Anyone who has a digital camera will know there is no shortage of editing software on the market. Even if you buy an entry-level camera you are likely to get basic editing tools. In recent times we’ve been split between Corel Paintshop Pro, which is simple, powerful and easy to use, and ACDSee’s own basic photo-editor, largely due to it being free and it’s basic array of tools. However, depending on your skills and needs, the price of more effective software can range from £50 to several hundred pounds.
On the face of it, Photo Editor doesn’t offer anything new but it’s easy to install and the mass of tutorials really help you get to grips with how easy it is to do more than simply colour-correct images. In fact, the main benefit of Photo Editor is the flexibility of these How Tos, allowing you to get to grips with editing without too much pre-knowledge.
As it’s aimed at the home user, you’ll find that many of the tools are based around projects. There are three types of project: the Basics, Photo Fix, and Creative Ease. So, you can quickly put together things like greeting cards, scrapbooks and even calendars without too much effort on your part, which is great for kids especially. Taking this "child friendly" aspect to its logical end, there is even a cookie cutter tool, which allows you to cut and crop images into different letters and shapes for inclusion in your projects. While not necessarily innovative, it’s fun and easy to use.
For the more experience user, you can take advantage of importing RAW files and editing down to other formats. With support for a wide range of formats, you can export edited images to other applications, including Microsoft Word as .png files are supported. You can either allow the auto-adjustment tool to walk you through a step-by-step guide or you can manually adjust as you go along. The Image Basket is a toolbar that shows you the changes you’ve made as you edited. So, of you need to go back a step, it’s easy to see where you’ve gone wrong.
For the most part, you’ll be using the fine adjustment tools, which allow you to correct colour balance, set sharpness levels and as with most other tools, you’ll find a preview tool, so you can see the changes before you actually carry them out. This all adds up to a simple and easy package.
If you have little or no experience at editing your images, then ACDSee Photo Editor is definitely the tool for you. It’s that good, we may even be giving Paint Shop Pro a miss in favour of this; it’s that simple and flexible to use and well worth the asking price.