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Last post Author Topic: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors  (Read 9801 times)

Target

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software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« on: September 16, 2013, 07:38:13 PM »
looking for recommendations for something to replace a corel paint shop pro (x2) install that has worn out it's welcome

On our W7x32 laptop it's hijacked most (all?) of the admin tools (ie control panel, devices and printers, etc) which has raised my ire so it's gotta go >:(

This is my wifes machine and she's a very light (basic!!) user, mostly minor retouching of photos or scans, so photoshop is probably overkill (not to mention that I probably couldn't afford a copy even if I could justify it).

This really isn't a software genre that particularly interests me so while I'm aware of the major candidates, I have no idea about their relative merits...

what say you?

4wd

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2013, 08:53:20 PM »
My most used photo editor is the free version of Photofiltre.

http://www.photofilt...tudio.com/pf7-en.htm

Version 7 adds layers or there's version 6 if you don't need them - it's also portable and not as resource intensive as some others

Runs on my old netbook quite well.

Renegade

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2013, 09:14:50 PM »
The GIMP is likely too much for your wife considering what you wrote above (though once you learn, it's worth it). Perhaps Paint.NET? It's easier, but still quite powerful.

You might want to look at the viewer market though. A lot of viewers have very simple and easy to use tools for quick retouching. e.g. Faststone, ALSee, etc.

Also, depending on your camera, some come with software packages for retouching photos, especially those that shoot RAW/NEF.
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Target

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2013, 09:48:02 PM »
The GIMP is likely too much for your wife considering what you wrote above (though once you learn, it's worth it). Perhaps Paint.NET? It's easier, but still quite powerful.

that was (is?) certainly a consideration, mostly because I'm expected to provide training and support!!

Quote
You might want to look at the viewer market though. A lot of viewers have very simple and easy to use tools for quick retouching. e.g. Faststone, ALSee, etc.

yep, been a long time user of FastStone, and she does use it a lot for exactly that reason :Thmbsup:

Quote
Also, depending on your camera, some come with software packages for retouching photos, especially those that shoot RAW/NEF.

sadly our camera's don't do anything in the raw - that said, I probably should at least look at the supplied software :-[.  I've never felt that the software supplied with camera's, scanners, etc was very good.  YMMV, but my experience hasn't been particularly inspiring

Renegade

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2013, 10:12:12 PM »
sadly our camera's don't do anything in the raw - that said, I probably should at least look at the supplied software :-[.  I've never felt that the software supplied with camera's, scanners, etc was very good.  YMMV, but my experience hasn't been particularly inspiring

Hehehe! I didn't say anything about good! ;D But usually it's pretty easy and simple. What I have found useful on at least one occasion in the past is the adjustment software for NEF files.

But some cameras do have simple editing software. It's usually the kind of thing that takes an afternoon to write, then several months of creating an over-blown and ugly front end. :D But, they're simple, which is what some people want.

Anyways, good luck in finding decent replacements. (I'd likely go for The GIMP and a viewer - but that's just me.)
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

rsatrioadi

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2013, 11:19:13 PM »
No one mentioned Photoscape yet? It's a freeware mainly for fixing & enhancing photos instead of painting/editing, so it is richer in tools for color adjustment, back light correction, red eye removal etc rather than 'micro' tools like paint brushes etc. This is probably what you need.

Here's the feature list from the website:
  • Viewer: View photos in your folder, create a slideshow
  • Editor: resizing, brightness and color adjustment, white balance, backlight correction, frames, balloons, mosaic mode, adding text, drawing pictures, cropping, filters, red eye removal, blooming, paint brush, clone stamp, effect brush
  • Batch editor: Batch edit multiple photos
  • Page: Merge multiple photos on the page frame to create one final photo
  • Combine: Attach multiple photos vertically or horizontally to create one final photo
  • Animated GIF: Use multiple photos to create a final animated photo
  • Print: Print portrait shots, carte de visites(CDV), passport photos
  • Splitter: Slice a photo into several pieces
  • Screen Capture: Capture your screenshot and save it
  • Color Picker: Zoom in on images, search and pick a color
  • Rename: Change photo file names in batch mode
  • Raw Converter: Convert RAW to JPG
  • Paper Print: Print lined, graph, music and calendar paper
  • Face Search: Find similar faces on the Internet

