Most remaining pro labs which do optical enlargement are mom n' pop operations susceptible to retirement, undercapitalization, etc. Therefore
it seems they keep digital printing options parallel, and offer both kinds of service. Printing right onto RA4 papers is more cost effective than
either inkjet or adding an intermediate scan step. But you need good negs to begin with. If you need to retool them the traditional manner,
you're faced with a lot of labor and a limited labor pool that has these traditional skills. By contast, people learning digital correction skills are
dime a dozen, though that's only the tip of the iceberg in terms of customer satisfaction. I don't print other peoples shots, just my own, so
don't have that headache. But an intelligently run business has to find a distinct niche. A lot of what custom labs used to do has now been
ceded over to inkjet printing directly in-house by med to large corporations. Still, optical printing can have a distinct look at a relatively
affordable rate. And the services of a true lab might also be necessary for specialized things like large print display mounting, which requires
specials skills and equipment. So there will probably remain a need for them in the foreseeable future. But pro quality work deserves equal
payment, and good lab services have never been cheap. If anyone wants to whine, then simply go back to the days when dye transfer printing was the quality norm, and extrapolate those prices into today's adjusted inflation. Then faint. Or simply learn to color print yourself.