Photo Printing Services Recommendations

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by rwa757, May 13, 2017.

  1. I do not have a quality printer at home nor do I have a quality local service. Any suggestions on what labs do quality work to print from digital files?
  2. There are plenty of good quality inkjet printers for low prices. Many for about the
    price of the included ink cartridges.

    Sometimes I still prefer wet processed digital prints, as it reminds me some of the old way.

    How high of quality do you want?

    Shutterfly does prints of all sizes, but the price increases fast with size.
    Maybe not museum quality, but good enough for what I often want, such as
    sending pictures of kids to their grandparents. They have specials often
    enough, that I rarely pay the list price.
  3. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    If quality to you means having the ability to fully use color management, soft proof and pick how the image gets converted to the output color space, instead of having to send sRGB (suboptimal), check out this list:
    Digital photo lab profiles
  4. I use Bay Photo in the rare cases when I don't print my own and have been entirely satisfied
  5. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    Too bad you can’t use the profile further.
    Same with WHCC; profile for soft proofing, can’t use it for conversions, must send sRGB or Adobe RGB (1998).
  6. really helpful discussion . thankyou
  7. I"ve used Samy's
    camera near me. On any kind of large print they would;d do a proof print and I got good prints from them.
  8. I do not print that often, but when I do, I use Costco. Costco profiles their printers and maintains them so they match the published profiles.

    I post process in either Lightroom or Photoshop, convert to the appropriate Costco profile, upload the resulting file, and go pick up my prints either later that day or the next day. Since the profiles are specific for a particular store, you must pick up the prints; mail order is from a central site that does not publish profiles.

    All my prints match what I see on my screen - at least to my (old) eyes.
  9. Here is a part of a report by Herbert Keppler in Pop Photo 1992-07. Some 47% poor or unacceptable.

    That was before digital had kicked in and explains, in part, why so many of us went digital between 2000 and 2005.

    It is not easier to find good B&W processing today. One might have thought a kind of selection process would have eliminated the poor quality labs, but it only eliminated the more costly processing.

    My very first roll of Panatomic X film through my then-brand-new Pentax H2 in 1960 came back with scratches, spots, and bug silhouettes. I soon learned to do my own work when I could.
  10. Vincent Peri

    Vincent Peri Metairie, LA

  11. AJG


    In my experience a lot of labs catering to professionals have gone out of business since their market mostly disappeared. Pros would spend for quality work since it made them look good and they were billing their clients for the prints. Amateurs, on the other hand are paying out of their own pockets and are understandably more price sensitive. Good labs are charging you for the inevitable remakes in their prices, otherwise they won't stay in business.

    My first and last rolls of B&W film developed by a commercial lab were also Panatomic-X and showed lots of grain in 3 1/2 x 5 prints. There are a couple of custom labs that I would trust now, but since I can develop it myself that's what I do.
  12. I should have mentioned Dwayne's also. Perhaps I was subconsciously wanting them to be even faster with my own film so.... Black and white, however, I do at home, unfortunately when I get to it.

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