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Nations Photo Review

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When we tested August 2020
Summary Nation's is the #1 lab for the highest quality prints. Their photos are obviously the highest quality among all the labs we tested.
Print quality (local pickup) Online only
Print quality (online orders)
99%
Local pickup available No
Cost per 4x6 print (local pickup) Online only
Formats available for pickup Online only
Finishes available for pickup Online only
Paper type for pickup orders Online only
Pickup speed Online only
Online only
Online ordering available Yes
Cost per 4x6 print (online) $0.32
Formats available online Virtually all sizes 4x4 to 30x45
Finishes available online Glossy,lustre,metallic,linen
Paper type for online orders KodakProfessional Endura
24 millimeters thick
Cheapest shipping option $3.95
To ship 10 photos
Delivery speed for cheapest shipping option 5-7 days
Order online

Nations print quality test

On 2/13/20, we ordered the following photos from Nations. On 2/13/20, we ordered the same photos from Nations.

We scanned in both sets of prints without color correction.

Here's how Nations compares to Nations (the highest quality among our tests).

Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scan of a printed photo of a appy grandpa smiling in front of a birthday cake. The cake has numbered wax numbers in it on the right, facing the grandpa reading, “94.” The cake is square with white and green frosting with 3 other candles on the left (his right) side of the cake. The old man has a grey, well-manicured beard and is wearing glasses (they’re highly magnified with his eyes slightly enlarged) and smiling bright. He’s holding up one hand in celebration. He’s wearing a multicolored flower lei and a blue shirt. Behind him is a woman with a huge smile, actively laughing, wearing a flowered tank top and a man, in his 30s, also smiling and with a beard wearing a grey long sleeve shirt and green pants. They’re all standing in what appears to be a living room and having a wonderful time.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scan of a printed photo of a appy grandpa smiling in front of a birthday cake. The cake has numbered wax numbers in it on the right, facing the grandpa reading, “94.” The cake is square with white and green frosting with 3 other candles on the left (his right) side of the cake. The old man has a grey, well-manicured beard and is wearing glasses (they’re highly magnified with his eyes slightly enlarged) and smiling bright. He’s holding up one hand in celebration. He’s wearing a multicolored flower lei and a blue shirt. Behind him is a woman with a huge smile, actively laughing, wearing a flowered tank top and a man, in his 30s, also smiling and with a beard wearing a grey long sleeve shirt and green pants. They’re all standing in what appears to be a living room and having a wonderful time.
Nations (Test: Lustre)

Scan of a photo: Beautiful icelandic landscape featuring a couple walking towards the right, centered in the photo. She’s leading him and they’re holding hands and she looks back and gazes into his eyes. She’s wearing black pants, leather boots, and a long navy sweater with a red shirt under it. He’s wearing a leather jacket, grey shirt, blue pants, and casual green leather sneakers. There’s stark contrast between the rocky and green mossy area they’re walking on and the hill behind them which has a white, almost-snowy overlay. The hillside is half covered in snow.
Nations (Test: Lustre)

