Diamine Crimson Color Change

One of the things that annoys me a little bit about some ink colors is that their names don’t quite match up to the color of the ink. I can’t complain too much though, because it was colors like Diamine Crimson that inspired me to start up the Swab Shop, which is now a very useful tool for comparing colors (even ones that do have names that make sense).

I’m not 100% sure when, but Diamine changed Crimson from what was once a very vibrant, hot pink to a darker red that now looks like what you’d expect from an ink named Crimson. The old color is on the left, new is on the right:

The reason I’m not sure when this change happened is because I was never given word from Diamine about an impending change. Diamine has 80 colors right now, and we have well over 350 inks in all to manage at GouletPens.com, so a change like this is something I didn’t notice until a customer emailed and asked if I had ‘old Crimson’ or ‘new Crimson’.

Now that we know we have ‘new’ Crimson, I can educate you all about it here on the blog. I want to thank the gentleman who emailed me, and emphasize how much I appreciate getting inquiries about product updates and changes from you all. You’d be amazed how often I find out about new products and changes from fans and customers before I find out ‘officially’ from the brands we represent.

Sometimes I hear false rumors and when I do, I can get them cleared up. Other times, changes like with Crimson just slip through the cracks and I need to get the word out about it. Either way, though, your grassroots support helps me to be a better blogger, better retailer, and provide better education to the writing community. Thanks everyone, keep those questions coming!

2017-10-11T14:38:42+00:00 May 29th, 2011|Ink Reviews|12 Comments
  • Jay Pulli

    Maybe the old bottles of the old color were filled with the wrong ink at the factory, and somebody there finally noticed.

  • Andy

    That could be quite a suprise to someone!  Do you have an "official" color sheet from Diamine?  (I'm not sure that one even exists)  Perhaps Jay is right and the color you got was filled wrong?  

  • No, it was not a filling error at the factory.

    The Diamine web page states: "The Dyes used to manufacture the original shade have been discontinued, i have taken the opportunity to change the shade to what i believe to be an improved representation of the true crimson colour."

  • Nope, that pink was the real color!

  • There's no official chart, just swabs from Diamine's website: http://www.diamineinks.co.uk/showproducts.aspx?catID=11

  • hdoug

    I think ink manufacturers shouldn't change the color without changing the name.  If they no longer produce a certain color, they should retire the name with the formula.  In this case, call the new formula "New Crimson" or "Crimson 2011" or "Crimson 2.0".

    The other thing that bugs me is the formula inconsistency of some inks and some manufacturers.  Some colors vary wildly from batch to batch — maybe even bottle to bottle — and some manufacturers are worse than others.

    We really appreciate your effort in helping us find the perfect inks (your reports, video reviews, sample vials, swabs, etc.), and you know how much time, money, and effort we put into this obsession of ours.  We need manufacturers to appreciate that.  We're serious about this, they need to be serious too!


  • Wow that's drastic change. I can't say I like either version though (personal taste and all that). I imagine "crimson" being brighter and more saturated than the "new crimson" in these samples.

  • 63chickadees

    I'm with Peninkcillin. Never did understand how diamine could call its day-glo magenta "Crimson," but the improvement seems more a brick red to me. Is somebody a leetle bit colorblind over there, and doesn't realize it? Brian, thanks for this heads up.

  • You're right, this would definitely help everyone out. Especially when going for such a drastic change like this! I still get asked about if we carry the 'old' Noodler's Polar Brown, even though it was reformulated over 2 years ago. Reviews, blogs posts, and forum threads about these inks stay up for years and years, and unless they're updated when changes are made, people get confused when an ink is reformulated and the name stays the same.

    I'm glad you appreciate my trying to spread the word. I'm a little embarrassed on this one that I had to heard about it from a customer and I didn't know first. But, I figured it's better late than never to get the word out 😉

  • What's funny too is the new Crimson looks dark like Red Dragon, Syrah, and Oxblood, which are all within the newest developments of Diamine colors. I haven't yet done a side-by-side comparison, though. In any case, I think Diamine has their dark reds covered for the time being!

  • You're welcome. Perhaps color names are perceived a little differently across the pond? I'm not sure. I do like the new Crimson better than the old, I'm always up for a nice dark red replacing a hot pink. Diamine has an abundance of pinks, so there's no loss there.

  • Interesting post.
    Safety vests