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PixelPol

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Posts posted by PixelPol


  1. I suffered that as a real big issue, as had some savage neighbors for a while, and had bad luck with 3 families in a row. No problem currently I explain below why. Things one can do :

     

    - 1) My sister's system. Freakin' simple: She put some disgusting music (for the type of neighbors) at loud volume. Can only do at hours legally "allowed", not at night, but still doable, as doesn't matter, if they'd hate it, you would end up in needing to negotiate, both, even taking you the initiative to talk. But is a bit an ugly method, I wouldn't do it, but it worked for her, but depends on area/country legislation, u could get into trouble. Worked great for my sister's place.

     

    - 1.5) Talking to them!! Should be number one. But worked really bad for the two times, different flats, when I, which am told to be a people's person, went to speak gently about this to neighbors. Turns out some ppl take this too personal....even said with the best words.

     

    -2) What actually allowed me to support TERRIBLE reformations noise of 3 months non stop polishing the floor (never understood why so much time, and how freaking well that Japanese paper wall would almost amplify the noise : I bought a 50 bucks professional headphones noise protectors, those used for roads machinery. I did look like a fucking alien, but even with some eventual date, she'd stop laughing at some point and even asked me for another (I had two, lol) for her. xD It was rarely at night, but the family would fight like in an extreme walking dead scene at those hours. During the day, as I worked first as a remote staff, later as freelancer like today, full time, I'd put those protecting headphones, and a slight tiny airplane-like headphone in one ear to hear (swapping each time) some music. ( 'cause I like it) It'd fit as is a thin cable. yeah, u can't do this one. Just in case serves for another moment.

     

    -3) Wall isolation: I consulted with some builder friend, he told me it was only with a special double wall with air chamber (foam wouldn't be enough, unless doing sth really expensive), specially built for that function, and still, only would partially stop the voice, aerial noise, not the one by vibration (furniture strong moving, hammers, etc)

     

    -4) Stupidly easy and efficient solution:  Changing rooms and your WHOLE house furniture/distribution. Sounds drastic, but I didn't mind any change, was the only solution in one very extreme case. I just moved my bed to the farther room from that freakin' wall. Now the other neighbor would put loud music from 22: 00 to 2:00 AM , but it was classic music, so, not terrible. Also, now that I remember, went to talk to him (with the other neighbors tried but was a disaster), and without needing to get specific, he proposed to lower the music specially at night. Then I invited him to  have a beer, all fine, good guy. Could stand the situation thanks to the solution. I just got to live in half the meters, lol... Pro of that : I adapted to live in 20 meters or sth, so, next flat, way cheaper for being smaller, but near to the job, never a problem, lol. This solution is merely using the air isolation, and distance attenuation. If your house is big, just put the bed besides the neighbor that is more civilized, and farther from the nasty ones. Or your desktop, if the problem moves to be in day hours, or etc
     

    -5) Grow a tolerance to it. It just ends up happening. My issue was made worse surely as I had always lived in the country side, noises that some could find strange, like the roosters, sheeps, goats, peacocks, village church bell, or cows, are/were music to me; people fighting as if they were fighting for food in an lost island, or doing an MMA fight before going to sleep, I was not used to it. Today, I use any of the ABOVE when/if needed, but not a concern anymore. Moving furniture still an issue, but with good (just normal music ones) headphones, no probs. Or just working, I get too absorbed. Also, I had very fine neighbors since a bunch of years in the 3 houses/flats I've lived at lately.

     

    Hope it helps somehow as a brainstorm start point.


  2. Can't vote.... I know Linux pretty well, from work and having multiboot for decades... I am using Win 7, have installed win 10 to all people I know, but dislike windows 10, as is more restricting than any previous Windowses.  My option would be "I dislike Windows 10 ( but I don't hate it, not even a close "feeling" to that), would use something equivalent, compatible with ALL current professional software" (is what only stops me to use Linux, indeed, as a pro freelance).  IE, an updated Windows 7. Though Windows 10 has some nice memory and performance enhancements (actually since win 8.1), very relevant to my work,  and other tech advantages.  My hope is MS ends up cleaning the cr4p at some point from Win 10, and stops the nightmare with the messy updates.... I might as well wait for long, lol.


