We report the development of a method to compare collision-induced dissociation (CID) spectra of peptides. This method employs a cross-correlation analysis of a CID spectrum to a reference spectrum and normalizes the cross-correlation score to the autocorrelation of the CID spectra. The query spectrum is compared by using both mass information and fragmentation patterns. Fragmentation patterns are compared to each other using a correlation function. To evaluate the specificity of the approach, a set of 2180 tandem mass spectra obtained from both triple-quadrupole tandem mass spectrometers (TSQ) and quadrupole ion trap mass spectrometers (LCQ) was created. Comparisons are performed between tandem mass spectra obtained on the same instrument type as well as between different instrument types. Accurate and reliable comparisons are demonstrated in both types of analyses. The scores obtained in the cross-comparison of TSQ and LCQ tandem mass spectra of the same peptide are found to be slightly lower than comparisons performed with spectra obtained on the same instrument type. The method appears insensitive to variations in day-to-day performance of the instrument, minor variations in fragment ion abundance, and instrumental differences inherent in the same instrument model. The use of this method of comparison is demonstrated for library searching and subtractive analysis of tandem mass spectra obtained during LC/MS/MS experiments.