Thursday, December 3, 2009

Vallejo or Coat d'arms

I have been looking into re-stocking some of my paints. So a trip to my local GW to pick up some paints and found that I was paying almost £5 for 2 pots of 12ml paints. 

At the time I thought that almost £5 for two pots of 12ml paints is ridicious. 

Up to now I have always used Citadel, but the price of alternatives are very appealing.  Maelstrom sell Citadel paints for £1.96 and at GW its £2.20.  I would imagine that Maelstrom are still making a profit at £1.96.

At Maelstrom I can get ...

Citadel 12ml for £1.96, thats 6 pence per ml
Vallejo 17ml for £1.35, thats 12 pence per ml
Coat d'arms 18ml for £1.53, thats 11 pence per ml

Citadel paints are double the price of Vallejo and Coat d'arms per ml, are they really that much better? 

So I posted on The Warhammer Forum on the topic of Vallejo or Coat d'arms asking which of the alternatives Vallejo or Coat d'arms have you used and which do you prefer over Citadel?

The thread turned into a rather heated debate over the Vallejo range.   Here is my favorite reply to the post.

GW paints are the worst avaliable on the market today. They use solid, cheap pigment and poor quality carrier, so that they don't cover well and they seperate. They are produced by the lowest bidder so don't be surprised at the quality.

Valejo aren't much better. They seperate because they are too thin; the carrier and the pigment aren't good. The first warning should be that the stuff comes out of a dropper bottle.

Coat d'arms is produced by a company called HMG, Coat d'arms is their own brand. Same company produces Foundry and Privateer Press' P3 ranges as well.  Foundry is the best avaliable on the market. P3 is as good but a much smaller range.  Coat d'arms is very good but not quite the spec of the other two.

All 3 use liquid pigment in large quantities, in good quality carriers, so that seperation isn't an issue and so that when, even diluted to greater than 1:10, the amount of and quality of the pigment still gives strong, smooth coverage.

GW washes are alright, they are just paint and mixing medium pre-mixed, so good for consistency but again not good quality for the price.

GW foundation range is a cheap attempt at emulating the quality, high pigment paints produced by HMG (whom no longer supply GW due to GW asking HMG to compromise on quality of product to reduce cost to GW [not cost to consumer notice, cost to GW], GW's reputation for good paint is built on the fact that HMG was the supplier when they first released paints, that stopped when the paint sold switched to the hard plastic pots with screw lids which were made in France. Today they are made in China. It's fair to say the current product doesn't live up to the reputation of the original).

GW metalics are run of the mill. Many people find them easier to use than other brands as they are weak and lacking in pigment in comparison. That does not make them good, it makes them easier to use than quality metalics which take getting used to.

GW's old inks were decent (not the original inks, but the ones that came in the hard plastic pots with white screw lids, the French company behind those did good ink), but at the price were not any better than W&N.

Valejo ink isn't bad.

P3 ink isn't bad, but Foundry and CDA ink isn't very good, sadly it's the one thing HMG don't do well.

Go to W&N for inks, it's what they specialise in.

Anyone buying from Maelstrom should be looking at Coat d'arms and P3. They won't look back.

So for my next big army painting project I am going to use the Coat d'arms range.

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