Plugin Newsletter - April 2005
COLORWASHER 2.02 RELEASED
DIGITAL PHOTO EFFECTS: Chromatic Aberration Plugins
POLL RESULTS: Commercial Color Correction Plugins
NEW POLL: Image Enlargement Plugins
THE DISCUSSION FORUMS: Sinedot, Photoshop Gallery, Rain Plugin, Video Color Correction, PSP books, ACVIS Retoucher
FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS: VignettingRemover, Photo-Plugins, Rosenman Plugins, XLProfiler, Cybia Brushes, PhotoFiltre, UP LE, MotionBuilder PLE
GRAPHICS NEWS: Neat Image, SHO, PhotoObjects.net, ArBa3d, Canvas X, Bibble, Poser 6
PRODUCTS FROM THE PLUGIN SITE
ABOUT THE PLUGIN SITE
The new ColorWasher 2.02 is our first plugin that is available in other languages than English. It is a bit an experiment, because only the plugin itself is localized, but not the setup, manual and product page. If you like it anyway, please let us know. If you would like to translate ColorWasher to another languages, you just need to open the two English text files in the languages sub folder in Notepad, but please let us know in advance if you plan to do that. As a reward you will of course get a free version of ColorWasher.
Recently when looking for a home electronic device I researched a lot of magazine reviews, forum posts and tested a few devices myself. The magazine review usually didn't mention missing features and the forum posts overemphasized weaknesses. Only testing the devices, which isn't always possible, gave the most accurate impression. Luckily you can test plugins almost always before you buy them, which is what you should do as extensively as possible. Forum posts about plugins are often quite unbalanced, although they can be a source for a list of problems. Magazine reviews on the other hand are often naive and rate plugins too positively, so they are often only useful to get an overview. I seldomly came across a review that demonstrates that the author has really understood the potential and weaknesses of a plugin. So I was quite surprised when I found a sophisticated reviews about 28 photo plugins that was published in the German c't magazine three weeks ago. It was nice to see that all three PhotoWiz plugins were rated very good.
COLORWASHER 2.02 RELEASED
We have just released the Version 2.02 of our color correction plugin ColorWasher. The ColorWasher dialog is now localized to the following languages: German, French, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese. The setup and manual are still only available in English. Secondly, selections from some graphics applications can now be seen in the ColorWasher preview. Additionally, right clicking on the Open button will display all presets from the Preset sub folder in a context menu. You can now also use the mouse wheel to change slider values.
A tool called Plugin Installer is installed with ColorWasher and also executed during setup. It lets you copy the ColorWasher plugin to the plugin folder of up to 25 applications and also uninstall it later again. This is possible, because ColorWasher will now look for necessary files in the original installation folder if it can't find it in its folder. The "Red/Orange Cast" Cast Type also renders more than twice as fast and more than a dozen bugs have been fixed. Registered users will receive the update by email within the next 24 hours.
For more detailed information please visit:
DIGITAL PHOTO EFFECTS
Issue 23 of the Digital Photo Effects magazine concentrates on black and white photography. There are tutorials for converting color images to mono, 10 professional Photoshop edits and how to get the best black and white print-outs. Other highlights include two photo-montage tutorials for Photoshop and Paint Shop Pro, a guide to adding rainbows to landscapes, an Easter-scene special, tips on shooting action shots and a beginners guide to using the extract filter in Photoshop. The Review section covers compact cameras and plugins for fixing chromatic aberrations. The cover CD contains video lessons and a full version of Photoclean Express.
POLL RESULTS: Color Correction Plugins
120 people voted for their favorite commercial color correction plugin. Here are the results:
1. ThePluginSite ColorWasher 29.2%
2. Other 27.5%
3. PictoColor iCorrect 10%
4. Extensis Intellihance 8.3%
AutoFX AutoEye 8.3%
5. Kodak DigitalROC 7.5%
6. PhotoTune 20/20 Color MD 5%
7. Powerretouche White Balance (3) 2.5%
8. TwoPilots Color Pilot (1) 0.8%
TheImagingFactory Color Correction (1) 0.8%
It is not surprising that ColorWasher got the most votes, because the poll was conducted on The Plugin Site. Also, the Other item shows that there are still a lot of other tools that are used by other people. iCorrect is another good color correction tool and DigitalROC can be useful on some old photos. Although ColorPilot can achieve good results, too, it is very complicated to use, which probably makes it less popular. Intellihance, AutoEye and PhotoTune are all-round packages, which is why they are probably popular among beginners, but color correction is not their main selling point.
For more poll results, please visit the Know-How section:
Our latest poll asks "Which ... image enlargement plugins do you use?". You can choose between 9 different products and the Other item. There was a similar poll one and a half years ago, but it didn't let you choose between so many commercial products and also included various image editing applications.
