Paint Shop Pro has long been the image editing shareware champion that many of its supporters claim to be even better than Photoshop. Originally created by Jasc, the title was acquired by Corel who, with its market established with CorelDRAW, was keen to extend its portfolio with a recognised image application. Paint Shop Pro X is the first release of the software title that Corel has been involved in and there have been a few changes that have had the Paint Shop faithful muttering.
A revised interface is the most apparent change – the old clunky interface has gone and a more streamlined front end makes the software a little more attractive to new users as does the introduction of the new Learning Centre feature. This makes itself available through a dedicated panel to provide the novice user with some invaluable advice on how to push their pixels, although we’d bet that more experienced users will quickly turn this off as the suggestions can be a little too basic at times.
Unfortunately for the artist, Corel has opted to focus more on the growing digital photography market, and although tools for correcting such images are impressive, there is a lack of new features that could have been borrowed from Corel’s Painter title. However, the software remains easy to use, its features are reasonably comprehensive and the price is attractive, so for those on a budget the trial version is certainly worth checking out.
•New Learning Centre help support
•Centralised image correction
•Faster rendering engine
•One-click red-eye removal
•Two hours of video tutorials
•Pixmantec RawShooter Essentials
•500 special effects
•Windows 2000 or XP
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