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Last post Author Topic: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review  (Read 18138 times)

jgpaiva

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FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
« on: January 31, 2008, 06:37:47 PM »
    Basic Info

    App NameFastStone MaxView
    App URLhttp://www.faststone.../FSMaxViewDetail.htm
    App Version ReviewedV. 2.1
    Test System SpecsLaptop Acer 1690: centrino m 2.0ghz, 1gb ddr2, win XP Pro SP2
    Supported OSesWindows 98SE, ME, NT, 2000, XP, Vista
    Pricing SchemeDonationware :)
    Author Donation linkDonate to the autor of MaxView
    Reviewer Donation LinkDonate to jgpaiva, the Author
    Relationship btwn. Reviewer and Product None. Just a happy user!


    Intro:

    This is just the simplest image view ever.


    Screenshot-08_02_01,00_20_32.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review


    Who is this app designed for:

    This app is intended for anyone who has lots of photos, and is looking for a application better suited then the default windows image viewer.

    The Good


    • Fast: It come up as fast as the default windows viewer (which uses already-loaded windows stuff, AFAIK)
    • Good shortcuts: What's better than one-key shortcuts?
            enter or f for "toggle full-screen",
            e to edit with external program (like paint.net)
            l or r to rotate left/right,
            etc....
      Screenshot-08_02_01,00_21_32.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    • exif support!! It reads the exif and rotates the image accordingly. It also displays all exif information
      Screenshot-08_02_01,00_22_01.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    • Borderless/captionless window: nothing simpler, all i want to see when i open an image is the image itself, i don't care for anything else. It can also open the image on fullscreen by default.

    • Smart edges when on fullscreen: if you move the cursor to the top edge, the menu comes up. If you move it to the right edge, exif information comes up. If you move to the bottom edge, the taskbar is shown! How many times have you pressed the windows key to check if someone said something on msn while you were watching a slideshow?

    • Zoom on mouse click: similar to XYplorer's "Mouse Down Blow Up", while you keep the mouse button down, the image zooms to 2x (that's the default, can be changed), and returns the original size on button release.

    • Resize to predefined/custom sizes: press ctrl-r and a dialog comes up. (actually i just found about this :P)
      Screenshot-08_02_01,00_22_47.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    • The slideshow features: customizable time, fade effects, and pause/play on mouse click! (how useful is that? ;) )
      Screenshot-08_02_01,00_23_18.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    • There are other interesting features i didn't mention because i don't use that much:
      • Email the image
      • Zoom on parts of the image (ctrl+drag on image)
      • Simple editor (highlight parts, write text, watermark, etc..)
      • Image smoothing.. ETC!


    The needs improvement section
    • The thing that most annoys me in maxview is the fact that it doesn't precache the images, which makes it be a bit slower than it could be. (not that it's very noticeable, though). edit: actually, i just compared it with windows image preview, and it isn't slower.. I possibly was sleepy when i came to this conclusion before :)

    • I also don't like the fact that there isn't an option to allow dragging on image instead of zoom when on windowed mode. (this makes me zoom in the image instead of moving it, every time i try to drag the window) Edit: This feature exists and works great! You only have to drag with the right mouse button!

    • Even though the email feature is really neat, there doesn't seem to be any option to set an external email program, and it doesn't use the system default, only uses outlook, which makes this feature unnusable for us software junkies :) edit: it uses the system default setting, see Perry's post below!


    Why I think you should use this product
    Well... If you're still using Windows picture and fax viewer, you DEFINITELY should at least try this, it's a huge improvement and you'll never go back :P


    How does it compare to similar apps
    OK, I've already compared to windows picture and fax viewer, I'll just make a small comparison with irfanview.
    DISCLAIMER: i haven't used irfanview in a while, thus, i might be out of date/forgotten about my comments. If so, please correct me below.
    I'm almost sure irfanview was slower, and had a bunch of features i didn't really need (like the picture browser and alike). Also, it missed THE most important feature: rotate on exif information.


    Conclusions

    I surely recommend this utility, it has made a huge difference in the way i visualize images, and i don't need to manually rotate pictures anymore! :D
    I think it's really well-though, every small detail needed in a image viewer is present, making it a joy to use.
    It's just simple, complete and freeware, you can't go wrong with that combination!

