Using laser c-print for black and white work?

Discussion in 'Wet and Dry Hybrid prints' started by mr.datsun, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. mr.datsun

    mr.datsun Member

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    (Is this the right place for this question?)

    I want to print some b&w photographs from digital files onto traditional wet-process prints using a commercial service.

    Laser C-Type is relatively cheap. A self-service 20x16" print is around £16 inc VAT

    B&W laser print onto traditional Silver Gelatin resin paper is £54 inc VAT. I think these cost more because they are only offered as a premium service.

    For reasons of cost (at the moment it's a non-paying hobby), I'd really go for the C-type but I am told by the service (in London) that they have an inherent colour-cast (magenta or green). I want the best quality I can afford.

    Does anyone have experience of getting b&w printed this way? (I have seen prints that were reproductions of old b&w images with colour markings in/on the same image that looked OK to me. It not notice any colour cast I can only assume they were c-types but have mo idea where they were printed)

    I will not consider inkjet. Thank-you :smile:

    NB. Harman Ilford offer cheaper silver gelatin printing from 8bit jpg. But I'm not totally happy that I can only use lossy files at that bit depth.
     
  2. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Yes.. go to my site www.alternativephotoservices.com and you can see what we do , My lab was the first lab worldwide to make wet Lambda Silver Prints, 2002 on Agfa Classic.

    Bob
     
  3. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber
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    From everything I have heard I think that you will be happier having Bob do the print for you and it will probably save you enough money to have more than one print made.
     
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    mr.datsun

    mr.datsun Member

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    Thanks Bob. Your prices for b&w do look similar to the one I quoted above. The other thing is that you are in Toronto! Even if you ship to the UK, I think the extra postage and import duty will make it unfeasible for me.
     
  5. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber
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    I believe Harman Express/Ilford Photo's affiliated lab does just what you are asking: https://www.harmanlab.com/

    EDIT: I missed your concern about 8 bit files. Why don't you contact Harman and ask them about it.
     
  6. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Laser printers like Chromira, Lightjet and Lambda require to print at 8 bit..... this is not a problem, do all your editing, sharpening ect in 16 bit , final size in 8bit mode will give you the exact same print as final size in 16 bit mode.

    they should say to do all edits this way.

    Only certain inkjet printers like my Canon work in both 16 bit and 8 bit.
     
  7. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    No Problem , shipping is expensive but I do this all the time for NA clients.
     
  8. richyd

    richyd Member
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    The Ilford service or the same technology offered by Metro in London are the only ones that I know of that offer a B&W service in UK. All digital print services that I know of, colour or B&W, require 8 bit files. I have used the Ilford service but had to work with them to get a profile and some extra tweaks to get the right balance for my workflow, but they were very helpful with this. As far as I am aware they or Metro are the only option in the UK if you want to do this; I have a vague recollection of another lab planning to offer the same type of service. Oh, Metro also offfer a fibre paper but I haven't tried this.
     
  9. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Picto in Paris offers this, as well there is a Lab in Berlin...
     
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    mr.datsun

    mr.datsun Member

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    Thank-you all for your feedback. Your comments about the lambda printer requiring 8 bit put my mind at rest.

    Yes, the service I have been looking at is Metro. They say they developed their own B&W process using the Lambda. Maybe this is why it costs more, as well as the fact that they offer no self service for b&w. I think the thing to do is for me to try the Harman-Ilford service as it is so cheap. I will just use the highest quality jpg that I can upload. I can then see how they look and always go for Metro at some later date if I can afford it. Fibre would be nice, too.

    I will check out the Paris service mentioned by Bob Carnie.

    I assume that no one here has tried printing b&w on c-type?

    But just back to the c-type question for printing b&w . Anyone know how this was done? It was one of a series by Thomas Ruff. Huge prints that were predominantly b&w but have spots of colour. I did not notice any colour casts (aside from the deliberate yellow edges) when i saw them in his show. Basically scans of found photos combined front and pack into one image and enlarged to 5' high. Definitely digital and as far as I recall all his work was c-print.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Bob Carnie

    Bob Carnie Subscriber

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    Many people have printed Black and White via Laser printers on Cprint paper, something I have done in the past but I got rid of my CPrint processor about 4 years ago and switched to inkjet, and still print silver fibre and negatives on the Lambda for direct print from digital files or negative to size for contact prints on any paper.
     
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