Softpedia Editor's Review for GIMP
GNU Image Manipulation Program
Written by Bogdan Popa on February 7th, 2012
Read an in-depth analysis in our professional review for GIMP
We’ve all heard of Photoshop and the great things it could do when it comes to photo manipulation, but for those who need an open-source free of cost alternative there is an answer: GIMP. Far from being a complete Photoshop replacement, it can easily play its role in many basic operations.
Installing GIMP is indeed a really simple task and if you want to customize the installation, there is a setup mode that accommodates this need. If you do choose to go for the latter variant, you can select the file types this software will handle, plus the tools that should be deployed on your computer.
Just like Photoshop, GIMP might seem impossible to use if you're not an experienced user, but it’s only a matter of time until you get used to the interface. The toolbox has all the basic elements you need to work with photos, but the interface can become a lot more difficult if you wish to do more complex things.
GIMP has everything from the most common tasks to more complex things such as effects and layers. Applying gradients and custom patterns will require minimal resources and on a fairly average system configuration batch processing can be successfully accomplished in quite a short time.
With GIMP you can retouch digital photos and create bitmaps from scratch, but it can work as well as an image format converter. Furthermore, the functionality of this tool can be extended by using one of the hundreds of plugins available.
All in all, GIMP can perform a wide variety of tasks and is suitable for novice and advanced users alike. The powerful feature pack and the multiple possibilities for customizing it make this software a must have for anyone who needs an extensible and expandable image manipulation utility.
Here are some key features of "GIMP":
· Full suite of painting tools including Brush, Pencil, Airbrush, Clone,
· Sub-pixel sampling for all paint tools for high quality anti-aliasing
· Extremely powerful gradient editor and blend tool
· Supports custom brushes and patterns
· Tile based memory management so image size is limited only by available disk space
· Virtually unlimited number of images open at one time
· Full alpha channel support
· Layers and channels
· Multiple Undo/Redo (limited only by diskspace)
· Editable text layers
· Transformation tools including rotate, scale, shear and flip
· Selection tools including rectangle, ellipse, free, fuzzy and intelligent
· Advanced path tool doing bezier and polygonal selections.
· Transformable paths, transformable selections.
· Quickmask to paint a selection.
· A Procedural Database for calling internal GIMP functions from
· external programs as in Script-fu
· Advanced scripting capabilities (Scheme, Python, Perl)
· Plug-ins which allow for the easy addition of new file formats and new
· effect filters
· Over 100 plug-ins already available
· Load and save animations in a convenient frame-as-layer format
· MNG support
· Frame Navigator (in GAP, the GIMP Animation Package)
· Onion Skin (in GAP, the GIMP Animation Package)
· Bluebox (in GAP, the GIMP Animation Package)
· File formats supported include bmp, gif, jpeg, mng, pcx, pdf, png, ps, psd, svg, tiff, tga, xpm, and many others
· Load, display, convert, save to many file formats
· SVG path import/export
What's New in This Release: [ read full changelog ]
· Move the OSX gimpdir to "~/Library/Application Support"
· Better names for the default filters in save and export
· Make tool drawing (esp. the brush outline) much more responsive
· Remember the "maximized" state across sessions
· Simplify the splash image code a lot, makes it appear immediately again
· Allow the text tool to start on an image without layers
· Various fixes for text style attribute handling
· Set unconfigured input devices to eraser if GTK+ says they are erasers
· Make language selectable in Preferences on OSX
· Make libgimp drawable combo boxes aware of layer groups
· Make sure plug-in windows appear on top on OSX
· Fix item width in GimpPageSelector (used e.g. in PDF import)
· Better default values in the Drop Shadow script
· Fix a whole bunch of bugs in the BMP plug-in
· On OSX, use the system's screenshot utility
· Add Brazilian-Portuguese translation to the Windows installer
Source and build system:
· Many improvements to...