Livescribe Smartpen Care and Usage

How to care for, clean, and use your Livescribe Smartpen

Smartpen Care

  • Use your smartpen regularly. It contains a lithium-ion battery which is not replaceable. If left in an unchanged state for an extended period of time, the battery will loose its capacity.
    • To prevent this, drain your smartpen's battery all the way down, then give it a complete charge for 2.5 hours at least once a month.
    • If you need to store your smartpen for a while, make sure it is fully charged first.
  • Only charge your smartpen via the included Micro USB cable or a standard Micro USB cable.
    • Only use your computer to charge the smartpen. Using a wall adapter or other charging device will damage the electronics of the smartpen.
  • Keep your smartpen firmware current by installing any updates so you will have the best experience.
  • If your smartpen has been in an extremely cold environment (like your car overnight), allow it to warm up for a few hours before powering it on.
  • Low humidity environments can lead to static electricity; high humidity environments can lead to condensation - both are harmful to your smartpen.

Cleaning Your Smartpen

  • If your smartpen acts sluggish or non-responsive when you interact with the printed paper controls, there may be dirt in the infrared camera lens area. Gently clean the lens with an alcohol wipe or cotton swab.
  • Regularly clean the exterior of your smartpen with a clean, soft cloth dampened lightly with water. While cleaning, do not pour water on your smartpen or submerge the smartpen in water.
  • Your smartpen is not waterproof! Exposure to water inside the smartpen will damage the electronic components and nullify your warranty. Do not leave the smartpen exposed to damp environments.

Using Your Smartpen

Downloading the Echo Desktop software

  1. Visit
  2. Choose either the Windows or Mac OS version of the software
  3. Save the install file to your desktop or downloads folder
  4. Double-click the install file after downloading (should be named something like "EchoDesktop_Setup_v#.#.#")
  5. Click the next button when prompted and agree to the terms and conditions
  6. Click next and wait while the software installs
  7. After installation, an Echo Desktop icon should appear on your desktop
  8. Double-click this icon to open the software

Uploading Audio and Pages from the Smartpen

  1. Plug the smartpen into the computer, the Echo Desktop software will automatically open up
  2. The smartpen will automatically being uploading any new audio or pages located on the pen
  3. If the smartpen does not upload anything or fails to upload, and you know there are new files on the pen, this means the pen needs to be updated (see instructions below).
  4. Once notes are uploaded, click on the Audio tab on the top left of the page. This will open up a screen listing all of the notes you have uploaded onto Echo Desktop. From there, you may:
  • View your uploaded notes along with the corresponding recorded audio
  • View your uploaded notes without audio

Deleting Notes from the Smartpen

Important note: Once you delete a session from your smartpen, your paper notes will no longer replay audio that was associated with that ink. This deletion is permanent. You must save your notes by adding them to one of the notebooks you have created on your Echo Desktop, or your session will be lost.

Deleting notes using the navigational tool on your Livescribe notebook:

  1. After turning on your smartpen, double-tab the center of the Nav Plus and your smartpen should display "Main Menu".
  2. Tap the down arrow on your Nav Plus to take you to "Paper Replay"
  3. Tap the right arrow to take you to "Record Session"
  4. Tap the down arrow to take you to "Play Session"
  5. Tap the down arrow once more to take you to "Delete Session"

To delete an individual session:

  1. Tap the right arrow to access your sessions
  2. Use the up and down arrows to select the session you want to delete
  3. Tap right for the "Delete session?" prompt
  4. Tap right again for the "Session Deleted" message that confirms the paper replay file has been removed from your smartpen

To delete all of your sessions:

  1. Tap the down arrow once more to take you to "Delete All Sessions"
  2. Tap the right arrow for the "Delete all sessions on pen?" prompt
  3. Tap right again for the "All sessions deleted" message that confirms that all the paper replay files have been removed from your smartpen

Deleting notes using the Echo Desktop software with your pen connected to your computer:

  1. Click the pages tab in the top left corner of Echo Desktop
  2. Right-click the notebook which has just been uploaded (should be at the top of the list on the left)
  3. After right-clicking, choose the option that says "archive notebook"
  4. This saves the notebook into Echo Desktop and clears it from the pen
  5. To clear audio from the pen, click the audio tab next to the pages tab
  6. You will see a list of all audio that you have uploaded into Echo Desktop, look at the information in the "source" column
  7. If the source says the name of the smartpen, right-click that file and click "delete from pen"

Updating the Echo Desktop software

If you connect your pen to your computer and receive a notice that an update for your pen is available, click on Update Now and your pen will be automatically updated. Keeping your smartpen's software updated will ensure a good experience for you.


With a fully charged battery, you can:

  • Capture text for approximately 6.5 hours
  • Record audio (without text) for approximately 7.5 hours
  • Record audio and text for approximately 4.5 hours

Below are the approximate number of pages your ink cartridge will last before it needs to be replaced.

Notebook Type Medium point cartridge Fine point cartridge
8.5" x 11" 35 pages 55 pages
A5 - small black notebook 60 pages 95 pages
Journal 65 pages 105 pages

Re-using Livescribe Notebooks

Because of Student Disability Resources' commitment to sustainability, and the cost of notebooks, we strongly encourage students to continue to use Livescribe notebooks until all paper is used. At the end of a semester, we ask that you archive all notebooks. Archiving will allow you to use the same notebooks the following semester by following these steps:

  1. Open the Echo Desktop software
  2. Connect the smartpen to your computer
  3. After any new notes or sessions finish transferring, click the notebook you want to archive from the notebook list in the left navigation window
  4. Choose the "File" menu, then select "Archive Notebook..."
  5. Windows users: when prompted with "You are about to archive 'notebook name'.", click "Ok" to confirm the archive operation, otherwise click "Cancel"
    Windows and Mac users: when prompted with the archive warning message, click "Archive" if you still want to archive the notebook, otherwise click "Cancel"
  6. Once the Echo Desktop software finishes the archive you will see the archived notebook in your "Library" tab in the "Archived Notebooks" group (Windows) / under your smartpen name labeled as "[Archived] notebook name" (Mac)

Once you have archived a notebook, you may use that same notebook for another semester.

Recording Lectures without Using the Notebook - Audio Only

  1. Hold down the "on" button on your smartpen until you see "REC" (only takes a second)
  2. When you are finished recording, turn the pen off.
  3. Your audio is recorded.

Playing Audio Sessions from the Smartpen

You are able to use this feature when:

  • You recorded a session without using the Livescribe notebook (see above)
  • You want to listen to a session, but you may not have that particular notebook

Follow these steps:

  1. Double-tap the center of a "Menu" button (lower left corner of any notebook page) to reach the smartpen "Main Menu"
  2. Tap the down arrow for "Paper Replay"
  3. Tap the right arrow to select the "Paper Replay" application menu. The first item in the list is "Record Session"
  4. Tap the down arrow to select "Play Sessions"
  5. Tap the right arrow to view a list of sessions by timestamp
  6. Tap the down arrow to scroll through the list of sessions.
  • Paperless sessions will have an "*" next to them and be listed first
  • Tap the right arrow to select the audio session that you want to open
  • Playback will begin
  • Common Problems and Solutions

    • Notes not downloading or pen not interacting properly with the notebook
      • You will need to remove the registration key on the pen by contacting Livescribe and using the Live Chat (Go to, click on the Help icon in the bottom right corner, then choose "Ask")
      • Livescribe will provide a link to de-register the pen
      • This solution is used when you have notes on the pen that you do not want to lose.
    • If you do not have notes on the pen to be downloaded and you are having difficulties interacting with the notebook or recordings; you can perform a master reset of the pen.