    EDIT: I would also need professional aspects of Windows and Mac OS you don't have that easy and complete in Linux, and you don't have at all in iOS or Android : Serious, profesional grade color calibrating of the system, devices, etc, by using hardware color calibration, profiles, etc.  Also, I use win 7 currently mostly as have a very complex setup, and a ton of work projects depend on many installed stuff and fine tuned system configuration. Can't loose 4 days in mounting all software and system stuff exactly as I need.


  3. My entire family  (except me, I select the parts in local shops)  is using Dells. Never a problem, zero noise issues, rock solid, good performance. Seems as if they were thoroughly tested in the lab or sth... Or might be my impression with all the machines I've dealt with ( 6, and a lot at latest company I worked at). but I agree, YMMV.


  4. 9 minutes ago, Franck said:

    100 times more than blender if that's what you are asking. Draw a shape and extrude in a direction. Making holes is a click, draw the shape or choose a preset hole / screw and it does everything for you. You can mirror things, repeat pattern of something you have done.

    As you are actually thinking and know, these can be also done in Blender (not so much in wings, tho, can be overcome, and that one has important advantages) but for this to be minimally operative, one needs a ton of experience, and booleans, and other operations needed for the above, are way easier, flexible and faster (making holes, unions, intersections) with a CAD tool. Besides counting on many helpers and ways of work with full accuracy from minute 1. I just would naturally use what I am familiar with, but what he says is the right type of tool for the project.


  5. Franck is right. :)

     

    Yep, it is friendly, surely easier to get on fast than Blender, by far (but Blender is GREAT for other advantages you may never need), and, while Blender 2.8 is a total different beast (as in amazing+revolutionary, in that sense) to previous versions, much easier, probably for your task is much better to use Autodesk Fusion 360, or other CAD tool.  (btw, another freebie I have used from Autodesk, I think was meshmixer, and if I remember well, I liked it...But is for a different type of project)

     

    I've done very complex printed pieces, miniatures with Wings3D and Blender. But I've been handling Blender since 2002, seriously, and more as a hobby in previous years. So, yep, better these specialized 3D printing tools and CAD tools.
     

    It depends on what you do want to 3D print, but something as technical as your project is, I can see why Franck is recommending CAD tools. Blender has been requested often to have more CAD features, and indeed, now it has line measuring and some things, besides the 3D print module, but is eons away from a CAD tool. I just don't handle that kind of stuff, so rarely will be my first recommendation to 3D print anything, but yeah, for such a technical design, a CAD tool is a no-brainer.

     

    While I think you'd better forget fully my advice about using for this Wings3D and Blender, I'll answer your question : Is sth common to all 3D. Alignment, I was referring specifically to the ability to align objects, elements and part to same distance and point in space of another objects. Snapping, so that when moving an object near the other, or a vertex/line/face, it snaps to it matching mathematically perfect, not a micron after or sooner. Anyways, then its... whatever the material you are printing with, each plastic or metal has its tolerances, minimum wall and wire width, etc. This can be checked in the material specs and its design guidelines, usually provided by the same printing service (shapeways, i.materialise, etc), in its materials or help zone,  if you use one of those. And everywhere (pops up fast with google) if you look for a material specs and printing with certain printer or printing system.

     

    But I'm a 3D generalist, have done some printing gigs but I come from 3D for video games and movies. For this type of project trust always better a CAD expert / mentor. Which I ain't by any stretch of imagination.

     


  6. I'd surely be perfectly able to do this in Wings3D. You need alignment tools, surely. And probably would benefit from "snapping to" objects, faces or vertices.

     

    Blender is perfectly capable, but I like a ton more wings for raw modeling, is just preferences (I do everything else in Blender, though, from texturing, to rendering, to animating, exporting, etc).

     

    Problem is: To learn Wings3D or Blender to a point you can do that safely and easily , might take you quite a long while, imo. Probably months, to say the least.

     

    Another one was SketchUp from Google, but I believe it's gone full commercial or sth, recently...

     

    None of these are CAD apps. There are quite some FREE CAD apps, but good ones, I'm told only a few (I'm an expert in 3D, but as a generalist, not CAD...Yet tho, what you are probably wanting to do is very much doable with Wings/Blender)

     

    Part of what I work on is doing gigs for 3D printing, and a very key thing is work with the exact real world scale and measures. In this, Blender is extremely complete. Specially now that its 3D print addon improved a lot, and now you can even use it as a checker to validate the scene for 3D print, and so be pretty sure any commercial checker will see it as valid for most online services like shapeways, i.materialse, etc.

