Puzzle Brand Comparison — Anatolian

This page is part of our Puzzle Brand Comparison. You can find the overview page here.

SUMMARY:  56/70

Anatolian is based in Turkey. They use a standard grid cut but have a nice variety of piece shapes. Their pieces are fairly thick and feel sturdy. The image reproduction is good. Their puzzles have a loose fit such that it is difficult to move small clusters of pieces without them falling apart, but the final fit looks nice. They use licensed images including photographic, painted scenery, and well-known artists like Josephine Wall, many of which have also been printed by other puzzle companies. Their price is very reasonable. A recommended brand.

1. BOX  — 8/10

How deluxe does the box looks and feel? Is it sturdy? Will it hold up over time?  How nicely does it arrange on the shelf?

The boxes are rectangular like most European brands. Both top and bottom are very sturdy. The size is 10″ x  14″. The brand has a consistent black background with red and white lettering. The front of the box has an attractive design with a linen finish.

Front:

anatolian_sm

Above: The puzzle we tested was Josephine Walls “Bygone Summer”, 1000 pieces. It was provided to Jigsaw Junkie free in return for an honest review.

Back:

The back of the box (see below) has general information about the Anatolian brand in various languages, but nothing specific about this particular puzzle image or artist.

anatolian_2

 

anatolian_3

Above: Close-up of the text in English.

Sides:

The box sides are nicely designed for vertical shelving with the puzzle image, series name, artist, and piece size very visible on all sides. I particularly like the fact that they have a small image of the entire puzzle as well as an appealing ‘pull out’ detail. This puzzle will be very easy to identify when shelved!

anatolian_sides_sm

2. INSIDE THE BOX  — 9/10

How deluxe are the internal goodies (such as posters or brochures)?  When you remove the pieces is there puzzle dust, pieces stuck together, hanging chads, and places where the image has begun to separate from the backs?

Inside the box is the bag of puzzle pieces and a box stand that has other images from the current collection on it. Nice! There’s also a little note inside the puzzle bag about ordering replacement parts, which is appreciated. Anatolian definitely has a very visible missing piece service, which is nice to see.

anatolian3

At first glance, the bag of puzzle pieces looked promising. There was no puzzle dust and no image lift, warping, pieces not fully separated, or other damage to the pieces. They looked sturdy and pretty thick. Click the photo below for a closer view.

anatolian2

Below is a close-up of the puzzle stand that comes in the box. I always like it when puzzle makers include other images from their line in some form (a mini brochure or whatever), because as a collector, I might be buying a puzzle years later on ebay, and it’s nice to have a reference to other images that were produced around the same time. Plus, honestly, it’s good marketing for the company. The box stand’s weight is that of thin cardboard or very heavy paper.

The stand works fine, and I used it. In fact, I’ll probably keep it out and use it for other puzzles. It beats my box tipping over onto the floor all the time. So I have given Anatolian a fairly high mark in this category.

anatolian

3. PIECE THICKNESS — 9/10

How thick are the pieces compared to other brands? How does a piece feel in your hand? How easily are pieces damaged or bent during assembly and separation?

Even while in the bag, I could tell the Anatolian pieces were thick and sturdy. Side by side with Ravensburger (below), you can see that the Anatolian piece is not quite as thick, but they’re close and they have a pleasing density. The pieces feel good in your hand as you are working the puzzle.

anatolian

4.  PIECE SIZE & SHAPE — 8/10

Are the pieces standard shapes? Special shapes? How much variety do they have? Are they large or small?

The pieces in this puzzle were a little smaller than Ravensburger. This 1000 piece puzzle has a final size of 48x66cm (vs Ravensburger 1000 piece size of 49.7×69.9cm).  See direct comparison below (this photo is larger than actual size).

anatolian

The piece cut is a standard grid. There is a good variety of piece shapes such that you never think a piece fits somewhere where it does not.  Personally, I prefer a non grid cut puzzle (like Sunsout, Springbok, House of Puzzles, or Bits and Pieces), but most European brands are grid cut. For a grid cut puzzle, this cut is good.

Anatolian_BygoneSummer_CU1_SM

5. PIECE FIT– 7/10

Do pieces interlock well? Can it be confusing if a piece fits or not?  Can you move groups of pieces together? Does it look snug when it’s done?