Scan of a photo: Beautiful icelandic landscape featuring a couple walking towards the right, centered in the photo. She’s leading him and they’re holding hands and she looks back and gazes into his eyes. She’s wearing black pants, leather boots, and a long navy sweater with a red shirt under it. He’s wearing a leather jacket, grey shirt, blue pants, and casual green leather sneakers. There’s stark contrast between the rocky and green mossy area they’re walking on and the hill behind them which has a white, almost-snowy overlay. The hillside is half covered in snow.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scan of a photo of adults and two kids in a fun portrait. They’re all wearing winter coats. The 
adults are wearing winter hats. On the left is a young, beautiful, brunette woman smiling big, wearing a light brown winter hat with a leather patch. A cute little girl is to her right, they’re all close together, wearing a pink puffy jacket with a white bow in her dirty blonde hair. Next to the girl is a man wearing a blue winter hat and a navy puff jacket, his tongue slightly sticking out and his beard a brown-red. To the man’s right is a boy, a few years older than the girl, wearing a red puffy jacket and a flannel under it, his tongue fully out and his eyes wide. They’re all having a blast.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scan of a photo of adults and two kids in a fun portrait. They’re all wearing winter coats. The 
adults are wearing winter hats. On the left is a young, beautiful, brunette woman smiling big, wearing a light brown winter hat with a leather patch. A cute little girl is to her right, they’re all close together, wearing a pink puffy jacket with a white bow in her dirty blonde hair. Next to the girl is a man wearing a blue winter hat and a navy puff jacket, his tongue slightly sticking out and his beard a brown-red. To the man’s right is a boy, a few years older than the girl, wearing a red puffy jacket and a flannel under it, his tongue fully out and his eyes wide. They’re all having a blast.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two grandparents and they’re grandkids. The grandfather is sitting on a brown, floral lounge chair with the two kids on his lap. The little girl is on his left, as if she’s trying to escape, wearing a red dress and white tights and red bow in her hair. The boy is wearing a red flannel. The grandmother leans into the photo with her hand on the right side of the chair. The grandfather is wearing blue jeans and a red flannel shirt and glasses with a thick black rim. Behind them is a cream colored living room door and to its right is a window. It appears to be around the holidays as there are two sets of blue, ceramic angels sitting on the window as well as a white, wood star. Through the window outside it’s dark outside and there’s a few white holiday lights illuminating a tree. There’s also a tropical fern just to the right of the image and a mirror and what appears to be the photographer in it.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two grandparents and they’re grandkids. The grandfather is sitting on a brown, floral lounge chair with the two kids on his lap. The little girl is on his left, as if she’s trying to escape, wearing a red dress and white tights and red bow in her hair. The boy is wearing a red flannel. The grandmother leans into the photo with her hand on the right side of the chair. The grandfather is wearing blue jeans and a red flannel shirt and glasses with a thick black rim. Behind them is a cream colored living room door and to its right is a window. It appears to be around the holidays as there are two sets of blue, ceramic angels sitting on the window as well as a white, wood star. Through the window outside it’s dark outside and there’s a few white holiday lights illuminating a tree. There’s also a tropical fern just to the right of the image and a mirror and what appears to be the photographer in it.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two happy dog owners and their black lab, all three of them with their tongues out. The happy dog is sandwiched between the two owners, his long tongue mostly pink with a couple black spots. On the left is a man with a short, red beard wearing a NASA baseball cap and large sunglasses; a black frame with magenta lenses. He’s wearing a t-shirt and a backpack. The woman on the right is wearing similar glasses except with a blue frame and light blue lenses. Her shirt is multi-colored lines with a slight turtleneck. Her backpack is a light blue. Her hair is tied back with a purple head wrap. The man’s hand is on the dog’s chest, near a brown leather collar and grey tick collar. The three of them are standing in what appears to be a forest and oh-so-happy.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two happy dog owners and their black lab, all three of them with their tongues out. The happy dog is sandwiched between the two owners, his long tongue mostly pink with a couple black spots. On the left is a man with a short, red beard wearing a NASA baseball cap and large sunglasses; a black frame with magenta lenses. He’s wearing a t-shirt and a backpack. The woman on the right is wearing similar glasses except with a blue frame and light blue lenses. Her shirt is multi-colored lines with a slight turtleneck. Her backpack is a light blue. Her hair is tied back with a purple head wrap. The man’s hand is on the dog’s chest, near a brown leather collar and grey tick collar. The three of them are standing in what appears to be a forest and oh-so-happy.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
An old man sitting in a brown plastic adirondack chair, on a makeshift deck with green shrubbery behind him. There’s an identical empty adirondack chair behind him with brown flip flops sitting at its base. The old man is wearing a green, baggy striped shirt and baggy slacks. His socks are also long and slightly baggy. He’s wearing a watch of some kind, glasses with a gold frame, and a faded baseball hat. He’s wearing modern athletic running shoes and they’re blue and yellow. A walking cane leans on the chair. He’s smiling and happy to be there.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
An old man sitting in a brown plastic adirondack chair, on a makeshift deck with green shrubbery behind him. There’s an identical empty adirondack chair behind him with brown flip flops sitting at its base. The old man is wearing a green, baggy striped shirt and baggy slacks. His socks are also long and slightly baggy. He’s wearing a watch of some kind, glasses with a gold frame, and a faded baseball hat. He’s wearing modern athletic running shoes and they’re blue and yellow. A walking cane leans on the chair. He’s smiling and happy to be there.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
A happy black lab. He’s sitting on a rocky beach. The dog is wearing a red collar as well as a grey tick collar below it. He’s also wearing a black and silver body harness. His tongue sticks way out and hangs to the right towards the water. He has big floppy ears. His right eye is pointed directly at the camera, obediently looking at his owner and looking great for the camera. Behind him is lucious grass growing on the edge of the beach. The ocean is in the distance and it’s a calm, low tide.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
A happy black lab. He’s sitting on a rocky beach. The dog is wearing a red collar as well as a grey tick collar below it. He’s also wearing a black and silver body harness. His tongue sticks way out and hangs to the right towards the water. He has big floppy ears. His right eye is pointed directly at the camera, obediently looking at his owner and looking great for the camera. Behind him is lucious grass growing on the edge of the beach. The ocean is in the distance and it’s a calm, low tide.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
A regal red cardinal sitting on a branch. It’s a male cardinal, as female cardinals are a different color. He has handsome, black feathers around his face and a bright orange, triangular beak. He has almost a backward mohawk. His eye is a black, oblong and he’s facing with the right side of his body to the camera. His tail sticks straight backwards. Only the bird and branch are visible in the photo, all else is blurred out.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
A regal red cardinal sitting on a branch. It’s a male cardinal, as female cardinals are a different color. He has handsome, black feathers around his face and a bright orange, triangular beak. He has almost a backward mohawk. His eye is a black, oblong and he’s facing with the right side of his body to the camera. His tail sticks straight backwards. Only the bird and branch are visible in the photo, all else is blurred out.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two Icelandic puffin birds. The bird on the right is most visible. He’s facing to the left. The bird on the left side of the photo is facing right, but he’s tucked down sitting on the ground and looking out towards the ocean in the distance. The photographer is shooting through green and tan grass. The right side bird has a large, orange, yellow, and black beak and a cute whie and black face. His head is mostly black feathers, which wrap around to his back. His chest is white. The birds are unique looking, almost like penguins.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Two Icelandic puffin birds. The bird on the right is most visible. He’s facing to the left. The bird on the left side of the photo is facing right, but he’s tucked down sitting on the ground and looking out towards the ocean in the distance. The photographer is shooting through green and tan grass. The right side bird has a large, orange, yellow, and black beak and a cute whie and black face. His head is mostly black feathers, which wrap around to his back. His chest is white. The birds are unique looking, almost like penguins.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scanned photo of birthday balloons. The photo is zoomed in with 95% of the photo being balloons. It’s positioned vertically. There are 6 balloons in the photo. Upper-left: Yellow, upper-right: Dark blue/purple, then orange, teal, magenta, and blue. All of the balloons have curly orange ribbons.
Nations (Test: Lustre)
Scanned photo of birthday balloons. The photo is zoomed in with 95% of the photo being balloons. It’s positioned vertically. There are 6 balloons in the photo. Upper-left: Yellow, upper-right: Dark blue/purple, then orange, teal, magenta, and blue. All of the balloons have curly orange ribbons.

