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What's your favorite photo editor and why?

by Marc Bennett CNET staff/forum admin / August 29, 2006 7:19 AM PDT

What's your favorite photo editor and why?

ACDSee Photo Editor
Adobe PhotoShop
Adobe Photoshop Elements
Corel Paint Shop Pro
FastStone Image Viewer
Ulead PhotoImpact
Other (what is it?)

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by mittens / August 29, 2006 12:39 PM PDT

yeah, yeah, I know it's old fashioned by now, but for me it's still the photo editor of choice for ease of use, and intuitiveness. Corel and Adobe are good, I can't disagree, but Ive tried them both and find I spend most of my time trying to figure out how, rather than actually playing with the pictures.

I use it mostly for sharpening up images that need a bit of contrast or darkening, for making graphics for backgrounds, and lettering.

In other words, it suits my needs, and isnt overloaded with features I'll never use anyway.

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PhotoDraw (Glad i am not alone on this one)
by melissas70 / August 29, 2006 11:53 PM PDT
In reply to: photodraw

I know there are more powerful editors out there, but I have been using it for so long that I can quickly do what I need to do instead of spending hours learning somthing new. (I dont think that is as sad as it sounds)

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Corel's PhotoHouse
by &yP / August 30, 2006 1:13 AM PDT

My favorite photo editor? -> old Corel's PhotoHouse ver.1.1 (included in the Corel's WordPerfect 8 Suite)
Why? -> Because it's simple, easy to use and I can do my tasks (Resizing, brighting and sharpening) quick and accurate.
I also have and sporadically use:
Ulead's PhotoImpact5,
ACDSee's FotoCanvas Lite 1.1,
MS Picture It! Photo 6,
and PaintShop Pro 4 (very old and I don't know whose is it or where I got it from)

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nope, just realistic
by mittens / August 30, 2006 9:36 AM PDT

It works, who cares how dated it might be.
Now and then I haul out my husband's PhotoShop, determined that this time, by golly, I WILL learn it.
But, alas, like calculus, realize it's not my toy. I'm left staring at the photo I managed to download after five minutes of pushing this and pulling that, I can select something, but after that, my only option seems to be to leave. Sigh.

And for the age of the product it can be amazingly sophisticated in its effects.

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Join the crowd..
by wheelzup / August 30, 2006 5:10 AM PDT
In reply to: photodraw

I'm glad I'm not the only one that keeps going back to Photodraw. Sure Photoshop Elements is a cool product and I'm learning to use it but when it comes to fast and easy I always open up Photodraw. I know of several others that do the same.

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Is photodraw really easy to use?
by Commuter / August 30, 2006 8:32 AM PDT
In reply to: photodraw

A trial Corel package came with my Dell computer, and I found it fairly easy to use. When trial ran out I came across a disc for ArcSoft..and had a brutal time using it. Need a recommendation for someone fairly untechnical who just wants to do some adjusting to my grandchildren's photos. Need to buy something that's user friendly. I don't look forward to using ArcSoft again.

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yes it is
by mittens / August 30, 2006 9:31 AM PDT

it's basically intuitive, without a great deal of emphasis on layers or rendering. It's a photo editing and manipulating program, all the controls are right out there, and you can move the image all over the place on the screen. to me, that's a plus.
Selection is simple, you just click and it's selected.
click again and it's unselected.

The only problem is, it is no longer on the market, so you need to get the disks either online or from a friend. And the default 'save' format is .mix, easily enough changed picture by picture, but still a bit too proprietary for my taste.

And the only way to find out if it works is to actually use it for a few days.

This sounds like the perfect fit for an untechnical person, and a great way to introduce them to photo editing.

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Great Shareware!
by bill Kline / August 29, 2006 12:48 PM PDT

I have used LemkeSoft's GraphicConverter for several years. I paid $25 for it about 1999, and one $10 upgrade fee. Thorsten Lemke updates it almost weekly, and it does everything to photos I need to do to them. It does great slideshows, prints catalog pages in infinite layouts, like I like to print 4 to a landscape page, and print the filename below each photo. I've never seen any program that does that as easily. I love GraphicConverter. If you have a Mac, download it from

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Graphic Converter Software
by bdeynyc / August 30, 2006 5:37 AM PDT
In reply to: Great Shareware!

