updated 08:05 pm EST, Thu December 2, 2010
Includes next-generation Genuine Fractals
Perfect Photo Suite, the collection of digital image-enhancement tools from OnOne Software, has been updated to v5.5, including updates to almost all the components of the collection, a new version of Genuine Fractals now called Perfect Resize 7, along with the ability to run most of the suite's components in Apple's Apertureor Adobe's Lightroom without the need for a separate host application -- and in some cases, as their own standalone apps. The suite will also include a new product, Perfect Layers, which will ship early next year.
Perfect Layers will give users the ability to create Photoshop-compatible layered files directly from Photoshop or within Lightroom or Aperture and will be included automatically to all licensed users when it ships. Perfect Resize 7 introduces new smoothing and sharpening controls, plus a Loupe tool for closer inspection. Users can now save presets, utilize an Auto Corner Fill, and experiment with the new Gallery Wrap preview and improvements in the Image Tiling tool. It can also now function as a standalone app.
PhotoTools v2.6 gains a dozen new effects, bringing its library to almost 300, and introduces a MaskingBug control based on the FocusBug control in FocalPoint -- both of which allow the selective application of effects instead of to the image as a whole. Although PhotoTools remains a Photoshop-only plug-in, FocalPoint has been updated to v2 and can now also be used in Lightroom or Aperture (or on its own), giving photographers an easy method to add realistic depth of field or selective focus. The program includes a new blur algorithm, lens presets, a FocusBrush feature and additional FocusBug features.
PhotoTune v3 has also now been adapted to run within Lightroom or Aperture as well as Photoshop (or on its own), offering fast color and tone correction for quick work while allowing advanced use for those who need it. The program incorporates SkinTune that specifically targets portrait photography or the option to identify and color-correct only skintones in an image.
MaskPro, which remains at v4.1.8 (last updated in June) is also included, allowing enhanced extraction of items from a photo using a "color decontamination" technology unique to MaskPro. This makes it easier to mask objects like hair and semi-transparent materials than it would be using Photoshop's own tools.
Finally, the suite also includes PhotoFrame, now updated to v4.6 and including over 1,000 design elements to help users frame, border or adorn images. The new version includes complete layouts into which images can just be dropped, and now gains the ability to be used within Lightroom or Aperture as well as Photoshop, or as a standalone app.
The entire suite is compatible with Photoshop versions CS3, CS4 and CS5. Selected applications mentioned above will also work with Adobe Lightroom 2 or higher, Apple's Aperture 2.1 or higher, and Adobe's Photoshop Elements 6, 8 or 9 (PhotoTools does not work in Photoshop Elements). Overall the suite requires an Intel Mac with a 1.8GHz processor or better, OS X 10.5 or higher, and recommends a video card or chipset with 256MB of RAM. A monitor resolution of 1280x800 or higher is also recommended.
Because some of the applications (PhotoTune, PhotoFrame, Perfect Resize and FocalPoint) are now available as standalone apps as well, they can be used with other applications that use a "workflow" approach, such as iPhoto and Adobe Bridge.
The updated suite is a free upgrade to licensed users of v5 of the OnOne Plug-In Suite. New users can purchase the suite for $500 (users of earlier versions can upgrade for $200). Individual plug-ins and applications from the suite are also available separately.