WHCC Out - Questions about MPIX

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Billy Ng, Jun 27, 2007.

  1. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    Well,

    I did a comparison of 8x10 prints from WHCC and MPIX a while back. WHCC was slightly more expensive, but the out-of-the-box prints matched my monitor calibration better than MPIX did and MPIX had some funky thing at the time where I couldn't order true black-and-white prints and color prints at the same time ... they wanted them in separate orders. As far as larger prints, WHCC is only $4 for an 11x14 (my portfolio is 11x14) while MPIX wants $7.

    Anyway, WHCC got the nod but in the past week I've been burned twice by them and am thinking of shopping around again. Specifically I had business cards printed (more expensive than anywhere else) that I am not happy with and was not quality checked (a phone call to let me know that my phone number was totally illegible would have been a nice feature), and yesterday I received my first press printed book which was missing the first two pages and cost me $78. For the record, $78 gets you a black fabric 10x10 book with 34 sides (well, 32 if they accidentally forget to include the first two pages) and B&W photos that aren't true B&W (my book is of all B&W prints and they all have a purplish tinge). The book is put together well and the paper is of good weight and excellent clarity .... but $78 is NOT what this thing is worth.

    So, back to MPIX. When I placed my last order, they made me put B&W print and metallic prints in a separate order which means separate shipping ... is this still the case? Does anyone else have any negatives they'd like to share? Any other top quality places out there?
     
  2. I agree. I love mpix, but hate the separate order requirement. i have wanted to sample some b&w and metallic prints, but i don't want to pay the separate postage for a few prints. the separate order requirement also applies to ordering other items from them, books, business cards, etc. This has truly been my only complaint about mpix to date.
     
  3. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005
    Missouri
    Go with Millers, they are the pro division of Mpix, highly recommend, and all the true BW is avaialable from them plus a whole lot more. Their canvas at Millers is great, and there book selections while pricey are very nice too.

    Wade
     
  4. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Thanks Wade...
    The other two have been so widely recommended
     
  5. Seneca

    Seneca

    Dec 4, 2006
    Texas!
    MPIX rocks for me. They're easy...and very quick. I didn't like the ROES software either.
     
  6. Millers requires you to have a state sales tax ID# and will not open an account wthout it.
    As an experiment I ordered the same print from Mpix, WHCC, and printed it on an Epson R800 printer using Ilford Smooth Pearl paper and the Ilford ICC profile. Mpix and WHCC we identical, Epson was extremely close.
     
  7. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    WHCC does free shipping, is cheaper, and was a better color match for me. MPIX was close, but my biggest complaint with MPIX still remains this "two separate orders" for b&w and color prints. Considering that they charge for shipping, that's outrageous to me and I was hoping to find out that I was just an idiot who didn't know the correct way to order true B&W's and colors on the same order.

    Do you normally not print color and b&w in the same order?
     
  8. My experience with WHCC has always been stellar; however, I have not used their Press Printed products (books, cards, etc.). As to B&W prints from WHCC if you submit a B&W print to them and don't check B&W, they will print it as a color print with it's attendant tones that were in the original submission. The last B&W prints I submitted (with B&W checked) were outstanding. I use their B&W service on a regular basis and have never been disappointed. Also, I never have to pay for UPS shipping since my orders are always for more than $12 (their minimum). Their customer service has been great and in the one incident when they made a mistake they reprinted it immediately and had it to me in two days.

    I have found WHCC to be much better than others that I have tried and have been using them for all my printing over the last two years.
     
  9. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005
    Missouri
    MPix mixing papers/print types, No, they have separate machines and areas of the lab set up and with automation and getting the prints from one part of the lab to match up an order with the other side of the lab the amount of time and energy involved is large.

    Remember they have different papers and different machines and the output from the lab is alot on any given day. I don't even have a clue on how many metallic machines, vs the E surface machines, vs the True BW machine. Remember the machine is set up for a particular paper color and type and the the amount of prints processed is huge. Remember they are an online lab, not just one down the street that does a few thousand prints in a day, but a few thousand prints of all sizes every single hour 24/7.

    By the Way Billy, EVEN WHCC does not mix paper/print types in their one to two day thrifty services!!

    Each order comes through as one group and is packaged and shipped in the line as soon as it is completed. I for one completely understand why this doesn't occur and it is the reason why I can get my prints so quickly. So is it outrageous, in my opinion no. Trying to stop and locate one out of the thousands of orders that come out of one are of the lab and locate among the thousands of orders the Bw from the other side of the lab is a large chore and a logistical nightmare. As stated above even WHCC doesn't do this unless you have a custom order and don't order at their thrifty prices.

