It was one of those phone calls you never want to get.
Some of our best friends called us late at night because they lost their young daughter unexpectedly to SIDS.
One of the things they eventually asked us to help with was to get some photos printed for the funeral that was just a few days away.
I put in the order with ProDPI late at night, with a little note explaining what they were for and when we needed them, and offered to pay whatever extra I might need to in order to make sure the photos made it there in time.
The next morning ProDPI contacted me to say that they were going to do a free in-lab rush, and that I could downgrade my shipping to a cheaper option and still have it get there with a day to spare. They said that if there was anything else they could do to let them know.
It was a small gesture that saved me a little money and took a little extra effort on their part, but it meant a lot to me to have that kind of response.
I knew at that point I’d have to write this post about their lab and talk about how much I love their company. I’d already selected them as my lab of choice, but this just cemented it.
FYI, this post is NOT a sponsored post. They didn’t ask me to write it, I don’t get anything if you switch to their lab, and they don’t sponsor me at all right now (although I wish they did – that’d be pretty sweet!) Just wanted you to know that this is all completely unbiased and my own personal opinion. I like to promote the companies that really treat me well, as I hope my thankful clients and readers will do the same for me.
Here’s 5 reasons why you should use ProDPI for all your professional photography lab needs.
1. Their photo quality is better than the other labs
In all honesty, I was hoping WHCC would win because they are located relatively close to me, so their products show up about a day or two before the other companies. I’d also heard many great things about them from lots of other photographers. But the quality, while still good, wasn’t quite as nice as ProDPI.
Black River Imaging added some weird contrast and their colors were a bit off, while the other three labs’ colors were fairly similar. MpixPro was a bit more yellow than the others, but not tons (and most untrained eyes would probably not notice it.)
But the real difference came in sharpness. ProDPI was just slightly sharper than the rest of the photos, and it really made the others look just a touch too soft. You probably wouldn’t notice it if you weren’t comparing side by side, but if you do your own test using the same image from both places you’ll see it as well.
2. Their press-printed products are far superior in quality than the others
I’ve never been terribly impressed with most press-printed products because the print quality just isn’t as nice as the quality of regular prints, but ProDPI does a great job with their press-printed products.
WHCC was a close second, but didn’t have nearly as nice of paper options as ProDPI (such as their GORGEOUS felt and stipple papers! Yummy!) and MpixPro was in last. I didn’t even order press prints from BRI as they were out of the running right away with their color calibration issues for me.
I do wish that ProDPI would add more press-printed products, such as the press-printed albums that WHCC offers or more shapes for their die-cut cards, but I can live with what they offer.
3. Their customer service is da bomb
Yes, I said “da bomb.” I’m so old-school that way it’s pathetic. But really, I’ve had other great experiences with them beyond just the story above. They really go out of their way to make sure you get great products from them.
4. They send you candy with your order
I’ve got a weakness for candy, so yeah. I like this. I think WHCC might do that too, but I don’t remember.
It’s usually something really yummy too, although once I got a simple dinner mint which was a bit of a let-down.
I used to think they only sent candy on occasion, but then I realized that it was only “missing” when my husband opened the orders instead of me.
5. They gave me a coupon for you!
So I contacted ProDPI earlier this week see if they’d be willing to do something for all you lovely readers out there. True to their awesome selves, they gave me a coupon code for 20% off any order for all you lovely readers.
The coupon code is only active from Sunday, August 14th -Saturday August 20th, so if you haven’t used them yet, go place your first order (five free 8x10s) and then place a real order in a few days with the coupon.
A final word
With the exception of Black River Imaging, I really do think that any of these labs would be acceptable quality for professional printing.
However, my business model is more of a boutique low-volume high-quality model, so I want the best that I can find.
For me, this was ProDPI. I think you’ll see similar results, although the prints really are close in quality. So take a moment, go get your free 8x10s (they offer this to all new customers), and do your own comparison to your current lab.
Let’s talk labs in the comments. I’d love to hear who you use right now, your favorite thing about them, and one thing that they could improve upon.