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Recomendations please

Discussion in 'Digital Image Editing & Printing' started by Charles2016, Aug 9, 2018.

  1. Charles2016

    Charles2016 Member

    Hi guys,

    Any recommendations for editing software. Firstly I won't pay monthly for any type of software, so that rules out a few. I've got Corel Photo Paint x7 but it's very clunky. I've currently got a trial of Luminar2018 which looks good but is incredibly slow, to the point of being unusable, and usually locks up when I try to export an image. The Lightroom trial, which I'm not going to get, is fast, so I don't think its a problem with my Laptop.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    There are several free ones that others will recommend but I use FastStone and am very pleased. It's a free download , it doesn't do layers but seems to cover the rest extremely well
  3. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Depends on what kind of editing you want to do. It is semantic whether you want to pay "monthly" or in chunks as new versions come out. I am using LR 6.14 which was the old standalone version. I haven't any particular objection to paying monthly but I don't need photoshop and the subscription price for LR + PS is more than double the cost of LR alone, even if cheaper than standalone PS.

    I have an On1 2018 subscription - it does a lot of what LR and PS do plus has a cataloguing function that is for me the deciding factor with LR. I'm only testing it so that, if I have to dump LR I have something to go to. The direct printing is not quite up to LR ease of use.

    Capture One is expensive but very good.

    AP reviewed Affinity which is low cost alternative to PS

    GIMP is free and another PS alternative for processing JPGs and Tiffs. I haven't tried the connectivity for Raw processing.
  4. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    Photoshop Elements is still a one off purchase and has more than enough control for purposes though it lacks some of the more advanced features of the professional version. If it has a weakness it's that the Raw conversion element has very limited functionality by comparison and, IMO, is badly in need of an upgrade.

    I recently trialled Affinity and quite liked it. In many ways it's what Elements ought to be as it has a very effective raw converter, can do HDR, focus stacking and panoramas and has features more akin to full Photoshop than Elements. Possibly not as slick in operation as PS but I didn't find it clunky - although I'm rather more used to running full PS on an XP machine so anything on Windows 10/64bit seems fast to me...:D

    I have used GIMP in the distant past which as Pete says has the advantage of being free. I found it versatile but not as well integrated as PS - still that's to be expected with open source software. I haven't tried the latest version but it might be worth a shot since it costs nowt.

    I do use FastStone fairly regularly. It's quite useful and can handle most raw files though it lacks the more subtle controls available even in PS Elements. It's a good basic editor and if it had layers and masks or some form of localised adjustment option it would be very good indeed.

    You may come across a Raw converter called RawTherapee. In terms of it's output the results are very good but I found the current version seems more like it's written by computer geeks for computer geeks rather than photographers - certainly not as user freindly as earlier versions. It should also be noted that it's almost entirely a raw converter, for things like cropping and cloning you'd really need an editor like Elements or GIMP as well.
  5. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    If you want Lightroom 5 without the monthly subscription, I've got it on CD will all packaging, purchased for £99 in 2014 after a rave review in AP. I installed it, tried it for a while and didn't like the way it wanted to take over all my picture folders. I returned to Photoshop Elements 7 which does everything I want (and appears much easier to use than Lightroom 5), and uninstalled Lightroom 5 from my PC. I'm open to offers for the CD and packaging.

    Lightroom appears to be aimed at users who want the software to catalogue all their pictures, and allow the same edit to be applied to more than 1 image (to correct a thousand shots taken in daylight with the camera's colour temperature for JPG output set to 'tungsten', for example). Whereas all I want to do is open a selected RAW file with the software and work on it, which Photoshop Elements does.

    And, the more you can get right 'in camera', the less work will be needed with editing software later. So, with enough care taken when you take the picture, you may not need the latest state-of-the-art complex software to work on it later.

    I am running Photoshop Elements 7 on a Windows 10 PC without problems, so you can buy and older version if you can find it. But a word of warning - unless your camera body can output Adobe-format DNG RAW files (mine can), you may find a problem opening RAW files from your camera with an older version of this software. Perhaps the Adobe website may help clarify this.
  6. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I went through LR 4,5 and 6. LR 6 added local adjustments which transform it really but I don't know if you can still get it on CD, I got it through the Adobe on-line store although it took an awful lot of finding. Not sure if it is still there.

    The free DNG converter is kept up-to-date for the moment so that you can continue to use LR or PS even if your camera is no-longer supported.
  7. CMitch

    CMitch Member

    I use Lightroom 6 which does nearly everything I need, but I have an old copy of Elements if I ever want to 'manipulate' a picture. I suppose the choice depends on what you want to do with your pictures and how much you want to spend. GIMP is free and will do almost everything that Photoshop does but I found just too complicated to use. Elements is pretty comprehensive also but I think is only subscription nowadays. Lightroom is more reasonable and can be purchased, but the purchased version omits some of the features of the subscription version. I wanted the de-haze function but it's not there so I ended up buying DxO which cleans up landscapes beautifully. It also has a truly excellent automatic correction for Lens/Camera combinations which seems to work better than Lightroom.
    It's all horses for courses I suppose and the depth of your pocket. But there are often free trials available which are worthwhile having a play with when you have a few spare months!

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