The last time I reviewed a Pilot Hi Tec C, it was actually the Coleto Multi Pen version where I used the .3mm refills, and I liked that pen lots. With that good experience under my belt, I thought Id try out a slightly smaller version, and go with the .25mm single barrel pen.
The first thing that you notice about the Pilot Hi Tec C .25mm is that it looks exactly like the other versions, except for one minor difference. The clip on the .25mm version has a small gold oval on it that has the tip size printed in it. I kind of like having this there because it really makes it easier to tell the difference between the sizes without looking at the top of the cap where the size is also printed. I think that they way most people store pens, the clip is usually the most visible part, so it makes sense to have there for easy identification. Besides the clip, everything else appears to be identical for the barrel on these pens. For the most part I dont mind the design of these pens, but I would prefer a more rubberized grip instead of the hard plastic ridges.
The .25 and .3mm version of the Hi Tec C write in a fairly similar fashion. I would say that the .3mm version is just a slight bit smoother, and less toothy on the paper, which in this case was the Rhodia Web Notebook with 90g paper. Im not sure if its just me, but when you look at the close up scan of the writing sample, both the Pilot Hi Tec C .25mm and the .3mm appear to write in the same exact width. It could just be that the .05mm difference is too difficult for me to discern with my eyes, so I wont swear to it, but it is a pretty close match if you ask me.
In this writing sample I also compared the Pilot Hi Tec C .25mm to the Pentel Slicci .25mm to see how they stack up to each other. As you can see, the line sizes appear to be almost identical. Neither pen shows any amount of bleed, feathering, or show through on the Rhodia Notebook paper, and they both seem to dry fairly quickly. Initially, the Pilot Hi Tec C .25mm had a tiny bit of scratch to it when I started writing, but after writing a few words with it, it seems to have disappeared and the writing experience became much smoother, and comparable to the Pentel Slicci.
If you are looking for a really narrow tipped pen that writes very smoothly with no bleed, I think that either the Pilot Hi Tec C or Pentel Slicci will fit the bill. My personal preference is to actually stay with the Coleto, simply for the more comfortable and thicker grip, but again if you have a different grip preference then the regular version of the Hi Tec C is for you.