Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others

Started Sep 1, 2012 | Discussions
life75
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Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
Sep 1, 2012

Hey just wanted to see what is everyone using here, been a smugmug user for close to 10 years, but their price is about to double so i want to explore my options.
Zenfolio looks interesting, anything else?
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Glen Barrington
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

I dropped Smugmug about a year ago, and use only the free sites. I like photo.net the best. jpg magazine second best.

Frankly, I didn't think Smugmug was worth the old price, a doubling offers even less value.
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life75
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

leaning towards photoshelter because i can hide galleries and not just password protect them, so far the big difference that i see between zenfolio and photoshelter
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The Best Camera Is The One That's With You - Chase Jarvis

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hotdog321
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

I've been with Zenfolio for several years, but many people seem to like Smugmug, too.

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Pimpleportrait
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Re: Smugmug's Easy
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

Hi,

I did some research on a few and went with Smugmug. Easy to configure, upload, delete, and quick responses too if you need to fix things.

http://www.benizisantamaria.com

Cheers and best of luck.

Ben

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dfrat
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

I have been using Zenfolio for a few year now and love it! I tried Smugmug first but fell Zenfolio had a cleaner look. You can do a free trial of both to see what you like better.
My top link in my signature is my Zenfolio account.
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bill hansen
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

Purely as a photo display site, I've used http://www.pbase.com for about 12 years. Its interface and image display options are perfect for my purposes, far better than Smugmug or Flickr. There's a free version, but I use the paid version because I have a few dozen different galleries, and a couple thousand images posted.

The disadvantages to Pbase are (1) it's a very popular site, so about once a year it "goes down" for a day or two. Over the 12 years I've used it, I've never lost a single image, but there have been a (very) few days when the site was unavailable. (2) as far as I know, there's not option to sell prints through pbase, as you can from Zenfolio, White House Custom Color, Smugmug, and a few others.

Zenfolio looks excellent to me. If I were selling prints, or if I were to switch from pbase, I'd go straight to Zenfolio.

My experience with White House Custom Color, by the way, was very bad. I needed them to make several 20X25 inch prints from image files I had optimized for that size. WHCC and I went through three attempts to get the prints right, but each attempt was completely unacceptable - not just poor, but terrible. I finally had a local print maker do the job, and the results were beautiful beyond even my high expectations.

Back to Smugmug - if you ever want to have Smugmug print pics for you, be very careful - you have to very specifically instruct them not to "improve" your image files, or they'll wreck them. I used Smugmug's printing services for small prints (4X6 in) for several months, a few years ago when my own printer broke down. The prints were okay, about the quality you could get from Walmart or any other automated printing system - as long as Smugmug didn't "improve" the original image files.

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life75
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Thank you, Zenfolio is a top runner at the moment
In reply to bill hansen, Sep 1, 2012
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http://rkruglov.blogspot.com
The Best Camera Is The One That's With You - Chase Jarvis

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Burbclaver
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

Yes, I have been with Smugmug 10 years also and have decided not to pay double for the pro account even though it claims to be a $100 discount.. The reason I don't think it is worth it is that you can't print to your own lab, but have to use their partner labs. If you build your pro business around Smugmug, you are tying yourself to their printing. If that's the case, I am not going to pay for their gallery tools in addition.

Smugmug says:

The last time we raised pro prices, it was 2005 and we were able to grandfather your account at the old rate of $99.95/year. We wish we could continue that forever but alas, starting October 15, we’ll be raising pro subscription renewals for grandfathered accounts like yours to $200/year. The price for new pros will be $300/year, so your new rate is $100/year less.

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Karl H. Timmerman M.A.J.D.
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

It depends on what you want to do. For me, (I was on Pbase until about 8 years ago), I just reserved a domain, ($10), bought "CoffeeCup Visual Site Designer", ($49.00), and have iPage.com host the site, ($3.00/mo for UNLIMITED bandwidth and space). About 2 years ago, I set up a separate Facebook page to share my images with family and friends, (Free): http://www.facebook.com/khtimmerman# ! pages/KarlT-Digital-Artist/125961850827298

and have found that to be most effective for sharing images, (although you can not link to Facebook images ... I use my website for that).
KarlT

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'The best part of taking the moral highground ...... is the view'.

