I know the print quality for 35mm varies widely from store to store, and obviously a professional printer does better than the one-hour shops at costco. I know for prints the 1-hour places have lots of variations in colors, exposures etc...
If I just want the negatives developed, can I get it done good if I go to Costco or Sams Club, or will that give me bad quality or tremendous variation from negative to negative? Once I get the negs back, I plan on scanning it on a system like the primefilm 7520 (any comments on that system) and doing any edits on computer before taking it to a lab to print whatever I want printed.
Can this work well?
I have gotten consistent and good 35mm film development at Costco. I get good print making there too. It helps to get to know the supervisor and talk to him about what you want done.
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I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.
If you're going to do develop only, why not use a high quality professional lab rather than risk the minilab. Yes, the mini lab can do a good job, but they are also likely to cause one of the following problems. First, they may not keep their roll processors cleaned correctly, which can cause serious scratching in your film. Second, they may not maintain their chemistry correctly, which can cause a number of other issues that make your life difficult down the road. You might get lucky with a mini lab that does take care of their equipment. But they may change staff one day and you wont know.
For develop only, its only a couple bucks more to use a pro-lab and I think that is money well spent.
In the past I've gotten good results from Costco.
I think modern minilab developer machines are probably perfectly fine for developing C41. The risks you run are in scratches and/or dust from handling. I get all my C41 done at Target. It's not that important to me and the price is only $1. I've had great luck with Walmart send-out service for everything from slides to medium-format C41 to movie film.
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what about slide film...who can develop slide film? I am assuming it has to be mailed out, unless you are in a big city with a dedicated pro film lab there.
You can develop slide film yourself, if you are prepared for the hassle and expense. I don't think any department-store-scale labs do slide film, but most can send it out to a lab.
Most decent-sized cities will have an E6 lab. Mine does (population 200,000 and isolated). We may have more than one for all I know, but the lab I have used for the last decade and a half is still running so I still go there. Mail order is possible too; there are lots of good labs that will do mail order processing.
Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.
Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?
I asked this same question (about C-41) a month or two ago, and while people were busily pointing out to me all the ways in which it's possible to screw up, the minilab was busily demonstrating all of them.
Theoretically, yeah, C-41 processing is standard. If whoever runs the minilab has it together to keep things clean and well maintained, use fresh chemicals, and not turn the negatives over to Edward Scissorhands at any point during the procedure, you should get consistent quality. Some places do, some don't. I switched from one CVS pharmacy that was butchering my film to another one a few minutes away that's been exemplary so far---the new one's lab is managed by a guy who seems like he could well be one of us.
San Diego, CA, USA
The lady of the house has to be a pretty swell sort of person to put up with the annoyance of a photographer.
-The Little Technical Library, _Developing, Printing, And Enlarging_
if you do the " send out " option for sams club
it goes to fuji labs ... it is worth a test roll ...
for 9 years i have had most of my personal
c41 sent there ... no real problems to report ...
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