104 RANGEFINDER SEPTEMBER 2014
Corel PaintShop Pro doesn’t always
get the props it deserves from pro
photographers, but updates in X6
may change that. Version X6 continues to be intuitive but offers a solid
range of features including some
notable updates with 64-bit support. An enhanced engine expands
options for creating actions, and
RAW support includes the ability to
manage and save IPTC data.
The software doesn’t have much
of a learning curve and offers several
quick and easy options for selecting
and removing objects, among them
Auto Selection, a Smart Selection
Brush to create masks, as well as
Smart Carver and Object Remover
for quickly eliminating unwanted
elements. Adding a new image to
a separate layer is drag-and-drop
simple, and Corel has added Athen-tech’s Perfectly Clear technology
for single-click corrections. This
Windows-only program is available
in Ultimate and Standard versions,
but the Ultimate is definitely the way
to go for advanced users.
Price: Standard, $80; Ultimate, $100
DXO OPTICS PRO 9. 5
This software application provides a
range of functionality but excels at
RAW processing and noise reduction.
Thanks to last year’s major update,
its PRIME noise reduction algorithm
provides an additional one-stop gain
over previous versions of the software. With an export system that
supports image processing on the fly,
there’s no downtime—you can start
working on another image while the
previous one is being processed.
Detail-oriented, Optics Pro provides access to an ever-increasing
data base of lens and camera modules for more accurate corrections.
It’s smart, too; when I first opened
an image shot with the NIKKOR 70-
200mm f/2.8 lens in the software,
a prompt appeared suggesting I
download the module for that particular lens.
The Standard version supports
compact, bridge and entry/mid-level
DSLRs, while the Elite version adds
high-end DSLRs to the mix. Upgrade
pricing is available.
Price: Standard, $169; Elite, $299
PHASE ONE CAPTURE
ONE PRO 7
Although best known for its RAW-processing capabilities, Capture One
Pro 7 has a wide range of image-editing features and tools that make it an
impressive software solution for pro
and semi-pro photographers. A solid
digital asset management system was
upgraded for version 7, but the older
Sessions feature is still available.
This application is photo-centric,
with almost all of the editing tools
you’ll find in Photoshop—levels,
curves, non-destructive editing and
layer masks—minus the extras that
photographers don’t need. There’s a
slight learning curve for beginners,
but Capture One is easily mastered
thanks to the software’s intuitive UI.
We also love its direct camera-to-software tethering that supports
a long list of brands and models.
Tethering is further enhanced by
Phase One’s iOS apps, Capture Pilot
and Capture Control, which allow for
remote viewing and capture control.
Price: $299 (multi-user, Express
versions also available); Capture Pilot app, free; Capture Control, $14.99