     


  7. Don't try to recover from the SSD that can be more difficult (and maybe more dangerous as is system disk). Try it in the external HDD. A cut operation is also delete in the original source, so I guess is possible.

     

    Don't do any writes (or any operation at all, as today almost all caches on disk) to that external till you have recovered those.

     

    The chkdsk command procedure , if your disk external HDD unit is E:

     

    I would only do this in an external HDD, and having pretty sure I've got all there back up somewhere else. Or if the drive only had the files now deleted.Otherwise you could screw big time.

     

    Open a CMD window (start up menu, Run, type "cmd" without the quotes) and: 

    chkdsk E: /f 

    go to your unit drive, ie, E:

    E:\>

    then execute attrib -h -r -s /s /d *.* 

    I have not tried, but it seems it generates a new folder, full with files with CHK extension ( *.chk ), from the chkdsk operation. So, rename the files with the proper original extension.

    As said, don't do this in any system drive, or with files not back-up somewhere else, and don't do any file operation in the external previous to recovering the files, or the temp memory will be overwritten, as far as I know.

     

    And alternatively.... I'm just checking, as I know how cr4ppy is to loose files that way... here's an article on several free utilities... but those can be limited in the size to recover (don't write anything in the external, I repeat), or other limitations. And  buying one of these things, for one thing that rarely will happen to you again.... :s . They guide you step by step with one of 'em, but read carefully its limitations before going for it, you might ruin your only chance with those files if not.

     

    https://www.techadvisor.co.uk/how-to/software/recover-deleted-files-3365461/


  8. First, a lot of people don't know that can just hit ctrl + z while being on that folder, or to be pretty sure, just right click on any empty space of that folder, hit "undo delete" in the popping menu.And it works if you just deleted it, open a browser or anything, get back to it, as for that folder you just did it. Dunno if the disk wrote a lot of memory in the middle, as when happens to me, I hit it immediately, and prob solved. U can also do this if decompress a huge file by error and it creates a ton of disordered folders, etc. Just be careful as undo can be as dangerous as the never-to-do so that is cutting files between units or in general. I always prefer the good old copy, paste, then delete, call me oldie.

     

    Typically there used to be a secondary internal memory where, if not too many writes happened after the fact, you could use the console command "undelete" to recover files from it. usually the command needed to be fed with the first letter of the file name or sth, can't remember now, is decades. This I think is since long gone. And not sure about what third party software would be the best, or even more, which one wouldn't include adware or even malware. And sounds to me no free good one is gonna be available. With undelete I recovered an entire thesis of an ex-girlfriend... she almost joked about getting back with me just because of that.... ;)

    Undelete is a nice utility that I believe it's gone, but don't quote me on that...

     

    I believe the good old chkdsk could do sth....by giving certain pass, then using attrib, and recovering resulting CHK files, renaming with the proper extension. But never used it that way, as did seem to me it could as well set those file attributes to all the drive files, and that'd be an enormous issue.

     

    Windows has a backup feature, it'd be way too much luck that you had that activated from previously, for a chance. 

    And lastly, at last company , I was a remote worker, we used an online service which would even scan constantly certain work folders, and keep a version system of each file, etc. Nothing is as solid as that, except some redundant expensive system in a home or office network, of course.
     


  9. X-Mouse Button Control. Is extremely useful for me: I replace all shortcuts, combined or not with mouse and pen buttons/wheel, and even really complex combinations. This way, I have all applications using the shortcuts, mouse wheel, zoom, pan, etc, just the way I want. Free tool.

