Click to See Complete Forum and Search --> : Best Pro Online Print Service

01-05-2006, 03:52 PM
I am about to shop around for an online printing service, where I can upload photos, clients can log-in and view and order prints.

Preferably I would like to make a little $ off their orders.

Preferably I would like to be able to customize / brand the look of my gallery a little bit.

The print quality should be top notch.

So do you use that meets any of this criteria?


old me if youv'e seen this one before.

01-05-2006, 04:26 PM
The best prints from digital seem to be on a Chromira printer. They're expensive but the separate RGB system is supposed to create amazing prints up to 50" on photographic paper.

Toronto Image Works are the only people I've used that do it, I'm not sure they do online work though, but if somewhere has a chromira printer they're likely to be into high quality results.

01-07-2006, 08:26 AM
Thanks aversion, that's good information especially for fine art photography. They do have some attractive online features (http://www.torontoimageworks.com/digital/online.html#). I have them bookmarked for higher-end or large format work.

Really this would be more for different client photoshoots like weddings and events.

I am thinking about setting up at shutterfly.com (http://www.shutterfly.com/). They seem to have the basis covered I want.
This is the only info they have about their printing.

The latest in technology to help prints last a lifetime
We use Fuji Crystal Archive paper along with Fuji chemicals and equipment to ensure that your pictures will last for years. Our exclusive VividPics® technology ensures that all your pictures are adjusted for color automatically.
Anyone have any experience here good or bad?

I have a photoshoot next week, so that's one of the reasons for my query.


edit: oooh, I get 15 free prints for signing up, hopefully I get them back befor my photoshoot :)

01-09-2006, 12:59 PM
I have used shutterfly to print a 2mp picture up to an 8x10 and another 2mp pic to print a 4x6 and they both came out amazing and this was almost 2 years ago. So I can only image what one of my rebel pictures with newer printers would look like!

01-09-2006, 02:05 PM
Cool, thanks wannabe.

I am still waiting to hear back from them re an API. I found one for them, but they seem to have since discontinued making it available.... I would love to integrate their print-ordering into my own online systems.

So I have that one set up.... right now I am uploading some things to fotki.com. Pretty cool service... not sure how any prints ordered will be though. They are damn cheap though, @ .09. Just using it for general all-purpose client uploads at the moment.

Big Up Ya
01-09-2006, 07:02 PM
You could just make your own ordering system on your own site, and find a decent lab near to you? Find a lab with something like a Fuji Frontier, A Kodak Pegasus or a Lambda. You could even set your self up with something decent like an Epson 2000 or up depending on the quallity you need. You might find it's enough. Defintely add $ on to your print. That is an absolute must!


01-09-2006, 09:20 PM
You could even set your self up with something decent like an Epson 2000 or up depending on the quallity you need. You might find it's enough. Defintely add $ on to your print. That is an absolute must!


That's kind of what I am thinking I will do.

I can upload the files to my own system, let them chose what they want... give them some options as far as quality / price and handle it myself from there.

I do like exploring and setting up some of these free online options though for now....

For example, I did a photoshoot a few weeks ago for an ad. I am going to go ahead and upload the shoot to my fotki.com account and send the client a link... just as a value added service and some more exposure for me.

Big Up Ya
01-10-2006, 09:30 AM
Can I make a suggestion? Hope you don't mind...

I think you should offer little in the way of quallity. Just give them the very best you can afford at the given price. Basically, with every bodies digital cameras and home printers being as good as they are in this day and age, anything other than premium quallity is out the window...especially when buying from someone. If people are buying a proffessional piece of imagery, it has to be significantly different from their own. Also, you don't want anything but the very best representation of your work out there.

Also another good for the same reason above is never do a 6x4 option. You don't do basic. You don't do normal. You don't do mini lab,. You do Admedia.

Most prolabs these days have an ftp facility. You could basically set it up quite easily. Go for super quallity. You'd be suprised at the prices as it's quite competitive. I'm in London and I gather by your use of therm dollars you're in the states so i can't help out with any names on that front but check out this big magazines web forum (http://www.pdngallery.com/cgi-bin/ubb/ultimatebb.cgi) there will be loads of people that can help you out there.

All this quallity means you can and should charge for it. Us photographers to have be excpetionally carefull about pricing our own proffessioon out of existence.

It's a great idea to post your work on your site for your clients. Password access makes it nice and exclusive for them. I always post retouched images as they come, on my site to 1. invole my client in the process which they love 2. As you already mentioned...value added, which they love and 3. to keep in their faces. The more you're there (in a healthy way! hahaha) the more you get work from them, which I love.


01-10-2006, 10:23 AM
I definitely appreciate your suggestions BUY. In fact I am taking all of your suggestions to heart and following them. Set up my own online system and only offer best quality prints. If they don't like my pricing, they can download the originals and print them somewhere else.