Hope this helps. :D

Target

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2013, 11:55:59 PM »
No one mentioned Photoscape yet? It's a freeware mainly for fixing & enhancing photos instead of painting/editing, so it is richer in tools for color adjustment, back light correction, red eye removal etc rather than 'micro' tools like paint brushes etc. This is probably what you need.

another contender, but just to throw the cat amongst the pigeons, how is it better than (for arguments sake) a 'viewer' that has many of the same features?

tomos

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2013, 03:20:35 AM »
^I suspect that's answered already here:
=
it is richer in tools for color adjustment, back light correction, red eye removal etc rather than 'micro' tools like paint brushes etc.

I'm not really familiar with many editors.
Paid:
Sagelight - is currently good and has great potential. Mouse orientated (so far). Some interface aspects confusing - initially at least (but I see I'm running 4.2g beta and it's now at 4.4)
Helicon Filter - relatively sophisticated yet easy to use. (Disclaimer: haven't tried it in a couple of years.) License is unclear - looks like it wont work if you dont pay each year :down:)
Tom

tomos

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2013, 04:03:02 AM »
other thoughts:

RAW is only for pros or people with a lot of time on their hands imo.

Will you ever want to open a photoshop file (.psd) - if so, that may limit your options a bit (Photoscape doesnt do psd files, dont know off-hand about the others).

To me, a very important part of an image editor is noise reduction, e.g. you're trying to improve an image taken in very low light with a compact camera. I'm afraid I cant make a recommendation there,** maybe someone else will (?)


** Sagelight probably good for noise - but I must update. IIRC he called it something else, which meant that as an occasional user, I often didnt find it :-[
Tom

rjbull

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2013, 04:36:59 PM »
photoshop is probably overkill (not to mention that I probably couldn't afford a copy
Photoshop Elements?  Though for your suggested uses, even that might be overkill.  If you get to see NPhoto magazine (independent Nikon magazine), their Issue 23, Aug. 2013, has a round-up of Photoshop CC, Elements 11, Lightroom 5, Nikon Capture NX2, DxO Optics Pro 8, Phase One CaptureOne Pro 7, Serif Photoplus X6, and Paintshop Pro X5, not all of which seem strictly comparable.  There's also Google's freeware Picasa, though some people don't like the way it tries to own all your photos, and by the looks of things, recent versions try hard to shepherd you into Google+ sharing.

Darwin

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2013, 04:48:09 PM »
^I suspect that's answered already here:
=
it is richer in tools for color adjustment, back light correction, red eye removal etc rather than 'micro' tools like paint brushes etc.

I'm not really familiar with many editors.
Paid:
Sagelight - is currently good and has great potential. Mouse orientated (so far). Some interface aspects confusing - initially at least (but I see I'm running 4.2g beta and it's now at 4.4)
Helicon Filter - relatively sophisticated yet easy to use. (Disclaimer: haven't tried it in a couple of years.) License is unclear - looks like it wont work if you dont pay each year :down:)

I have licenses for both - don't really use either much. FWIW, Helicon Filter is working just fine (latest version/latest build) and I bought my license two or three years ago... But then, I think I got a deal on a lifetime license. Really can't remember...
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

PhilB66

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2013, 12:56:25 AM »
Check out XnConvert

panzer

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tomos

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2013, 04:35:19 AM »
http://www.techsuppo...tal-image-editor.htm

the winner of the basic class is a free/limited version of Sagelight editor.

Paint.net gets best of in the middle class. Must have a look at it.


I *think* Photofiltre can use Photoshop plugins FWIW
Tom

4wd

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2013, 06:13:16 AM »
I *think* Photofiltre can use Photoshop plugins FWIW

Not in the free versions, only Photofiltre Studio has 8BF support.

There are however a number of Photofiltre native plugins that will work with the free or paid versions.

AbteriX

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2013, 12:58:57 PM »
Some ideas, maybe from use for someone...

I doesn't have much use for a graphic editor this days.
Only a little bit cropping, color and brightness adjustment, drawing a arrow, little rotation and like that.

