My source image is a medium-high resolution (say 50MP) digital capture and I'm interested in producing a darkroom print from it, there are industrial machines like the Durst Lambda and other minilabs that can do that but they're not affordable to an individual practitioner, is there something that is ? Mind you I don't need the printing part - just the projection.

  • 1
    How large do you want to print? Is there any reason you do not want to use a print service?
    – xiota
    Oct 10 '18 at 3:44
  • 1
    Hueco has described about making contact prints via transparencies.
    – xiota
    Oct 10 '18 at 3:47
  • A standard 8x10 would be a good start, and because I like the idea of end-to-end authorship I guess. The idea of an inkjet transparency contact print is interesting though transparencies traditionally have a lower dynamic range then either modern digital or photopaper. Oct 10 '18 at 4:00
  • So apparently this is the somewhat standard practice and has a name - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_negative_(transparency) Oct 10 '18 at 4:26

That is not very affordable...

You would need to have a projector of more than 8K resolution, and that only gives you 7680×4320px, or like 33Mpx.

A normal projector is only FullHD, this is 1920x1080.

You could take an 8K monitor and take a photo, for example using black and white film.

There were digital to film printers, but they were extremely expensive. They were used for example to pass visual effects to film for distribution.



This isn't exactly what you're looking for...

But Fuji makes a printer that uses their instax film. It receives the image over wifi, exposes via LED, and then pops out the print.

Per the comments, digital to transparency can work to get a darkroom print from digital. You're right in that some range is lost.

Frank points out in a comment that you could also simply print the image and contact print this - just keep in mind that your exposure doing this will get rather lengthy.


There have been a few attempts to bring something like this to market. I'm not aware of anything that has gone much past the fundraising/initial run stage.

The ones I've seen though have worked with smart phones as both the "negative carrier" and the light source. For example the "Enfojer" -- https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/enfojer-old-school-darkroom-for-smartphones#/ and the Fojo -- https://www.facebook.com/fojography/

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