Blurb vs Mixbook Photo Books

Editor’s Key Takeaways: Blurb vs Mixbook: Guiding Your Photo Printing Choices

Photo Book on table open with photos showing.

Choosing a reliable printer for photography projects, professional photos or memorable occasions is pivotal. Two options often faced by photographers are Mixbook and Blurb. Both are popular but it’s essential to understand key differences before making a decision.

Four key considerations when choosing a printing company include:

  • The type of print – needs for hobbyists and professionals may vary.
  • Budget and flexibility – some printers cater to specific budget zones; others offer unexpected deals.
  • Need for extra features – functionalities beyond basic printing may be required.
  • Quality – compromises on qualities could lead to unsatisfactory results.

An in-depth comparison of Mixbook and Blurb can help users assess suitability: by comparing the product range, prices, reviews, and overall impressions.

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Professionals and beginners alike can have a difficult time finding a printer they love. Whether you’re looking to expand your portfolio by having some of your best shots printed professionally or just looking to document your niece’s sixth birthday, choosing a printer you trust is vital.

While it’s important to sort and compare your options, sifting through dozens of printer websites can be a waste of time, time that could be spent doing something you love.

For those who would rather devote their free time to furthering their photography passion, we’ve compiled an in-depth comparison of two heavy hitters: Mixbook and Blurb.

Continue reading below and check out our Blurb vs Mixbook comparison chart, which can assist you when selecting which printer is right for you!

How to Choose a Printer

Before we get much further into our side-by-side review, it’s important for you to take a minute and decide exactly what kind of features you’re looking for. Keeping your needs in mind can simplify the decision process and make your job easier. In general, there are four things to consider when choosing a printing company:

  1. What will you be printing? Those looking for a hobby photo book will have different criteria from those looking to have single photos printed. When researching reviews, be sure to narrow your search to match your needs.
  2. What is your budget and is there any wiggle room? If you’ve got a strict budget, the best use of your time may be in narrowing your search to companies that cater to your budget. If you’ve got wiggle room, don’t be afraid to look at some higher-end companies: some have better deals than you’d expect.
  3. Will you need extra features? Some printers offer a level of customization in your prints that professionals will be especially interested in, while other companies target a demographic that wants these things automated. Pay attention to what optional features each company offers.
  4. What kind of delivery will you need? For those looking to receive their product on a tight schedule, it’s worth it to compare shipping prices from a few companies. Also, keep in mind that not all companies will ship internationally.

Comparing Blurb vs Mixbook


Blurb Photo Book Printer (How do they Compare to Mixbook?)
Blurb is one of the best photo book printing services – but how does Blurb compare to Mixbook? Let’s find out!

Blurb, founded in 2005 in San Francisco, CA, has stood out among other photo book companies, largely because it is a self-publishing company offering a very different selection of services. Blurb ships to over 70 countries and has delivered more than 14 million books. Most photographers will be interested in Blurb’s fantastic photo book abilities. While they may offer fewer services than others, they more than make up for the deficiency with high-quality printing.

Blurb Product Range

While Blurb does offer options for traditional printing, we’re focusing on their gorgeous photo books. The books are available in six sizes: 5×5″, 7×7″, 8×10″, 10×8″ 12×12″, and 13×11″. Rivaling the paper options of Mixbook, Blurb also offers six paper options, meaning you won’t have to sacrifice your love of customization when going with Blurb.

Currently, they offer Standard, Premium Lustre, Premium Matte, Proline Uncoated, Proline Pearl Photo, and Standard Layflat. Their covers are available in three different styles:

  • Glossy Softcover,
  • Hardcover ImageWrap with a matte finish, and
  • Hardcover Dust Jacket with a glossy jacket over black linen.

Impressively enough, the design aspect of their photo books is what really sets Blurb apart from Mixbook and other competitors. While it does offer a fantastic browser tool, it also offers a desktop and mobile version. For those who are looking to really personalize their photo book, there’s also an option to upload directly from popular professional tools such as Adobe InDesign.

