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Chromatography Data Systems

The right chromatography data system (CDS) can spell the difference between a streamlined data collection process and one that is haphazard. CDSs are software packages that collect, store, and help users interpret data. Some have instrument control functions as well. CDSs come in many different varieties, which can make selecting one a daunting exercise.

by Lab Manager

Top 7 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a chromatography data system

1. What are the key elements you need to have from the data system?

2. What differentiates the vendor’s software from others offered, in terms of chromatography data handling, customization and powerful analysis?

3. How do you validate the specification claims presented by the vendor?

4. Has the data processing software been designed for enhanced analytics, with lab workflow in mind and does it support critical compliance requirements?

5. What are important price points to keep in mind when selecting a GC software package?

6. Laboratories need fast and effective services. This includes an effective distribution of installations, help desk, education, and service personnel. How does the company serve these needs globally?

7. Is validation, like support for 21 CFR Part 11, critical for you?

The types of CDS installations found in our readers’ labs, according to our latest survey:

Web-based 16%
Stand-alone 45%
Thin client/server 8%
Client/server 28%
Other 2%

The primary purposes our readers who own CDSs are using their systems for in their labs:

Improved communication between instruments and related software 18%
Accelerating the documentation and reporting of experimentation 16%
Centralized data repositories 14%
Improve productivity 12%
Infrastructure for capturing, accessing and sharing experimental information 7%
Enabling scientists to collaborate effectively on multi-stage projects 7%
Streamlined regulatory compliance 2%
Workflow coordination across geographic and business boundaries 1%
All of the above 20%

The top five most important factors in our readers’ decisions to buy a CDS:

  Important Not Important
Ease of use 97% 3%
Service and support 98% 2%
Price 97% 3%
Versatility 94% 6%
Seamless communication
between different instruments
and software
93% 7%

Recently Released chromatography data systems

CompassCDS™ 3.0
• Eliminates the costs associated with licensing of named users
• Provides operators with a powerful tool for a variety of analytical operations
• Available as a standalone or fully networked client/server application
• Designed to operate in 24/7 production environments with current Windows versions as well as with Virtualized and Citrix metaframe installations


• As a straightforward upgrade, it is 100% compatible with the raw data, methods, sequences, and results of the existing ChemStation and EZChrom Elite
• Also adds a host of new features to boost productivity
• Built on the fully scalable OpenLAB architecture, making it future-proofed
• Delivers enhanced reporting and lets you monitor your lab from anywhere—even from your smart phone


Empower 3
• Provides customizable data reports
• Includes integrated custom calculations
• Features relational data so all your meta data is traceable back to the raw data
• Boasts optimized workflow for different users and different analyses
• Also features enhanced 21 CFR Part 11 compliance capabilities such as electronic signatures


• Developed keeping UHPLC specifically in mind, and can be configured for simultaneous multi-detector/multi-channel operation
• Microsoft Outlook®-like user interface is easy to learn and operate
• Helps streamline workflow for efficient sample analysis and data acquisition
• Direct, “hands-on” control of instruments allows active methods and sequences to be modified in real-time


Chromatography data systems Manufacturers

Hitachi High Technologies
SRI Instruments
Thermo Fisher Scientific