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Labs that I use

By Q.-Tuan Luong.

Updated June 2005, but I prices are not current, and should only be taken as a relative indication. I use exclusively color slide (transparency) film in 35mm and 5x7 formats. I cannot recommend labs for negative film.



Color Printing

Whereas there is still room for film-based cameras because the cost and bulk of top digital cameras capable of rivaling simple film cameras in all focals is prohibitive to many, I'd have to recommend digital printing. The digital process makes it possible to fine-tune the image very precisely and to match the paper's characteristics, something which takes a considerable amount of skill and experience to achieve with traditional processes, especially from a slide/transparency (which is why prints from slides often look too contrasty). In large format, the ability to remove glitches is also critical.

Costs are high if everything is left to the lab, but if you do the digital work yourself, the cost (including a scan) is quite comparable than having a good lab do the printing with traditional methods. Another excellent option is inkjet printing, which can be done at home or outsourced to a lab. Currently the only inkjet printers that produce prints with excellent color and permanence are the Epsons that use the Ultrachrome inks. They come in several sizes, starting with the 2200. Ultrachrome prints are beautiful, however the permanence rating is based on accelerated fading tests rather than actual experience, and the prints are more delicate than photographic prints such as the Lightjets.

Traditional printing

Digital printing

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