Online development of digital photos

Within the past year, I’ve attained a strong interest in photography. I took a ton of pictures over the summer after acquiring a nifty digital SLR camera, and quite a few of them are good enough that I would like to order prints. Now that I have recently upgraded to a high-speed Internet connection, it will become practical for me to order prints online of my digital pictures.

A friend of mine recommeded this place for developing my digital pictures. I’m wondering if anyone here has used this service, and if so, what their impressions were.

I’m also wondering if anyone has other sites that they would recommend. This is a new area for me, and I think the more information I have, the better.

There are a ton of them around. has been around for a while. However, even many retail chains such as CVS and many others let you do this now. Is there any reason why you want to do it this way rather than just marching into a store like Target or a pharmacy chain with your memory card and walking out with the prints 10 minutes later? That way is really cheap at .19 - .39 cents for a regular 4x6 print.

Reading your OP again, do you require some really specialized printing?

I’ve got a couple of pictures that I’m interested in making into a very sizable print. The aforementioned friend in the OP is a pretty serious photographer, and there were a couple of pictures that he liked so much that he strongly advised that I get some enlarged prints. Hence, his recommendation of

I have a digital camera and have been using it for a few years now.

Can you elaborate on this interesting concept of “development of digital photos”?

::visualizes a digital tray full of digital developing solution in a digital darkroom::
Are you perhaps maybe conceivably talking about printing them?

I have the good fortune to have relatively unfettered workplace access to a high-end Epson inkjet (it’s longer than I am tall and receives print instructions in true PostScript only from a spooler running DuPont spooler software). They’re exquisite at 22 inches by 16 (camera is a 7.1 megapix Canon PowerShot, nothing outstanding). My impression is that places with decently nice printers charge a ludicrously high fee for printing something like that, way out of proportion to material costs and maintenance on the printer. I have offered to pay ink costs and fancy-shiny injet-paper usage cost and my share of wear & tear on the printer, but they just wave me off and say it’s negligible. (They use the inkjet just to print test proofs, the final copy stuff is run on even more high-end dye-sub printers).

Shop around. In particular, get them to print smaller output sizes for you to tweak color saturations and whatnot before shelling out for full-size (if you’re going big. for small output sizes, probably not applicable)


I started using Costco.

Before, I was using Photoworks, because it is in Seattle and it didn’t take too long to mail to me.

Still…it took a week.

Now I use Costco. I can pick them up the next day, and the price can’t be beat.

Does anyone else use Costco? I think the quality is fine but not great. But I really don’t know.

And shouldn’t I be calibrating my monitor with some sort of gadget? As if I knew what that meant…

In my work on my family tree I’ve borrowed and scanned a lot of old photos from various relatives and gotten good results getting prints from Mpix on their B&W specific paper. I’ve been quite happy with their service.

One minor annoyance is that their system doesn’t allow for combining different paper types in one order. They’ve got a metallic paper that I’d be curious to try on a picture or two, but I’d have to order it separately and pay the flat rate shipping cost (which used to be $4.95, but they’ve recently added a $2.50 first class rate for smaller orders) just for one picture. If I could just pay the 75¢ or whatever for the print as part of another order I’m placing I’d give it a shot just to see how it comes out.

But that’s a minor point. They’re pretty fast and their prices are good. I haven’t had a problem with any pictures, but from what I’ve heard they’re good about replacing photos if you get ones that are too dark, etc.

If I’m not home printing, I use Adorama. It is a fairly well know NYC camera store. The turn around is very fast. Now I don’t have the finished photos mailed to me as I live here and I just pick them up.

Their rates are competitive and they are very reliable.

I used Costco online to print some duplicates. I had already printed the card in-store at the same location that week. Printing the same photos, from the same card, to the same store, using the online service yielded really badly pixillated copies. Not sure what the problem was.

<blush> My prevous post wasn’t intended snarkily. I skimmed past some other folks’ posts and actually didn’t get the OP’s use the phrase.

I’ve gotten great prints from shutterfly. I went to target to get digital prints once and they turned out really crappy. Bad color, not crisp-looking. YMMV.

I have used Snapfish ( and have gotten good results with 4x6 and 8x10. (These were prints from a Canon 20D, 8MP, 3504x2336). But they’re the only ones I’ve tried so far so I can’t say whether they’re any better or worse than others. (I am an intermediate amateur, so I’m not as demanding as a pro.)