Big Up Ya
01-10-2006, 03:59 PM
Hmmmm...I wouldn't give them the option of taking them else where.

Some one who isn't in the know will get a **** print of your work. Not even know it and 1. use it with your name on it for everyone to see or 2. get a **** print and think it's your **** photography (there are so many different variables that go into setting up a good print with monitor callibration, level output values etc find a good lab that gets it perfect and stick with them).

The final product really is too important. It's on show to the world. Also if they can download it, it makes them think they have the right to do what ever they want with it. **Your pics are good**. Believe in that and charge them. People will buy. it's about presenting your work in the best possible light as well as giving them great imagery.


01-17-2006, 10:18 PM
Well I just ordered a 8x10 Matte print from Flickr.com I will post a review once I get it. Not bad $3.64 with shipping. I made it the biggest resize file available with a basic flickr account(really want a pro) But I will post as soon as I get it.

01-18-2006, 02:33 PM
There is this place called phototec that is in rutland about 20 minutes from here and they have a little program you can download(pc only) or you can go through the site and have them shipped to you or pick up. I just got 20 printes printed for $4.61 and no shipping since I am going to go pick them up. I just ordered a ton of random photos to test them out I got a mix of 5x7, 4x6, 4x6/border and a mix of those with Lustre and Glossy. I will post a review of those as I will be picking them up in about an hour or so. I just called them to make sure they got the order and how long to pick up and he said 40 minutes...not bad at all!

01-18-2006, 03:49 PM
cool, thanks wannabe... keep me posted.

01-18-2006, 07:59 PM
well I just got my photo's printed and I am VERY impressed with the results. They are very professional! I didn't know what the Lustre type prints actually were I thought it was them trying to be fancy with a different name for matte. But what Lustre really is, is has anyone seen highschool senior pictures where they are like glossy without the glare they kinda have a dull look to them? That is what they are. I think the print I got that was 4x6 Lustre with borders was VERY nice I really liked the way they turned out! I will find some more photos and get larger prints from them sometime and post another report. But I would recommend them to anyone. It is very convient for me as I can drive and pick them up. I got all those prints for $4.61 about as much as developing a roll of film would cost. Sticking with pure digital is even more tempting now other then experimenting with old cameras. Once I get my Flickr print back(8x10) I will post those results.


This is who phototech goes through. Maybe find a place around you? also not sure if I mentioned this above but through Flickr if you have a Target near you, you can pick up your prints at a local store within an hour.

01-18-2006, 09:31 PM
what the hell is this?


While looking around at the rest of the site...Media this mught be what you were looking for. A place to put prints and have clients order what they want.

01-18-2006, 10:05 PM
While looking around at the rest of the site...Media this mught be what you were looking for. A place to put prints and have clients order what they want.

Yea, actually I went through all of that earlier. It definitely is geard twords pro 'labs'. To tell you the truth I have 300+ images I need online by the weekend. I am just about done customizing my own system for the client to log-in and proof/order the photos... and others to log-in and upload as well.

This way I have complete controll over pricing and quality for now.

After all of my research I have concluded this is a nice little niche perhaps I can fill with some of my skills. My local custom photo lab has no website. So I plan on offering them my services as well ;).

Keep posting anything you find here though. This area is huge and seems slightly ignored.

01-24-2006, 03:07 PM
Well got my flickr print in. 8x10, I got it on the matte paper. It is very decent quality. I just had that picture already uploaded and sent it so no editing or anything and it came out very nice. If I get a pro account I will be uploading all my pictures with NO resizing to archive and to use to print. They have very decent prices and for this being a 8x10 with the res I uploaded it at. I am pretty pleased with it. I will order more sizes with better res sometime in the near future to really test them out. But until then I will stick with my local shop. Their 4x6 with borders are AMAZING.

And on a side note. I picked up one of their business cards last time me and my room mate got prints. I was checking out the back I didn't even realize at first glance but they print their business cards on the Kodak Professional Lustre paper. I mean it makes sense since that is what they do for business but I thought it was rather clever :)

01-24-2006, 03:24 PM
I have my site done... well it's being used in Beta right now... I'll show you it soon.

In the meantime I think smugmug.com has a good pro service for re-selling prints to clients. I set up a 7 day trial of the pro account and am strongly considering it.

Pro's of the site are the Gallery is skinnable via CSS.
Con's are the Shopping cart isn't, which wouldn't be a big deal, but I hate their blue on black default look.... I want to integrate into a plain black or blue on white site.

Here is a referral coupon for 5$ off any signups

01-24-2006, 08:32 PM
oh oh trying to get us to sign up through you now...you player!

Checking it out now. :)

haha! they have a hacking section.