Blurb Review

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Check out the photos at right of actual Blurb books I've made and be sure to check out the links to my full in-depth reviews below!

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Blurb was founded in 2004 and is headquartered in the San Francisco Bay area. Blurb’s BookSmart software is available for Mac and for PC. You download the software to your computer and build your book offline. When you complete your book, you upload it to the website.

Blurb’s BookSmart software allows for complete customization of your photo book. Blurb allows for a full-page bleed on the front cover and back cover, and titling on the spine, printed directly on the hard cover surface for complete customization of the exterior of the book. The cover is matte which means that it doesn’t show fingerprints and has more of a “real book” look to it. This option is known as the ImageWrap. Other hardcover options include a dust jacket.

A standout for Blurb’s software is the ability to create your own templates or alter the provided templates, and save your custom templates for use in future books of the same size. You can also do a two-page spread (a single photo stretched over two pages) and also place your photo as background for the template. The software is pretty intuitive and flows smoothly. Another less common feature of Blurb's is the ability to accept PDF files for upload into a book.

Look here for a detailed step-by-step tutorial on how to create customizable templates in Blurb.

Blurb’s print quality is very good but in my experience, not quite as sharp as MyPublisher’s. Blurb’s premium paper however feels heavier than MyPublisher’s paper (when compared to MyPublisher’s Classic photo book), but I’ve never ordered the regular paper, so I can’t say firsthand how that compares. (UPDATE: Check out my Blurb paper comparison review Blurb offers two types of premium papers in lustre or matte finish and two newer ProLine papers in addition to the standard paper.

Blurb's photo book prices are very reasonable. It used to be the case that additional pages were priced in groups of pages, but since early March 2013 Blurb changed to a per page pricing structure which is more typical of other companies. According to Blurb 80% of the most popular book types would drop in price or stay the same, but with ProLine paper upgrades increasing in price.

Another notable feature is the ability to share and sell your book online. Blurb allows you to set your own price and keep 100% of the markup and has an easy to navigate and visually appealing bookstore where you can preview and buy authors’ creations.

Unique Features/Tips

  • You can get up to a whopping 440 pages in Blurb, many more pages than most other publishers
  • Customizable templates can be saved for future projects and software is easy to use
  • Offers a variety of sizes including square books as well as portrait and landscape options
  • Blurb now has more paper options including two ProLine papers, one with a matte textured surface (Uncoated) and one with a pearlescent finish (Pearl Photo). New endpapers and other upgrades have also been added.
  • Blurb offers bookmaking tools and support in Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and German
  • Volume discounts start with just 10 books. At higher quantities, Blurb also offers order fulfillment, special enhancements such as foil stamping, custom sizes and traditional offset printing.

Click HERE to go to Blurb's site!

Don't forget to check the main Photobook Deals page for all of today's deals! Bookmark that page or fan me on Facebook and you won't miss out on the latest coupon codes! Save money with the latest Blurb coupons and deals.

Blurb Reviews from the Blog

Apr 4, 2016: Six Prizes! Blurb Mother's Day Photo Book Giveaway - Enter By 4/11/16
Apr 26, 2015: Blurb Mother’s Day GIVEAWAY Winners Announced!
Apr 13, 2015: Blurb Mother's Day GIVEAWAY $300 in prizes Ends 4/20/15 Plus Exclusive Blurb Coupon Code!
Dec 31, 2013: Year In Review Photo Books - Happy New Year!
Dec 8, 2013: Blurb $200 Giveaway Winners Announced
Nov 21, 2013: Blurb Photo Book Giveaway! $200 in Prizes + Blurb Coupon Codes
Aug 8, 2013: Make Your Own Family, Heritage and Genealogy Photo Book
Jan 8, 2013: Blurb 365 Project 2012 Giveaway Winners Announced
Dec 28, 2012: Blurb 365 Project Giveaway! $100 Prizes - The Last Push for 2012 (ENDED)
Nov 16, 2012: Blurb Coupon Pre-Black Friday 2012 (25% off extended thru 12/3/2012))
Oct 25, 2012: Custom Notebooks, Journals and Planners - Day 3 Can't Miss Christmas Gift Ideas (Updated 2014)
Oct 1, 2012: FREE Photo Book from Blurb 2012 - Make a Facebook Photo Book in Minutes
Aug 15, 2012: Blurb eBooks for the iPad
Jul 12, 2012: Blurb Instagram Giveaway 2012 Winners Announced & Blurb Coupon Codes
Jul 1, 2012: Exclusive Blurb Coupon Code and Giveaway - Blurb Instagram Book Review 2012 (ENDED)
Jan 3, 2012: Blurb Custom Notebook Review
Aug 26, 2011: Blurb Review of Softcover Photo Book & GIVEAWAY Ends 9/1/2011! (ENDED)
Jul 27, 2011: How To Sell Your Photo Book Online - An Interview with Photographer Dan Lo
Jun 13, 2011: Blurb Review 2011 (UPDATED 2016): ProLine, Premium and Standard Papers Compared
Apr 16, 2010: Q&A: How to Create Customizable Layouts in Blurb
Mar 13, 2010: Blurb vs Mpix Review - Make Your Own Affordable Wedding Photo Book - A Bride-to-Bride Guide (with Pictures) Part II
Mar 8, 2010: A Review of Photo Book Printing Companies that I’ve Used: Blurb vs. MyPublisher vs. Snapfish vs. Mpix

Quick Specs for BlurbNew to photo books? Learn the lingo

Book TypeHardcover & Softcover
Book ShapePortrait, Landscape & Square
Types of CoversFull Photo Cover, Dust Jacket
Min/Max Pages20 - 440 standard paper; 20 - 160 premium paper
Paperstandard - 80 lb. matte; premium - 100 lb. matte or lustre paper; ProLine 100 and 140 lb.
Bindingprofessional library binding
Lay FlatNo
Fully Customizable LayoutsYes
Layouts/TemplatesFull customization; 300+ colors
Image as BackgroundYes
Full Photo CoverYes
Customizable SpineYes - solid color and title only (no image)
Full Photo Back CoverYes
Full Page BleedYes
Download or OnlineDownload
Special Photo ImportingFlickr, Picasa, Photobucket, SmugMug, iPhoto
Share OnlineYes
Sell OnlineYes
LogoYes - removable with fee
Photo Editing in ProgramRotate, Size, Borders
Digital Scrapbooking CompatibleYes

Blurb Photo Books

Thinking about designing a photobook on Blurb? You can view a detailed chart of every Blurb photo book, including sizes and pricing. See the full list of Blurb photo books.

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