Grumbacher Deluxe Opaque Watercolors | Review


Today I’ll be reviewing another watercolor pan set, but this time it’s the Grumbacher Deluxe Opaque Watercolors. Last time I reviewed the Koi Watercolor Pocket Field Sketch Box which were transparent watercolors, but I also wanted to experiment with the use of opaque watercolors to play around with different types of paints.



  • 24 opaque watercolor pans
  • 1 tube (.25 fl. oz/7.5 ml) of Deck-Weiss Opaque White
  • Round brush (size 4)
  • Carrying case w/built in mixing palette

Transparency vs. Opaqueness


Even though Grumbacher claims to be opaque I still did the sharpie test so you could see just how much it covers and no surprise-it passed!

Granulating vs. Non-Granulating


Here I tested the top row of the top palette. There is some slight granulation in the outer rings of the bottom row, but it’s not very noticeable. I’m actually really surprised at how blended the colors are!

Staining vs. Non-Staining


As you can see these watercolors are very staining. I painted four circles graduating from light to dark and was unsuccessful in removing much pigment.


  • Wide variety of opaque colors
  • Fair price (about $30-$40)
  • Removable pans
  • Opaque white provided is useful for adding highlights


  • Cheap case that’s easily breakable
  • Mixing palette is too shallow
  • Layering watercolors pans on top of each other can damage those beneath

Final Verdict

I love the color output of these watercolors, so I definitely think they’re worth buying if you love opaque watercolors, however, I really dislike the case since it’s hard to open, feels fragile, and is impractical to carry. I’ve heard from one watercolor artist that you should cover watercolor pans if they’re wet to avoid cracking, but if you stored both top and bottom layers in this case while they’re still wet, you’ll end up damaging the bottom pans. So if you plan on using this set on the go, I suggest looking for something better to store them in.

I hope you found this review helpful! Let me know in the comments what your favorite paints or art supplies you love most!


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