View Full Version : Those without a darkroom, where to develop/print?

18-May-2009, 18:28
Those of you who do not process at home, where do you send your film for processing, proofing, printing?

I have been trying to avoid a darkroom up to this point, sending my 35mm B&W off to NCPS for development and some scanning. Unfortunately they want $25 per sheet to scan, and they can not print without scanning, which means every 4x5 I want a proof or enlargement of costs printing plus $25 which is a little steep.

I know a darkroom would be more economical in the long run, but lack of suitable space coupled with the fact that I am a casual shooter would make it much harder.


sun of sand
18-May-2009, 18:59
community darkrooms/friend or bathroom bathtub being most likely
develop film with small amount of supplies
contact print with just a few more
print developer
contrast filters

A small box of stuff

18-May-2009, 19:27
community darkrooms

One of these in/near Houston?


sun of sand
18-May-2009, 20:09
no idea
Think someone on one of these forums at some point may have asked the same thing -maybe Houston maybe Dallas maybe not anywhere in Texas

Found this real quick
single person though
wait lists

money for your 1 scan etc or 1 hour in the darkroom

Kirk Fry
18-May-2009, 22:55
Bathroom at night, pans. Scan for proof on epson 3200.


Joanna Carter
19-May-2009, 01:14
If you are shooting B&W, you can easily process your own film in something like a CombiPlan tank, in your kitchen; it only takes half an hour plus drying time.

As for printing, take a look at using a scanner yourself; the Epson flatbeds are perfectly fine for prints, right up to 40" x 32", although finding room for such a large printer could be difficult ;) I use an Epson R2400 for printing up to A3 and get stunning results.

19-May-2009, 03:09
Combi tank for 4x5, changing tent, and a scanner. Have done about 500 sheets at this point in the kitchen with lights on. I do my own B&W but send the few color slides I shoot to Praus. At this point, the tank, changing bag, and scanner have more then paid for themselves in 2 years with just the B&W I have developed.

Gary Beasley
19-May-2009, 07:23
You could send them in for developing only and scan them yourself in an appropriate flatbed scanner with a transparency adaptor, for example the Epson Perfection 3200 Photo that I have. A few minutes at the scanner will tell you what the possibilities are for that sheet of film you shot and in the long run be way cheaper.

Diane Maher
19-May-2009, 09:08
I develop my b/w film in a Jobo tank, and then if I need silver contact prints, there are several labs nearby who can do contact prints for me. Otherwise, I either scan the negatives or make myself a pt/pd print.

Diane Maher
19-May-2009, 09:09
I develop my b/w film in a Jobo tank, and then if I need silver contact prints, there are several labs nearby who can do contact prints for me. Otherwise, I either scan the negatives or make myself a pt/pd print.

Color film I have to take to the lab because I don't have the ability to control the temperatures during development that I understand is needed.

19-May-2009, 09:14
i use my bath room. i have my scans done at sames club. costs me $2. develop only color film 1.50$

too easy to process my own. i use a daylight tank for everything up to 4x5 and trays for bigger than that.

katie cooke
19-May-2009, 11:13
Develop all my film in the kitchen. Make contact prints in the windowless bathroom (or inside a cupboard!). Make platinum prints on the kitchen table when it's not a sunny day. Use an enlarger at a public darkroom (if there's not an obvious one, try local colleges and community centres...it's surprising who has these things kicking around and OK to use if you ask nicely.)

26-May-2009, 21:40
I am in the same situation. I know its cheap and easy to develop my own 4x5 B&W film but for a couple reasons I still need to find a good developer. I dont mind sending them to a person who develop's at home or a huge lab. As long as they can provide a great service at a fair price. I am just starting to shoot film so I would like to get experience on exposing my film before I try to develop it. I am excited to develop my own film but I would like to learn to crawl before I run. Also, with the very small amount of color film I use, I cant afford the cost of color developing supplies to do it myself. That being said, even if I develop my B&W, I still need a good lab I can mail my color film to for develop and possibly contact print. I live in Southern California which is very close to Freestyle photo supplies in Hollywood. They do not take mail orders and I am not able to hand deliver it. If anyone can offer me info on a few good developers in the US I would appreciate it.

26-May-2009, 23:00
BTZS tubes in my bathroom. Epson 700 and 3800 on my table. I am dangerous.

Now to take some decent photographs. ;)

27-May-2009, 02:17
Here in Turkey I have no darkroom, so I load & process my films 120 & 5x4 in the bathroom. If you can find a second-hand Jobo tank they are far better than Combi or Yankee tanks, mine are the older 2000series, I bought the first (in the UK) back in 1976 & the one here in Turkey via a wanted advert on APUG, but I'd also try the For Sale/Wanted section here if I was after another.


31-May-2009, 17:05
Hi All, I am looking for a lab that can process LF E6 and BW in the Burbank/Glendale area. I know of a great lab in Hollywood, but is far to drive. Any recommendations? Thanks, Chris

31-May-2009, 17:47
Allan, you need to make a trip out to Katy... I have a rudimentary darkroom in the bathroom to print 4x5 as contact prints (just recently moved from printing using the ceiling light to using a 35mm enlarger as a light source), but I have been developing my own 4x5 negatives for several years now and scanning them. I have been developing film since the early 70's without a darkroom - - just a changing bag and my kitchen sink - - I run 4x5 film in batches several times a month - - 6 sheets at a time in a Jobo tank. If I had another 2509 reel, I could do 12 sheets at a time. You are welcome to add yours to the batch, provided you like my choice of developers...

31-May-2009, 20:04
Actually I am doing two sheets at a time in trays right now. Kind of a pain but it works. Hopefully I should have a 4x5 scanner in a little over a week so that will get me started. I had planned on sending off for larger prints anyway.


31-May-2009, 20:31
You are welcome to use my darkroom as well. Also ask around at Sam Houston U. Maybe you can get some time in thier darkroom.