This post is an attempt at assisting independent paint and hardware store owners out there that may be considering purchasing a used spectro on eBay or used through any other online source. As a certified seller of X-Rite and MatchRite products, we often (too often) hear from people who have bought used MatchRite spectros and/or computers and need what can only be described as “salvation” from their mistake in buying non-returnable useless equipment.
Our Most important asset is our customers. With over 25,000 independent hardware and paint dealers having trusted us with their paint equipment needs we feel obligated to protect the industry from scams, rip-offs, and other types of unscrupulous dealings when it comes to topics we are all too familiar with.
3 reasons a used MatchRite is a bad idea:
Most used equipment has been “Traded-In” to buy a newer system from MatchRite.
- This is a big deal as part of “Trading-In” your old system involves a status change for the traded-in systems serial number or “CBO#” to “Dead” status. This means that the spectro or computer or both are unable to be updated, serviced, or repaired. This also means that you cannot buy software for the spectro, rendering it as useless as a boat anchor. Buying software includes a database which is the heart of a color matching system. Without the correct database for your system you cannot match colors. Also, paint manufacturers change their products annually and you must update your software to reflect these changes or else your matches will not remain consistent.
There is generally a reason that the spectro is being sold…
- If you are in the market for a color matching system then you are most likely aware that they are not cheap. Therefor why would you sell one on eBay for a couple hundred bucks if you did not have to or if it was still functioning great? Sure, some of the units may be from a store that has gone out of business. However, I have heard this story many times from my customers where they later found out that it was just a great way to relax a potential victim, I mean, customer on eBay…
The unit could be over 20 years old! (Ancient for tech products)
- Though you may be told that a spectro is “Practically new” on an auction site or even by a fellow hardware store owner, the CF57U or CFS57U you are looking at could be over 2 decades old at this point. This piece of scientific, computer equipment may have lived in a dusty paint department longer than many of your employees have been walking! Would you pay 500.00 for a laptop from 1991 to run your business? Plus, the spectro may have never even been serviced! The CF57 series of spectros uses a custom-made light bulb to measure samples. This bulb has a life-cycle of around 5 years depending on use. (the new iVue spectro that replaces the CF57 series uses LED light sources with useable life measured in decades instead of a few years) Replacing it and servicing the CF57 series spectro costs around $1600. After service, it carries a limited, 90 day warranty only on the parts that were replaced. That is assuming that it was not marked as “Dead” after being used as a “Trade-In” at which point it is just dead…
Please do not take this the wrong way. We are not trying to scare you into buying a new color matching system. This post is to help independent business owners avoid being scammed. We had 2 more customers that called this morning irate at the “Great deal” they “scored” on eBay only to be extremely frustrated by the fact that their CBO#’s were “Dead” and they had wasted hundreds of dollars on an 8 pound chunk of metal that was useful only as a bookend.
In closing I will say we do have great pricing on MatchRite products with full manufacturers warranty, Support, Software updates, and years of worry free service. But before you buy a used system, spectro or computer on eBay give us a call and let us help you avoid getting scammed by checking the serial number for you for free.
Regards,The Harper Inc. Team (888) 884-4313