Where to Develop Film in San Diego in 2023.
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Even with analog photography gaining significant momentum in the last few years, there’s no way that the medium will ever return to it’s pre-digital-camera glory days.
Across the country, photo labs are becoming harder and harder to find as the heyday of film photography is long-gone. Sure, there are plenty of new labs being opened by enthusiastic young photographers, but it’s not enough to match the amount of places closing their doors.
If you’re in San Diego, though, you’re in luck – there are still plenty of great options in 2022.
Check out the list of places that still develop film in San Diego below – we’ve included which types of film are accepted by each lab and a map of their locations.
A SoCal haven for film photographers, Safelight Labs is a great place to develop your film in San Diego.
You’ll be able to get your film developed whether it’s C-41 color or black and white – that goes for 35mm, 120, as well as large format film.
For the perfectionist who wants to be involved in every step of their photographs, you can also rent their darkroom for DIY processing.
Safelight Labs recently moved location and took over Camera Exposure, one of the biggest used camera sellers in California.
Nelson Photo Supplies is a one-stop-shop for al of your photographic needs. Film developing is just one of the many things you can expect from this photoshop.
You can drop off your film to be developed if it is 35mm or 120 – color or black and white.
Aside from getting your film developed, you’ll be able to shop for any camera equipment you may need, get your gear repaired, or even take a class to level up your photography skills.
If you ever find yourself shooting an odd film size that other labs may not be able to develop, we’d recommend checking out George’s Camera. Established in 1965, they’ve been frequently voted the number one camera store in San Diego!
While they are capable of processing most film formats that you can find, they also do a great job developing more common sizes. 35mm, 120, and large format film are all processed in house, whether you like to shoot color or black and white film.
Outside of the photo lab, George’s is a full-service photoshop with any gear or accessories you may need.
While located a little bit outside of San Diego, there are still plenty of people in the area who may be interested in checking out Total Photo.
You’ll be able to get your C-41 color or black and white film developed, whether you shoot 35mm or 120. Total Photo usually offers a quick turnaround on scans.
One of the most unique and alluring aspects of this photo lab is their loyalty program, where your 10th roll of film is developed for free! This is one of the best deals we’ve seen, as very few darkrooms offer any sort of discount on their services.
North Coast Photographic Services, or NCPS for short, is a lab located near San Diego in Carlsbad. This lab has been developing film since they first opened their doors in 1978.
NCPS is all about analog and they offer services for any type of modern film. 35mm, 120, and large format film can all be processed. That goes for C-41 color, black and white, and even E-6 slide film. This is the only place to develop E-6 in the area.
This spot has a bit of notoriety in the photo world as Ken Rockwell’s go-to lab for many years. They are quite popular for mail-in film developing and have quite a large facility.
Map of the San Diego Film Developing
Did We Miss Anywhere?
Do you know of any other places for film developing in San Diego that we missed? If so, let us know in the comments.