Customer Review

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This 'British Photoshop' makes for an excellent photo editor for pros and amateurs, 1 Nov 2010
This review is from: PhotoPlus X4 (PC) (CD-ROM)
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When it comes to photo editors there's simply a huge variety of applications on offer to the consumer, from free apps to the professional high end apps like Photoshop CS5. Serif PhotoPlus X4 sits in between these extremes, it's a medium-end photo editor that also includes some nice features found on some high-end applications.

If you're already familiar with photo editing applications like Photoshop then you'll be up and running with PhotoPlus X4 quite quickly as its interface is very PhotoShop-like. A big help for PhotoPlus newbies is the Welcome panel that appears when the application is first run. This help feature offers automated assistance for many tasks, as well further help via a set of "show me how" links. This help system is very comprehensive and provides an excellent way of overcoming PhotoPlus's learning curve.

Photo editing features are extensive and include some capabilities found in far more expensive photo editors. PhotoPlus has full support for layers and incorporates powerful adjustment layers, this is where a complex edit to a photo has its own separate layer, so reversing any kind alteration is very easy. Additionally, if you want quick results, there is an excellent filter gallery that has a large range of artistic effects. A feature I liked is the pixel grid, which allows you to zoom in at the pixel level and edit individual pixels.

Quick editing of photos is accommodated by the PhotoFix Studio, this has a group of functions that allows you to perform common jobs like cropping and red eye removal and other types of photo retouching. It also enables more complex lens issues to be corrected. Photos can also be joined together to create a panorama effect using the built-in panorama tool.

Another great feature is the Image Cutout Studio, which makes removing objects from a photo very easy and is very well implemented. Objects can be selected intelligently by PhotoPlus by dragging over a part of an image, or you can fine-tune the selections by hand.

Actual photo management is handled by the AlbumPlus Organizer. This allows for photos and videos to be imported, as well as raw camera files, though unfortunately photos cannot be tagged as they are imported. The AlbumPlus Organizer can also be used to easily create slideshows, calendars, greeting cards, etc., and photos can be directly uploaded into Facebook. Geotagging of photos is supported but there is no face recognition capability, which is a bit of a limitation.

PhotoPlus X4 is definitely a great all-round photo editor that is ideally suited for someone who wants to enhance their photo collection beyond red eye or blemish removal. Performance wise it's very quick and responsive and doesn't seem to consume huge amount of system resources like many of its competitors, and includes a comprehensive set of tools that allows for very complex photo manipulation. The more advanced features do require a bit of learning but the built-in help system is great and provides some excellent hand-holding for PhotoPlus's more sophisticated features. As a non-expensive medium-end photo manipulation application I definitely recommend this product.
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4.2 out of 5 stars (66 customer reviews)
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