Mpix Pro’s Welcome Kit: A Short Review

Late last week I applied for an account with Mpix Pro. They are the next step up in photo lab service from the Miller family. Mpix still rocks, but the company saw a gap in service between Mpix which is for consumers and Miller’s which is for full-time professional photographers.

Enter Mpix Pro. Their products and services are geared toward the photographers who fall in between Mpix and Miller’s. Think of them as a print service for lower volume professional photographers. However, don’t let my term “lower volume” mislead you. Mpix Pro provides twice the amount of products to working pros that Mpix does and their service is only available to photographers who derive a least a portion of their income from photography.

At Mpix, you simply upload images to their website and forget about them. They will take care of any color correction or levels adjustments to your images to make sure they look their best on paper. Mpix Pro relies on the photographer a bit more. Proper monitor calibration is key to getting the best prints.

So when you create your account and it is approved, Mpix Pro has you upload 5 test images so that they can be printed and sent to you to compare to what you see on your screen. If the prints are off, you make the necessary corrections to ensure your prints match what you see on your screen.

My Story
Yesterday, I received my Welcome Kit from Mpix Pro. It didn’t cost me a dime… they even paid for the FedEx Overnight shipping. (Note: Mpix Pro only ships via FedEx overnight and it’s $4.00 per package and if you’re order is over $100.00 the shipping is free.) When I opened the plain white box that my Welcome Kit shipped in, I saw the neat package from the image above.

When I opened the Welcome Kit, I saw their catalog, paper samples, and my sample prints below them. The packaging was very professional and neat. I’m impressed already.

I couldn’t wait to open up my 8×10 test prints and check them out:

I was floored! Those prints rocked the moment I laid my eyes on them! The photo I took does them no justice… you’ve got to see them in person to truly appreciate them.

The prints were a touch darker than my monitor and the colors were right on the money. All I needed to do was dial down the brightness on my monitor just a bit. And I’m talking like just one notch.

I will definitely be using Mpix Pro for all of my prints and for my clients prints as well. One thing I was slightly concerned about was that orders made from my Zenfolio account would still be fulfilled by Mpix. However, I read on Mpix Pro’s website that there will soon be an option for Mpix Pro in Zenfolio user’s accounts soon. Right on!

If you’re a photographer who makes a little money with your photography and you’re somewhat familiar with monitor calibration, I highly recommend that you apply for an account with Mpix Pro. The products and services they provide are just what professional photographers need to be able to grow their businesses.


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12 thoughts on “Mpix Pro’s Welcome Kit: A Short Review

  1. MPix Pro and Zenfolio!! Now I’ve got to get some monitor calibrating done!! I think you’ve mentioned it in the past but what do you use to calibrate your monitor, Steven?

  2. Wow! I wish I had as much luck as you guys. I’ve been using Mpix for a couple years and recently signed up with MpixPro to expand my product offerings. I have a Dell U2410 monitor and I’ve recalibrated it over a dozen times using my Spyder3 and I can’t get a test print to look at all close to my monitor. I’m getting very frustrated with the entire thing.

  3. Hi Stephen,

    sRGB IEC61966-2.1

    I’ve calibrated several times again this morning and ended up with numbers that look pretty good.
    5011 white point 2.2
    White @ 11 = 119.8
    Black @ 85 – .44
    RGB gain at R95 G79 B74

    I guess the proof is in the printing, so I don’t know how they will look until I try again with MpixPro. The two previous attempts were way too dark and had a pinkish hue. The screen looks better now, so maybe I’m getting closer.

    Everet

    • Hi Everett,

      Yes, your calibration looks pretty good. How high is the brightness setting on your monitor? That could be the reason that your prints look dark. I would reduce your brightness some and adjust your photos accordingly prior to uploading to MpixPro again and see if that doesn’t make a difference in the prints. The reason I mention this is because most folks have their monitor set entirely too bright. It’s a little odd to get used to a darker monitor at first, but then it’s not even noticeable after a day or two.

      Let me know how it goes.

      All the best,

      Stephen

  4. Hi Stephen,

    My brightness is set at 11. I was going to make it lower, but that starts knocking my white setting down from the 119.8 I finally got it to so I decided to leave it there.

    I won’t know if my new setting print well until I try some prints, but I do know that I am a web designer also and post lot’s of photos online. They all look too pink to me now.

    Hopefully I’m getting closer. I did print a large print on brushed aluminum this week and it came out brilliant! There were no people in the picture, so any slight color errors weren’t really an issue.

  5. Hi Stephen, what do you have your brightnes set as? I’ve had the same experience with Mpix Pro where my prints are just way too dark and I’ve also calibrated my monitor several times 😦

    Diana

    • Hi Diana,

      My monitor on my MacBook Pro is set to 3/4 of its full brightness capability. You can also look at your histogram in Photoshop, Lightroom, etc and judge by that as well. Bring brightness down and process your images to compensate for the brightness reduction of your monitor and that should help a lot. Also, ensure that you are exporting your images in the sRGB color space.

      All the best,

      Stephen

      Sent from my iPhone

  6. I have tried several times calibrating my monitor with MPIx Pro and I’m so frustrated. I pulled up my Mpix order cart up to the final photo in photoshop and MPIX is sooooo much darker and yellow. I was told by customer service that it should be 120 brightness, 5000K and 2.2 gamma. Is that a set number even though my calibration device advises something else? I have a Mac and like I said my test prints were way darker but i love the quality of their pictures.

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