ACDSee launched Photo Studio Ultimate 2019, the world’s only digital asset manager and RAW editor with layers. It’s a powerful suite that combines the best properties of Photoshop and Lightroom in one package. It has all of the workflow and organizational tools of Lightroom folded into the versatile image editing, filters, and manipulation of Photoshop.
The 2019 edition distinguishes itself by directly accessing the source drive on which an image is stored; while this may sound like a simple quality-of-life improvement, in reality it means much less time waiting for files to import and load, and much more time spent editing, or snapping photos behind the lens. It also means that you’ll spend less time fiddling with version management, eliminating the need to keep copies of projects on your primary drive as well as the source drive.
It also brings powerful facial recognition and memory tools, automatically picking human faces out of photos that you can then label appropriately so they can be automatically tagged in every subsequent image. ACDSee puts this catalog of remembered faces at your fingertips for searching, indexing, and organizing. Sorting pictures by who’s in them, for instance, or finding pictures of an event by searching for the people present, turns arranging hundreds or thousands of photographs from a Sisyphean feat of impossible proportions to something easily manageable in a few minutes.
There are a huge number of other new additions in this year’s version, including a number of brush options in Develop mode. You can now alter color temperature and tint with the swipe of a brush, isolating parts of an image without affecting the whole, or you can apply them gradually with linear and progressive gradients. You can also brush on alterations to brightness, vibrance, hue, and contrast, as well as things like color overlays.
Also new is a much improved black and white mode, which now allows you to individually play with the contrast of the colors beneath the b&w filter, or specify a brightness range that the adjustment in contrast will target. And 2019 also adds the ability to use your images as custom LUTs, importing them and then applying them to other projects as filters.
These are all the tip of a huge iceberg of subtle and nuanced improvements packed into Photo Studio’s latest iteration. You can now decode HEIF files, add metadata to help easily sort your photo collection, or easily view, manage, or copy and paste adjustments made to one image to another. You can even copy color images and paste them as luminance masks on other layers. You can also share specific, individual actions or presets with 2019’s importing/exporting tools.
One understated but very useful new addition is the ability to select parts of an image based on brightness. For anyone who’s ever tried to eliminate the background from a photograph, or wanted to select individual elements to lift out and paste into or combine with another image, this is a huge boon that helps ease the pain of ‘magic wand’ style selection.
Lifetime licenses are available for $149.99 while subscription plans start as low as $69 a year, or $6.90 a month. More information is available on the ACDSee website: https://www.acdsee.com
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