Also, Blurb offers you a free desktop software (see to create your own books, magazines, and ebooks.

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Blurb Prices

Depending on which size, cover, and type of paper you’re looking at for your photo book, the price will vary. To give you a general overview, we’ve listed the price range for the photo books offered by Blurb based on their sizes:

  • Small Square Photo Books (7×7″) will cost anywhere between $14.99 and $44.99. Keep in mind, additional pages for this book will cost anywhere from $0.20 per page to $.0.40 per page, depending on the type of paper you choose.
  • Standard Portraits (8×10″) can cost between $21.99 to $52.99. Additional pages for this size tend to run between $0.25 and $0.45, making it a reasonable price bump from the Small Square Photo Book.
  • Standard Landscape (10×8″) matches the Standard Portrait price and can be as low as $21.99, although can go as high as $52.99. Additional pages for these also mirror the Standard Portrait pricing guide, between $0.25 and $0.45.
  • Large Square (12×12″) will cost anything from $55.99 to $84.99. While this may seem like a price jump, it’s important to note that this size is not available in a soft cover (which is the cheapest option and results in a lower price for other sizes). Additional pages are between $0.50 and $0.70 per page.
  • Large Landscape (13×11″) can cost between $58.99 and $87.99. Once again, this larger size is not available in softcover format, which results in a more expensive base price. Additional pages for this size mirror the pricing for the Large Square size and fall between $0.50 and $0.70 per page.
  • It’s important to note that a huge benefit to ordering through Blurb is their quantity discount. Those ordering between 10-19 books will receive 10% off; if you’re ordering between 20-49 books, you’ll be eligible for 20% off. For those who are planning for more, anyone ordering over 50 books will receive 25% off.

Blurb Reviews

An important step in any major purchase is taking a glance through customer reviews. For the purposes of simplicity, we’ve narrowed our search down to three of the most reliable sources: the Better Business Bureau, Top Ten Reviews, and

  • Better Business Bureau: A+. Earning a 4.12 average from 9 reviews left on the site, Blurb has a solid rating from the BBB. For the majority of the negative comments left, it does seem as though Blurb has left some feedback and offered an apology when necessary. Whether it’s a good sign or bad, most of their complaints are not about the product and are actually related to the chat-based customer service. Overall, reviews from the BBB indicate the product received is high quality.
  • Top Ten Reviews: 5.8/10. While the score left by leaves something to be desired, it’s important to note that the two major factors leading to the poor score are the less than intuitive user interface and the lack of size options available. For those who are looking for the option to upload via PDF or Adobe InDesign, this still may be a viable option for you to look into. Reviewers still loved the quality and amount of customization offered, although they were disappointed with the few templates offered.
  • Cnet. While the review does not offer a number or letter grade, the review is overall pretty positive and in line with what other review companies have said. The quality is great, the paper is phenomenal, but it can be difficult for a beginner to use. The reviewers at Cnet do agree that the flexibility offered by Blurb, for those who are comfortable using it, makes it worthwhile.

“Blurb was the most flexible of the bunch in terms of large swaths of text. It also turned out to be the most frustrating to use.” –

Related Post: Blurb Review

Blurb: Our Overall Impression

Blurb is a fantastic company. While their prices for high-quality paper may intimidate some, you get what you pay for. Their Mohawk brand paper is top-of-the-line; however, this may not be the best option for those who are looking for a quick drag-and-drop book creation. Blurb seems to better fit those who are comfortable with technology or have used programs like this in the past.

Mixbook Find out How this Custom Photo Book Printers compares to Blurb
Mixbook Website Screenshot. Their Slogan: “Print a custom photo book for any occasion!”

Based in California, Mixbook is an online photo service center. Offering a high level of customization, this company has exploded in popularity since it was founded over a decade ago. Interestingly enough, Mixbook was designed by Andrew Laffoon and Aryk Grosz as a way for high school students to design their own yearbooks, making it clear why this company has built a cult following for its photo books.

