Thursday, November 18, 2010

Photo manipulation software bleg

I use Photoshop Elements 3 for what photo manipulation I do. Mostly lighting changes, some color work, dodge and burn, vignetting and blurring, etc. It does everything I need such software to do.

On the other hand, it is cludgy in it's use of computer resources, and noted for horrendous crashes, which I have experienced many times. One such Titanic event had me reformatting a hard drive.

Now it's time to purchase new photo software for a new machine in the house.

What is out there that I should pay attention to? Please... something that costs less than a new Canon L lens.



Bob said...

Ever looked at Picnik? It's an online photo-editing service; it started out independent, is now owned by Google, but hasn't yet been folded into the Google website. The great advantage of it is that it is available with any computer, not just the one you purchase your software for. Of course, you'll have to investigate the features to see if it is suitable.

Bryn, North Wales, UK said...

Corel Paint Shop Pro X2, US$30.00 on

Yes, there are later (more expensive at $50.00) versions, but I find PSP x2 to be stable and not resource-hungry. It also does everything I want it to do re. basic photo editing.
Currently running happily on an old AMD FX55 with 2Gb RAM, WinXP-Pro.

Peter said...

Take a long, hard look at Picnik's terms of use before you adopt it. You're giving them a free, irrevocable license to use anything and everything you edit with their software. Typical clause, of course - most online services demand the right to use your private data for their own purposes.

Borepatch said...

I use The Gimp which is a free, open source Photoshop type application.

Downside: Like Photoshop, it has a steep learning curve, and takes rather a lot of resources.

Upside: Insanely powerful. And did I mention the "free" bit?

Freddyboomboom said...

Adobe Lightroom.

Looks like it can be had for $80 if you're a student, I'd imagine a similar discount for educators.

Or around $274 (priced at

Carteach0 said...


Do you use Lightroom? I'm considering it, but would like to ask a few questions of someone who already uses it.

og said...

I don't work at the level you do, of course, but I have been happy with, which is free, and seems to have many more tools than I have any idea how to use. I've used it quite a bit, and it doesn't seem hard to use for adjusting color, contrast, effects, etc. I've also never had it crash. I mostly like the fact that you can make mods on"layers" and then edit the individual layers.