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08-08-2011, 08:57 PM   #1
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Best free processing program?

Hi all, my apologies if this has been asked a thousand times. I need to install a new processing program on my new computer. I did a trial of Lightroom and really liked it but I can`t afford to buck up for the program at this time. I used Piccasa in the past and wasn't crazy about it. Any tips on the latest free software I can use. I have Paintshop Pro on my lap top but I have a new 22 in monitor and new dell so I can't use the lap top any more. I have the software that came with my K200 but I don't care for it much either. Any advice on what to use(free) until I can pay for the lightroom? Thanks for your help.

08-08-2011, 09:31 PM   #2
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I use a combination of Gimp and sometimes Darktable to process RAW (although I don't do a lot of that). Bit of a learning curve but its fairly powerful and theres a few tutorials around for most things you might want to do.

I run linux anyway (only use windows if really really have to) so that knocks out most of the commercial options for me.
08-08-2011, 09:38 PM   #3
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Pentax dSLR comes with the software PDCU. While not the most user-friendly, PDCU gives some excellent outputs and it is free.

The latest version 4.33 is a marked improvement IMO.

Hope that the suggestion may help.
08-08-2011, 09:38 PM   #4
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Gimp has a steep learning curve. If you want something easier to use and does a fair decent job of editing, plus reads .PEF and DNG files, Faststone is free. I use it. If you want something more I would suggest picking up a copy of PhotoShop Elements. It's a lesser version of PhotoShop.

08-09-2011, 03:03 AM   #5
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1) I use RawTherapee for converting raw files. This program is free and I find it quite good.

2) For more complicated processing I use Picture Window Pro 5.0. This program is not free but it is not very expensive either. The documentation is very good. You can download the documentation and a trial version from Digital Light & Color.

You can download them and decide for yourself.
08-10-2011, 08:19 AM   #6
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Thanks for the suggestions folks. I ended up downloading Photoscape. Free and very easy to use. I will try the others out if I end up not liking this down the road.
Thanks again.
08-11-2011, 09:57 AM   #7
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You might want to give Capture One Express 6 a try. You can get a free copy (not just a 30-day trial) from this promotion here. I've been playing with it for a couple of days now and it is feature rich and quite powerful on a 64bit machine.
08-11-2011, 10:44 AM   #8
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I'm using GIMP + UFRaw. While both programs take a while to learn, they are extremely powerful and both Open Source.

08-12-2011, 11:16 AM   #9
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Hey Wasim, Ithe link requires a password from the magazine. Any ideas!
08-12-2011, 06:09 PM   #10
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I use fastone and GIMP. fastone is easy, GIMP is extensive but with a steep learing curve as noted. I don't use RAW though, my files are all scanned from film/glossies. Fastone has a direct link to GIMP (once you have set it up) making it a one key option to open the current file in GIMP and gain acess to the advanced functionality and scripts and such that can be downloaded for it.
Loads of free online tutorials etc help GIMP a lot, the (free) help file is, well, value for money...

But the best thing about the freeware is that I could spend the money I saved on a good monitor.

MattC
08-13-2011, 02:37 AM   #11
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Another vote for Faststone as a quick, easy to use program.
08-13-2011, 02:41 AM   #12
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GIMP.... make sure to make use of all of the available free plugins
08-13-2011, 06:26 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by humpy Quote
Hey Wasim, Ithe link requires a password from the magazine. Any ideas!
PM sent. Please check your inbox. I think this promotion was slated to end on 14aug11 (tomorrow).
08-15-2011, 08:36 AM   #14
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Which free programs are available for both linux and windows?

I'm about to jump into the deep end of the pool with a linux system and I'm not interested in learning two programs (for my netbook). I do have GIMP downloaded and did a little in it but I need to start the learning process.
08-15-2011, 07:05 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by abacus07 Quote
which free programs are available for both linux and windows?
gimp.
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