For each long trip to another country, I make a photo book containing most of the photos I’ve taken. I’ve tried multiple services for this purpose. Some of them are better than the other. A while back ago I used Snapfish to process my photo books. They were the best alternative for me at that point. I was working on a stationary PC and Snapfish had special client for PC-users to take advantage of. Today, more and more services are available and with even more options to chose from (paper quality, number of pages, hard vs. soft cover etc.).
One downside of Snapfish at that moment, was that the client was quite buggy (at least on my computer). The quality of the prints in the book was also not that astonishing, as I would like them to be.
The day I bought my new Macbook, the possibility to use Snapfish ended. I never got the Mac-version of the software to work out. From what I’ve heard today, they are using an online service instead of a downloadable software client (as they did before).
Two of my books (A trip to India and Thailand) have been ordered from Blurb. Since I’m a regular Mac user now and I like the idea of having a client installed to make my books, they’ve been my No.1 choice. Good price, fast delivery and a very nice client to work with when editing the books. The quality of the prints could be better though. I think the color could be more vibrant than what they are (even on premium paper).
Anyway. It’s hard to compare the quality of the paper/prints if you’re not ordering an exact copy of the book from each provider.
I have recently tried a new online service called Photobox.com. Mainly because I wanted to update my portfolio coffee-table book that I bring to the clients I meet. I thought is was a great opportunity to try a new service.
I must say that the quality of this book is the best one of all the ones I’ve done so far!
The book that I made has 96 pages, a hard cover and premium paper (option). It took me around 1 hour to make the book even though I’ve never tried their service before. To round things up I would like to point out a few thing that came to my mind while I was working with the book.
- Web based (works on all platforms, PC or Mac etc.)
- Simple interface and usage
- Autofill (One click and your book is filled with the images you’ve chosen)
- Many different templates
- Premium book options (Select paper quality, cover etc)
- Payment choices (I like the possibility to use Paypal)
Not so great
- No software client (Some of us would like to be able to work offline)
- Price indication (You don’t see the price of your book until you’re finished to order. I would like to see what the difference, adding a page or two, would make on the price while I’m working with the book.)
- The price (Although the quality was great I think that $130 is quite much for a 96 pages book. I paid $72 for 122 pages at Blurb with shipping included)
I recommend using Photobox if you’re looking for great quality and a simple interface to work with.
There are tons of online providers out “there”.
What is your choice of provider when it comes to photo books? Please leave a comment below.