    It is not something I'd qualify as "just good to have", as with one application, it literally allows me its use for my work, and it is a quite main application in my workflow :

    https://www.highrez.co.uk/downloads/XMouseButtonControl.htm

     

    My best area of expertise, the stuff I know better is digital painting, and drawing (comics, realistic, everything), so I am maybe able to expand it here for you all. Digital paint tools, quite affordable, too, in personal order of preference :

    Clip Studio Paint . The pro version, 49 $, is way enough. I'll buy the EX in the next 60% discount (around twice a year), though. This is an absolute MUST for any comic artist. I am even using it to make digital painting, covers. GUI very good, familiar to most :

    https://www.clipstudio.net/en

     

    Rebelle 3  (more expensive of the bunch, yet dirty cheap (89 $), and the best watercolor simulation ON EARTH ) This is mostly for pure digital painting, in a very natural, traditional way. Outstanding simulation of several types of media.  :
    https://www.escapemotions.com/products/rebelle/index.php


    Art Rage, 79$ ( An absolute jewel, a great digital painting tool able for many traditional painting media simulation, and you can configure also with a photoshop-like interface)

    https://www.artrage.com

     

    Paintstorm Studio ( I only set it the last because I hate licensing per machine, linked to the hardware needing a mail back and force if change the machine, etc, and also, as text tool is not strong, and too GPU focused, the canvas can't be as big as the print resolution I need for my larger works) :  
    https://www.paintstormstudio.com/es/index.html   (19 US $ !!! :o  still, very, very good application. )

     

     

    In what is video editing, Davinci Resolve was mentioned, for a Premiere / After Effects alternative, but I believe was not linked : https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve/

     

    Wings 3D for a free efficient modeler (not a full 3D package like Blender. For Blender, I recommend strongly to start with the 2.8 beta: Much better and easier.  ). http://wings3d.com

     

    EDIT: LOL... how could I forget... and was not added by anyone, surprisingly... Serif's Affinity, all apps are available in Windows, Mac and iOS ( iPad Pro). But am only referring the price for Windows desktops :

     

    - Affinity Photo :  A tool that can be used, till an extent as a Photoshop. But no subscription, and extremely affordable, somewhere around 50 $ or euros (is long ago since I purchased these). https://affinity.serif.com/es/photo/

     

    - Affinity Designer.  A tool you can use to use instead of Illustrator. I truly love it, like I like Photo a lot as well. Same price, 50. Same deal (only purchase, no subscription)  https://affinity.serif.com/es/designer/

     

    - Affinity Publisher.  Is a tool in the line of functionality of InDesign / Quark Xpress. Not adding the link, as is only yet in free beta stage. You can download it to get a taste of it. But will be much better once fully released.  Same price.All idem in the purchasing side of it.  or well, why not... just don't make any commercial use yet... as it's lacking final functionality + stability :  https://affinity.serif.com/es/publisher/

     

    And from another company, Photoline, 59 euros, a tool very efficient for image editing, not my fav in GUI, but still, with functionality no other tool has, in certain details :    https://www.pl32.com/


  10. Not seeing it in the first post, and I think it keeps updated, so, here I go : Not as a full 3D package that does it all, which is Blender, and which 2.8 incoming version, (pretty stable betas out now) will be beyond revolutionary, but the modeler with which I got to convince every boss at every company, to let me use for all my character modeling, props modeling and etc, Wings3D, is fully open source (BSD license), fully free for commercial or whatever usage, versions for linux, mac and windows. Once you get the handle of it, is immensely efficient. I have used it professionally for my modeling, but of course, needed to do a lot of things in Max/Maya, Zbrush, etc. Is a GREAT 3D modeler, strongly recommended. http://wings3d.com

    As I have read certain comment, I'd say WinSCP can be also used as a complementary tool for Putty. I used both (and Skype...) as super essential tools for 2 years as a remote worker, part of the staff.  Worked great to have a tunneled communication with the company, that is, to communicate through it from my Windows machines to the Linux servers at the company.

     

    In the Premiere / After Effects realm, I do miss there Davinci Resolve. Now Fusion is included in it, and I believe it can be used apart, and has functions similar to After Effects. You can use the free version, I believe it just wont let you render at full 4k, but at quite some resolution. A very similar case with hitfilm: hitfilm express is free, limited to non 4k, etc. Of the two, probably Davinci is more pro. And of course, hitfilm could never make it to this list, as is Win/Mac only.

    https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve/

    You would need to scroll till the very end to see the free version download, and the commercial 300$ one. Linux, Windows and Mac versions.  :).  A real powerful suite.

     

    Maybe Dark Table, as for a free tool with functionality for Photographers (more like Light Room, etc, not Photoshop-like functionality) could be a good addition. https://www.darktable.org

     

    A note about Inkscape, Gimp and Scribus. The interfaces are hand to handle, but Gimp is evolving pretty faster this year, inkscape is very solid in functionality, and Scribus is started to be used in several POD print companies (online print shops), something I would not have expected.
     