Is this software available for the PC? It sounds great.


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I agree! GraphicConverter is G-r-r-reat!!!
by timztoyz / August 30, 2006 8:39 AM PDT
In reply to: Great Shareware!

I've been using GraphicConverter for at least 4 years and I've used it to open all kinds of photos, plus create my own albums and prepare photos for eBay. It's a lot simpler to use than PhotoShop -- and a LOT less expensive!

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my favorite photo editor
by azcarl / August 29, 2006 12:49 PM PDT

so far it has been iPhoto from Apple. the why has to do with its simplicity and that it was designed to fit Mac computer architecture like a glove.

on the flip side of the coin I am not enthralled with the fact that to stay current version-wise one must religiously stay current with o/s updates, something I do not always do because of the unknown disruptions that are usually associated with o/s changes.

so at some point I will probably jump ship and find a suitable 3rd party photo editor for my Mac.

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I've Been Using
by Riphly2 / August 29, 2006 12:50 PM PDT

GraphicConverter for 10 years and nothing has seemed an improvement on it.
So, I'll continue using it.

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I use PhotoShop
by paul dexler / August 29, 2006 12:55 PM PDT

Years ago, I used Corel Phpto Paint. After all, it was less expensive. Did almost everything, too. Then I got some kind of deal on an older edition of PhotoShop, and found out why all the pros use it. I have since upgraded, and now I use PhotoShop CS2, and I'm still learning all its bells and whistles. But I'd rather have a program that can do more than I need, than one that does less.

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Free is good too!
by gabby528 / August 29, 2006 1:28 PM PDT
In reply to: I use PhotoShop

I use Photoshop Elements MOST of the time. I have also tried the GIMP which is a free download. It is full blown but the learning curve is kind of steep so I fall back on my Adobe Elements. I'm gonna keep GIMP on my machine however.

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Phtotoshop and ACDSee
by doremifaso / August 29, 2006 1:39 PM PDT
In reply to: Free is good too!

Photoshop is the way to go, if you can afford it. I've used it on school computers but don't have it on my home pc. There I have ACDSee, which I love... it came free with a little scanner I bought a few years ago. It's never disappointed me. Unfortunately it's just about impossible to find nowadays.

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Old Favorites
by gabby528 / August 29, 2006 1:49 PM PDT
In reply to: Phtotoshop and ACDSee

I had an OLD version of I=Photo that came with a 200Mhz Vaio that was really cool and easy to use. When I got an XP machine I tried to load it up but it was "Missing" a DLL or something and wouldn't run under XP. I found a FIX on one of the forums here but now after having to reformat my HD I seem to have lost it.

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by gabby528 / August 29, 2006 1:54 PM PDT
In reply to: Phtotoshop and ACDSee

Gimp is free but can be intimidating because of it's extensive capabilities. It wil also run on MANY different OS's

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GIMP Again
by eatingcascade / August 30, 2006 3:55 AM PDT
In reply to: GIMP

I agree, GIMP can be tough to learn but I've found it fine for desktop use in a small office - cropping logos, resizing images, converting etc. If you're somewhat familiar with major apps like Photoshop then GIMPs 'bare' Photoshop 5 - like interface will not pose too much of a problem.

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Gimp is very difficult to just get set up
by njg123 / August 30, 2006 12:26 PM PDT
In reply to: GIMP

Gimp is very difficult to just set up. I spent many hours trying to set it up (on the screen that is) and I still was bewildered. I had an enourmous trouble finding a book on using it and when I did it was written way over my head. Thank god it was free and all I lost was the many frustrating hours.

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Gimp is very difficult???
by roddog63 / September 1, 2006 5:01 AM PDT

The Gimp is a godsend! I have never used photo editing software prior to the Gimp and did not relish the idea of paying a fortune for Photoshop. I found the Gimp on a websearch. It set up flawlessly, all I did was read what I needed to do from the Gimp site. I downloaded the book grokking the Gimp (free on the web with another 2 second search) Anything I have wanted to do, I have accomplished in mere minutes with either grokking, the help menu, or a quick web search with the word Gimp included in the description.

The Gimp Rules!

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Help for Gimp
by flightwave / March 9, 2007 6:12 AM PST

I downloaded Gimp twice. I can't get the help menu. When I click it, I get The GIMP help files are not installed.

