Written on: 23/02/2011 by aarondkeogh (1 review written)
ASDA Thurmastons film and print service review.
I use ASDA's photo service ritually most weeks for developing film and then having the images put onto a CD (only for reference, more on this later). As an amateur creative photographer I like to use ASDA in Thurmaston because I have got to know the people who work their very well and the price and effort to process film at home is to much hassle.
However, their are some draw backs. I go by you get what you pay for a lot and this is no exception. Some of the draw backs of using ASDA Thurmaston's photo services are;
Nearly all my film negatives come back with ether small scratches, dry emulsion stains (were they havent been dried correctly) or even sometimes the negatives get cut half way through the best picture on the roll!
The scanning from their film scanner is awful, pictures get cropped way out of proportion, occasionally lines appear on the scans from a fault in the scanner and exposure settings are normally way off. Luckily I have a film scanner at home were I can scan my own negatives and retrieve the full frame image which I originally shot. This sums up why I only use the CD service as an index print and not for final prints thank God!
One time I sent a roll of film into be processed and put onto a CD and the employee pulled out the whole roll of film from the canister before it had been processed - coincidentally loosing all my hard work from that 4 hour sesh of street photography! When I asked how this happened, it seemed their was a verbal misunderstanding between us and the employee thought I had already had the film processed, although you never have a film processed inside the canister! Tut tut, some potential gems gone forever!
The prints ordered from ASDA are very cropped around the edges, I have my images cropped just how I want them to be printed, but the machine for some reason, crops of about 5% in from the edge even more! It's just crazy why it should do this.
Staff are pretty uneducated about photography and processing techniques and procedures in general.
Although I stress on the bad points first, any good review must have an equal opinion from both sides and although their have been some negative points in the past I keep returning because the positives outweigh the negatives.
Cheap and cheerful - You get what you pay for though!
I like to use a technique called cross-processing (x-pro) promoted a lot by Lomography - basically you process slide film in negative film chemicals producing nice contrasty effects. After some education on the technique the staff where very happy to do this for me, which is a bonus because first they were reluctant!
Very friendly staff
Quick! A 1 hour service is sometimes done sooner than an hour. And I've had a 2 day service finished in 1.
My conclusion: Although I've had a few bad run-ins in the past, they rarely ever happen anymore, expect for the constant crappy scans and scratched negs etc but because the price for proccessing is cheap and I know the staff I keep coming back because I know I'll get a good personal service for £3 a film. If you want to make sure your negs come back perfect - go to Jessops and pay £5/£6 a film. If you want a cheap budget service for an amateur photographer/ family prints stick with the green giant.
Thank you please.