  11. I'm fully moving from a multi profile career in graphics production towards more of a programming one. Not even leaving the old fields (you can freelance like for ever in your life), and not saying no to new job offers in my old fields. But IMO, the more profiles you add, the better. At 46 is specially hard to move towards full coding areas from full graphics making ones, but I was already coding the eventual python script, HTML and CSS, so, slowly, but is doable... Even if coming from a zero digital experience. The brain is super flexible, and is more than has been said to be at very much older ages than yours. So, yeah, totally.

     

    EDIT: Oh, and I had been before solely a painter (pictures painter), and after that, a drawing teacher. And after that, all the tech related jobs.


  12. Age is a state of mind.....  ;)

    It's all in the attitude.

    I'm 46 (but no grey hair and I keep all of it xD , strong and healthy, as I don't drink neither smoke, and was quite into sports), and am quite decent in Planetside 2. Meaning, not and ace, but not easy to frag me, and I have even needed to uninstall it 3 times, as I'm not of the kind that sits one hour and cuts it. And one needs the time for the freelancing, lol. So, been a very long while ( 1 year, I believe) since last match.  Altho using a MSI Afterburner utility or the like to see the time in overlay, or having ye good old clock in the table helps a lot. It's doable, have done it, but lately even that hour is better used in something else.

     

    I was tier 4 (back then there where only 4 tiers. Dunno later) in Quake Live (before it was closed to get moved to steam, I never clicked with Steam...) , back then I spent my good 2- 3 hours daily, with often sessions of 5 - 7 hours  !! And got a nice skill, was well approaching my forties, if I remember well.

     

    Look, I am a 3D modeler, pixel artist, digital painter, animator and web coder. Seems is not like age is affecting any of that... If anything, take care of your eyesight, that's a great advice.... And games are a second nature to me, while in my childhood THERE WERE NO computers... Was only in my 15s, that I got an Spectrum, I believe, and coded a game with it. Before that, it was the green and orange pre PC machines, the XTs, and also the arcade machines in the pubs. Meaning, I've played invaders there, and later international karate, Street Fighter, etc, lol. It was an addiction already, as with with just one coin u could stay A LONG time, with skill. Indeed, because of that, skill was super key, we had to have it to play, while in the consoles time,which was quite later on, was not super essential, games where more casual, and your "coin" was not an issue. So... that plus we are the generation of the "Quake-cons", the LAN parties+modding events, and got into the MORPGs once already having a job and money (most), it clicked as a novelty with us, as well.  

     

    I do not recommend gaming tho, to anyone, if is something you can't control to get below one hour (well, neither social media) or so per day. Is too much of your life you could be doing past that time. 1 hour is fine, as is good for training reflexes (heck, did I get those with Quake, Unreal, etc) and some other abilities, plus is an adrenaline drop, but more than that... dunno, my personal take. I'd prefer to vote for board games. Not because I'm involved in making art for those (which I am), but because I've learned through it that those are way more social : Is not u and your screen, you get to talk and interact with other people "in person", instead of joe517 and wolverine81. There's a huge difference. Even if it were only so that makes u move your butt from the chair. And I mean both board and card games. Of course, nothing is excluding the other : You can do all with good organization....

     


  13. Thank you very much both, it is really appreciated ! . I was mostly thinking I had a very narrow possibility of later on making possible that a 3000 series would work in a current board. I will save no buck in the mother board then, I am putting that boards list to a document, is long enough to find one of those locally. Thanks!. It is specially cool that I'd be able to use a machine of that range of capability. I've seen the specs of the incoming series, and it just blows my mind, totally. About the 2600, I have been considering it. Even more, so to put the money in a Wacom Cintiq or alternative (as I paint a lot) even considered the now dirty cheap 1600, as in many benchmarks is quite a decent machine.