Nations envelopes

When you order photos from Nations, here's what you can
expect the envelope to look like.

There is a brown cardboard box wallet envelope vertically positioned on a table. There is a transparent adhesive tape wrapped around the left side of the box. The top right side of the box has a shipping label stuck to it. The shipping label is divided into 5 horizontal parts. The first part of the shipping label is divided into two parts by a vertical line. The left contains a block letter “F” printed in a very thick font. The right part has the postage information. It reads “US POSTAGE AND FEES PAID,” under this is some text in smaller fonts, it reads, “2020-08-14 21030 C44192 Commercial 8.0 OZ ZONE 4.” Across this is a text in slightly larger and thick fonts it says “EasyPost.” Under this is a barcode, and below the barcode are tiny numbers that say “0901000000838.” The second part has text in block letters that reads “USPS FIRST-CLASS PKG.” The third part has more space than the other parts. In it, there is a return address printed in the top left corner. It reads, “NATIONS PHOTO LAB, 11103 PEPPER ROAD, HUNT VALLEY MD 21031-1203,” right across are digits that say, “0000.” Below the return address is the delivery address which is blurred out. To the top right of the delivery address is the text “C002” printed in a small box. At the bottom right corner of this part is some reference number that read “2|WEB12123028X01.” A thick line separates the 3rd and 4th parts. The fourth part has the tracking information. “It has a text that says, “USPS TRACKING.” There is a barcode printed right under it. A barcode is blurred out. A thick line closes off the 4th part. The fifth part is blank. Text on the shipping label in black ink, and 4 lines separate each part.
 Envelope sitting on wood table top.
A wallet envelope cardboard box is vertically positioned on a wooden surface. Probably used for packaging and mailing books. The flap covers 3/4 of the envelope. The edges are a little dogged-eared, probably because of transit. The bottom left corner of the box has a QR code. There is a transparent adhesive tape that seals the flap in place and goes around the box. 
 Envelope sitting on wood table top. ))
A brown card box envelope held up by a left hand on its side on a wooden surface. The side is about 2 inches thick. The other part of the envelope is not visible in the picture.
 Envelope sitting on wood table top.

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Photo credits
Atlantic puffin photo by @miss_ohara
Cardinal photo by @drphotomoto

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