Mimeo photo book: Two-minute review
If you find yourself overwhelmed by masses of different designs and product options, then you’ll likely enjoy the simplicity of Mimeo, one of the best photo books available in the US and UK.
The only options to choose from on the main website itself are between a hard and soft cover and the size of the book you want – this means that the design is only decided once you enter the website builder.
I much prefer this to other websites, which will often give you several different ‘entry-ways’ into the photo book builder (i.e. via the shape of the book, or via a particular design, etc.).
While Mimeo isn’t the cheapest option on the market, I found its base price of $32.99 / £25.99 for an 8 x 8” 20-page hardcover photo book to be very reasonable. Once I’d selected the type of book I wanted, I entered the photo book builder itself.
This is where I could choose from a relatively small selection of designs. While there were some nice contemporary designs, there were markedly less so than other sites – and many of the designs were a bit naff and old-fashioned.
One of the few frustrations I had with Mimeo is that you can only upload images from your desktop or Google Photos. This means that if you want to take photos from Dropbox, Facebook or Instagram then you’ll have to separately download the images before you can upload them into Mimeo. This annoyance was blessedly counterbalanced by one of my favourite photo book builder features – the ability to start creating a book while your photos are still uploading. Not only is this a massive time saver, I also found that the uploading process was markedly faster than other services I’d tested.
Mimeo’s process of putting together the photo book was much more enjoyable than other services. While it has the standard drag-and-drop feature, you were also able to select a frame and then select the photo for it. I also liked how easy it was to change a photo to spread across the entire page or double page spread – and back to its normal frame again.
While I couldn’t replicate this event across my other reviews, my computer unexpectedly restarted Google Chrome while I was working on my Mimeo photo book. Despite the fact that I hadn’t pressed the Save button myself, Mimeo had saved my progress so far and I didn’t have to replicate anything.
Once I’d finished building the book, I did initially struggle to find the Preview button, as it’s very small. However, I did find the Preview function useful once I eventually found the button. When I went to buy the book Mimeo gave me a helpful warning to double check the spelling and grammar of any text and the image quality of my photos. My minor quibble at this stage was that I discovered that the shipping cost was a whopping £8.99, which was higher than the other services I’d used.
The Mimeo photo book arrived in secure cardboard packaging and even had a plain dust jacket to protect the proper dust jacket. However, despite this obvious care, there was a little bit of scratchy roughness on the book’s dust jacket near the spine - I would guess that this was from the printing process. Other than this, I was very happy with the quality of the book. The printing was true to color and the binding looked great. Overall, I felt that Mimeo offered a good product at a good price.
Should you buy the Mimeo photo book?
Buy it if...
You like a simple design process
Mimeo offered the simplest design process out of all of the photo book services that I tested.
You want a reasonably priced product
While it’s not the cheapest, I found that Mimeo was very reasonably priced for its service.
You want a creator tool that’s easy to use
Out of the photo book services that I’ve tested, Mimeo’s creator tool was definitely the easiest to use.
Don't buy it if...
You want lots of stylish design options
While there are some nice design choices available, it’s definitely not Mimeo’s forte – try Mixbook or Snapfish for this instead.
You want to avoid high shipping costs
The delivery cost for an 8 x 8” photo book was extraordinarily high compared to other services.
You can’t upload photos from social media
This is probably my biggest quibble with Mimeo – you have to upload your photos from either your desktop or from Google Photos.
How I tested the Mimeo photo book
- I built a photo book on Mimeo’s website using my own photos
- I standardized the tests across different websites by choosing products at a similar price point with similar designs and features
I’ve tested a batch of different websites, including Mimeo, Mixbook, and more. To standardize this process where possible, I chose books that were at a similar price point as I wanted to test the value for money for the user. I also chose similar designs, shapes, and sizes where I could. I used my own photographs for each book, ensuring that I used the same ones for each book.
When I received the Mimeo photo book I made sure to compare it closely with the photo books from the other websites. I checked for image quality and any potential color variations. I also made sure that there was no damage or scuff marks on the cover or the individual pages of the book.
First reviewed May 2023