I would categorize Anatolian as a ‘loose fit’ puzzle. This is one of the loosest fits I’ve seen. It is impossible to move a group of even 3-4 pieces without the piece you are holding onto just lifting right out of the group.  So when you move clusters of pieces around, you have to use a piece or paper under them or move them piece by piece. You can see in the photo below that when I attempted to lift the puzzle by a corner, pieces fairly far away were dropping out or threatening to.  This is not really an issue while you are making the puzzle, other than when you try to move clusters. Otherwise the fit is good. I never had any doubt about whether or not a piece fit in a particular spot as each piece has a unique fit. I do prefer a snugger fit though.

anatolian

When assembled, the puzzle looks fairly seamless and there are no raised pieces that won’t lie flat.

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6. IMAGE REPRODUCTION — 8/10

Are the colors bright and vivid? Is the image sharp or feel like a bad Xerox? How is the finish/texture on the pieces?

The color reproduction on this puzzle was very good.  The lines of the image are not sharp, but then that’s the painting’s style. I’m guessing their image reproduction is crisp when the art is crisp.

The surface finish on the pieces is not reflective, which is a plus.

Anatolian_BygoneSummer_CU3_SM

Anatolian_BygoneSummer_CU2_SM

 

7.  IMAGE VARIETY & ARTISTS — 7/10

Does the brand have a wide variety of fun images and good artists?

anatolian_3-in-one

Above: “Kittens” by Debbie Cook 1000 pieces, “Ayasofya” 1500 pieces, “Bon Voyage” 1000 pieces

Anatolian images include fine art, photographic scenery, painted scenery, and licensed family friendly images. It appears that all of their images are licensed art images, rather than commissioned (unlike House of Puzzles, which commissions all its images). Because of this, many of the images they use can be found in other puzzle brands also, such as the well-used artists Debbie Cook, Bill Bell, and Josephine Walls. There’s nothing particularly new and different in their line-up, but they are reasonably priced for their quality even in the USA, and it’s nice to be able to get some images that are out of print elsewhere.

See their website with their full line here.

SUMMARY:  56/70

Anatolian is based in Turkey. They use a standard grid cut but have a nice variety of piece shapes. Their pieces are fairly thick and feel sturdy. The image reproduction is good. Their puzzles have a loose fit such that it is difficult to move small clusters of pieces without them falling apart, but the final fit looks nice. They use licensed images including photographic, painted scenery, and well-known artists like Josephine Wall, many of which have also been printed by other puzzle companies. Their price is very reasonable. A recommended brand.

JJ

10 responses to Puzzle Brand Comparison — Anatolian

  1. Lisa Reagan says:

    Disappointed. Pieces were way too tiny! Too tiny to use, and even much smaller than Ravensburger pieces.
    Too Bad. Will have to give it away, but I don’t know anyone that can use pieces that small.

  2. Kathleen says:

    I had one Anatolian puzzle which was OK, but the one we are working on now -“Family Treasures” – is terrible. There are SO MANY pieces that just abut each other until you assemble the surrounding area. Also, the fit is SUPER loose! I would put it back in the box and donate, but my husband will persevere.

  3. Craig says:

    Just finished one of their puzzles and started a second. Both 1500s. First one fit the review. Great graphics, solid pieces, bit of a loose fit, though I had no trouble with the piece sizing. Second one the pieces fit snugly and I can easily pick up 6 in a line. This should be much easier to assemble, with fewer misfits. First puzzle was manufactured in Turkey and the second in Poland. Polish puzzle has a larger variety of piece shapes in both the border and interior. Box did not nclude a cover stand.

  4. Craig says:

    Update on my comments. Frustrating puzzle unless you’ve got lots of time to kill. Fit was better than Turkish mfg. but a lack of piece variety and the general loose fit made it very difficult to know if the pieces were in the right place. When working on the sky I often had to remove pieces that had seemed like perfect fits. Couldn’t be sure of some edge pieces until I had them connected to a couple of interior pieces. I’ll take a break from this brand for a while.

  5. mal Quy says:

    I want to buy 2 of these puzzles and have a question first. Can the puzzles be glued for a frame or are they to loose as stated in the comments

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  1. […] We received a large shipment from Perre/Anatolian puzzles. You can see them all here.  If you’ve never tried an Anatolian before, check out our brand comparison page. […]