Earlier this year I reviewed PhotoDirector 3 on Windows. Now, PhotoDirector 4 is available and, for the first time, is available for the Mac. How does the Mac version stack-up compared to its Windows counterpart?
Well, first of both versions look remarkably similar and a familiarity with one will certainly help you get to grips with the other. This obvious port from Windows to Mac, though, doesn’t come without its downsides – for a start, standard touchpad gestures don’t work, so you can’t use it to zoom for instance. However, one Mac technology that is supported is the new Retina screens – indeed, this is the first non-Apple photo manager to support Retina.
All the features of PhotoDirector 3 are present along with a few new ones…
- Face recognition technology – this is of use for tagging faces in the photo browser, as Google Picasa does
- HDR Effect – turns high contrast scenes into HDR images
- Chromatic Aberration correction – corrects unnecessary fringes of colour
- People Beautifier Toolset – this brings together a number of the existing tools along with a new one – Body Shaper. This, as you’d expect from the name, allows you to re-shape a person’s body.
- Content Aware Removal – automatically remove objects from a photo
In addition, a number of the existing functions have been improved – for example, the spot removal tool.
If this appears to be a slim list then that’s because of some of these changes are massive – face tagging and content aware removal in particular.
Content Aware removal is where it allows you to remove elements of a photo. This isn’t perfect, but then Photoshop’s equivalent function isn’t either.
As with version 3, everything is easy to use and works brilliantly well. The only thing lacking is a matching help system – help is present but it diverts you to a web page on your browser and it’s not very intuitive.
So, Windows and Mac versions are remarkably similar which is not a bad thing. One thing I didn’t experience with the Mac version, though, was the slowness – maybe because I tested it on a modern MacBook Pro, unlike the Windows version which was running on a system with a much older processor. As before, if you’re looking at the Windows version I’d make sure you have a relatively modern, powerful machine to support it.
PhotoDirector 4 is available for £79.99 and comes with both the Windows and Mac versions.
The following screenshots are taken from both the Windows and Mac version.
As per my review of PhotoDirector 3 this is a refined and powerful photo browser and editor. If you’re serious about your photography then, in a crowded market of similar products, this is well worth considering.
For a similar price to the cut-down Photoshop Elements you get both the Windows and Mac version of the software – both of which are equally excellent.
If you have a Retina Mac then the fact that this is the only non-Apple photo editing software that supports the improved resolution, then this is surely a must-have.
Disclosure of gift - I received this product at a discounted price in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.