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How does Fuji frontier 340 print?

Derek C. , Jul 18, 2004; 10:28 p.m.

I was looking for a new lab around the town for proof prints of my wedding jobs (4x6)
I usually take my negative to my friends' mini-labs (two of them)
They have high quality labs but I am not quite happy with the results.
Because their machines decide the exposures time automatically, many of my metered portrait under the tree come out dark

I have contacted one lab 30 miles away from my house
They say they have a Frontier 340 and every single shots will be customized (brightness & color balance).

How does Frontier 340 work? Do they actually preview every single picture on the monitor and decide exposure time & color balance?
I am kind of old school, I cannot imagine that kind of machine exist.
I have 17 rolls 35mm's and I hope my two trips to the lab will be worth it.

Responses

Joseph Allen , Jul 19, 2004; 12:08 a.m.

They scan the roll of developed film through the machine. It pops up the photos 6 at a time. The lab tech can then decide to lighten/darken each one (or leave it how the machine guessed was correct) and also adjust the color (cyan/red, magenta/green, yellow/blue). If the lab techs at the lab you described are paying attention and are reasonably good at your job, you shouldn't get dark portraits under the tree any more.

Scott Eaton , Jul 19, 2004; 09:33 a.m.

The Frontier, being digital, is among the few systems that actually allow the operator to make real time adjustments than mean anything vs proof and correct. You can at least blame the lab if they claim they'll adjust each frame and not do so.

Great system, in the right hands. Please tell me you're using professional print films like NPH, Portra NC, etc.

Graham Serretta , Jul 19, 2004; 09:35 a.m.

You shouldn't get dark portraits any way. No matter the equipment, good prints depend on the people pressing the buttons more than anything else - I have had some very bad work from a lab with a Frontier, and some excellent work from the same lab, different techie on shift. It's not the gear, it's the people!

Derek C. , Jul 19, 2004; 12:12 p.m.

I have 15 rolls NPH & 2 rolls Reala to process :)

Scott Eaton , Jul 19, 2004; 03:49 p.m.

Should be gorgeous at the Frontier shop, provided it's not run by pt time teenagers who flip on every possible enhancement option.

Derek C. , Jul 19, 2004; 05:17 p.m.

I agree with you Graham.
Ten years ago, a person had to look at every single frame and hit the button
Now, a machine will "guess" the exposure time for the entire roll.
They usually work pretty good, but not always.

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