Color differences: Polymerized composite and corresponding Vitapan Classical shade tab

William D. Browning, Rosalia Contreras-Bulnes, Martha G. Brackett, William W. Brackett

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Objectives: This study compared newer composite resin restorative materials to the Vitapan Classical tabs they purported to represent. Methods: Five Vitapan Classical tabs were studied: A3.5, B2, C1, C3, and D2 (n = 3). These tabs created a variety of levels of lightness, chroma and hue. Each of these five shade tabs was removed from three different shade guides, and an intraoral spectrophotometer was used to capture CIELAB color coordinates. Three separate readings were made and all nine were averaged. The inter-tab color differences were also calculated. Five specimens approximately 4.0 mm thick were fabricated for each of the shades studied using five different composite resin materials. Composite specimens were of the same size and shape as target shade tabs, and three separate recordings were made for each of them. This average was compared to five Vitapan Classical shade tabs to calculate the color differences using both CIELAB and CIEDE2000 color difference formulas. Color differences were compared to thresholds for perceptibility and acceptability reported in other studies. Results: CIELAB and CIEDE2000 color differences ranged from 3.9 to 22.8 and from 2.1 to 13.8, respectively. None of the materials proved, an acceptable CIELAB color match to any of the shades tested. Conclusion: When various shade tabs of Vitapan Classical shade guides were compared with correspondent tabs made of direct restorative composites, no material/shade combination resulted in an acceptable mismatch relative to the used standard of acceptability. Therefore, evaluated resin composites exhibited poor match compared to target Vitapan Classical tabs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e34-e39
JournalJournal of Dentistry
Issue numberSUPPL. 1
StatePublished - 2009


  • Color
  • Color measurement
  • Composite resin
  • Delta E 2000
  • LCH
  • Lab
  • Spectrophotometer
  • Vita Classical shade guide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dentistry(all)


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