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Thread: Processing Lab Recommendations

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    Durham, NC
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    Processing Lab Recommendations

    Hi All,

    I have been searching the site for this information but have been unable to find it, even though I know the answers are here somewhere.

    I am looking for a lab in the US to send my color 4x5 sheet film to be processed, both chromes and negatives. It doesn't matter where. I'm located in North Carolina, but FedEx can take my film as easily to New York as Atlanta or anywhere in the US.

    I had a lab I used to use for film processing. They did wonderful work. Now, seven years later, I started using them again. I have used them only twice, but both times they messed up my film. The first time the chemistry was dirty, so there were dark spots all over the film, that couldn't be cleaned. They offered to scan and remove all the spots off the chromes at their own cost, which I thought was very nice. The next time I brought them film, all the chromes came back badly scratched, and two sheet of film were stuck together. This time they took 40% off the B&W film processing for me, as a way of apologizing. They are really nice folks. They used to do excellent work in all their processing and still do with B&W processing. Since they no longer process color negative sheet film, I thought I would find a lab to do both chromes and color negatives. I would be grateful for recommendations, if they are current and for a lab you've had extensive experience with.

    Thanks,
    David

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    9,476

    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    www.4photolab.com Edgar Praus is the best all around mail order lab and he does it all.

  3. #3

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    Jul 2007
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    Austin TX
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    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    I agree with Petronio; so far for my work, Praus is impeccable.

    Nate Potter, Austin TX.

  4. #4
    Big Negs Rock!
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    Pasadena
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    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    A & I Hollywood, California is another option.
    Mark Woods

    Large Format B&W
    Cinematography Mentor at the American Film Institute
    Past President of the Pasadena Society of Artists
    Director of Photography
    Pasadena, CA
    www.markwoods.com

  5. #5
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
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    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    Dodge Chrome in Silver Spring, Maryland, does excellent work with B&W, E-6, and C-41. They handle sheet film up to 8x10.

    http://www.dodgechrome.com/photofilm/wetlab.html

    These are great folks to work with, totally committed to quality. I just picked up a batch of 4x5 and 8x10 from them last week.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    30

    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    I've had good luck with Samy's Camera Santa Barbara. I'm in the NC triangle and will send film to Samy's on Monday and have it back by Saturday. 4x5 E6 is only a $1.70 for dip and dunk. The downside is that their lab home page is no longer available... PM me if you want a pdf of their order form. I believe they still do the volume to ensure the quick turn around. I've tried other places and it might take a week for them to process while they are waiting for other orders. They also do C41 at a similar price.

    Cheers,

    mitomac
    Last edited by mitomac; 4-Sep-2011 at 14:40. Reason: fixed price

  7. #7
    Just waiting to be developed..
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    Feb 2007
    Location
    New Rochelle, NY 10804
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    502

    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    LTI in NYC is an amazing lab. I use them for all of my E6, C41 and B&W.
    Everything is clean and fast. All in D&D Refremas. Their traditional printers are fantastic, my contacts look great.
    The employees are a great bunch of guys to work with, very knowledgeable and helpful.
    Definitely worth a try.
    -Ian Mazursky
    www.ianmazursky.com Travel, Landscape, Portraits and my 12x20 diary
    PrePress Express

  8. #8

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    Jul 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles
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    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    All labs are not created equal especially when it comes to b&w processing. E-6 and C-41 processing are very well defined and all a lab is required to do is keep the processing clean and in control, but b&w doesn't have a defined standard for processing. I ran a test through a number of professional custom labs in Los Angeles (attached). The film was TXP 120 and the instructions were to run it normal.

    The results show two labs at the lower end of normal and two at the higher end. The fifth lab was way outside anything that could be considered normal. In another test with TX 125, the fifth lab was even further off. This showed that not only was their process too contrasty, they weren't even consistent from film type to film type.

    This was sometime ago and most of the labs no longer exist, but I think it is a good lesson that no matter how good the lab's reputation, you should always test. Trust but verify.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    St Paul, MN
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    619

    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    Burne Photo has been awesome for me. Great quality and pretty quick turnaround and prices are very good I think.
    My website Flickr
    "There is little or no ‘reality’ in the blacks, grays and whites of either the informational or expressive black-and-white image" -Ansel Adams

  10. #10
    bob carnie's Avatar
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    Toronto, Ontario,
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    Re: Processing Lab Recommendations

    Run Normal????

    unless you know what their chemistry line is and what they call normal you would be just to blame for inconsistent development as they may seem.

    Running good film requires some effort at both ends.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Benskin View Post
    All labs are not created equal especially when it comes to b&w processing. E-6 and C-41 processing are very well defined and all a lab is required to do is keep the processing clean and in control, but b&w doesn't have a defined standard for processing. I ran a test through a number of professional custom labs in Los Angeles (attached). The film was TXP 120 and the instructions were to run it normal.

    The results show two labs at the lower end of normal and two at the higher end. The fifth lab was way outside anything that could be considered normal. In another test with TX 125, the fifth lab was even further off. This showed that not only was their process too contrasty, they weren't even consistent from film type to film type.

    This was sometime ago and most of the labs no longer exist, but I think it is a good lesson that no matter how good the lab's reputation, you should always test. Trust but verify.

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