OT Poor results from Jessops scan

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by terry_rory, Feb 5, 2006.

  1. Like a fool I decided to try out Jessops Fuji Frontier processing and
    scanning to CD this weekend. (My usual lab was a bit overrun with
    work and equipment maintenance)

    I asked for the Jessops 'Pro CD' option (3000x2000 TIFF 16bit for an
    extra 4 GBP)

    Needless to say I got nothing of the sort! Instead I got oversharpened
    and artifact ridden 1800x200 jpgs and a lame apology on the phone when
    I rang to complain. "Sorry we forgot".

    The operator 'forgot' to see two prominent 'special attention'
    stickers next to a double underlined Pro CD label and a verbal
    instruction from the manager that I overheard whilst in the shop.

    Obviously this is my fault entirely for thinking that Jessops were up
    to the job and my fault for not having more patience and waiting until
    Tuesday until my usual Lab had sorted out their maintenance and work

    Just a warning to others in the UK who may be tempted to use a high
    street Jessops when they are away from their usual lab or their usual
    lab have delays.

    (Luckily none of the pics were a big loss to me.)
  2. And yes I am planning to get a Nikon Coolscan LS50 ED (some time soon) in order to do my own.
  3. Sorry to hear that Trevor. The machine operator in the Jessops near my work is a keen photographer and he advised me not to use Jessops for any developing, printing or scanning(!) - probably the most accurate bit of advice I've ever been given by any of their staff.

    I've used Snappy Snaps for a while now and they always seem to do the job fine.
  4. Oh dear. I suppose you knew what was going to happen, its kind of sad that the largest photographic retailer in the UK has such shoddy service. They are overpriced for crap results. They have lost 1 roll of bw which had spots over all of it and a roll of velvia(each turning up just over a month late) so i gave up with them. Also, their "diamond" neg developing is atrocious. They obviously scan them and put lots of lovely over-the-top sharpening on anything.

    This is why i do not develop anything from them and use snappy-snaps, LCE, or focalpoint (local).

    I suppose they appeal to the people who dont have a clue
  5. For one year, I made extensive use of Jessops in Colchester and had no problem. I also made intermittent use of Jessops in Richmond on Thames and had one problem, for which the manager apologized. (He also refunded me and gave me various little presents. Later, Jessops HQ apologized too and sent me a non-trivial wad of coupons for free prints.) Meanwhile, the one time I used it, Jessops somewhere or other in central London seemed to be staffed by people with as little interest in or knowledge of photo development and printing as I have in, say, hairpins.

    Jessops varies by branch. No doubt some will still tell you that B/W paper no longer exists, which is why they printed your B/W negs on color paper.

    Actually by far the biggest irritation at Jessops (Colchester) was the delay waiting while undeservedly long and amicable answers were being given to people with goofy questions about their digicams. ("What, you mean I don't have to buy a new card when the old one is full? But what do I do with what's on the old one? I don't want to lose it!" Et cetera.)

    I hate the chainization of British towns and suburbs, whereby every high street seems to be a trivially different rearrangement of the same modules: HMV, Starbucks, Virgin, Next, Fcuk, Clarks, etc. I'd rather there were independent shops instead of Jessops. But as chains go, Jessops seemed OK to me.
  6. The 'Diamond' treatment Jon mentioned must be responsible for the fact that even OOF backgrounds have been oversharpened into unsightly 'clumps'. (I would probably need about 400 percent sharpening to emulate how bad they got it.)

    What I dont understand is that my usual lab do such a good job with almost identical equipment without me having to ask for 'special' options.
  7. Jessops Weston-Super-Mare (new store) lost my film after making a complete mess of it, by the look of the prints and CD. Boots were little better and after the local Kodak lab closed, results became unreliable, with mangled and cut through negs, even.

    I use Avoncolour, Bristol by post - so far BRILLIANT.
  8. And if I took it back I would waste more time just to have another low grade, identically oversharpened CD produced.

    I am not confident the Jessops operators actually know the options available on their machine. (Although they know just exactly how much to charge for the options you don't get. Maybe they just assume no-one will notice.)

    In the long run it is false economy. OK they got a few extra quid out of someone for not having to select a couple of different options (and spend a couple of extra minutes waiting for bigger scans) but that will be the ONLY extra 4 pounds they get out of me for nothing.

    If they had done a good job I would be back there regularly and I may have pointed other people in their direction for digital/film processing. Its a shame. There was a time a few years back when they were quite good. Time to get a scanner before Nikon axe that part of their film related product line as well.
  9. UK, that is.
  10. I've never had a problem with Jessops on New Oxford Street.
  11. To be fair to Jessops (now my annoyance has subsided a bit) I can relate a few stellar Jessops experiences from the past.

    Once, in 1999 I was buying my first Contax T2 brand new from a London Jessops branch (Holborn) and arrived on the designated afternoon to collect whilst on a day trip there. I was informed there woul be a short delay because the manager was out collecting my camera himself from the local Securicor depot. The depot had experienced industrial action by its drivers so the T2 had not arrived on time and the manager took it upon himself to go through their stuff at the depot to find my item.

