Photo processing in Boston MA and USA in general
I've been lurking for a while but now have a question for you!
I'm on holiday in the US, currently in Boston and I would like to process my film before I go home. It is all colour negative film and I'm looking for a good quality drugstore/ minilab processing.
So can you helpful US apuggers suggest some places that you have found give reliable processing? Specific places in Boston would be great but suggestions of chainstores that usually give good processing are also very welcome.
I will be in New York in a weeks time so suggestions of places there would also be useful.
Depending on exactly where you are, you might be able to get to Newtonville Camera (on Walnut St. in Newton, near rt16) or to a Hunt's location (I think the one closest is in Melrose. There is a one hour place in Waltham, on Lexington St. near the line with Lexington.
If you have 120 and have time, there's Ultracolor on Bridge St. in Watertown - they are a pro lab and don't have the fastest turnaround, but the quality is good.
Hands down the best option in Boston is Color Services Inc, which is off of route 9 in Needham. It's fairly close to where route 9 meets I-95, and probably a 20 minute drive from downtown without traffic.
They are open something like 8 AM to 7 PM during the week and will do same day (i.e. within 3 hours) processing for C-41 and E-6 up through 8x10 sheets. They'll also do B&W with XTOL, I think in some nitrogen burst apparatus, but you're unlikely to get that same day unless you go early in the morning.
There are two Hunt's locations closer to the city -- one in Kenmore Square near Fenway Park, and you can get there on any of the Green Lines (except the E), and there is one a block from Harvard Square in Cambridge. But as far as I know they don't do any processing in-house -- they send it all out.
If you're ok with minilab processing, there are drugstores and Ritz Cameras everywhere. That's not a problem.
cvs pharmacy or walgreens should have a minilab inhouse
none of the "pro-labs" i would send you to
are even around anymore
Thanks for the replies. I don't have a car here so I'm limited to the subway and buses for transport. The film is all 35mm and I'm looking for dev and 4x6 prints. I'm thinking I will try minilab processing and hope for the best. I guess they should all be about the same quality so I'll just pick one at random unless anyone knows of particular ones to avoid.
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Zona on third street in Cambridge is an excellent pro lab - Just take the red line to Kendall Square and you can walk there. You probably want to give them a call first as they are pricey.
If you're downtown there is a Ritz Camera that is very close to the Old South Meeting House. It's on the Freedom Trail somewhere.
The only other one hour labs I know of specifically that are on a subway line are one in the Longwood Medical Area (on the corner of Binney Street and Longwood Ave, across Binney from Children's Hospital), and then a Ritz Camera in Coolidge Corner on Beacon Street, just a block up on your right. Both are easily reachable from the subway, but I'm sure there's more downtown.
I just had a couple of rolls done at Cambridge Framery near Harvard square because they were close by and cheap. Not a full-service pro shop but more than adequate for the usual 35mm C-41 and E-6 services. I had them do a roll of Portra and a roll of Provia and it was fine.
Any of the major drug store chain outlets (CVS, RiteAid, Walgreens etc.) will have mini-lab photo services. This is true in Boston, New York City or just about anywhere. Outside the inner cities you can also find WalMart, Costco etc.
The real question is what kind of quality to you desire?
The mini-labs will process your film and produce very good quality 4x6 prints (just like you get at home). And, just like at home, issues will arise if you later decide to scan the negatives.
You see, the mini-lab's print processing includes digital "healing" (think Photoshop) such that the prints will appear flawless. But if you subsequently scan the negatives (like I do) you may well find all kinds of nicks, scratches and even fuzz and hair marks. That's because, unlike the prints - the negatives are not "healed".
If the pics are primarily snappies and you just want the 4x6 prints - go to any nearby drugstore. If you want "clean" negatives - you have a better chance of obtaining so at a pro shop.
I doubt this is any different than the situation "at home" wherever your "home" is.
BTW: If you bring the negatives back home and have additional prints made there - no worries. The mini-lab there will also "heal" the prints.
zona isn't around anymore. they moved from kendall square to
Originally Posted by dslater
somerville, and over the last year they closed down.