With the increasing popularity of shooting film in both 35mm and medium format, and the accompanying inquiries regarding development, scanning and printing, we’ve put together a small guide to finding places popular with SPC members. There are however, plenty of small Fuji and Kodak outlets around the place if you keep an eye out. These places can often develop regular film in-store, but if you take slide film, B&W or any format different than 35mm in they will likely just send it to Chungmuro anyway, so you might as well go there yourself, it’s a cool area to check out.
Pricing is all very similar, with developing film ranging from 2500 won up to about 4000 won. You can get film in at least both 35mm and 120 format from all of these places also, with all manner of slide, B&W and color negative types available.
Photo Top – Development, scanning and printing. Film for sale also. Photo Top is my personal preference.
Saeki P & C – Lots of tripods and support gear as well as new cameras. Film also. Support items for archiving and caring for negatives like binders and sleeves and so forth are available.
Photopia – Development, scanning and printing. Film available. Negative archival items as well. They also have a branch south of the river, right on exit 8 at Sinsa Station. Scroll down to view ‘Tom’s Experience’ with the Sinsa branch.
Toy Camera – I haven’t actually been inside, but for those of you who are into lomography and related equipment, it’s here for your information.
click for a larger view
Chungmuro is ‘camera central’ for used gear. You’ll find all manner of cameras in various stores there. The area is especially good for used cameras – great condition and generally cheaper than in Namdaemun. As an example, I picked up a Pentax SMC 55mm f/4 lens for my Pentax 6×7 medium format for about 250 000 won less than I found in Namdaemun. Score.
SPC member ‘tommyroscoe’ had an exhibition during March 2009. He spent a lot of time wandering, reprinting and trying to make sense of Korean websites and Konglish phone calls. What he learned could make it much easier for many of us. The fruits of his efforts are posted below. As I have pulled this from the SPC Flickr site, I’ve edited it a little make sense in this context. I went to Tom’s exhibition and I can assure you the prints were fantastic – Aaron
First of all, I’m assuming that you accept that not all labs are the same. I was specifically seeking a lab that could print larger sizes, used high quality machines and paper, was calibrated, and had a knowledgeable staff.
Some people advised me to go to Chungmuro to get my prints done and this was not the best advice, but led me to the right lab. Most of the places in Chungmuro print CMYK and while they are cheap and decent, they aren’t nowhere near the quality of prints on photographic paper. Eventually, I was led to the Chungmuro branch of Photopia which made a few good prints for me, but had no English speaking staff and no ICC profiles for the Frontier machine. My Korean co-teacher spoke with them over the phone and they directed me to their main location. Very easy to find:
Line 3 (orange), Sinsa Station, Exit 8, about 20m from the exit.
This is the best place I found for high quality prints. They have both a Noritsu machine for regular sizes and a Lambda machine for large sizes, up to 72x40inch. Both of these machines have ICC profiles for download from Photopia’s account on Webhard. (www.webhard.co.kr l: digital p:0554)
Their prices are slightly higher than other labs I’ve gone to in Seoul, but in my opinion the prices are still very cheap compared to Canada.
Here is a price list for glossy paper on their Lambda machine to give you a general idea of the cost. Of course, prices vary depending on the type of paper and smaller prints on the Noritsu are much cheaper. I’m including this particular list because I’m assuming people want larger high quality prints.
prices in March 2009
If you want to get prints done there, contact Ji-Ae-Lee on 02-3445-2988. Her English is excellent and she worked with me to get my prints exactly how I wanted them. I was very satisfied with this lab.