Earning praise as “one of the best photo book-making sites” by CNET and being featured on The Today Show for their gorgeous canvas prints, it doesn’t look like Mixbook plans on slowing its expansion anytime soon.

Mixbook: Services Offered

While best known for its photo books, Mixbook actually offers a pretty comprehensive line of services.

  • Photo books. Mixbook has been renowned for its quality photo book prints, offering a high level of customization for even the pickiest of photographers. Their books are offered in a variety of covers and papers, and can be designed to fit most budgets. For the professional, keep an eye out for the premium flat-lay option. Hobbyists, take a browse through their extensive theme library.
  • Cards and Magnets. Available in a variety of papers and styles, Mixbook is a fantastic option for those looking to create cards. With themes for everything from party invitations to save-the-dates, you’re pretty well guaranteed to find a theme to suit your needs. Uniquely, cards can be made with a cotton-like finish, ultra-thick cardstock, and even made with foil highlights to add dimension. Custom photo magnets are also a viable option as an alternative to traditional cards and remember to check out their custom address labels and stationery to match your theme.
  • Calendars. For those looking to start their year off right, the calendars offered by Mixbook are a great option. Fully customizable, their calendars offer an assortment of sizes and formats. You’ll be able to choose from their theme library or, for those who want more control, design it from scratch yourself.
  • Wall Prints. While these are categorized on their website as “home décor,” they’re best explained as wall prints. For those looking to put their photos on display, or make your latest family portrait the center of attention in your sitting room, Mixbook offers several options: canvas prints, metal prints, acrylic prints, acrylic blocks, and even poster prints.
  • Photo Prints. Finally, Mixbook offers simple photo prints for those looking for a professional print. With their online photo editor, Mixbook boasts that you’ll no longer have to deal with the local copy store accidentally cropping your heads out of your Christmas cards. After uploading your photos, you can choose from a variety of sizes. While the most common is 4×6″, 5×5″, 5×7″, and 8×10″, they also offer larger 36×24″ prints.

Related Post: Best Photo Book Printing Services (Top 11 Amazing Picks)

Mixbook Prices

Part of what has made Mixbook such a popular option is its amount of customization. This had led to the company offering an option for every type of photographer and for any price point you may have in mind. While it can be hard to give exact prices, we’ve collected some average price ranges for their products below:

  • Photo books can be tricky to price out, considering there are so many different options for cover, size, and varying page numbers. A softcover will be priced anywhere from $15.99 to $24.99, making them the cheapest option. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a premium lay-flat hardcover, they’ll be priced anywhere from $59.99 to $124.99. Keep in mind, anything over 20 pages will cost you extra. Be sure to check the per-page cost before ordering on their website so you know what to expect.
  • Photo Prints are pretty reasonably priced for Mixbook. Their 4×6″ shots are priced starting at $0.15 a piece, going up to $3.99 for each 8×10″.
  • Cards by Mixbook vary in price, largely due to their high levels of customization. If you’re looking for a simple satin finish, the price can be as low as $0.69. If you’re looking for a luxurious ultra-thick card stock, they’ll start at $1.99. Their Premium Matte and Pearl Finish are both available from $1.09, while the Cotton Texture will start at $1.59.
  • Calendars are priced pretty affordable. A typical square calendar at 12×12″ will start at $29.99, while landscape calendars will start at $24.99.
  • Wall art can vary in price for the site. Their Acrylic prints range from $49.99 for a 6×6″ to $199.99 for a 30×20″. Their canvas prints will cost anything from $49.99 for a 10×8″ to $164.99 for a sizable 36×24″, while their metal prints run anywhere from $19.99 for a 6×4″ to $249.99 for a 36×24″. Lastly, their posters seem to be the most affordable option, ranging from $7.99 for an 11×14″ to $31.99 for a 36×24″.