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life75
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to Burbclaver, Sep 1, 2012

Same boat i would understand $50 increase but double of that, seems to much
so i am looking at zenfolio, within the price range it seems the most complete
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harrygilbert
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

SmugMug, but it has just announced significant price increase for Professional gallery. About double the former rate.

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life75
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to harrygilbert, Sep 1, 2012

yep, thats why i am looking around, i understand prices go up, but double the price................
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Mark B.
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to harrygilbert, Sep 1, 2012

harrygilbert wrote:

SmugMug, but it has just announced significant price increase for Professional gallery. About double the former rate.

Yup, that's not right. Their service is great, but they should have taken a few smaller increases rather than one big increase all at once. I'll be looking around.

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matthias jurisch
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Re: Smugmug's Easy
In reply to Pimpleportrait, Sep 1, 2012

Hello Benizi...congrats on your new website...fantastic photos you have there especially the ones of Indonesia.
take care
Matthias

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life75
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to Mark B., Sep 1, 2012

i spend last 4-5 hours playing around on zenfolio and it is pretty nice
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The Best Camera Is The One That's With You - Chase Jarvis

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Paul Szilard
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Re: Photo Hosting, Smugmug and Others
In reply to life75, Sep 1, 2012

SmugMug had announced a fee increase for their existing PRO account of 67%.

I believe that unless this approach is changed, and changed very quickly, then this will be the end of SmugMug as we know it.

The new price of USD250 per year for a PRO account with unlimited space and usage is the WRONG approach:

1) It penalizes the masses who do not use huge storage space
2) It is not competative with alternative services

3) A sudden raise of 67% is such a shock that it will trigger a mass migration of users who will never return, even if SmugMug was to change its policy later

SmugMug's CEO claims that escalating technology had resulted in an unforeseen increase in storage use. Very high resolution images from the likes of the Nikon D800 and other cameras, plus ever easier upload methods had caused the unlimited storage per user to mushroom.

Most smugMug users love the facilities that the site provides, however to pay $1,000 every 4 years just to host one's photos is a BIG ASK! I for one, wish that SmugMug stays as a profitable and value for money service that is stable, however let's look at the running costs:

1) Storage
2) Maintenance
3) Support
4) Development

Only item 1) is directly proportional to amount people use, although 2) and 3) are also impacted by numbers. If the current environment is not cost effective, then the

ONLY SOLUTION is a structured charging model! People with high storage requirements, are the ones that should bear the increased storage costs!

With the current direction of unlimited storage and an increased annual fee, a huge number of the lower storage users will leave (and never return!) leaving the costs even more skewed.

===============
Now let's look at the user's point of view an alternatives

The first choice is whether to host your own server, or use a paid service.

Many people now have the possibility of realistic fast broadband connections, using ADSL or Cable and can deploy an inexpensive NAS, and host their own photo website. NAS boxes such as QNAP or ReadyNAS offer virtually, out of the box solutions.

Alternative commercial hostings are many, here are just a few:

1) Flickr $24.95 annual, or $44.95 for 2 years unlimited storage
2) Picasaweb $29.88 for 25GB, $59.88 for 100GB per year

3) JAlbum PRO $79 1-time cost for s/w only - use your own space (Hostmonster and others can provide unlimited hosting plans for as low as under $100 per year)
4) 500pixels $49.95 unlimited
5) Zenfolio Premium $160 commercial
6) Adobe Revel

The list goes on.

I am going to explore 500px and Zenfolio

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Burbclaver
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No DVD Backup for Smugmug
In reply to life75, Sep 2, 2012

There used to be a DVD service on Smugmug where you could backup your whole account and have it mailed to you. Not any more. You have to download a gallery one at a time. I believe you can create a zio file and download that, but it doesnt save much time and effort. I wonder if this is a coincidence that they boost the price, then make it difficult to get your images. I've been a loyal user of Smugmug for years, but hardly a heavy user. I've recommended it to a lot of people. But this big price increase is just too much to bear.

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matthias jurisch
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another option...
In reply to life75, Sep 2, 2012

http://www.wordpress.com

I have the simple basic wordpress website and it is absolutely free...easy to modify and upload pictures.
greetings
Matthias
http://www.foto-jurisch.de

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JulesJ
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Re: Smugmug's Easy
In reply to Pimpleportrait, Sep 2, 2012

You can keep a lot of images on Flickr for free before they ask you to pay, not sure exactly how many, but it's easy to use.
Jules
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