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07-16-2009, 07:43 PM   #1
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Color Negative processing: How much variation?

Hello,

Note to moderators: Not sure if this goes here or in the film section. I apologize if it's in the wrong place so feel free to move it if needed.

How automated is the negative processing? Is there any big variation between labs?
Let me explain:
My pro-lab is a 2 hour drive from home. A few blocks away, I have a Walgreens (actually 3 of them and growing), WalMart, Sam's club and others. We all know how much Walgreens and Walmart prints suck. But given the convenience, I'm thinking of taking my film to process and get only the negatives and maybe a photo CD. Then I can plan a trip to my pro-lab to print whatever needs to be printed. Would this be a good plan? Any major difference if done like that vs taking it all to the pro-lab?
I don't shoot much film now, but I still enjoy it, especially with the older cameras.
Of course, if there is something really important I'd go straight to the pro-lab.
I'd like to hear your comments.

Thanks,

07-16-2009, 07:55 PM   #2
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Most labs use automated processing for C41. The variables are that affect your experience are:
  • The quality of the machine
  • Machine maintenance
  • Chemistry replenishment schedule
  • Care taken in handling your negatives
If the soup is old or the temperatures off, your results will definitely vary. True also for techs without gloves working in a dusty environment sliding your negs into low-quality sleeves.

Steve
07-16-2009, 08:17 PM   #3
graphicgr8s
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Most labs use automated processing for C41. The variables are that affect your experience are:
  • The quality of the machine
  • Machine maintenance
  • Chemistry replenishment schedule
  • Care taken in handling your negatives
If the soup is old or the temperatures off, your results will definitely vary. True also for techs without gloves working in a dusty environment sliding your negs into low-quality sleeves.

Steve
I have to second Steve's response. Stick with the pro shop.
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