     

    The problem is that where the machine stops more my workflow is in 3D rendering and video rendering. Mostly the former. And Blender Cycles renderer LOVES Ryzen machines, attending to benchmarks. I can set how many threads I want to use inside Blender, and this is also very convenient at times. In tests, and my own work experience,  seems the 2 extra cores (4 extra threads), or any number of extra threads do benefit greatly the rendering times. But is always a balance with clock speed and other cpu features. The number of cores alone is not enough (8700k does beat some cpus with more cores, due to the brute force). The 1700 has proven to be really good in rendering. Otherwise I would definitely would be looking more towards a 2600 / 2600x, seems is better in single core (which Adobe apps favor greatly). The 2700X was only in case I find myself in the circumstance that the 3000 series get a huge delay (hope not!!), or.... which I don't know....Could happen? that being a high end inside mainstream... might see its price drastically reduced when approaching the series 3000 launch. 

    Also, digital painting software, 2D editing applications, 3D ones... all is asking for more cores, more clock, better CPUs ( Krita, a digital painting app, gets benefit from the CPU cache for the brush size !)... today anything 1st gen is bottlenecking hugely for work production, even with a (geekly) super fine tuned system.

     

    Thanks a gazillion both, I'm kind of familiar with tech (though not at all with mobos and power supplies), but was finding nowhere something even slightly solid in favor of purchasing now the machine. I would be even fine with a 50% risk, as a 1700 or a 2600 are great machines. This clears the path !  :)

     


  14. So....Anyone would be so kind to recommend me what specs to look in (maybe is about brands?) a mother board, hopefully a B450 (is more modern than the 470 despite being middle range?) , so that mostly I could upgrade to a nice series 3000 Ryzen in July. It would be fantastic if also would be one expected to work fine with say, a 2700 or 2700x. But my main worry is that the B450 (or 470) board could at least work at a 90% of the performance (compared to purchasing a 570 in its moment).

     

    My huge issue is not being able to wait till July, and I use the computer for work ( 3D rendering, video editing, general 2D, etc). So, I was thinking in purchasing a B450 or 470 right now, and buy a Ryzen 7 1700, as they seem to be at a nice price now in my local area, and money is short for now (will be somewhat better in July, surely), but this compared to my i7 860 is a big (huge) jump forward, by any benchmark I've been able to use putting my old machine in. Then hope for it'd be possible an upgrade of the bios, and buy a series 3000 cpu in July. I "might" be able to purchase a full new machine by then, but it could be as well that bills make that quite non convenient, even if possible. Thing is, I work slow with this old machine now, I've been able to tune the system a lot, so, till recently it was fine. Five months working slow is a ton fo money for a freelancer, too, so seems the purchase is a must. I don't mind intel or AMD, but I need the most cores (rendering) for the money, and a fine performance/cost ratio, while I rarely play games. So, seems AMD is for me...


  15. Hello everyone,


    Sorry if this is a 15 days old thread , but thought I could contribute, as is my bread and butter (not photography by any means, but image editing in general), I work with 2D/3D graphics since decades and am always putting a lot of attention to new things, trying them (just for my own sake) and all that. There are quite nice alternatives, today. I hope is fine if I put a list here, actually in my personal order of preference, for what they provide you with, how complete and good they are : 

     

    1 - Affinity Photo. Has been mentioned above, yep, is really good. Not yet a full Photoshop replacement, but is getting very near, specially latest customer betas (I have both Photo and Designer purchased since long ago). UI is very similar to Photoshop's, and in what is different, is actually very intuitive to learn. It can become easily your work horse for anything 2D. Other big advantages :  You count on a very similarly functional (not a toy) version of both (Photo and Designer) for the iPad. Extremely useful to carry work on the move, sharing SAME files. Affinity Publisher is incoming, a kind of InDesign/Quark Xpress yet this one is the tool to be farther from the established tools, of the bunch. At first years, Publisher will be more of a kind of beta, useful for not very demanding professionals. Still, the 3 applications give you a suite for DTP, vectors/design/illustration, publishing and Photography. Not bad (is around 50 euros each...No subscription, and free updates between entire numbers (1.x....till 2.x. They make a lot of versions in the middle, with new features and all). Being a suite, is interesting for a studio having to fill many seats. Or for a personal/freelance use getting the best bang for the buck and still at professional level. You can open RAW files and edit them, but is not fast processing them as would be a very specific RAW editing tool. You can also purchase Mac or Windows versions. Or both, ofc.

