In an attempt to woo more advanced photographers, Corel has introduced a neutral gray skin for PSPX2.
Caption:CNET Reviews staffPhoto:Lori Grunin
Operations you can perform in PSPX2's Express Lab include Smart Photo Fix (tonal range and saturation); cropping, rotating, and deskewing; and red eye and blemish removal.
Suggest Settings for Smart Fix tends to do a pretty good job, although the results usually still need some tweaking.
PSPX2's new Express Lab allows you to step through individual files in a directory, applying a variety of basic adjustments. Unfortunately, you can't perform any minibatch operations, such as selecting several photos at once for rotation.
Corel has added a basic HDR photo merge to PSPX2. As long as the photos are very similar, it does a reasonable job. But if the perspectives differ slightly or there's varying content--such as people moving through the scene--it doesn't fare too well. (The assumption is that you're shooting exposure-bracketed photos.) Unfortunately, you can't manually tweak the automatic image alignment.
The new Clarify parameter provides an intelligent contrast boost to the final image. Clarify is available within several other of PSPX2's adjustment dialogs.
PSPX2's Black and White Film effect allows you to choose any RGB value as the "filter" color for defining your grayscale tonal range. Personally, I prefer using levels and curves when converting to black and white.
Clicking on the die prompts PSPX2 to randomize the parameters. I think this tool could benefit from some preset conversions rather than simply relying on fate.
The new visible watermarking capability comes in quite handy, though more control over the emboss (it's pretty ugly as-is) and a bundled script for batch watermarking would substantially add to the usefulness of the feature.