So I searched for free and portable lightweight apps and found this recently:
Hornil StylePix - Free Photo Editor
PixBuilder Studio - Free photo editing software - WnSoft

In the past I used Photofiltre too to create the graphic pack for SC.
Also from time to time I use pay ware PhotoLine (there was a giveaway on german c't magazin years ago. Still have too less use for it to buy a newer version)
And then I have bought some cheap older PhotoImpact from the electric bay. But often I just use a "patched" trial of version 8 (2002?) because it's small and all I need.

As viewer I use Irfan View every day since years. (reminder to me: check last donation time)

.

rjbull

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2013, 03:04:31 PM »
Or one of Serif's offerings?

xtabber

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2013, 09:13:14 PM »
I can recommend Paint.NET

 I also used Paint Shop Pro for many years but gave up on it after Corel bought it and made a DRM nightmare out of it.   I don't do much photo editing, but I do need to do some basic things every so often.  Paint.NET had the right mix of serious capabilities and ease of use for my purposes, and it is free.

Curt

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2013, 02:02:29 AM »
This is my wifes machine and she's a very light (basic!!) user, mostly minor retouching of photos or scans, ...

The two easiest to use of the able ones are PhotoScape and PhotoFiltre Studio X Pro. There is no marker / selection tool in PhotoScape => it will only alter the entire picture - which is why I also use PhotoFiltre, so I can edit the details. Except for "amplify colours" (which is amplifying too strongly), I am very satisfied with these two editors.

-------------
During installation of PhotoScape you should not click the first "I agree", but "Options", otherwise you will usually get some 3'rd party program.

PhotoScape is Korean, PhotoFiltre is French.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2013, 02:14:46 AM by Curt, Reason: quote »

oblivion

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2013, 02:07:00 AM »
Coming late to this thread -- blame mouser for highlighting it in the newsletter :)

I've used a few graphics / photo editors over the years.

For all the proponents of The Gimp, it's always looked to me like the learning curve is way too steep. I have a copy but I've never used it for anything serious.

Sagelight -- the paid version -- is brilliant for photo work. The noise reduction and one-shot HDR functionality components are very new and have become indispensable to me already.

I like Xara Photo & Graphic Designer for object removal but it's a vector tool with photo capabilities added in later and again the learning curve is fairly hefty. And it's quite expensive. But it has a big and committed userbase and the fact that it combines vector and photo capabilities in one package may be a plus.

Serif PhotoPlus: I've had various versions of this for ages and still use it -- particularly if I want to add text or do object extraction, layer-based manipulation or, well, anything that's about changing the content of a picture rather than just tweaking it for whole-image improvements. It's a good companion to Sagelight but they definitely complement each other.

The various free tools mentioned in this thread: there are good points to all of them but -- with the possible exception of The Gimp -- I'm not sure any of them really delivers on all the functionality you're likely to want. Sorry -- I think you may have to spend money.
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elvisbrown

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #20 on: December 10, 2013, 02:55:36 AM »
Fotor is well worth a look, it does sophisticated things really easily, perfect for someone who knows what they want but don't want to get bogged down in menus.

http://www.fotor.com/windows/index.html

Also available on other platforms.

I use this in conjunction with PSP X2 which behaves itself on my Win7 machine, probably because it is a portable version :-)
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rjbull

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #21 on: December 10, 2013, 04:03:10 PM »
PixBuilder Studio - Free photo editing software - WnSoft
I haven't tried their products, but their flagship is the well-respected PicturesToExe slideshow program, so I'd expect Pixbuilder Studio to be as good as any freeware.

Ampa

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2013, 09:27:11 AM »
Personally I use Xara Designer for almost all graphic / photo tasks.

LifeHacker are currently running a "what is the best Photoshop replacement" thread, which may throw up some interesting suggestions.

cranioscopical

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2013, 09:45:02 AM »
You could take a look at Real-World Paint.
The author is responsive here, at DC, and otherwise.
Or, why not save a lot of trouble and keep the lens cap in place?


Target

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Re: software recommendations - photo/graphics editors
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2013, 05:01:35 PM »
Quote
Or, why not save a lot of trouble and keep the lens cap in place?

ever tried to put a cap on your wife?

safe to say the result will probably be a negative...