After years I’ve finally renewed my editing software. I’m not a fan of Adobe’s subscription method, so I’ve been using editing programs from other companies. My go-to for converting RAW files to usable TIF/Jpg images is DxO Optics Pro, now called DxO PhotoLab.
DxO’s software has been a loyal companion for ages, but I started to have issues after I purchased my Canon 80D prior to the Universiade. My old version of DxO optics didn’t support the 80D raw files. I always shoot RAW so this was a fairly annoying issue for me, but since the 80D’s buffer improves a lot when shooting Jpg I decided to avoid RAW files for a while. It wasn’t a huge issue because when shooting sports having a deep buffer and high frame rates is a Godsend, so I sucked it up (especially because at that time my budget was really tight).
Now that the budget allowed me to spend some money on non-gear related material, I decided to upgrade the software to its latest version, which not only adds RAW support for my 80D but also a plethora of new and improves features. Now I can use my low-fps 6D for images when I value image quality above all, and switch to the 80D when I need to capture a quick sequence of shots, all of it in RAW format. Yay!
Here comes the rant, though. Corel Paintshop Pro.
I don’t “create” images, and by that I mean that 80%+ of the editing is done on the RAW files, then I use an image editor for a few extra retouches. I’ve used 3 different versions of Corel’s Paintshop software over the years, and while not as complete as Photoshop it served me extremely well. Then Corel decided to change their payment method, switching from direct purchase to a payment service called Cleverbridge.
Well, fuck me, I’ve not been able to pruchase their software in years.
“The transaction has been denied – please contact your bank – there was an error and the purchase couldn’t be completed – please contact the card issuing bank” etc etc…
I’ve never seen a payment system so keen on making me save money. I tried for a very long time to purchase the latest version of Paintshop because it has a few extra features that can be extremely useful for photo editing, such as the introduction of gradients. Unfortunately, Cleverbridge decided that I’m not worthy.
As a result of that, I switched to Serif Affinity.
I’ve only processed a batch of images so far, and the impression is extremely positive. There’s a learning curve to it, but by the end of the 20-ish images I processed today my speed was not far off from my more familiar software. There will be macros to set, blending modes to explore and all sort of new stuff to check out, but so far I’m 100% satisfied about the purchase. The fact that they ALLOWED me to purchase their software is also a huge bonus, of course.
All the images from the latest batch are here: https://flic.kr/s/aHsm9zR9mv
I always suggest to view photos on Flickr for better viewing quality.