First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
Serif Digital Photo Suite 2009
A set of simple and intuitive, if not particularly powerful, tools for organising and enhancing photos.
- Useful collection of tools
- Expensive - compared to some of the free tools available
For those who don't want their photos online and are willing to pay for a simple, well-integrated program to help them organise and edit their photos, Serif Digital Photo Suite 2009 provides a good balance of features that are tailor-made for home users.
Buy now (Selling at 5 stores)
Serif Software Digital Photo Suite 2009 offers photographers a set of simple and intuitive, if not particularly powerful, tools for organising and enhancing photos.
Serif Software Digital Photo Suite 2009 comprises Serif's image organiser and editor package, AlbumPlus X3, and PanoramaPlus 3.
Digital Photo Suite 2009 has some appeal - but only if you have need for its specific set of tools.
AlbumPlus X3 has more features than its predecessor, Serif PhotoPlus X2, including more image editing tools as well as the ability to upload photos to social networking sites. AlbumPlus X3 will not be available as a stand-alone program; instead, Serif is offering it as part of the Serif Digital Photo Suite 2009 bundle.
We were pleasantly surprised by how easy and quick it was to pull the almost 2,000 photos from a hard drive into AlbumPlus X3. In just a few clicks, we could see thumbnails of all of our photos stacked by the folder where the images reside on my hard drive, ready for us to assign tags we could later search on. (In addition to photos, you can import video and music files from your hard drive, CD/DVD drive, digital camera, scanner, or external storage drive.)
Serif starts with a small group of tags in a Windows-style folder system that you can add to or customise with your own tags. You can choose an icon for each tag from the list Serif provides or add your own, and you can organise and search for photos many different ways, such as by tag, star rating, date, or file size.
We generally found it intuitive to assign tags. One counterintuitive point about the process: you assign tags to images by dragging and dropping a photo or group of photos to the tag list rather than dragging tags to the photos. Alternatively, you can right-click and assign a tag from a list; we prefer that approach.
The AlbumPlus X3 software is not intended as a full-bore image editor akin to Adobe Photoshop Elements 7.0. However, it does have a small, yet fun set of tools that let you make simple changes to your photos.
You can fix blemishes, smooth skin, whiten teeth and the whites of the eyes, and even add a fake tan (albeit one that looks much like many fake tans). You can also choose from a fairly standard set of fixes, such as brightness, sharpness, contrast, and color saturation, and play with a few effects like stained glass and oil painting.
Serif provides excellent on-screen explanations along the way, making this software a good choice for photo-editing neophytes. Each time you click to open a particular tool, a small section of the screen is devoted to giving instructions on how to use it and tips for getting the best results.
Once you've sorted your images, AlbumPlus offers several options for sharing photos, including putting them on a CD; creating printed calendars and albums; sending them via email; and uploading them to social networks, including Facebook, Flickr, or YouTube.
Serif makes this package a suite by bundling in its PanoramaPlus 3, a tool for stitching photos and movie frames into a panorama or a 360-degree movie. The Serif Digital Photo Suite 2009 has a single installer, but each of the programs within it maintains a separate identity, though there is a button in AlbumPlus X3's main menu that will launch PanoramaPlus 3.
Like AlbumPlus, we found PanoramaPlus easy to use and integrated with terrific instructions and tips.
You can find many of the features in AlbumPlus X3 for free from online image editors such as Picnik, Photoshop Express, and scores of other Web-based image editors. That makes Digital Photo Suite's price tag feel steep.
Latest News Articles
- With OpenPower, IBM tries to turn the tables on Intel
- Report: US FCC to allow payments for speedier traffic
- IPhone sales drive strong Apple earnings
- Facebook sales leap, amid a growing mobile ad business
- Brazil's global Internet conference includes call to end spying
Most Popular Articles
- 1 Buying guide: Ovens, cooktops and freestanding cookers (upright ranges)
- 2 Tethering tutorial: How to use your iPhone as a modem
- 3 The most disturbing YouTube videos of all time
- 4 LCD vs plasma vs LED TVs buying guide
- 5 Aldi's new budget Android smartphone isn't very good value
GGG Evaluation Team
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.