GRANDVILLE — X-Rite reports that it has begun shipping out its ColorDesigner 3.0 system, the latest generation in its MatchRite family of color-matching products.
Developed for home centers, paint retailers, mass merchants, hardware co-ops and their customers, ColorDesigner 3.0 is a software and turnkey hardware package that has the linguistic flexibility to be intelligible to clerks, customers and decorators anywhere from Rome to Tokyo and from Beijing to Berlin
X-Rite says the package provides consistent, accurate color matching — combined with added features on which patents still are pending — that facilitates commercial and residential decorating.
The firm has given those new software features names like Color Harmony, Paint My Room and Paint Problem Solver.
X-Rite says ColorDesigner 3.0 combines the innovation of Match Rite’s original system with special aids for paint retailers.
According to Rick Mueller, global marketing manager of the firm’s Retail Business Unit, the new product works for all customers, no matter how specialized their firm may be.
“We’re an all-inclusive partner to our customers,” Mueller said, “from unprecedented product innovation and channel-focused sales to exceptional product service and tip-notch training. ColorDesigner 3.0 is proof of our evolution as a business dedicated to deeply understanding and fulfilling our customers’ needs and desires.”
Mueller said the new system is configurable, which he said makes the software equally useful in small hardware stores as in mass retail home centers. He explained customers can purchase only those features for which they have a current need, but which still can be up-graded and expanded as their own customer base expands.
Moreover, he explained that when the system is not involved in color matching for clients, the computer in which it is installed is available for accounting, inventory control, word processing or Internet access.
“ColorDesigner 3.0 is configurable to provide color-matching services to paint retailers, home centers, mass merchants and hardware co-ops—no matter how large or small,” Mueller explained.
“We configure the system to meet the customers’ requirements as their paint, sundry and home décor sales grow and change. Doing so ensures that customers who purchase ColorDesigner 3.0 are making a good investment now and in the long run.”
He said the software solves another problem in that it can interface with most automated colorant dispensing machines.
“The system provides maximum uptime, with little-to-no maintenance costs or downtime,” he said.
Likewise, he said that like all well thought-out programs, ColorDesigner 3.0 requires minimal training, with routine users easily accessing the system’s intuitive help files at every step of the color-matching process.
X-Rite says that because presence on the floor is critical to retail operations, the system gives retailers the chance to advertise their custom color-matching capabilities on both the main menu screen and the printed labels that the system generates. Built-in screen savers, shelf-talkers, counter mats, posters and window decals complete the merchandising program.
X-Rite says the system is available in two basic hardware configurations and a variety of software configurations: Customers can buy the package with a Dell computer linked to a standalone spectrophotometer and a label printer; the new software also is available with a countertop spectrophotometer to be linked to the customer’s computer.
Two of the package’s new features — Color Harmony and Paint My Room — operate in tandem to let customers play with paints before committing.
Color Harmony allows customers to use a customized color palette that offers coordinating colors keyed to a single reference color. The palette also offers coordinated colors in what are termed “safe, statement and bold” accents.
In each of those accents — which might be termed to range from conservative to wild —
Color Harmony also exhibits shade intensities, all of which are available in fan deck names and numbers, for customers to have when making their decisions.
ThePaint My Room feature enables customers to design a virtual room — something newly constructed or an existing room — which they then can virtually paint with the Color Harmony’s recommendations. The idea is to obtain a virtual look at a room rather than trying to imagine how the color on a chip will look on a 30-by-12 wall.
Another software feature is Paint Problem Solver, which helps retailers who may not specialize in paint and sundry products but still need to provide color-matching and paint solutions for their customer.
Paint Problem Solver addresses the most common customer concerns, including surface preparation techniques, paint tool selections and recovering from painting mistakes.