Could not open 'C:\Program Files\GIMPshop\share\gimp\2.0\help\en\gimp-help.xml' for reading: No such file or directory.

Know where I can get this?


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Phtotoshop and ACDSee
by SujaGeorge / August 29, 2006 2:52 PM PDT
In reply to: Phtotoshop and ACDSee
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finding ACDsee
by holedout / August 29, 2006 6:52 PM PDT
In reply to: Phtotoshop and ACDSee

very easy to find...go to

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onto the Mac
by rikp / August 29, 2006 9:39 PM PDT
In reply to: Phtotoshop and ACDSee

I've been a registered user of ACDSee since version 4 and I love it too. I've tried Photo Shop elements when my wife bought it, but my fingers know the ACDsee steps and it does just what I need. Now I've switched from a PC to an iMac. I found ACDSee for the Mac but they don't seem to have the Photo Editor for the Mac so I may have to get something else.

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on the Mac
by BobCPhoto / August 30, 2006 2:39 AM PDT
In reply to: onto the Mac

Try Photoshop Elements, a small version of Photoshop. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles, but is very easy to use. I recommend this to many individuals who want to do good work but simply do not have the funds to purchase the full version of Photoshop. The latest version is
V.4. Scott Kelby, president of NAPP along with several well known users of Photoshop, have written some extremely good instructions books for Photoshop elements which are available for around $25 or so. Check them out at Amazon or other on line book stores.

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No iPhoto?
by suninmoon0 / August 30, 2006 4:17 AM PDT
In reply to: onto the Mac

Strange to hear about someone switching to the Mac and not using iLife. Have you tried iPhoto? It's not a full fledged editor but it beats ACDSee for sure. Elements is also good, has some very easy quick fixes that, unlike most editing programs, work very well.

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Paint.NET -- free, full featured, and easy
by Peter0423 / August 30, 2006 12:35 AM PDT
In reply to: Free is good too!

A lot of my image processing needs are met by IrfanView, a free, fast, and astonishingly capable program. No one should be without this one.

I've also used The GIMP, an open-source Photoshop replacement, although it may not be for the casual user -- the interface takes a little getting used to (although it's logical and efficient), and it has so many bells and whistles that it takes a few moments just to load. But there's very little it won't do.

But my latest sweetheart is Paint.NET (, another open-source Photoshop replacement. The interface looks much like Photoshop, it's faster to load and easier to learn than The GIMP, and it features layers, a powerful tool set, and a growing choice of add-ins...gotta love open source! As the name suggests, it requires installation of the .NET framework (the download can include it if you don't already have it), which I found to be no big deal.

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Best Photo Editor
by santy173997713 / February 21, 2008 4:17 PM PST
In reply to: Free is good too!

ZC Dream Photo Editor & MagicEffect Photo Editor is the best of alll.i have bought them to my father as Christmas gifts and he was very hapyy ,because it is very easy for him to use and there too many effects to use.
you can buy them from

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I use Phptpshop, also!
by BobCPhoto / August 30, 2006 2:30 AM PDT
In reply to: I use PhotoShop

I was a professional photographer for 26 years specializing in portraits and weddings. I had used photpshop since version 2 came out and immediately saw that it could do much more than anything on the market. I, also, am using version CS2 and I don't believe I have come across anything which I could not do with it. I have on the selves above my computer at least 20 books on photoshop and am a member of the National Association of Photoshop Profesionals (NAPP). Through this organization I can get free tutorials monthly on all aspects of photoshopk and discounts to seminars held all overr the US by the great master of Photshop just to mention a few. I firmly believe that if you are going to do something worthwhile, then do it right, and this is the program for me. I see so many examples of individuals who copy a head from one photo and put it on another person in another photograph and they are so easy to spot because the do not blend into the sellected one, or you can see a rim around them. With photoshop this can be accomplished literally seamlessly! The cheapies are OK if that is what you want - cheap looking work, but IF you want you work to look the best then Photoshop is it, bar none!

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Photoshop also
by ptowndave / August 30, 2006 5:20 AM PDT
In reply to: I use Phptpshop, also!

I've used Photoshop since 6.0. I now use CS2 and wouldn't think of using anything else. I have tried most others but for professional work I have to go with the best. I do alot of graphic design work, photography professionally and content for websites.

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