Just had a look at the specifications of the Colorado class ships, at 35000 tons and 9x16" guns they seem similar to Nelson and Rodney
if that a fair comparison?
I suppose that like any battle its going to be the one who h.its first and keeps on hitting is going to win
You mean North Carolina class instead of the Colorado class?
The Colorado or West Virginia class dates back to WWI. The deck protection of the West Virginia class, even after modernization, was rather poor. In my opinion it worse than the Hood's.
The North Carolina class Immunity zone was 18,000 yards (15" effective US Class A) to 28,000 yards (4.1" effective US Class B deck protection) against the American 14"/50. The German 15" was a more powerful gun than the 14"/50. The Washington would have little to no IZ against the Tirpitz' 15" guns. Meanwhile the Tirpitz would have had a rather wide IZ against the Washington's 16"/45, given the scarp triangle vertical protection system and the 5.25"-6" effective Wh deck protection.
The Tirpitz' gun also has a wider danger space with shorter flight time, also with relatively low dispersion, and therefore was more likely to hit first and hit more often, given the German fire control system was at least as capable.