Picture Snob

April 1, 2008

Photo Software Series: Finding the Right Program

software.jpgAmazon does a great job categorizing the photo software options in a way that should help you choose what's right for you. We've narrowed things down a bit further to reflect the best quality brands and features. Do we all need to shell out $650 for Photoshop? No way, Bob. In fact, many free programs that come with operating systems, digital cameras, printers and scanners are plenty adequate for your average man, woman or chicken. It depends what you're looking to do -- organize, edit, create?

In PictureSnob's Photo Software Series, we're taking a look at a range of current photo software. Let us know your experiences and if there's another photo software that you'd like to recommend.
software_free.jpgThe Free Stuff
See what you've got already! Besides iPhoto and Picasa, you might have software that came with your camera, so take a look around. The focus of these programs is organization and sharing, the drawback is that after a certain number of images, they will get slow, slow sloooooow. Keep in mind that these type of programs do not have pixel integrity in mind when it comes to editing photos. If you plan on doing a lot of editing and you are concerned with keeping high and pure resolution of your photos, consider pro software.

iPhoto (Comes with Mac operating systems)
Remember that if you want to have the latest version of iPhoto you may need to purchase the iLife software suite, we're not sure how much you can automatically upgrade the software as part of your operating system. You can do everything mentioned for Picasa (below) and we like the total integration with Apple's print products (prints, books, calendars, etc.), iWeb software and .Mac interface. This allows for easy upload for sharing, printing and creating your own web site or print products. Apple is the professional favorite for color, design and quality. The .Mac web gallery is a cool feature coordinated with .Mac where you can create an online gallery where visitors can view and download photos as well as add their own. They've also introduced theme-based home printing, so you can add fun borders and text to your images and print them out at home.

Picasa (Free download from Google)

Windows XP only. A lot of folks are using this. The capabilities are similar to iPhoto in that it will locate and centralize your photos and allow you to group images into albums. You can also rate your photos, write captions and do basic editing like correct red eye, adjust contrast, convert to black & white. Picasa also facilitates emailing photos (especially easy with Gmail) and uploading photos to your web site or popular photo printing sites. There's no doubt, a lot of great features (if you don't mind contributing to the Googlepire).

Tune in tomorrow for Photo Software Series: Programs for Beginners & Kids.

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Posted by Susan Moriarty at April 1, 2008 7:32 AM
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