The Cross Affinity Rollerball has a design similar to luxury writing instruments of the 20th century. The Affinity is sleek and crafted from high-gloss crystalline resin. The chrome plated accents make for a luxurious design. The grip is incredibly comfortable when writing for long periods of time. The Affinity is also well balanced both posted and unposted due to the cap being very lightweight. The pen's cap is screwed on to prevent leaks and damage to the pen's point.
The Retro 51 Tornado with its Schmidt P8127 refill is my standard for rating other rollerball pens. The Cross Affinity outperformed the Retro 51 Tornado in most ways; however, the Affinity lacks durability. The barrel is made of resin, so you must be extremely delicate with this pen. This pen's resin barrel will not take abuse as well as brass or stainless steel. The performance of the Affinity's gel rollerball refill really stands out. It produces dark, crisp, and clean lines and glides across the page easily.
The Cross Affinity has been discontinued since I made my purchase in July; however, you can still find it in many local office supply stores at a discounted price. I would recommend the Cross Bailey Rollerball for those of you unable to obtain the Affinity. The Bailey Rollerball has more heft and contains the same Cross 8523 refill.
Penman's Final Remark:
The Cross Affinity is an absolute joy to use and will fit well into any professional environment. This pen is definitely not for those who handle pens roughly. If you are rougher on pens, I'd recommend the Retro 51 Tornado or a Sherpa Pen with a rollerball refill.