by May 1, 2005 0 comments



This offering comes for free; but you have to register to get an unlock code from them for unlimited use. Photoshop Album, like others, finds, organizes and helps in sharing your images effortlessly. It has an innovative way of finding files on your computer, where you can specify the locations and minimum file size to be scanned and arranged. After that it catalogues all the files found,then it also displays the media files that did not match your search parameters, which you can choose to organize or simply ignore. You can add images into your album(s) with the choice of importing them from your camera, card reader, scanner or local disk(s). Moving the ‘slider’ on the ‘bar graph’ toolbar lets you browse through images stored and catalogued according to their stored month and year. On the bottom right-hand corner there are buttons for you to choose the type of view you would want to have: small, medium or large thumbnails or single pictures. There are not many image processing options available in this version. 

Photoshop Album’s Quick start guide helps you to perform various functions 

Google Picasa 2.0

Google proved its mettle in search engineering in Picasa too, and we found it to be the best free photo-management utility. Once you have installed this, it gives you the option to scan specific folders for pictures, or the entire system. We were amazed after it was through with the search; it seemed to have scanned the computer to the deepest core. Files that we didn’t know existed and files long forgotten were found and catalogued in a very organized manner. Picasa works with all the major images and video file formats and is compatible with all popular digital cameras. Editing and Effects tools included like Sepia, Shadows and highlights and Image Temperature work incredibly well. What we liked the most was its capability to undo in multiple levels. Picasa can e-mail your files, after considerable compression and resizing without much quality loss, using your Gmail account, with any third-party e-mail client. The timeline view of images is very impressive and Picasa allows you to burn a CD with your albums in the same interface. The only problem we found with this software is its lack of support for handheld devices. 

Select files and create collages at the click of a button

IrfanView 3.92
IrfanView besides being free is quite small in size, a mere 856.5K. Its installation does not make any changes in the Windows registry, unless initiated by the user. It supports a plethora of different digital media file formats, as compared to other packages featured and has freely downloadable plug-ins available on its website to support those which are not supported by default. For organizing your files it has features such as thumbnail viewing, unfortunately it does not have auto cataloging capabilities, so you have to know the locations of your files. We tried out its batch-processing feature and found it to be pretty handy; it has many more options than Picasa. IrfanView also has many basic image editing, effects and retouching capabilities on the fly. 

IrfanView’s batch conversion allows many advanced options that can be set for all images

With its TWAIN support you can acquire and batch scan images from various sources. The support for Photoshop filters and Multiple TIF editing proves the software’s worth. Although it’s far from being labeled as the complete photo ‘management’ software it’s a very convenient software to manage your digital media files. 

Performance Results

Software

Pricing Pros Cons Rating
ACDSee $49.99 Flexible,
Advanced Device Detector, Reasonable price
Memory
hogging
4.5 / 5
Adobe
Photoshop Photo Album SE
Free Image editing
capabilities
Quality loss 4.5 / 5
Google
Picasa
Free Cataloguing,
Special features
Not enough image
editing capabilities
4.0 / 5
IrfanView Free File formats
supported, Plugins available
Cataloguing not
available
3.5 / 5
iView
MediaPro
$119.00 Cataloguing,
Manages various digital-media
Price is a bit
high
5.0 / 5
Jasc
Paintshop Photo Album
$45.00 Export options,
Image editing capabilities
Lesser format
support
4.0 / 5
Compupic
Pro
$99.00 Image thumbnail
indexing
No cataloguing,
Price is too high for what it offers
3.0 / 5
Ulead
Photo Explorer
$29.95 Device support,
Export options
No cataloguing 3.0 / 5

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