PhotoBox Digital Printing Services

Digital cameras are great, as they allow you to take loads of photos of your prize catch, your fishing environment and even your fishing tackle. However, printing them out at home never seems to do them justice and leaving them on your hard drive seems such a waste…..especially if you’ve got some really stunning pictures that would look better shoved in front of your mate’s nose! Let’s be honest, we all love to share our big fish catches!

Printing your digital images used to be a bit of a nightmare. There are plenty of companies who offer such services, but the finished prints can often suffer from poor cropping and ropey print quality to say the least. I first came across Photobox after a recommendation from a keen amateur photographer, and I’ve not been disappointed. The pictures accompanying this article are ones that I received back in September, 2005 and they were stunning!

What you are really looking for, in addition to good print quality, is a simple and foolproof way of uploading and editing your images. Photobox offers just that, with a very easy to use step-by-step process. First of all you register with the site, and then you can upload images straightaway.

You start off by selecting the images you wish to upload, you can do this by email, FTP or by simply dragging and dropping jpegs, files or folders from your PC • Honestly, nothing could be easier. Once you have uploaded the images you simply add them to your basket and you are ready to edit. You then choose the size format you want and the images automatically show where cropping will occur (if any). You then scroll down the images and adjust the cropping where necessary - It really is a synch, and if its easier you can simply choose a shrink to fit option.

If there are any problems with the images you have selected, for example if the quality is too low for the print size you have selected, the system flags it up as a problem straightaway and helps you to sort it out in an easy step by step manner. Once you are happy with the images you confirm the order and make payment; that’s it - job done.

I was amazed at the delivery times. You get email updates to let you know when the order has been processed and despatched • and every lot I’ve had done so far have been despatched the next working day. Including my last order of over 500 images!

The finished print quality is superb; for small format work (up to 10"x15") they use FujiFilm Frontier 370 and 390 printers, which work by exposing red, green and blue laser light onto FujiFilm Crystal Archive photographic paper at 300 DPI (dots per inch). For their large format work they use a Polielectronica Laserlab; a device which prints onto FujiFilm Professional digital photographic paper at 254 DPI. The fade resistance for either type of the print is rated at around 150 years! It’s also worth mentioning that they print from the original jpeg you upload • they don’t compress or reduce any files to save on storage space.

For standard sized prints (6x4.5”/5x3.75”) prices start at around 15p per print. Which may sound a lot, but if you buy print credits in advance, you can get them for as little as 7p each • fantastic value for money. I prefer to order larger prints and tend to go for 7x5 inch prints. These start at 25p per print, but if you order 100 or more you can get the price down to just 15p each.

Photobox offer all kinds of services - You can even print pictures from your mobile phone! And there are literally hundreds of print mediums to choose from; standard prints, passport prints, contact sheets, poster prints, sticker prints and tons of gift ideas… you can even have your image put onto canvas!

For more information on getting those big fish images printed out, visit: www.photobox.co.uk

Julian Grattidge
September 2005