Vallejo: Model Color New Formulation | Armorama™

The best version of Vallejo's finest and iconic range is now a reality! After a lot of research, testing, reviews, formulations and hard work, the New Model Color 2024 is here.

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Should be good- I notice AMMO recently released a new range, called Atom, that is also self-levelling.

I’m a loyal and card-carrying Vallejo exponent and if they are redoing their VMA line as well I’d be really keen to try it. I dare say a more accurate Dunkelgelb, 4BO and NATO Green would be a nice start.

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Hmm. I already use AK 3rd Gen paint, I don’t have a supplier of the ATOM paint locally, and my experience with Vallejo has not been great. Good to see that they have improved their stuff, but I’m fine with my current brands I use.

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I’ve been using their paints for figure painting for about 15-20 years and love them but I’d like to try this new improved formula.


I hope that they come in bundled paint sets as the lack of LHSs make them hard to find locally. Wargame shops might sell them, but again, those stores are far from me.

One can indeed buy these new paints individually online and bundle them for shipping savings.

Vallejo is still my #1 paint that I go to and I’m very glad that they have improved their formula. Some bottles are too thick and some are too thin and others don’t mix well even when shaken. However, I find that they flow out of the bottle smoother and easier than some of the other paint brands in an eyedropper bottle. Some other paint brands require thinner as the paint is too thick and most times I don’t add that, being a somewhat lazy painter.

I look forward to this new Vallejo paint line. I have a lot of Vallejo AIR and I learned that I need Vallejo Airbrush Flow Improver to prevent them from clogging the airbrush. Now if Vallejo can make their AIR paints improved without the need for Flow Improver, that would be ideal also.

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Looking forward to trying these. So far, I’ve used mostly Vallejo whether it’s with tanks or figures. I’ve had good results. Good coverage with the occasional not so great bottle. I’ve also grabbed some AK 3rd gen and like them just as much, however, they take a little more mixing than Vallejo. Interested to see how these new ones will work.

Former Tamiya Acrylic loyalist here. Converting to AK Real Color (for the extended color palette), but I hear nothing but good things about AV. WIlling to give it a try at least once.

I assume these can be sprayed straight from the bottle, which is always a plus.


No, Model Air is their line that can be airbrushed straight from the bottle. The Model Color line needs at least a thinner, and folks often use some of their other additives such as retarder and flow enhancer. I’m finally getting some grip on the learning curve of hand brushing the Model Color paints… wet palette, glazes, etc… :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Probably the main reason i will stay with AK Real Color. Love the way it goes.

Light Green FS34151 (RC028) on an old Tamiya LVTP-7; want to paint it in MERDC Summer Verdant.


Oh yes, Real Color + Mr Leveling Thinner is airbrush nirvana.


Couldn’t be happier. :+1:

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Yeah I wouldn’t airbrush VMC unless in a real pickle as it is super pigment heavy and you’d need to thin it right down, waaaay down. I also think the pigment content in them varies by colour much more than for other paints which have a narrower thinning spread if that makes sense. They are great brush paints but I wouldn’t put them anywhere near an airbrush if I were you.

VMA is their airbrush optimised range and they do spray as advertised, straight out of the bottle. They level off beautifully as well. As I have stated ad nauseum on here, I’m a big fan and use them 90% of the time for airbrushing. You can spray it from the bottle but the key to them is a few drops of drying retarder and thin with Vallejo thinner circa 20%. You can get absolutely sumptuous thin layers of nice, hard wearing coverage with it if you thin it right and as a bonus it makes the airbrush a dream to clean as thinned VMA doesn’t really leave nasty deposits etc. I love it, amazing stuff.

You are quite correct in that VMC is best used with a wet palette as it dries really fast and I find thins better with their thinner than water as it splits after a while on the pallete if you thin it with water and you cannot re-thin it because the dried particles don’t break down so it ends up going gritty. Vallejo thinner is the answer. I just pour some into an egg cup and use the brush to add it as needed. They do glaze nicely too, I see why they are popular with the Warhammer crowd.


I’m wondering if I should try their thinner Chris, I do my figures exclusively with VMC and always use water to thin them. But you are correct in that they need to be constantly mixed as they do separate when thinned with water, I use a wet palette only sometimes though just to paint equipment and details ; I use a metal dish with wells to do faces and uniforms so I can lay out the various shades to highlight and shadow. Which thinner is it may I ask?



Hi Richard. Ive used water since I started using them and struggled a bit with the thinning - no matter how much i thinned them I still ended up with a finish that looked as though they hadn’t been thinned at all. Look at the SS camo patterns on the pics below, it looks way too thick and yet it was almost translucent when it went on.

In some cases I ended up with an odd chalky finish too, as on the feldgrau uniforms below, as if i’d drybrushed them with almost dry deck tan or something (I hadnt). Was weird.

I tried it with Vallejo thinner (I used their Airbrush thinner out of the bottle as I figured it is optimised for their chemical makeup) on a wet pallete (water) and the finish was a bit better. Not much but noticeably improved.

Figurepainting is very much my weak spot and is something I really struggle with. Someone recently suggested I should move to using Lifecolor for brush painting and I do have their flesh tones set which is really nice and does blend beautifully with water.

I’m starting to come round to the understading that thinning your paint properly is the most important part of doing figurework effectively. I’ve haven’t got a handle on it yet but I feel like I am getting closer. The “NightShift” glazing method helps a lot but depends on having the paint thinned correctly - too much or too little and it falls over hard.

As an aside I recently tried a “hybrid” method where I basecoated in black, vertically highlighted in off-white and then airbrushed the uniform of the figure using very thinned VMA. The thinking was that you then go after it with washes and highlights and use the brish to tidy up the overspray etc. Results inconclusive but I’ll give it another go on some feldgrau figures as I think these would work better. For sure it saves a lot of time though.

I guess its just figuring out what works best. Practice, practice, practice.

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What type of water are you using?

Are old Model Color and new Model Color paints compatible such that they can be mixed?

Do new Model Color paints use the same Airbrush Cleaner, Airbrush Thinner, Flow Improver, and Thinning Medium as old Model Color paints?

Those are two very critical questions the people at Vallejo need to answer.

Vallejo paints already dry too fast, making airbrushing and wet blending techniques difficult, even with Flow Improver and Thinning Medium. Why the heck make that even worse?

Model Color me very worried.

As an aside, I recently purchased some Model Air paints. Two came with a new style of label, very difficult to read and ugly. I wonder if those labels are part of this transition to new formulations.

I also have one suggestion for the people at Vallejo. Do NOT wrap the label all the way around the bottle. Leave a gap, making it possible to see the paint level in the bottle. If the label must go all the way around the bottle to prevent unwinding, make part of the label clear.

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Tap water. I live in Rotterdam so should be fairly benign, right? Or should I be using distilled water do you think?

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I would try distilled water. Looked like tap water issues to me.

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I use the water out of my refrigerator which is filtered. I’ve used tap water here in NY with no problem as well.