I recently applied for an opportunity to review the SAAL Digital Lay Flat photo book through a sponsored ad on Instagram. They ask for you to submit your Instagram handle so they can review the quality of your work and suitability for reviewing the products.
The company asked me for a review of the book and in exchange they would give me a £25 voucher towards the cost of my book.
I choose to make a book and my unbiased opinion follows. It’s worth noting that the code they gave me expired after 2 weeks and a quick email saw them extend it for another 2 weeks due a really busy end of the school year meaning I just didn’t have time to sort my images ready for upload. Really a nice gesture to ensure I could still take part.
I’ve based the book on my experiences of other photo books I’ve purchased in the past from: Jessops, Photo box, Truprint, Printerpix and Blurb.
I’m basing my review on five key categories:
- Print quality
- Paper used
- Ease of creation
Firstly, this is by far the best quality photo book in terms of print quality. Colours are really accurate and the finish of the prints are lovely. The only book to get close to this previously was Blurb but I’d still edge towards this book as it brings me nicely onto the next section.
This is by far the most luxurious paper I’ve ever seen used in a “standard” paper photo book. It really is more like card and gives a fantastic satisfing feel when you turn the pages. I have zero complaints about the quality of the paper used. 5 stars here.
The lay flat nature of this book beats ever other book I’ve ever used. It enables you to span pictures across two pages without any issue and allows the book to lay attractively on a table for viewing from all angles. Again this book wins this hands down. I would say the security of the bind feels less sturdy than Blurb but in all the people who have handled it in the month I’ve had it, never has it felt like it’s going to break or wear out.
Ease of creation
The website provides a great interface to upload and arrange photos and this worked really well on my Mac running the latest version of Safari. Thankfully it’s not based on Adobe Air like many others and it’s not based on some terrible software that looks like it came out of the 1990s. So again bonus points here. Well done SAAL.
Now this is always subjective. I prefer paying a little more for quality but Blurb has always worked out closer to £40 than the £25 I paid for this book. Given the price, the quality and the software I consider the SAAL lay flat book to be great value and I will be creating more to show off my portfolio as I generate more images.
I really love this photo book. It represents great value and really considerably better quality than most “standard” priced books. It’s much more professional to put a lay flat book in front of potential clients.
Since then I have also ordered an aluminium print and a canvas print. Delivery times were exactly as they specified and my experience was mirrored on all their products. They will now be my preference for all photo creation products.
Without hesitation I recommend SAAL Digital.