    I know they have thought about this and this is their number one complaint, but they haven't found a way to do this....yet....

    Remember MPix is the equiv of the WHCC express/thrifty order process. Millers is like the WHCC pro custom area, just for information for everyone.

    both are good labs, all have differences and quirks, I prefer Mpix since the mother company is based in my own state, and I get one day delivery even from their labs in Kansas. Their special BW prints are outstanding, and have the most film like look of any prints that I have tried. That said, I have not tried WHCC for BW prints. Just color and metallic which was fine, and a good quality too.

    cheers,

    Wade
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 28, 2007
  10. Toddshooter

    Toddshooter Guest

    quick question

    Hello all.
    Could you please expand this company name for me? "WHCC" I am from Canada and have never heared of this company.

    Thanks Toddshooter
     
  11. White House Custom Color (WHCC) is one of the major printers for pro photographers in the USA. They can be found on http://www.whcc.com
     
  12. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    I've been using WHCC for months. I'm fully aware of the checkbox for black and white prints, but that checkbox does not exist on press printed products. You simply upload your pages in the order you want them in the book and hope for the best.

    As far as this latest incident with the book missing two pages, my customer service experience is fair, but definitely not "good" or "great". They reprinted my book for me (expected), and because I'm meeting my client tomorrow, they pushed it through the press printed production line which normally takes 2 days so that they could get it printed and out same day overnighted. Problem is, they're charging me to ship it overnight and they're making me ship back the bad copy on my own dime. Considering the same exact book from MPIX would have cost me $37 + shipping (remember, I paid $78 and change for this book), I would have expected them to waive the $3 overnight fee and the include a pre-paid shipping label for the return of the defective book.

    Considering the shortfalls of MPIX ... I guess I'm just going to have to use two printing services which is something I do NOT want to do. WHCC is the same price for most print sizes, and MUCH cheaper for others ($4 for an 11x14 @ WHCC, $7 for an 11x14 @MPIX) ... plus the free shipping, plus I get to order B&W and color prints on the same order. I guess I'll just have to get my press printed products @ MPIX until a better option comes along or WHCC has a drastic price reduction.
     
  13. I ordered a 56 page Proof Book 10" x 13" from Mpix with images numbered 1 thru 444, cost $147
    The images were out of order, not in sequence.
    I contacted Mpix and they showed me what I did wrong, it was my fault.
    They are correcting the error and sending me a new book free of charge!

    MPIX = Great cutomer service + quality
     
  14. My suggestion here is that you do a complete B&W conversion where no filters have been used. If you are already doing that then I guess you are left with the choice that you have made.

    Based on what you have said thus far I would think that WHCC has tried to make it right. There are so many ways to make B&W conversion and many of them involve leaving some color or even adding color (sepia, etc) that it may not be their fault at all.

    By the way, I am not an appologist for WHCC, I just like the service and quality that I get there.
     
  15. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    Of course! If you've ever printed black and white prints on color paper through a regular color printer, a magenta tinge is almost impossible to get rid of. Apparently this is the type of printing that is done with the press printed products. I would expect to get the same thing from MPIX. Difference is that MPIX would have charged me half the price.

    Bill
     
  16. ffb2t

    ffb2t

    420
    Jan 16, 2006
    CA
    Out of curiosity why didn't you use lulu.com for the book? I don't know that they would have avoided the magenta caste, but I would think they might have seeing as they ask for b&w images in grayscale.
     
  17. Billy Ng

    Billy Ng

    722
    Jan 22, 2007
    Hartsdale, NY
    Update.

    I just wanted to check in. First, I want to give props to WHCC's customer service department which has been courteous, professional, and understanding. They printed a third book and shipped it. Contrary to my original post, at no time was the shipping of the first two books back to them supposed to be at my expense ... I misunderstood which was followed up by a failure on the part of UPS.

    In doing a lot more research on press printed books, I have come to the conclusion that WHCC's prices were not as far off of market as I had originally believed and in fact they may be better than market since I can't find anyone else who makes the same size book as I ordered.

    Overall, while this experience was frustrating on many levels, the Customer Service department at WHCC is top notch and I have let them no as such. It was a truly refreshing experience compared to some of the absolute service trash I have been dealing with in the past few years.

    Bill
     
  18. Jaws

    Jaws

    Mar 27, 2007
    Columbia, MD
    I also agree that Mpix has great customer service. They are prompt, informative, and courteous when you email them a question. They also were very good at reprinting prints for me when I complained about them. Once the prints were a little off center, and another time one was bent when they put the shrink wrap on the prints. They immediately reprinted the order and were very nice about the situation.
     
  19. Jaws

    Jaws

    Mar 27, 2007
    Columbia, MD
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