Processing and Scanning Company Recommendations

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by Mike Dale, Nov 1, 2018.

  1. I’ve recently got back into film with a Hasselblad 503CX. I’m using mostly Fuji Velvia 100 transparency film which I have no question intention of trying to develop myself. I’ve been getting the film developed and low quality scanned by The Darkroom.

    As I improve I’m getting a few that I’d like to get scanned in high quality so I can correct any problems and print on my Canon 13x19 printer.

    Can I get some recommendations for alternative processing and high quality scanning companies please.
  2. It will probably help a lot if you indicate where you are based.
  3. I use Peak Imaging in Sheffield. I have them develop and scan my film. I use their "CD Archive Gold" service. I am perfectly happy with them so far.
  4. Urrrrrr yeah. I’m in Pennsylvania.
  5. NCPS in Carlsbad, CA. Outstanding.
    casey_c likes this.
  6. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

  7. I use LTI Lightside in Manhattan for processing B&W 35mm film. The negs always come back spotless. I mail films to them from California.
  8. Me, too. I send my color film to Praus Productions in Rochester, NY. I don't know about their scanning as I do my own. I've also used Blue Moon Camera and Machine in Oregon - they're good, but farther away so I switched to Praus.
  9. Any other thoughts?

    I've placed a few orders with The Darkroom, getting processing and hi-res scanning. I've mostly been happy with the results (the biggest issue being some crinkles in the uncut film when it's returned), but the cost adds up fast. I just placed an order for 3 rolls (2 B&W and 1 E-6), and it was just shy of $70. Looking at some of the other recommendations, it seems like Dwayne's is probably the only place that's less expensive (it wasn't clear if LTI-Lightside offers E-6 processing or scans without prints, or what their scan resolution is).

    I haven't placed any orders directly with Dwayne's, but I had a roll of B&W get sent to them when I dropped it off at a local camera store that doesn't process B&W in-house. The negs came back unsleeved, dirty, and scratched. Needless to say, I'm somewhat reluctant to use them again.

    Unfortunately, the camera stores around here only process C-41 in-house (one did B&W until I complained that my film kept coming back scratched and/or dirty), and I've had less than great luck with one of those. Plus they don't offer high resolution scanning.

  10. I don't use The Darkroom, but it looks like you're using their "Super Scan" service? It's tempting to convince yourself that you will accept nothing but the best quality, but as you adds up quickly. What about their "Enhanced Scans"? I know it only saves $5/roll, but it also adds up I suppose. 2048x3072 is acceptable enough for most common print sizes. What do you do with your scans? For web use, that resolution is certainly plenty. If you did want to print something larger than 8x10 or so, you could always have individual negatives/slides re-scanned. Just some food for thought...
  11. I use a local lab, mostly to avoid postage.

    If I am not too much in a hurry, I wait until I am going in that direction.

    Nearby lab does C41 for USD 8.00 and E6 for USD 12.50 (that is, 10.00 + 2.50 for mounting) for 135-36.

    It used to be that USPS would ship a 35mm roll for the 2 ounce rate, but now there are surcharges,
    which will also apply to the return shipment.

    I do remember when I was younger, using Kodak mailers to send them out. I suppose there were
    local E4 (that long ago) labs around, but we always assumed that Kodak knew best.

    Well, as far as I know, there have been many C41 labs, but the fewer E6 labs offered more
    professional services and higher prices. Mostly my father used the Kodak labs when I was young,
    and so I did, too.

    If you shoot enough that you can pack 10 rolls together then the shipping per roll is less.

    I suppose I also like supporting the local lab to keep them open.
  12. The Darkroom is fast, has fair pricing and provides a quality service so you might just want to level up in the quality of scan there that you're asking for.

    For as much control as possible in the editing of the photos you might want to consider 48 bit scans. 48 bit scans done on a great scanner like a well maintained drum, Eversmart, Creo or even a Nikon Coolscan will allow you to pull details from your highlights that you may not be able to with a 24 bit scan. Especially in a high contrast light situation.

    Greg Miller
    Film Rescue International
  13. Another vote for The Darkroom and their Super Scan. I've been very happy with 16x20 prints from medium format Ektar 100.
  14. I am from NZ and I send slides to AGX Imaging. They also do $12US Imacon scans. Slides only though, no C41 processing. I have also used Dwaynes before also and they are quite good too they also have order forms that cater to international customers. They as you might know processed kodachrome for people around the world as they were the last lab in the world that did that.

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