    Just a few more screenshots:
    Screenshot-08_02_01,00_24_40.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-ReviewScreenshot-08_02_01,00_25_16.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-ReviewScreenshot-08_02_01,13_35_04.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    PS: i'll add the images in a bit Done![/list]
    « Last Edit: February 01, 2008, 07:36:10 AM by jgpaiva »

    zridling

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #1 on: January 31, 2008, 09:07:28 PM »
    Thanks jgpaiva. I gave up VuePrint (which does gallery views) for MaxView a couple of years ago and haven't looked back. I just use it to look at pics. And when I want gallery views, I flip back over to ACDSee or XnView. Well worth a donation to the author. I love how it gives snapshot info at the top if you like, and in more detail when you move your cursor to its right border.

    maxview0899a.jpg
    « Last Edit: January 31, 2008, 09:10:12 PM by zridling »

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #2 on: February 01, 2008, 02:52:24 AM »
    Thanks for calling my attention to the fact that maxview is donationware and not freeware! I wonder how i missed see the "donate" button!

    ThalSwe

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #3 on: February 01, 2008, 05:24:07 AM »
    Been using this program for a while now and really like it. Suits my minimalistic taste without removing the functionality.  :up: Definatly worth recommending.

    techidave

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #4 on: February 01, 2008, 05:59:10 AM »
    I just downloaded this program.  It is much faster than the windows default viewer.  Is there anyway that I setup Thunderbird as my mail client instead of Outlook?  The software defaults to Outlook and I added Thunderbird as an external program but that didn't help either.

    Any ideas?
    Dave

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #5 on: February 01, 2008, 06:09:09 AM »
    Hey techidave!

    About outlook vs thunderbird, i suppose not, unfortunatelly :(
    I just tested, and apparently it even ignores the windows default setting for email program. It's a shame, because that email feature is really nice (i had never used it :) ).

    PS: the external programs are only external programs for image editing, anything you add in that tab appears in the "edit with external programs" menu, and the first one on the list is triggered on e press.

    techidave

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #6 on: February 01, 2008, 06:16:39 AM »
    I kind of thought that is what the external programs were for but thought I would give it a shot anyway.  Oh well.

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #7 on: February 01, 2008, 06:25:06 AM »
    Yeah, this really is a bad point about the app. I shall add it above on the mini-review :)

    And i'll send the developer a mail!

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #8 on: February 01, 2008, 06:32:49 AM »
    And i'll send the developer a mail!

    Maybe we all should send an email (as a more realistic indication of the functions support)  :D

    doctorfrog

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #9 on: February 01, 2008, 06:35:26 AM »
    Hey this is very nice, I did not know about this software. IrfanView has been getting pretty cluttered over the years, plus the addition of an adware bar in a recent install package has soured the deal further. This is an excellent viewer that retains the ability to flip over to IrfanView or Picasa for when I want to do some more in-depth image mangling. Thanks for the recommend!

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #10 on: February 01, 2008, 06:37:08 AM »
    Maybe we all should send an email (as a more realistic indication of the functions support)  :D
    ;D I already sent mine, and pointed the developer to this thread.
    Let's not annoy him to death (or he might get mad at us and not implement it :P), but get the max people to post here supporting his software instead!

    I'll bet you that this approach will get a better result (not to say about the warm feeling inside for the developer ;) )

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #11 on: February 01, 2008, 06:40:55 AM »
    Hey doctorfrog!

    I didn't know about irfanview's add of an adware bar. I guess that's yet another positive point for MaxView :D

    Actually, There's something i forgot to mention (becaus i haven't really used it in depth), but MaxView also has its own simple editor, which allows you to add highlights, text, freelines and watermarks to images. And the highlights look really really nice!! :D

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #12 on: February 01, 2008, 06:55:00 AM »
    Maybe we all should send an email (as a more realistic indication of the functions support)  :D
    ;D I already sent mine, and pointed the developer to this thread.
    Let's not annoy him to death (or he might get mad at us and not implement it :P), but get the max people to post here supporting his software instead!

    I'll bet you that this approach will get a better result (not to say about the warm feeling inside for the developer ;) )

    You could be right: I guess it depends on how the developer deals with bugs/requests. I would have thought that a new email about an issue was an indication of the level of need. But I'd hate to annoy him to death...

    BTW: My version emails out of Thunderbird just fine
      :-\ ... so I didn't send my email anyway  :D

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #13 on: February 01, 2008, 07:01:50 AM »
    BTW: My version emails out of Thunderbird just fine[/b]  :-\ ... so I didn't send my email anyway  :D
    Now that's strange... I have opera set as defaul email handler and MaxView still opens in outlook express.
    It could be some error on my end, then.

    tomos

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #14 on: February 01, 2008, 07:07:54 AM »
    Thanks for the review jgpaiva !! :up:

    I been using Imagine very briefly lately. as reported by Lanux

    this came up in gHacks recently: Imagine. looks good but haven't tried it yet..

    what I miss straight away in Faststone (compared to imagine) is that it wont go from last file in folder back to first ("Jump to the first file?" box pops up)
    also miss the modifiable shortcuts..
    but I'm finding Imagine either a bit buggy or else it has very strange defaults with regard to zoom - havent looked into it enough yet
    [edit - what gets me most about imagine is no pan :tellme: you hae to use arrows - edit]