Mixbook Reviews

In order to keep our reviews as fair as possible, we’ve gathered the reviews for Mixbook from the same professionals we listed for Blurb. Take a look at some of the fantastic ratings this company has garnered:

  • Better Business Bureau: A+. Currently, Mixbook has a 4.1, based on 6 customer reviews in their system. Of the few negative reviews left on the BBB website, it does seem as though Mixbook has been pretty prompt in contacting the customer to rectify the issue, something that tends to reflect a decent level of customer support. As with all BBB ratings, there’s no way to verify many of the complaints, but it’s a good sign that none of them are regarding the same issue.
  • Top Ten Reviews: 9.73/10. In a review, members of Top Ten Reviews compared a series of photo printing services.
    • Of these companies compared, Mixbook has come out as the top company, earning an impressive 9.73.
    • The largest complaint is that there’s no option for in-store pickup, something that may impact your decision if you’re looking for the quickest delivery time.
    • Other than that, reviewers were impressed with the quality, customer service, and the variety of themes offered by Mixbook.

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“Mixbook offers a vast selection of design elements and makes everything really easy…”

  • Cnet published an impressive review of Mixbook, comparing it to other industry leaders. After raving about the ease of use when accessing their website and design process, reviewers voted Mixbook the superior company, topping even names like Shutterfly.

Related Post: Mixbook vs Shutterfly

Mixbook: Our Overall Impression

Honestly, one of the things that makes Mixbook such a major brand has been its level of customization. The themes offered by the company are top quality and there’s something in their library for everyone.

For those who are looking to venture away from themes and really create their own unique design, there is also an option to start from scratch. All of their products come in a variety of finishes, and there is sure to be something that will fit your budget and that you’ll love.

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Blurb vs Mixbook: A Side-by-Side Comparison

Looking to get a better understanding of these two companies from a distance? Take a look at our chart below to learn which features are offered by which company.

International ShippingYesYes
Money-Back GuaranteeYesNo
Live ChatYesNo
Online Album SharingYesYes
Import from Social MediaYesYes
Processing Time1-2 days4-5 days
Available Photo Book Sizes76
  • While both of these online printers are fantastic, they do cater to two different audiences. Those who want total control over what they’re getting may feel more comfortable with the capabilities of Blurb.
  • For those who are just starting out you may want to take a closer look at Mixbook.

Overall, it’s fantastic to see two great options available to photographers at any experience level. Be sure to let us know which one you prefer!

About the Author
photoworkout author

We are a team of enthusiast photographers crafting every piece of content to help you become a better photographer.
The PhotoWorkout Team is always curious about the latest photography gear, post-processing software, up & coming photographers, and innovative ways to print your photos.

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20 thoughts on “Blurb vs Mixbook Photo Books”

  1. I have used Blurb often to do same book. 7”by7” and 12”by12”. Very frustrating experience over all. Ordered my last 12by 12 and pages(looking at the spine) are all wavy. Quite unprofessional. Contacting them is always a nightmare. No live chat and no phone#. U email them and wait for days sometimes to get an answer. Was quite pleased w/ their printing on Mohawk Pearl. Am waiting to see if they might send me another copy where pages are flat. Payed $200 for just one book 12”by12”. For this price, the pages (49) should be flat. Jamesleestern@gmail in santa monica

  2. Nothing about this review talks about the quality of the printed photographs. “Good” and “excellent” are not qualitative terms. For instance, with Blurb, what printer do they use for their Mohawk paper? What is their ink resolution in dots per inch? How many ink colors are used?
    Thank you,

  3. I’m looking for a high-quality photobook online company that does not have censorship oversight. While Blurb does not censor, their “printing partners” do, and can preempt an order. Is there an online photobook company that won’t censor erotic/nude photographic material?

  4. Richard Lunsford

    I’ve made several Blurb books and one Mixbook lay-flat book. A few things I encountered:

    1.) Both turn out a good hard-cover book, and I highly recommend image-wrap covers, not a dust jacket (looks good, less annoying).

