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Review: Qoop Printing for Flickr

qoopI previously reviewed Qoop's printing service for Flickr then took down the review because a Qoop representative offered to let us reprint the books for free to see if their newer printers would solve the issues I cited in the review. My main complaint then was that the print quality looked more like something printed off on an office printer than what I had seen with Apple's iPhoto books. The inks didn't have the right reflectivity (the blacks stood out) and the paper wasn't thick enough.

The verdict on the new books: We both felt that they were much improved, both in the inks that were used as well as the paper. With the new books I felt that I was holding a book, not something I printed off at work and stapled together. The printing quality does fall short of providing you with vivid, accurate color reproduction of your photos -- the color dynamics are a bit dull and the levels don't match what you see on the screen. There was also one other problem: two of the books had bent corners that was fixable with a bit of massaging. I would suggest to QOOP that they upgrading their packaging.

d and I don't quite agree on the overall assessment. I was expecting something more akin to a catalog of photos, d was expecting something more to vivid, photo-paper quality. Based on my expectations, I give the Qoop books a passing grade. It's not a book of photos you might buy in the store, but it's an easy way to get your photos into book format and save time in the process. d has a more mixed review, feeling that they aren't up to the printing quality of what you would get with the iPhoto books from Apple. We both agree that you get what you pay for and what you pay is cheap.

  • Do use if for: a hardcopy of your photos that you can carry around with you and scribble on
  • Don't use if for: giving as a gift to your friend (e.g. a book of wedding photos)

I've updated parts of my previous review. Read on for a full review.

Notes from my previous review:

The integration with Flickr is very seamless and saves a lot of duplicative and time-intensive effort were you to try and do it yourself. You would also have a hard time replicating the nice cover and binding using your office printer. A feature that I really like is that you can easily print with notes pages to create a photo journal. Those who are less snobbish than me may not care about the print quality and enjoy having something to carry around and annotate.

If you are going to use the service, make sure you check your photo titles. If you uploaded a photo titled 'IMG_21923.jpg,' it will print in the book with IMG_21923 in nice bold letters. You can tell Qoop to not print your photo titles, but I think Qoop could have done a better job warning us that the photobook was going to look like a computer directory listing.

Pros: * Reads data straight from your Flickr photoset * Arrives in a nice booklet that has thumbnails of the photos printed on the cover * Relatively inexpensive * Time-saver

Cons: * Print quality looks like an office printer * Update: The print quality gets a passing grade, but won't wow you * The books weren't well protected for shipping, resulting in some bent corners * There should be a warning if you're printing photos with filenames as titles

Comments (4)

I wish I had looked for a review of the printing quality of Qoop first. While they have offered to reprint the photobooks I purchased, I found the quality pretty poor. While I haven't used iphoto's service, I might give it a try now.

Qoop has a ways to go to evolve from looking like a mediocre prints in your high school history textbook.

For me the most important thing of a photobook is the printquality.

It takes hours to create a nice book and the there is a large disappointmet if the pictures have al low quality... :-(

ET:

This is June 2007, and Qoop's print quality is still terrible. The paper they use is actually very good (Fuji Crystal Archive), but the ink looks very cheap to me (e.g., quality of faces is terrible, the photo looks "digitized", i.e. one can see the pixels).

I am a photographer with knowledge of resolutions etc (didn't have time to print this batch of photos myself this time), and I did upload high
resolution images.

Very disappointed...looking for alternatives.

Hi,

Based on your review i would like to sugest you to try our service to compare it with the Qoop service and write an article about it. If you are looking for quality, you won't be disappointed !

http://www.icreategifts.com


We will refund your purchase as soon as your article is online !

Thank you,

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