    Faststone does give a lovely full view of images - no messing around with windows etc!
    so think I'll try it a bit :)

    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image
    e.g. in adobe and other graphics products:
    -
    Ctrl+Spacebar and click/drag to select area to zoom into - add alt for zoom out
    Spacebar for pan -
    (mind you thats all a bit broken in Acrobat 8 - changing from zoom to pan doesnt work properly)
    Tom
    « Last Edit: February 01, 2008, 07:11:28 AM by tomos »

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #15 on: February 01, 2008, 07:12:32 AM »
    I just downloaded this program.  It is much faster than the windows default viewer.  Is there anyway that I setup Thunderbird as my mail client instead of Outlook?  The software defaults to Outlook and I added Thunderbird as an external program but that didn't help either.

    Probably a dumb question, but you have set up the default email client correctly? The following works for me...
    Screenshot - 2_02_2008 , 12_05_02 AM.png

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #16 on: February 01, 2008, 07:24:39 AM »
    Probably a dumb question, but you have set up the default email client correctly? The following works for me...
    I feel dumb... You're right, that works. (unfortunatelly, opera won't accept it, though, but no problem :)).

    Ok, so i just found out another interesting thing!
    I mentioned about moving the image when out of full-screen: that can be done with right-button drag! smart :D

    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image
    Oh, but MaxView won't let you down on that! Try pressing ctrl and dragging with left button! :D

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #17 on: February 01, 2008, 07:34:50 AM »
    what I miss straight away in Faststone (compared to imagine) is that it wont go from last file in folder back to first ("Jump to the first file?" box pops up)

    Hmmm: I don't get that happening? I can keep scrolling through all the folder's images continuously going from last back to first, etc.

    Try the "Repeat Continuously" toggle. I couldn't find any documentation, but that seems to do the trick:

    Screenshot - 2_02_2008 , 12_36_51 AM.pngFastStone MaxView Mini-Review

    also miss the modifiable shortcuts..

    I agree! In this day and age, it all should be configurable...

    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image

    IrfanView zooms like this and it is very handy to get to a particular spot at a high zoom quickly.

    I like the pan in MaxView though...
    « Last Edit: February 01, 2008, 07:37:51 AM by Perry Mowbray »

    tomos

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #18 on: February 01, 2008, 07:41:48 AM »
    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image
    Oh, but MaxView won't let you down on that! Try pressing ctrl and dragging with left button! :D
    ahhgh SUPER!! -I'm sold! :-*

    and
    @Perry, repeat continuously works nicely :Thmbsup: -
    I did like the warning in imagine but can imagine that [in imagine ;D] getting annoying too
    Tom

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #19 on: February 01, 2008, 07:46:35 AM »
    I feel dumb... You're right, that works. (unfortunatelly, opera won't accept it, though, but no problem :)).

     :-[ No, I meant my question was probably dumb... but glad it works. [Opera won't work with a standard OS setting??]

    Ok, so i just found out another interesting thing!
    I mentioned about moving the image when out of full-screen: that can be done with right-button drag! smart :D

     :up: I just accidentally found that too  :D
    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image
    Oh, but MaxView won't let you down on that! Try pressing ctrl and dragging with left button! :D

    Great  :Thmbsup: Thanks! I read it on the website, but it didn't seem to be working (don't ask me, it's OK now)..

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #20 on: February 01, 2008, 07:52:48 AM »
    @Perry, repeat continuously works nicely :Thmbsup: -
    I did like the warning in imagine but can imagine that [in imagine ;D] getting annoying too

    I'd think (I resisted the temptation   ;) ) that you can define that behaviour. You can in irfanView.

    jgpaiva

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #21 on: February 01, 2008, 08:07:54 AM »
    [Opera won't work with a standard OS setting??]
    Opera does work with the regular mailto: links, the problem is with the image, from what i understand, it doesn't allow you to create an email with an attachment with that method.

    Perry Mowbray

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #22 on: February 01, 2008, 09:01:31 AM »
    I also love the Roll-up / Roll-down as standard option in the window  :-*

    techidave

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #23 on: February 01, 2008, 10:12:28 PM »
    Today must be my day for senior moments.   :-[

    Perry, I checked my default email client and it was set to Outlook.  I changed it and it works like a champ!

    urlwolf

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    Re: FastStone MaxView Mini-Review
    « Reply #24 on: February 01, 2008, 11:10:10 PM »
    what I miss in most viewers is the option to zoom into a selected area of image
    Oh, but MaxView won't let you down on that! Try pressing ctrl and dragging with left button! :D
    ahhgh SUPER!! -I'm sold! :-*

    ^^ But Irfanview does that too...