Benefits of developing at a pro shop, and some possible Melbourne locations
I'm just getting into analogue photography, but decided to shoot film on a recent holiday. I've got some 20 films to show for it, mostly of Fuji superia 200 or 400, with a couple of rolls of Reala (and mostly shot using only 1/500th speed and a heavy reliance on the Sunny-f16 rule after my camera's light meter contacts decided to stop conducting). Also, almost all of it has been cooked lightly by spending a day or two in a car in the hot Australian sun.
Now, given the grade of film in question I have two questions:
1) Is there any significant advantage to get a process and proof or maybe process and scan done at a pro place rather than a simple minilab? Do their scanners really scratch negatives?
2) If I go down the cheap route; I've found good prices at a place convenient to me (Elizabeth Camera Centre on Elizabeth St) which I've heard good things about.. however, they are a kodak branded developer, is that significant in their ability to develop Fuji? My minilab alternative is a 1-Hour Photo place on Lygon St (at the same centre as Cinema Nova, for those from the area). Is the fact that they are Fuji branded, and their photo sleeves say "Fuji certified photo finisher" any real positive?
1 - I reckon - in my experience the range of services a little photo place can offer is not so great, and the folks working in the lab may (these days especially) not have had such great training, nor experience with film anymore
2 - Vanbar in Carlton (Cardigan St, one block west of Lygon) would be close to you - why not test these theories by getting something processed and scanned there/compare the two, see what works best - cost vs ace-ness!