Please vote at the bottom of the page at
THE DISCUSSION FORUMS
We were forced to set several forums to Registered mode because of increased spam posts. So you need to register now to be able to post something. Anyway, here are the latest interesting posts from The Plugin Site Forums:
Pat wrote: "I have sinedot 11 and I having great
fun with it,I read somewhere it has a preview pane but I donot know where
it is or how to make it appear anybody help."
Adam wrote: "I like the Photoshop web gallery
plugin, but I do find that its options & templates are a bit limited.
Does anyone know of a plugin that provides web gallery functionality with
more options for customizing the web pages ?"
hades wrote: "i am after a rain plugin i have
looked but the closest i can find is a snow one anyone know where there
Helmut wrote: "I am using a JVC/camcorder with
a simple underwater housing. As it is not possible to do a manual white
balance under water I want to do it by filters afterwards. Does someone
know a not too explensive filter, which does such corrections automatically?
especially with pinnacle studio od magix?"
Alison asks: "Bought [PSP] V9 ... Anyone know
of any good how to books to learn this product?"
spinvest wrote: "I have tried a fantastic plugin
called Acvis retoucher in photo shop but really want to use it in paint
shop..The problem I have is that the programme works best in photoshop
with the selection tool in quick mask.
Im not at all sure how to use the paint shop selection tool in the same way."
For more interesting discussions please visit
FREE PLUGINS AND TOOLS
Rob Miller released a plugin called VignettingRemover (for Windows), which can be used with 8bit and 16bit RGB images. It is primarily meant for removing vignetting from astronomical photos, but it can also be used for normal photos. It is freeware, but the author asks you to donate $5 if you like it.
Two more plugins have been added to the Photo-Plugins collection (for Windows). Lens Corrector removes barrel or pincushion distortions and Selective Saturation applies saturation adjustments to areas with a certain saturation. All Photo-Plugins are freely usable, but George appreciates donations via Paypal that help to cover his web site fees.
Richard Rosenman added two new plugins (for Windows) to his vast collection. Pinocchio is a fun tool that lets you prolong the nose of people in photos by dragging it in the preview. Color Replacer performs selective color replacements.
XLProfiler (for Windows) is a freeware ICC profiler for digital cameras and scanners, it is a combination of a Microsoft Excel Workbook and a standard Adobe Photoshop plug-in filter. The procedure looks quite complex, so you need to invest some time.
Cybia updated his free brush packs for Photoshop, PSP and GIMP (for Win/Mac). You can now download 4 packs of FREE brushes, containing a total of 1100 individual tips. Cybia also offers 5 commercial brush packs for $10 each.
PhotoFiltre (for Windows) is an image editing tool with a lot of nice features. Many interesting plugins, which only work in PhotoFiltre, are also available for it. PhotoFiltre is free for a private, non-commercial or educational use (including non-profit organizations). Paradoxically it isn't possible to register it at the moment, so you are not allowed to use it for commercial purposes, which is a bit weird.
The free LE version of Ultimate Paint 2.86 (for Windows) works just like the commercial version, but does not support Adobe plugins and has only 20 image filters built-in. It is meant to be a replacement for Ultimate FX which isn't officially supported any more.
The free Personal Learning Edition of Alias MotionBuilder (for Win/Mac) is a character performance and animation package for non-commercial use. It offers all features of MotionBuilder Standard 6, but doesn't allow exporting to FBX, an application independent 3D format.
Neat Image Noise Reduction Plugin Updated
Noise reduction and sharpening can be applied within Photoshop in a layer, channel or selection, with transparency data preserved, using this Win/Mac plugin. Demos available.
Kodak DIGITAL SHO Professional Plugin Now Supports
Optimizing the contrast and exposure of an image to reveal details hidden in shadow or dark areas, as well as in highlights or bright areas, is what this plugin is all about. Win/Mac demos available.
JupiterImages Launches PhotoObjects.net Subscription
JupiterImages, which owns such stock photo sites as Comstock Images and Photos.com, has launched PhotoObjects.net, a royalty-free subscription image service offering more than 100,000 photo-objects.
ArBa3d 3D Photo Utility Updated to Version 2.1
This Windows utility generates a 3D image from two source photos in JPEG or BMP format. Demo available.
ACD Systems Announces Canvas X for Technical Graphics
Canvas X is a vector graphics illustration application designed for the creation, enhancement, presentation and distribution of technical illustrations. Win/Mac trial versions are available.
Bibble Digital Photo Processing Software Updated
If you need to organize and edit large numbers of RAW images created with a professional-level digital SLR camera, then you should give the trial Mac or Windows versions of the Bibble demo a try.
Curious Labs Releases Poser 6
The latest version of this 3D human figure software tool for Windows and Mac adds several new figures and improved rendering abilities.
For daily graphics news updates, visit