe the page-curling may be more pronounced in humid environments. After speaking with Evangelical Bible they were under the impression this had been rectified by Cambridge. Though the pages are thin, they are extremely resilient and tough.

      Looking forward to getting the NKJV Quentel. But will still probably spend the most time using my Clarion. Would love to see Cambridge use that as a starting point for a new NKJV Large Margin.

  28. Lee, I tried for the longest to convince myself to buy a goatskin or calfskin Clarion, and couldn’t. I love its small footprint; I’ve become a fan of small chunky Bibles–if the font is large and dark enough to read. (I like my Crossway calfskin ESV Heritage okay, especially in good light, LOL.) After looking at the Clarion more closely, I just didn’t like the thin paper, the pale, too-small (for my older eyes) print, and the hard-to-see verse numbers within the paragraphs. I also don’t like the vinyl liner for the price. The Clarions are extremely popular, though, so I think we are definitely in the minority on this. (A part of me still wants one, but I know it would be hard on my eyes.)

    The price I paid for my beautiful Schuyler NKJV SC was only several dollars more than the goatskin Clarion’s price, and there’s no comparison imo. Of course it’s a larger volume. Just my two cents to go along with yours.

    I’ve also just ordered the goatskin Schuyler KJV reference Bible for $160. I can’t wait to see it!

    • You will not be disappointed. The 200,000 references are keeping me paging hither and thither. AND it’s a Schuyler. The Westminster Trinitarian, which EvangelicalBible sells, too, has all the info, and is no slouch, but the binding and sewing is several cuts above in the Schuyler. PRIDE of ownership, of which I repent. This is an addiction.

  29. Oops, my last post is actually above my second-to-last, which is probably confusing.

  30. Pingback: Schuyler’s NKJV Quentel - Bible Review - Bible Buying Guide

  31. Frank, you are so right! From the outside, this looks like a mini-Quentel, and I’m in love with it already. I can’t even explain how lovely the purple cover is, or how wonderful the leather. But that’s just the color and binding. I also love the paper and especially the smaller size of the volume. I like this edition so much that I’ve already sent Beth an email gushing about it. 🙂

    And, even though it’s the weekend, she’s already replied. I have to say the folks at EB and Schuyler are the best. They truly listen to what we Bible readers think and to the ideas and suggestions that we express. Beth, thanks (and oh happy day!) LOL

    Your post about Tyndale and the martyrs is spot on as well. We have so much for which to be thankful, and often it’s taken for granted. If God’s word were suddenly discovered somewhere for the first time, as opposed to having been readily available all our lives, what stunning news it would be, and what a reaction it would produce. How can we not read and study our Bibles, in whatever presentation we have? (Yes, I could do a better job of that, admittedly.) *steps off soapbox*

    I’ve succumbed to the addiction, too. I use my children and grandchildren, who will presumably own these someday, as part of my “excuse.” I sometimes wonder if such quality editions will continue to be produced long into the future. It would be a shame if not.

    And while I’m at it, thanks again, Mark, for initiating and cultivating so much of the renewed interest in these and for providing this site for discussion.

  32. I purchased a Clarion KJV to replace my PitMinion Kjv a few weeks ago, due to my aging eyes. I’m in Panama on a year long mission stay and service from evangelical bible was 9 days from order date. My Pit Minion is,the older kjv 6.25 to 6.5 times semi bold printed and bound in the UK. The new ones are not this font.
    The Clarion is a wonderful size and feel, but unfortunately was harder to read than my Pit Minion. My hope was that I could carry it around in public without needing my readers. The Pit Minion 6.5 times semi bold is far better than the Lexicon 8 pt for legibility.
    I will return it or sell it when back in US in 3 weeks. I put it back in its box.
    I’m a kjv fan and have my eye on the Canterbury coming out but am fearful of the size to carry around. I use a backpack around Panama often.
    Room for notes would be nice also for that footprint.
    I may end up with a Concord for legibility and size concerns.
    I’m open to suggestions. I’m going back to my double column format preference. I have small hands and aging eyes. Haha.

    • Dear Cindy, as you have said, it’s your eyes that have made the Pitt Minion a problem. Get a thorough eye exam before heading off to Panama, if possible, or whenever, because other insidious things can degrade our vision other than the normal things that are age related. Most eye diseases present with image degradation, and not much else, very seldom is pain a main symptom. You also mentioned aging eyes specifically, and at about 42 you will have entered the Mandatory Correction Zone, and no amount of larger font will stave off the necessity for glasses. So get a prescription, pick up the Pitt and see now how it looks. You may not need a new Bible. If so, Beth at info@Evangelicalbible.com can help out with her great experience, and will have a few comparative things to say about their stock of fine Bibles, including the new Schuyler Canterbury KJV due in stock by late fall.

    • “I may end up with a Concord for legibility and size concerns.
      I’m open to suggestions. I’m going back to my double column format preference. I have small hands and aging eyes. Haha.”

      Cindy, the Concord is a lovely Bible. One of the largest I’ll regularly use. Very clean print and good paper.

