Dec 9
2010

Photo Editing Software for REALTORS

Written by Chris Adams | posted in Technology | 0 Comments

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Real estate agents who list a lot of homes invariably take a lot of pictures. While cameras aren’t exactly cheap, it’s nice to know that the image editing software IS – how does FREE sound?

We took each of the following free online imaged editors for a test drive, giving you insight into which work the best, and what you can accomplish with each.

1. Our Favorite: Pixlr

Free image editor Pixlr

Pixlr might not be the favorite for real estate agents (check out #2 for that) but for FREE, they offer a lot of features and we were surprised at how well it compared to the uber-expensive, professional Adobe Photoshop CS5. The layout was very Photoshop-esque and a lot of the tools are bound to be familiar to Photoshop users. Pixlr isn’t exactly a Photoshop replacement (especially for serious designers and photographers), but for everyone else it makes a lot of sense to use.

Pros:

  • Free to use, no sign-up required
  • Easily accomplishes your major tasks (red-eye reduction, cropping, blurring)
  • Advanced filters and adjustments
  • Multiple language supports (by multiple we mean A TON!)
  • Ability to add “layers” (very cool, but might be overkill for most users)
  • Clickable history, which means you can SEE your modifications to a photo so far (not just an undo button)
  • It saves and exports images right to your PC/Mac (no need to sign up)
  • Ability to save in multiple formats: .jpg, .png, .bmp
  • Compression: when saving as a .jpg you have the option to compress the image (i.e. make it a smaller file size)
  • Shareable: easily share your finished images via imm.io, Facebook, Picasa, and Flickr

Cons:

  • Built completely on Adobe Flash, which means very limited mobile device support
  • Will appear too advanced for casual image editors, and those new to image editing
  • Hard to access full-screen mode

VERDICT: The best free image editor for those needing a comprehensive set of options and available modifications.

2. Best for Real Estate Agents: Photoshop Express Editor

Photoshop Express Editor Free

Photoshop Express Editor actually makes image editing fun, and the whole system was very intuitive. While it bears the Photoshop name, it looks wholly different – which is a good thing for casual editors and those looking to get an image in and out of editing quick.

Pros:

  • Free to use, no sign-up required
  • Easy enough to use for any age range
  • Easy to find full-screen mode with a nice neutral gray background
  • All the most-used tools can be accessed quickly
  • Color correction shows potential changes in real time (has auto-correct feature as well)
  • Exposure change shows potential changes in realtime
  • It saves and exports images right to your PC/Mac (no need to sign up)
  • Offers 2 save options: original size and thumbnail size
  • Language support, only 3, but better than most
  • Very easy to revert back to original photo, and compare current photo to original

Cons:

  • Built completely on Adobe Flash, which means very limited mobile device support
  • Poor save options, you can only save it as a .jpg
  • Only supports opening and modifying .jpg images (not a big deal for most)
  • No sharing options
  • Non-user-friendly acronym (Photoshop Express Editor just takes too long to type)

VERDICT: Makes editing images extremely easy and will appeal to the widest base of users.

3. Best for Sharing: FotoFlexer

Photoflexer Free

Pros:

  • Free to use, no sign-up required
  • Can save images as .jpg, and .png
  • Easy to apply editing options: decorations, animations, and distortions
  • Very easy to share with friends on: Photobucket, Flickr, Facebook, Picasa, Smugmug, Myspace, Tinypic, and via email
  • Undo and redo options

Cons:

  • Editing options not as advanced as Pixlr or Photoshop Express Editor (which might be a pro for some)
  • Built completely on Adobe Flash, which means very limited mobile device support
  • Limited language support

VERDICT: While it’s not a bad image editor, there are better editors out there (see #1, #2), but it does very well in the sharing department – making it very easy.

4. Too Basic: Picnik

Picnik Free

Pros:

  • Free to use, no sign-up required
  • Can save images as .jpg, .png, .gif, .tiff, .pdf, .bmp
  • Compression: when saving as a .jpg you have the option to compress the image (i.e. make it a smaller file size)
  • Easy to share with friends on: Google Buzz, Photobucket, Flickr, Facebook, Picasa, Myspace, and via email

Cons:

  • Will only load up in the Firefox and Google Chrome browsers
  • Built completely on Adobe Flash, which means very limited mobile device support
  • Limited image editing control, basically one-button
  • No full-screen mode, have to start account or upgrade to premium level

VERDICT: Unimpressive. While Picnik is a fairly popular image editing application it came across as overly basic – to the point where it was unusable (unless you’re 4-years-old).

Thoughts or Comments?

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