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  • Black & White Lab

    Hi - I am the studio director (not the photographer) at a 2-person fine art portrait studio in the US Midwest. We are having a devil of a time finding a great -- even good! -- b&w lab. We want clean, undamaged negatives back (sometimes we scan for digital retouch.) We want proofs, not just contact sheets, at a reasonable cost. We want clean, film-matched developer (we use TMAX 120 film) and the ability, for final prints, to opt for warm toned paper -- eg, Ilford. We would like, but don't insist upon, numbered proofs. We would like, but don't insist upon, matte or semi-matte finish proofs, not glossies. We definitely don't want b&w printed on color paper. We operate on a narrow profit margin, but we are willing to pay a fair price for consistently good work.


    We've been through several reputable labs now, and have had problems in one or more of these areas, repeatedly. We do some work in our own darkroom, but for a variety of reasons, we really need to move to having a lab do more of the d/p.


    Can anyone make a recommendation? Thanks!!



  • #2
    Re: Black & White Lab

    Did you try H&H??? Problem is they only except new clients in January.


    http://www.hhcolorlab.com


    Kirk


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    • #3
      Check with.........

      ........Berry and Homer. Philly area as I recall. They have been B&W specialists for a long time.


      As you suggest.....it has become nearly impossible to get good B&W work done by commercial labs. The interesting thing about that is.....if they don't do the B&W well.....are they really doing the color well? Or.....have we all come to accept less quality.....to keep costs down? Just playing devil's advocate. (grin)


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      • #4
        Re: Black & White Lab

        Thanks, Rick & Kirk. H&H prints on color paper, I believe. I'll look into the Philly place. Rick, your thoughts on color quality... yes, that's crossed my mind... Still open for more referrals, and I'll post our results with any we try. Thanks again.


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        • #5
          Re: Black & White Lab

          They DO have a regular B&W department. They will print on Panalure, or Ilford paper. And I think some FIBER???


          So NO it's not just color.


          Kirk


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          • #6
            Re: Black & White Lab

            try these.......Buckeye Color Lab ( www.buckeyecolorlab.com I think) in Ohio and Jonnathan Penney... www.jonathanpenney.com in New York...also I have heard good things about Dalmation, I think they are in the Boston area.


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            • #7
              Re: Black & White Lab

              Hi, Lisa - Thanks for the tips. I'll look into them. I've used Dalamation - I'll have to look back at our notes to see why we didn't stay with them. I think Buckeye does only RC, maybe only glossy. I'll recheck. Thanks for sending me back to my H&H catalog, Kirk. They do print on Ilford Multigrade (pearl); no fiber. Based on our color work with them, H&H gets A+ for being among the nicest people in the world to work things out with. Still looking :-).


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              • #8
                Re: Black & White Lab

                Hi Cher. I'm in St. Louis and use H&H (in Kansas City) for both my color and B&W. Great lab with great pricing and services. One of the other photogs here recommended them to me for some digital retouching. They turned out to be half the price and did excellent work.

                George


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                • #9
                  Re: Black & White Lab

                  Cher: H&H does print on color paper if you request. Otherwise they use Pearl and one other type of B&W paper that I cannot remember at this time.

                  George


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