Adobe CS5 Web Premium Part One: Illustrator and Photoshop By Kevin Schmitt Adobe CS5 is finally shipping, so over the next few weeks we'll looking at the major programs which comprise the Web Premium package, starting off with the old stalwarts of the group. Now, it's somewhat hard to believe that 2010 marks Photoshop's 20th anniversary, with Illustrator having been around for a few years even before that, but here we are. Both products have certainly seen a lot of design trends and operating systems come and go in their time, but lest I take a long, nostalgic detour down software memory lane, let's simply get to the latest and greatest. ...Read More »
Adobe CS5: Five Things to Keep in Mind By Kevin Schmitt Eighteen months, seemingly like clockwork. A mere year-and-a-half after CS4 was released (which itself was a mere year-and-a-half after the release of CS3), Adobe has unveiled the CS5 lineup. Having had a chance to see and try the new versions for myself over the past several weeks, here are some general observations about the latest versions of Adobe's software uberbundles. ...Read More »
WinX HD Video Converter Deluxe By John Virata WinX HD Video Converter Deluxe is an inexpensive video converter that enables you to take virtually any type of video file format and convert it to a variety of other video file formats. The application's interface uses a simple four step process to video conversion, and it is really quite simple. ...Read More »
Book Excerpt: My MacBook by John Ray By John Ray Editor's note: Excerpt from My MacBook by John Ray, Published by Que My MacBook provides step-by-step instructions with callouts to MacBook photos that show you exactly what to do. It offers help when you run into MacBook or Snow Leopard problems or limitations. ...Read More »
Alien Skin Eye Candy 6 By John Virata Alien Skin Eye Candy 6 is the company's latest collection of filters and textures for Adobe Photoshop CS4 and other image editors. The cool thing about Eye Candy 6 is the fact that each filter and texture can be tweaked to your heart's content, with more than 1500 presets in specific filters and textures. There are myriad sliders to work with to get just the right look that you are trying to achieve with a particular effect or texture. ...Read More »
Corel VideoStudio Pro X3 By John Virata It has been more than five years since I looked at any version of VideoStudio. In fact, what was my go to application for a long time was supplanted by the other applications on the market that compete with it. So, I consider it new to me again. What has Corel done to enhance the capabilities of VideoStudio? ...Read More »
iFunia Video Converter Pro for Macintosh By John Virata iFunia's Video Converter Pro is an application that converts your video into a wide variety of formats, including AVI, WMV, AVCHD, MKV, FLV, H.264/AVC, MP4, MOV, 3GP and DV. It is straightforward to use and the results are very good to excellent. The application works in three simple steps; Source Setup/Add, Destination Setup, and Start Conversion/Start. ...Read More »
Corel PaintShop Photo Pro X3 By John Virata PaintShop Photo Pro X3 is Corel Corp.'s latest update to its photo image editor. The application has been around in various iterations for more than 15 years and has a fairly large following. It is an image editor targeted at digital camera enthusiasts, and especially those with Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras who want a more robust image editing tool than what ships with the camera. ...Read More »
Apple Intros iPad By John Virata After years of hype, Apple, Inc. today introduced the iPad, a portable computing device that looks like a big iPhone. Introduced today by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, the iPad features a touchscreen keypad, wireless capability, the capability to run all iPhone applications, all in a form factor that fits in between an iPhone and a MacBook. With the iPad, you can play movies, load maps, view photos, update your calendar, basically do the same things as on an iPhone, and more. ...Read More »
HDTV Buyer's Guidelines By Christina Hansen When it comes to choosing between Plasma and LCD, it's important to shop in the mindset that one high-def TV is not necessarily better than another - rather, it's a question of which one is right for you. That said, it can be a tough call to make when all that meets the eye are sleek screens and vibrant pictures - are Plasmas and LCDs really that different? ...Read More »
Lenovo D20 media workstation By John Virata Lenovo's D20 is the company's top of the line ThinkStation workstation. This particular model shipped with dual Intel E5540 2.53GHz Xeon processors (four processor cores), 12GB RAM, and Windows 7 Professional. Graphics was powered by an NVIDIA Quadro FX 4800 graphics card. This is your classic media workstation, configured to run the latest creative applications from Adobe Systems, Autodesk, Sony Creative Software, as well as CAD tools such as AutoCAD, Pro Engineer, and others. ...Read More »
First Look: AV Bros. Puzzle Pro 3.0 By John Virata AV Bros. Puzzle Pro 3.0 is a Photoshop plugin filter that enables you to create cool puzzle looks with your Photoshop images. When you launch AV Broz Puzzle Pro 3.0, the plug-ins interface opens which enables you to further tweak the puzzle look of an image. ...Read More »
Ci Design's iStorage Pro iT8MIS 8 bay Mini SAS JBOD System By Kevin McAuliffe As a tech writer, I am lucky to have companies approach me to look at their products, and after looking at a competitor's product, I was approached by Ci Design to look at their iStorage Pro Mini SAS JBOD hard drive array. Since I'm always on the lookout for the best product for what I need to get done, I jumped at the chance. Here's how it turned out. ...Read More »
X-Rite Colorchecker Passport By Robert Jensen I've got bad news for you. Shoo the kids away from the computer first. Ready? Guys and gals, there is no Santa Claus and the sensors in digital cameras are not all created equal. I hate to break it to you but all sensors vary to some degree in their capturing of data, not only from manufacturer to manufacturer but even from model to model from the same company. Worse yet, sensor characteristics can vary even from batch to batch of the same model sensor! ...Read More »
New Wacom Bamboo Fun (Pen and Touch) By Robert Jensen First off I should tell you I've haven't seen a graphics tablet I've liked in more than 20 years, and I've tried quite a few in that period. When the new Wacom Bamboo Fun came in I was ready to make another mark in my 'Hate it' column. I did struggle with it at first but that was more to do with problems with Snow Leopard than anything wrong with the Bamboo. ...Read More »
3.06 GHz 17-inch MacBook Pro By Heath McKnight I recently had a chance to review the latest, top-of-the-line unibody MacBook Pro from Apple; with a 3.06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, 8GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive, and many other great features, this is the fastest Apple laptop I've ever used. ...Read More »
HP Z400 workstation By John Virata The Hewlett-Packard HP Z400 is the company's entry level workstation. While it doesn't have the whiz bang design features of the HP Z800 reviewed in March, it still does not disappoint as the benchmark numbers will surprise you. ...Read More »
An afternoon of fun, NFL football, and the Canon 7D DSLR By John Virata This past weekend we were able to spend an afternoon with the Canon folks at the San Diego Chargers/Philadelphia Eagles NFL football game in beautiful San Diego California to attain some first impressions on the new Canon 7D DSLR. Canon invited several journalists to shoot with the Canon 7D and Digital Rebel T1i. ...Read More »
Telestream's ScreenFlow 2 By Kevin McAuliffe As an instructor and online trainer, I need a screen capture program that will not only be very easy to use, but also produce excellent looking end results. Windows users have a ton of options, but for us Mac users, the outlook was pretty barren. More than a year ago when I started doing video tutorials I came across ScreenFlow, and liked it a lot. Well, Telestream is back with version two of this great program. Let's see if it's worth the upgrade. ...Read More »
Epson PowerLite 1716 LCD projector By John Virata The Epson PowerLite 1716 is a portable, wireless-capable LCD projector with a 4:3 aspect ratio targeted at mobile presenters and those on the go who need to present content in an effective manner. The PowerLite 1716 features a three chip Epson 3LCD optical engine that has a native hardware resolution of 1024x768, and features USB, component, and SVGA connectivity. ...Read More »
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