    2.) Blurb is mainly designed for computer software based book-making; the online tool didn’t allow nearly as much customization as Mixbook’s. But…Mixbook’s required doing it online. If you want to access your project and work on it from different computers in different locations but maintain customizability, Mixbook has a strong advantage.

    3.) Mixbook had a number of page backgrounds (think varied colors and photo backgrounds; not a whole lot, but better than Blurb, which could change color and that was about it), and it was easy to insert clip art from their extensive included collection. I’m not a big ‘scrap book’ type, I mainly make an annual photo book with lots of photos and text captions in various size containers, a number of which I customize. So if you like enhancing background pages for your photos, and putting cute little clip art accents around them, Mixbook is the clear winner.

    4.) But Blurb does one thing Mixbook doesn’t that’s usually a deal breaker for me. Blurb has a small added cost option to generate a PDF version of my book. This provides me an ‘ebook’ I can distribute copies of freely, and a way to keep copies very compactly (in a folder on any computer I wish). Mixbook doesn’t do that.

    So for me, it’s mainly Blurb. And I like the large landscape Blurb books – 11×13′. Couldn’t find quite the same thing on Mixbook; got more of a really big square shape. But that Mixbook lay-flat book I make our daughter is a thing of beauty.

  5. I have used Blurb for years but I just tried to upload and print a travel book using Bookwright. It was 270 Mb and took many hours to upload and then failed to process. I tried 4 times and also sent 4 emails over a week asking for technical support with no response. Very disappointed with the lack of support. Will never use them again.

    1. photoworkout author

      Thanks for your feedback. Yes, I also agree that designing and ordering your photo book should work from within the Internet browsers. Hence, Mixbook would be a better option. – Andreas

    2. Cristian Chelaru

      You have plugins for major Adobe softwares and a dedicated and simple to use Bookwright and you still have problems to upload your book? You can make the book in any software you want then exported as pdf. Talk with your internet provider if you have problems with 270mb upload.

  6. Can you please offer a comparison on image quality between the two companies? I have used Mixbook in the past, and although I love how easy it is to use, I was a little disappointed with the “graininess” of the photos. I’m curious about Blurb, and would like to know if they offer more “crisp” and sharp photos.

    1. photoworkout author

      Yes, we will be doing a comparison with image quality. Right now we are comparing Mixbook against Shutterfly, next up will be Blurb.

  7. Great and detail review. Blurb is an online publishing and originated from a professional photographer. If you are a photographer, you might not wanted to print your book at those site as they are made for mass production and have very little of color control. My suggestion is to print the book in artifact or Both of them pay detail attention in color management and handmade photobook. the finishing will surprise you everytime. Remember my first time order from flipchap, i was surprised by how they personalized my books with tons of free gifts. gifts like mini calendar, book mark, dust jacket and mini book(Cutest gift ever). all of them printed with image i upload to make the book. the mini book was the highlight as they make a tiny version of my book into a keychain size book. Their delivery is a little bit slower, since they explained that all their books are hand made and need to do it book by book.
    i turned it to artifact uprising because of the environmental awareness as all their paper was recycle material and i am happy to play a part in this environmental role while still enjoying a book.

    1. photoworkout author

      Thanks for sharing your experience of printing your photo books. We will certainly look into and test and soon and add them to our list.

  8. Hello,
    Just getting started. Am I required to download Blurb’s BookWright program in order to create a book? As far as I know, Mixbook and the others don’t require this. Am I mistaken? Thank you.

    1. photoworkout author

      Yes, you are right. You have to download the bookwright software at Mixbook doesn’t require that. That way, Mixbook is a better (easier) option.
      We are about to publish a detailed Mixbook review soon.

  9. I live in the Netherlands, and it’s no problem ordering a Blurb-book here. Since 2007 they print and ship in the Netherlands to accomodate the European market.

      1. photoworkout author

        P.S. We just updated the comparison table and changed international shipping at Blurb to: Yes. That was a mistake form our side and is now rectified.