      My “go to” Bible is an Allan’s Brevier Clarendon (in black highland goatskin). It is (so far) my absolute favorite. Much smaller than the Concord but the dark type makes it just fine for MY “aging eyes” Allan’s Highland Goatskin and dark red art gilding are just amazing.

      Like many here, I’m looking forward to the upcoming Canterbury KJV but I can’t help but think I will find too large to read comfortably. It’s going to be MUCH larger than my Brevier, I fear.

      Ken

  33. Cindy, I’m not familiar with the Concord, but If you’ve not looked at this one recently, you might want to take a peek, just in case:

    http://www.bibledesignblog.com/2014/10/kjv-schuyler-reference-bible-antique-mahogany-goatskin.html

    I believe Mark said it has 9.6 pt. type, and the print looks pretty dark to me. I just bought one in purple and I’m pleased with it. The two columns of references reduce the available width for the text columns, as you can see in the review photos, but the print is still good to my eyes. This edition is a lot larger than a Pitt, but it’s smaller (and seems a lot smaller in the hand) than the NKJV Quentel. The outside dimensions of the cover are about 9-1/8″, or a hair under, x 6-1/2″, and it’s not too thick. I think evangelical bible also sells a similar Trinitarian version.

    The people at EB are easy to work with. They’ll likely let you return your Clarion whether or not you order a different edition from them. (Re the Clarions, almost everyone else loves them dearly–I love the footprint, but like you, I just can’t read their print well enough.) I don’t know much about the new Canterbury that’s in the works.

    Good luck in your search, and blessings in your mission work!

  34. I have the new Quentel NKJV in red. It is in my study corner with my diglot and other reference tools.

    I’m really enjoying it.

  35. Just an FYI:
    In my email today from EB there are two new links. One is to a list of their best selling Bibles for this year and over the past 15 months, and another is to an update on quality Bibles, including a few things in the works. If you’re not signed up for their emails, take a look if you’d like:

    http://evangelicalbible.com/information/best-selling-bibles/

    http://evangelicalbible.com/information/general-information/quality-bible-update/

    One thing I found especially interesting, and actually soothing to me, was this reference to Allan: “,,,Allan, that refits typesettings with their vintage bindings …”
    I’ve always thought of Allan as a publisher of Bibles, and as I’ve gained more knowledge, had become disenchanted at their use of cheap text blocks in their very exquisite bindings. To acknowledge that they “refit” somehow smooths my slightly ruffled feathers. And of course I’m glad they sometimes use Jongbloed for their text blocks I do think Schuyler has now, overall, surpassed them in quality in many editions. (A heretical statement, I know.)

    That said, I just purchased my second Allan Bible, the NASB Readers edition, produced with Jongbloed. Yes, I think the Quentel is a higher quality edition, but,,, it is big. With a 2016/2017 NASB update in the works, I wanted to get a premium bound copy of the 1995 NASB, primarily to hold in my hands for extended reading. (I’ve not yet explored the NASB much.) When/if Schuyler produces their single column updated NASB in a year or two, there’s a good chance I’ll go for that one, too, So for now Allan it was. Assuming the print is dark enough to suit my rather picky eyes, I think I’ll like it.

    Meandering back on topic a bit, I have the very wonderful and amazing NKJV Quentel and was delighted to see how well it is selling. 🙂
    On another note, the also excellent and beautiful Schuyler single column NKJV is now out of print.

  36. Received the blue one with red letter last month. U like all the colors and for the first time ever I was tempted to get black. Everyone in my family always have had blue bibles so yeah, I had to get that color with the translation I was reared on.
    Everyone else here had commented on thevpeefection of the text block itself, so I can’t add much to that aspect other than saying that this edition is perfect. Cudoes to Schuyler for finding thinner paper with basically the same opacity as the nasb quentel 1st print. I want to brag on Schuyler on two things they got very right.
    First is the red letter. I usually only like Cambridge ‘s red letter editions and an old glue bound Nelson that prints brown letters. Schuyler prints a red letter somewhere between a Cambridge and an old nelson. Dark red that veers into a slight hint if brown. Very elegant and easy on the eyes compared to bright red or those pinkish reds that I avoid like the plague.
    Second is the maps. I thought that Cambridge would be the only one out there with the best maps. I still like Cambridge maps but these maps Schuyler have put in are too perfect for words. Still has the incorrect route of the exodus but at least they put Jabal al Lawz on the map(double points for that). These are what I call preaching maps. Everything you need and nothing you don’t. The only map page I would have done a little different would be the timeline. If it were me I would have included a timeline that reaches the full contents of the bible and what year each book was written. But that’s really not a big deal. I usually add that info at the end of each book.
    Thank you thank you thank you for putting the ministry of Jesus. If all bibles only had one map, then the ministry of Jesus map should be it. I also like the Jerusalem map and the pin point spots of the passion and ascension .
    The only thing I would add to the bible maps would be a then and now of place names. Rose publishing has some maps like that but their way too tacky for this bible. But then again I might be the only bible map nerd. How many people do you know that have a 3D printed map of Israel. Now only if Schuyler could put 3d printed maps in; that would be the impossible but let me know if that happens.
    Over all I can’t find a ligitamate complaint about this bible. The price is well worth it considering the calfskin liner; which gives the bible some floppyness and yet still remain rigid enough to stay in your hand.
    Ive been binding bibles for friends as a hobby for years. But somehow Schuyler has managed to blow my mind with their knowledge of pairing the right materials together to make the bible “feel” alive in your hands. This is something that takes many many years to get right; but somehow Schuyler has done it in less than a decade. Way to go👍
    I could go on and on, but all I’m trying to say is that your getting a better than good deal with any Schuyler bible.
    Hope someone out there found this helpful or at least sorta entertaining.
    God bless and hoping everyone here have many blessed readings of His word.

