View Full Version : Sending B&W negs to a lab?

rich caramadre
27-Jul-2012, 18:31
Just curious. Do people still take or send B&W negs to a lab to have silver gelatin prints made? Or do most who still shoot film print their own.


27-Jul-2012, 19:02
no. $$$$$$ and it wouldn't be very satisfying. Darkroom gear is free, or pretty close to it these days.

Daniel Stone
27-Jul-2012, 19:06
Do what works for you. Lately I haven't had time to process my b/w small format (120) myself, so I've been sending out to a lab. I haven't printed in nearly a year, again, due to time constraints with a varying work schedule as a photo assistant. I'm planning to print a back log of negatives this winter.

I'm trying to find a new place that will allow me to have room, so I can set up my sink :)


Noah A
27-Jul-2012, 19:25
I don't shoot much B&W these days, but I still enjoy it once in a while. I usually have a lab process my film. They do a good job, they use the developer I would use anyway, and it's fast and easy. I haven't done any silver prints in a while, but I wouldn't have a lab do them. Now I drum scan my negs and make inkjet prints, but if I had more free time I'd use one of the local rental darkrooms to make my own silver prints.

My wife and I are moving though, and if we end up in a home with an appropriate space, I'd love to have a darkroom of my own. As Vinny pointed out, the equipment is almost free these days and I can do the construction, if any is required. So it'll be a fun project if we have space once we find a new house.

Greg Y
27-Jul-2012, 19:49
I process all my own film , 120, 4x5, 5x7. I can't imagine getting the negatives I want by farming out the processing.

Mark Woods
27-Jul-2012, 21:09
I process and print my own images.

rich caramadre
29-Jul-2012, 07:39
I was curious about printing only, not processing film. I ask because I was thinking of trying to offer printing services for people who still prefer silver gelatin prints over inkjet but have no access to a darkroom. I've worked in a custom lab doing B&W and color printing for 17 years. But since everything has gone digital I'm no long working there. I have set up a darkroom at my house and I'm able to print from 35mm to 8x10 negs. Just trying to put out some feelers and see if this service is even needed.