Sam’s Club (Fujifilm) 8×8″ Lay Flat Photo Book Review

Sam’s Club (Fujifilm) 8×8″ Lay Flat Photo Book \ Photo: Nikon Df Neutral Settings

Hello everyone, I got these in the other day, 8×8″ Lay Flat Premium Photo Books from Sam’s Club.  These are essentially smaller more portable versions of the 12×12″ books that I order through Costco.  In fact they are printed at the same Fujifilm plant in SC.  It’s just odd that Costco doesn’t offer this size as an option, so for me, it’s worth it to have both memberships so I can print out lots of things!
Sam’s club right now is offering Free Shipping on all photo products (probably for the foreseeable future). That’s a great deal, if you are okay with waiting for sporadic shipments that trickle in over the weeks like I’ve experienced.
I won’t go at great length on the image quality as they are basically the high quality color rendition you get with the larger Fuji Crystal Archive photo prints.  (You can read about the Costco books in detail in my archive)
Notes:
  • The 8×8″s start at $34.86.  Much cheaper than a book from New York, and the size fits perfectly in the same style Hedgren bag that I’ve carried for like 17+ years.
  • You can put text on the spine and change the background color, and you can rotate it.  I goofed on mine, the text runs down to up orientation.  There are different (better) typefaces available though, like the standard and modern Raleway
  • If you need more pages or more visual impact, the Costco books are much cheaper in the long run.  I needed a Design Portfolio book that could go with me everywhere so the price is great for that.  However adding enough pages for my book made it over $50.  Still cheaper than all the other online options, but this can still add up if you want to print out every single memory/day/adventure like me.
  • The free shipping might be a big deal breaker if you can only choose between Sam’s or Costco.  The 12×12″s via Sam’s costs MORE though and have LESS pages so you have to factor that in
Okay, with all that out of the way, here are photos of my first test books.  I made a Graduation/Senior book, and I made a Design Portfolio that mainly has all the stuff I’ve been working on here at home during the pandemic.
I also thought it would be a good experiment to photograph the books with my various cameras.  Since they all render so differently, the examples below show what the books either look like in a faithful way in terms of color, or just as a pretty colorful image.  Anyone who has ever designed for print know the differences in your stuff in CMYK over sRGB stuff on your phone.  The captions below the images should give you more info.  I shot all these on a Saturday afternoon with kitchen light, which this summer in Georgia fluctuates from cloudy to crazy hot and then to rain.

Nikon J1 High Saturation mode that is that camera’s strength

 

Fujifilm X100 \ The X100 has always had a soft nice look with a bluish and cool tint. These are how the books arrive, in a nice plastic package that can be re used.

 

Sam’s Club (Fujifilm) 8×8″ Lay Flat Photo Book \ Photo: Nikon Df Neutral Settings

The above photo was taken with the Df with Neutral Picture profile applied in post.  It’s pretty close to what my book looks like in real life.  You can compare the background blue to the above X100 image.  While the X100 is vibrant and saturated and pretty nice, the Df one is closer to the CMYK type of rendering.

Canon 5D mk II and Neutral Color Setting

 

Canon EOS RP and Neutral Color Setting

 

Canon 5D Classic and Neutral Color Setting

 

Olympus E-PL1 Vivid Picture setting \ You can see the difference in blue and skin tone here, but to be honest in re visiting my old ancient E-PL1, it still has some of the best out of camera JPEGS of any brand.  This camera is a bargain and I recommend getting one.

So you can kind see the various ways camera manufacturers “cook” their images in terms of color, saturation and contrast.  Most everyone sees life through their smartphone screen and those images are definitely not an accurate representation of the color in real life.  Nor would we want it to be, as the clever old saying goes, we take pictures just to see what the world looks like photographed.
For the pictures of the interiors I decided to post the ones I shot with the little Olympus.  My past posts were shot with the J1 or X100, but wanted to do something different this time.  Plus the images (besides the cover) look pretty darn good and close to how the prints actually look like in real life.

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

These next photos are from my Design Portfolio/Resume

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

 

Olympus E-PL1

The big book is from Costco, the smaller ones are from Sam’s Club, but both are printed at the same place, Fujifilm.

Olympus E-PL1


 

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