  37. Mark

    Off topic

    What is the bible on your cover page? (Leather over boards)

    Thank you

    P Hyatt

  38. I have never owned high-end bible until now. The Schulyer Quentel NKJV, dark brown, red-letter edition I suspect will also be the last one I ever own. The reason why is quite obvious — it is superbly well made.

    I expected a high quality bible but I received so much more. I was completely blown away by the goat skin cover. Coupled with the calf skin inner cover, it just literally melts in your hand.

    I thought I wanted a single column bible when I was shopping but the layout of the Quentel convinced me otherwise. I was not disappointed. It is masterfully arranged so that it is a joy to read. Coming from the ESV Legacy, it is several steps up in readability.

    When I read this bible, I am struck almost immediately by the lack of references. Yes, it has them and has them in abundance, but because of the Quentel way of arranging the text they all but disappear until you want to look for them. Then they are so easy to read an refer to. The same way is to be said for the translation notes.

    The two things that have really gotten my attention about the Schuyler Quentel NKJV is the font and the paper. The 11 point Milo font is an absolute dream to read. It is not to big as to require 11×14 paper and yet is well manageable for those who may prefer to read comfortably without assistance.

    The paper is probably the most outstanding feature. It is thick enough to mark on if I want to (but not yet!) and still thin enough to remind me that I am reading something special. But that is not all. The off-white cream color of this bible gently leads me into a reading experience that never want to end. The stark whiteness of other bibles led to fatigue that the Quentel leads you away from.

    I came looking for a high-end leather bound bible. I received the Word of God in a heirloom.

  39. Great post, Scott, and I couldn’t agree more. I have that edition and it is just about perfection.

  40. “The Quentel’s double column layout means that a book with 11 pt. type and cross references can be the same size as text-only single column setting with 9 pt. type. True, the Legacy has some room in the margin that could be sacrificed for slightly larger type, but the fact remains, double column settings are more efficient when it comes to fitting words on the page, which makes for a thinner book block.”

    How would a double-column format fit more text on a page than a single-column format, even with all other things being equal, let alone with the double column text having a larger font and cross-references? I don’t get that. Isn’t the same page area being used (actually, slightly less for the double-columns, because of the space between the two columns)? Why would one be more efficient than the other then?

  41. Well, having owned the Quentel NKJV for about 6 months now I thought I’d lend my thoughts on it.

    In short, I believe it to be the highest quality NKJV out there… which means quite a bit to me as there has not been as robust a selection of NKJV offerings as some of the other versions out there.

    I also own the Schuyler NKJV Single Column and the Cambridge Clarion to compare with. As far as everything aesthetically, from the leather and ribbons, to the gilt and binding, this Bible is just superb. The red-letter is an outstanding hue and the lack of ghosting makes this a joy to read.

    Before I continue I think it important to state that I am truly thankful for any version of the Word of God, the choices we have in the West I do not take for granted nor do I allow it to become another subtle form of idolatry.

    One aspect I was curious about was how the double column would effect my overall use and enjoyment of it. What I found was interesting. I was surprised to find that I actually do not enjoy reading the Quentel quite as much as my Clarion. I find it harder for my eyes to locate particular verses (though the red numbers are great!) and though the layout of the Quentel with the centered references at the bottom are wonderfully artful they are not as quick or useful as having the NKJV notes and references to either the direct right or left of the relative verse or scripture referenced. I also found that I didn’t quite need such a large font as the 11 point Milo (though the Milo is a great font!), even while preaching. I would enjoy a larger size than the Clarion’s 9 point however… as well as paper that didn’t roll up on me, lol (which of course the Quentels don’t).

    I am curious if Schuyler came out with a new Single Column NKJV Text Block similar to their NLT if having a 10 point font would allow them to keep it relatively the same size as the NKJV Quentel?

    So in short, though I find the quality of binding, paper, ink, gilding, maps, etc. exquisite in it’s excellence, I would still prefer a Single Column Clarion-esque type-set for both personal and pulpit use. Couple that layout with a little extra room for notes, a thick, plain, English Calfskin, cover, and a somewhat less… shiny gilding (perhaps bronze?), I don’t think you’d be able to keep them on the shelves.

    Outstanding job to the team there at EB & Schuyler, outstanding work on this masterful orchestration of God’s magnificent Word! Can’t wait to see what is in store for the future!

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