Paint Shop Pro X3 Review
By Terry


X3 Review

paint shop pro x3 boxPaint Shop Pro x3 still represents good value for money, allowing the beginner to enhance images, through to allowing the serious enthusiast to be extremely creative. 

Users of x2 can upgrade through Corel directly for a reduced fee, but new purchasers can buy a boxed set from other resellers in the EU or North America for not much more – it is worth shopping around. 

The new features of the software, like “smart carver” and “object extractor” are aimed at the beginner who can quickly perform nifty removal of an offending object from the image. 

Smart Carver Screen Shots

x3 review one The original image with an unsightly mast messing up the picture.
x3 review two The same image with the Smart Carver dialogue.
x3 review three The offending mast is painted in for removal.
x3 review four The mast is gone!

Like “one-step photofix” before, these new features can be performed using existing tools such as layers, masks and the like, with a little skill and practice and achieve a result specific to the job rather than the generic result programmed into the software. 

Probably for me the most useful feature was the RAW converter, which enabled me at last to batch read, convert and process files from my camera which was not possible in x2 because the RAW dialect was not recognised.  A legion of such readers is now standard in the program. 

Raw Dialogue Screenshot

x3 review raw The Raw Dialogue

  • Adjust ...
  • Exposure
  • Brightness
  • Saturation
  • Shadows
  • Sharpness

The software processes faster than X2.  No longer is there a very long delay whilst the software catches up with the tools like the brushes, but the reading from file and the save to file are much slower.  There is an upside to this.  It is now possible to “undo” changes after a “save” and to go back to steps before the “save”. 

The software is more of an upgrade than a new version. 

“Curves” seem less likely to crash, although it is still possible to crash the software if you tell it to do too much at one time (I have pushed it to the limit though!).  It is a pity that in the tidying up of the coding Corel didn’t take the opportunity to tidy up the menu structure. 

Object Extractor

x3 review object extractor Object Extractor in the Images menu.
x3 review The object to be extracted is outlined and filled with red to select.
x3 review The Extracted object - there are some remnants of the original image which are easy to eliminate.

Conclusion

The 30 day trial version that I downloaded for this X3 review installed easily without fuss and I have used it repeatedly against earlier versions.  Like X2, it has features that I like and use often, and has features which will never be used.  I will be purchasing X3 when my trial time ends because I will use most of the features.
 


X3 Review
Page Links

Smart Carver

Raw Dialogue

Object Extractor









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