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Mail order labs?

Discussion in 'Film Forum' started by snegron, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. snegron

    snegron

    983
    Jul 29, 2007
    SW Florida
    I just got a great deal on color film, Kodak Ultramax ISO 400: 8 rolls for under $8.00! I couldn't resist, so I purchased six 8-packs (48 rolls of 24 exposures). I think it will be great for all around, every day shooting. Problem is that the developing labs in my area have taken a major nosedive in terms of quality. My corner drugstore has "gone digital" and their new machine turns out horrible, pixilated, really awful-looking prints. Local Walmart has ruined many of my negatives in the past (they seem to love cutting my negatives in the middle of the frames despite my written insistance on not having the negatives cut at all). Sam's Club and Cotsco have lowered their quality, and my local custom lab has been declining in quality and increasing their prices.

    So, I am looking for a decent, affordable mail order lab that can provide decent quality at an affordable price, also CD's or DVD scans of my negatives WITHOUT the crappy image viewing programs that they incorporate on the didcs with the images . I sent for some mailers from Dale Labs, still waiting for them. Any suggestions on mail order labs? I don't want to spend a fortune on color developing especially because this is for all around, daily shooting. And no, I can't develop my own color negatives. Also, scanning myself is not an option because my Epson 4870 "Pro" scanner is pretty much an overpriced paper weight for me at this time. Any suggestions?

    p.s., I would like to find a low cost lab with decent results so I can buy more of those inexpensive rolls of film! I don't think that they have too much more of them in stock, so I would like to go and buy several more 8-packs providing I can obtain good results with developing.
     
  2. Chris101

    Chris101

    Feb 2, 2005
    Arizona
    Sorry Sandy. I don't know ANY mail order labs except Dwaynes, which is the only remaining lab that does Kodachrome (I really should shoot some, I used to love it!) But they do everything else too.

    I develop all my own B&W at home, and take my C41 to the nearest 1 hour, which is almost always in a drugstore (Walgreens in AZ and RiteAid in CA.) Ok, they scratch it once in a while, but not as often as I do! :eek: :eek: 

    Freestyle does B&W processing, but it's expensive!
     
  3. snegron

    snegron

    983
    Jul 29, 2007
    SW Florida
    Thanks anyway Chris! As luck will have it, Walgreens (or CVS Pharmacy here) will only scratch the negative that I like the most! :Curved: As Murphy's law will dictate, they will only damage the only good frame on the roll!

    I have used Dwaynes in the past for Kodachrome, but since these rolls of film I have are inexpensive, I was just hoping to have some fun with them without having to spend too much on developing.

    Sadly, I was looking at some old pictures I took 6 years ago and had developed at the local Ritz Camera in the mall. The quality was extraordinary! Unfortunately their developing tokk a dive for the worse and has not really recovered, so I can't count on them for quality developing anymore.
     
  4. Baywing

    Baywing

    Feb 22, 2005
    CT USA
    Try Image Craft in Phoenix, AZ. I've used them for years (not so much lately) but last I knew they were still doing film. Surprized Chris didn't mention it.....
     
  5. snegron

    snegron

    983
    Jul 29, 2007
    SW Florida
    Thanks!:smile:
     
  6. Connahhh

    Connahhh

    Oct 27, 2007
    NH
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  7. snegron

    snegron

    983
    Jul 29, 2007
    SW Florida

    What was I thinking! My memory of Walmart was the 1 hour in-store lab that has ruined many of my rolls in the past. I totally forgot about your thread mentioning their mail order business! I guess I was so excited about finding such a great deal on 35mm film that I totally forgot about my experiment with sensing a 120 roll through their mail order!

    Update: I went back to my local CVS Pharmacy today with several rolls of film. Yes, I know, I complained about how they have butchered my rolls in the recent past, but I needed the rolls developed immedieately. My intention was to at least get the negatives and spend a few hours scanning a couple of frames.

    When the salesclerk asked if I wanted a scanned disk of the negatives, I thought, "why not? At least I can email a few of those low-grade scans." I went with the cheaper disk (the CVS disk instead of the Kodak disk).

    I was surprised when I got them back in an hour! The prints actually looked good! I popped the disk in my computer, and while it had that annoying viewing program, it also had the option to copy the images on my desktop. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the images were copied as 1.34 MB JPEGS! I opened a few in CS2, did some minor enhancements, and obtained very decent reults! I feel as if I have just rediscovered the wheel! Maybe this was just luck, maybe the lab tech put more effort into it. I don't know. All I can say is that I am happy! :smile:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  8. GoGo

    GoGo

    Apr 20, 2006
    New York
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