     

    2 - PaintShop Pro. This one is really old, but has been keeping updating from time to time, and being quite an easy to learn, good to use application for photo editing. This one would get one of my best recommendations for an easy UI. It has a system for the UI panels that is genius. Is very friendly and has depth. It used to come with a great gif animation tool, Animation Shop, really well done. Not much more to say, but just that: it's a very nice software. Only one thing... I read once in a forum, that there's certain issue with their internal sRGB profile (through which all images are processed). So, I'd check the status of that previous to anything, in their forums, as is quite an important matter. It surely is fixed already.  https://www.paintshoppro.com/es/products/paintshop-pro/

     

    3 - PhotoLine. I dislike the UI, quite (outdated, not too friendly, still, easier than Gimp's). Yet though...in some aspects is way more powerful than the two other above, in very technical matters that most photographers or over all many-fields 2D people wont notice. But there are important bits that are not essential, or even noticed by the average Joe, but are really interesting for a professional use. So, this one is good, too. It always makes my number 3 in my personal list because it has certain features you don't even find in Photoshop. Is indeed a good idea so to have it, even if your main tool is other, as a great technical helper.  https://www.pl32.com

     

    Now, the following ones following are some I have not deeply used, only occasionally , but offer a good deal for the price and feature set and good quality for production, together with some other advantages :

     

    4 -  ACDsee Photo Studio. Quite much into the RAW editing, it seems. but is not a RAW editor, but a photo editing application.  I've heard good things from this, I used it quite when it was only an asset manager. It was kind of the one able to open better certain high end native formats.  https://www.acdsee.com/en/products/photo-studio-ultimate

     

    5 - Photoshop Elements. It's good and nice, but is not a Photoshop trimmed down. It feels like a different thing. And too limited for my taste (Affinity Photo's or PaintShop Pro's feature set is quite wider). You get  a lot more for half of the price with Affinity Photo. Plus, I don't fully trust on this not getting into the CC subscription pack at some point... ( I don't have to put the URL of this one, right? Not that I wished.... ;)

    I intentionally don't put Gimp on the list, because, while I think is much better and deeper than most people think (I've used it for years) a lot of people get stuck in the UI. If you are used to hard UIs, I'd say, give it a try. It has in its favor an immense depth, for the cost of absolutely nothing, free. I like it, but I don't typically find people thinking the same. I've used harder UIs, maybe is due to that. Most people has the image in their mind of an application stuck in its progress for 6 years, but recently has caught new impulse, and now is progressing at good pace.

     

    Summarizing : Affinity Photo, Paintshop Pro or PhotoLine, those are my best recommendations. As you seem to deal quite with RAWs, I'd say, try as well ACDsee Photo Studio, as I have heard it deals well with RAWs. Affinity Photo is only 10 days trial, and because is quite a good piece of software, I'd advice not to test all at once if that is going to remove time of testing Photo. A fast test can carry also to a wrong impression, and it'd be a pitty. Paintshop Pro is a joy in terms of interface. It has no support of CMYK mode, but most photographers wont care about that. PhotoLine supports about everything on earth, and allows you do very advanced technical things, but it depends on what you need for your workflow. If it is all about RAWs, might be a good idea to try ACDsee Photo Studio. And super obviously, RAWTherapee and DarkTable.

    Plus, each one's preference for an UI is always different. I think the  best bet is to try them all, see how it goes.

     

    Wasn't asked, but if looking in general for alternatives, I'd have a look at Davinci Resolve as a video editor, and now Fusion is integrated inside it, a kind of After Effects (just WAY less resources hungry). You have a very generous free version (wont edit full 4k for free), so, you can test it endlessly previous to purchase. The permanent license is 300 bucks, but you get a real lot for that, as the package is quite serious. From other company, you have also Hitfilm Express, which is free, again, the Pro is where things gets interesting (it's quite into effects stuff). There's quite some hype about Davinci, imo quite logically, and also about Hitfilm,. but I think the latter is because is much more intuitive to learn, while I believe Davinci is more powerful. A probably easier to learn video editor, yet quite capable, for those not going for very advanced editing, could be Sony Vegas. I used this one a lot at certain company, is nice, behaves well.

     

    For some basic audio editing, you don't go wrong with Audacity (free)  https://www.audacityteam.org . I've even created/edited game FX loops with that one.

     

    I hope that was somewhat helpful.

     

    Salute! 

     

     

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