Where do you print your photos?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Jeepinmomma, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. Jeepinmomma
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    Jeepinmomma New Member

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    If you own your own business or are a freelancer you take photos for people and they buy them, but where do you send them to get printed? Ive tried walmart and walgreens and i think they are crappy! I did a recent photo session for my brothers school pictures and i don't know where to have them processed at? Can anyone help< thanks!
  2. Robin Usagani
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    Robin Usagani Well-Known Member

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    why are they crappy?
  3. bigtwinky
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    bigtwinky Well-Known Member

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    Never print at walmart or any pharmacy. They are not printers. I've printed at a few and never liked what they did. Not even in a pinch. Last time I printed at walmart, their calibration was totally off, colours were bad. Some images came out way darker. Thought I would use them quick when I had to print stuff to show a friend. When I got the same image, same file, printed at a lab a few days later, it looked normal.

    The only one I have seen do a good job is costco.

    I have 2 local print shots that I use. They are both camera stores with good labs. So look at your local stores and see if they can do prints or if they can refer you to good labs.

    Online, I like WHCC for when i need to ship prints to the US.
  4. Robin Usagani
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    Robin Usagani Well-Known Member

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    I print mine at costco.. I just thought they will be similar to the other places OP mentioned. The one thing I like about costco at least the one by my house, I always see the same few people work there.
  5. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    I use a professional lab in my city. Luckily for me, it's the head branch of one of, if not the, best labs in Canada.

    If you don't have a pro lab in your area, there are several good options for ordering on-line.
  6. Bram
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    Bram New Member

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    Why are the photos from a Walmart crappy? are you getting them printed on 4x6 from a PM2000? Because if you are these printers are amazing and have great resolution. Try maybe getting them printed on the 8x10 shinko printer then maybe you'll have better results.
  7. DerekSalem
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    DerekSalem New Member

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    Actually, Wal-Mart is not like the pharmacy companies (CVS, Walgreens, etc...). They use $100,000 Fuji printers in all Wal-Mart locations which is on par with most of the professional printing companies. Nothing wrong with getting prints at Wal-Mart but if you had problems you should complain about it...they should give you a refund and offer to print out more after a calibration.

    Secondly, if you want a great printing service: Mpix. Mpix is a fantastic online printing service that I (as well as many TPF members) have used many times over and have always been pleased with. You can get any size you want and it's usually around the same price as everywhere else (or sometimes cheaper).
  8. bigtwinky
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    bigtwinky Well-Known Member

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    Good comment.

    I did complain, I did get a refund and a voucher for free prints. They said they would look into their machine calibration, came back a month later, same crap.

    Might just be a local walmart issue, but I've heard similar stories from walmarts in and around Montreal. If the situation is different in your area, great! But in mine, its crap so I dont use them, whether its a 4x6 or 8x12
  9. akeigher
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    akeigher New Member

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    I used to print at a local lab before they closed, but now I send them to Miller's Professional Imaging Miller's Professional Imaging

    They are the "professional" photographers side of MPIX http://www.mpix.com

    I have never used mpix, so I dont really know what they difference is.

    Miller's does make you show that you are a professional photog before they will open up your account (mpix does not).

    Hope that helps.
  10. Uncle Rico
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    Uncle Rico New Member

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    I've used Bay Photo www.bayphoto.com . They have professional print quality at reasonable prices and give you many more print options than retail chains. The only downside to using this and some other pro printing services is their print ordering systems - not nearly as simple or clean as Walmart.com or Costco.com. But the benefit has outweighed the slight inconvenience.
  11. Taylor510ce
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    Taylor510ce New Member

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    For price and quality, costco is the only local franchise type lab I will go to. Have used adorama as a test when I first tried printing. My settings were jacked though so they sucked. My fault not theirs. I hear good things about bayphoto and mpix.
  12. Gaerek
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    Gaerek New Member

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    I order most of my photos through my Smugmug account. They use Bayphoto as their print lab, and I've never had any bad prints. Photos come out near perfect.

    However, I just got a Canon Pixma Pro 9000 MkII as a gift, so I imagine I'll be printing my own photos a lot more in the near future.
  13. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    From my experiences, Wal-mart is a bad option. While they might use fancy machines, that doesn't mean much when the photos are only run though with the auto-adjust settings....or with low paid 'techs' on duty. I've tried a handful of different Wal-marts in my area. Most times the results are OK, but not impressive...and sometimes they are down right terrible. There was a photo manager at one store, who did give me great results, but only when he was working.

    One of the advantages of a pro lab, is that you will presumably get consistent, dependable results...and they will likely be a better quality than you get at the department & drug stores.

    I've tried Cost-co as well....and they were on-par with the best drug store labs, at about half the cost. But my pro lab isn't really all that expensive and the results are fantastic.
  14. Hardrock
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    Hardrock New Member

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    Another vote for MPIX.com!
  15. user3977
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    user3977 TPF Supporters

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    where in TN are you? sams usually has pretty decent prints. the walmart near me actually does really good prints. i have been enough of a PITA for them and they got tired of dealing with me i guess and corrected the color on the printers. also the instant HP printers seem to be nice but not sure if the 2 bucks extra is worth it. vrs waiting an hr

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