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AdoramaPix - Review 2020 - PCMag India


Pro photographers and videographers have long been familiar with the Adorama brand and its AdoramaPix photo printing service—the latter now rechristened as Printique, According to the company, the name change is intended to drive home the notion that it's all about printing. In our last test of the service under the previous name, it was among the best, with an excellent ordering interface, top-notch packaging, and fine results and options—though at a premium price. We're happy to report that the new name hasn't altered the high level of service and packaging.

Pricing and Starting Up

Printique is among the higher-priced services, starting at 31 cents for a 4-by-6-inch print. That compares with 32 cents for Nations Photo Labs and 33 cents for Mpix. Of course, more consumer-targeted services (which often do a good printing job, too) cost less: Snapfish only charges 9 cents per 4 by 6, a price matched by Walmart Photo and York Photo Labs.

Start Printique Order

Larger sizes are reasonably priced: 5-by-7 prints go for 95 cents and 8 by 10s are $2.49. That compares with RitzPix's 99 cents for 5 by 7s and $3.99 for 8-by-10 enlargements. Mpix prices 5 by 7s at $1.29 and 8 by 10s at $2.79. Walmart Photos (which produces better quality than you might expect) charges only $1.79 for an 8 by 10.

As with most photo printing services, Printique offers more than just paper photos: You can order photo books, starting at $19.99 for 8-by-8-inch softcover, canvas prints starting at $27.49 for 8 by 12s. Wood, acrylic, and metal prints are on offer as well. You won't, however, find the smorgasbord of objects that Shutterfly offers: Printique won't embellish your drinkware, clothing, bedding, or shower curtains with your photos.

Print Ordering Interface and Options

You start your order by choosing a size and paper type. You can create an order without signing up for an account, but I recommend doing so, to make it easier to see your orders and online-stored images later. Sizes range from 3.5 by 5 inches to 12 by 36. Among services I've tested, Printique offers the most choice, including Kodak Endura Luster, Glossy, Matte, Silk, or Metallic; Fuji Deep Matte; and Giclee paper of low, medium, or heavy texture. The latter are defined by higher-quality, finer resolution, and archival paper.

Next, you choose the source of your photos. You can simply upload them from a folder on your computer or get them from an online source such as Dropbox, Facebook, Flickr, Google Photos, or Instagram. Once you upload image files, they'll be in your Printique online galleries.

Only JPG and TIFF formats are supported, but the latter option is more than a lot of services support, allowing for full-resolution image files.

Once you've chosen the pictures you want printed, you have two procedure options: Express Order Mode and Detailed Order Mode. The latter simply lets you specify different sizes and paper types for each photo. Detailed is particularly useful if you only want large versions of particular shots in the set. Thankfully, buttons at the top right let you switch among these modes at any time during this step.

After you've got your sizes and paper picked out, you proceed to review the cropping. The program checks if your photo dimensions don't jibe with the print size and lets you adjust the crops so that they do. I like that you get a Letterbox option that results in no lost image edges.

You can turn off the default color correction if you use a color-calibrated monitor and therefore trust the accuracy of the colors you're seeing on it. You can also enter text to print on the back of the photos and choose if you want the filename and date to show up there as well. This is a thoughtful touch that only the best services offer—some simply print an inscrutable order number. For $5, I could add a sample pack to see what the different paper choices look and feel like in person.

If you live in New York City, you can pick up your prints at the Brooklyn or Manhattan locations. Otherwise, shipping is pricier than most services, starting at $6.95 for one-week delivery of my order of 22 prints, mostly 4-by-6 inches with a couple 5 by 7s thrown in. For comparison, Nations Photo Lab's shipping cost for the same size order is just $3.95, though Mpix charges $7.99. The more wallet-friendly Snapfish beats the pack at $2.99.

One puzzling fact is that I didn't receive an email confirming my order after I'd put it in. A note to the support staff was unanswered. This could have been because I signed up using my Facebook credentials, but the service should still have been able to get my email from that.

Printique Packaging

Shipping and Print Quality

My Printique order arrived in the most substantial packaging of any photo processor tested—an oversized cardboard box. Inside that, the photos were placed on shrink-wrapped cardboard sheets. Nothing, but nothing, was going to result in bent or creased photos with this shipment treatment. What's more, the order arrived in just three days after I'd placed it, even though my shipping option only guaranteed six days.

The photo quality of the prints was very good, especially in larger prints. But Mpix and Nations Photo Lab got more detail from the mountain scene below. (You can click on the image for a larger view.)

Landscape Photo Printing

In the portrait with a red hat below, Printique does a fine job of rendering the felt of the hat and imparting realistic skin tones. It and Mpix produced the best blend of saturation without oversaturating or giving an underexposed look. For this one, I left the AdoramaPix (the previous name for Printique) in, showing that the newer service produced a more satisfying result.

Portrait Photo Printing

Boutique Photo Printing

With the rebranding from AdoramaPix to Printique, this photo printing service remains among the best, but it's also in the upper pricing echelon. You'll receive your prints in the strongest packaging of any photo printing service, and print quality is excellent. Printique is a PCMag Editors' Choice for photo printing services, sharing that distinction with Mpix among high-end services, and with Snapfish and Walmart Photo for value services.


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