    Twenty minutes (and a nice cup of coffee courtesy of the staff) later a breathless manager appeared with new Contax T2 in hand and insisted I accept a couple of 5 packs of Reala and a handful of Duracell CR123 batteries and a Lenspen free as an apology for the delay.
  12. Trevor,

    Sorry to hear about the poor results.

    I think it is not Jessops or the Fuji machine but rather the operator of the machine that is the problem. Here in the States, we have a drug store chain named Walgreens which uses the Fuji Frontier system. What I discovered is that there are two people who do know the machine and how to operate it but there are about 15 people who work the photo department at different times who have no idea about it or photography in general.

    I will only leave film if one of the two who know the machine are there and have even got to the point of knowing their schedules so I know what night to drop the film off. I'll usually bring them coffee or throw them a few bucks too. It is sad that we have to worry about stuff like this but the bottom line is that most of these retailers do not pay enough to attract quality photo experts to work there. They are mostly just High School kids working after school looking to make some beer / gas money.

    It can be very frustrating.

    Good luck, JT
  13. Thanks.

    Next time its back to the Lab I normally use. They are all trained well and develop a lot of local wedding shooters stuff and a lot of the University's photography students go there for B&W. (The only place I can get true B&W prints from traditional film AND scanned to CD in about 4 hours on a good day. Their C41 B&W scans are even better. I think they have either no sharpening or low sharpening and only require minimal curve adjustment afterwards in PS. By contrast (no pun) the Jessops scans are crazily sharp and over contrasty and at 'actual pixel' size, look a complete mess on screen with significant artifacting.
  14. Now you see, Trevor, why many of us shake our heads in amazement -- and envy -- when you routinely post fine results from what you always describe casually as Frontier scans from the lab. Many of us, I suspect, normally get what you got this last time.
  15. Yes, well this is about the best I could salvage from my 'scan' today...
  16. To be fair, I've frequently used Jessops processing with no problems. I've used several branches, most frequently, Swindon, Cirencester and Bath, and I've not had anything back from them that I didn't like.
  17. "I hate the chainization of British towns and suburbs, whereby every high street seems to be a trivially different rearrangement of the same modules: HMV, Starbucks, Virgin, Next, Fcuk, Clarks, etc. I'd rather there were independent shops instead of Jessops."

    Great word: 'chainization' . My sentiments exactly. Our media and politicians gloat about our faster (than the rest of Europe) growing economy, but it seems that the price is monotonous shops, who pay badly and cannot or will not train their staff. So different in Germany, France, Italy and Holland where, of course, they are suffering individually owned shops with knowledgable staff.

    The great British economy is growing towards the lowest common denominator.
  18. Here in the U.S., I have my film processed by "affordable" labs which do consumer grade processing. Their work in "souping" my film and making prints has generally been very good, but I have never had good results from any lab I use when it comes to CDs. There are too many artifacts and the entire image is gritty looking with much information missing. The good news is they are inexpensive! Ha Ha. Bill
  19. So which lab do you normally use Trevor? I am eager for a recommendation!

    Thanks - Dan
  20. Goodwins
  21. Jessops in Colchester may have been atypical and it may also have been very different from how it is now. But anyway I found that the people there varied from self-confessedly ignorant to very knowledgable (and willing to discuss), and that the former were good at passing on questions to the latter. The scans were crappy but they were dirt cheap (if a better and more expensive option existed, I didn't know of it) so I regarded them as akin to sets of contact prints (which I think would have cost more) and didn't think I could reasonably complain.
    The mess-up I experienced was to a roll of E6 and was primarily the responsibility of morons outside Jessops, plus Jessops for delegating responsibility for processing film to that company.
    The C41 problems I heard of concerned processing other than by Jessops' in-store "Diamondscan" or whatever it was called. Once any branch had installed the hardware for the latter, it pressed customers to use it; what staff wanted to say but could only mutter off the record was that taking the slightly cheaper and slower option to have your developing and printing done elsewhere put your film at the mercy of whatever company was quoting the lowest price, and those companies weren't renowned for high standards.
    The worst bunch of morons I encountered was in the Victoria or Waterloo station (I forget) branch of some chain (I forget). I rather optimistically took them a roll of film from a Meopta Opema: 24x32 (cf an old Nikon or Minolta). I explained that the frames were non-standard ("kind of like 'half-frame', but bigger") and asked if this would confuse the machinery or otherwise be troublesome: if so, I'd just have processing, uncut. No, fine. Well, the fools didn't cut through any frame on the developed film, but they served me a pile of prints from a machine clearly programmed to print from a series of 24x36 frames (so the frame-breaks gradually moved across the prints, as one viewed them one by one). When I pointed this out to the grown woman who "served" me, her reaction was that of a stereotypical sullen thirteen-year-old. Maybe she really was a retard -- I didn't bother to find out, as I had a train to catch.
  22. My sympathies Trevor. Jessops are getting worse and worse and I now revile them altogether. Their mail order service is slow and uncommunicative, their prices usually a complete joke and their development services hit-and-miss at best. I would take my colour negatives there (at gunpoint) but nothing else.

    I use Peak Imaging in Sheffield who are very good. Attractive pricing for a pro lab, professional and fast even for mail order. Don't know what their scanning is like but I suspect good too.

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