Viewing and Editing Images with Nero

very good
key review info
application features
  • Large number of effects
  • (7 more, see all...)

As plenty of users know, among the applications included in Nero multimedia suite, there is also an image viewer that doubles as an image editor as well. PhotoSnap Viewer is the tool that loads up the images for viewing purposes. Modifying an image can be easily be done by quickly snapping to editing mode of the application.

The purpose of the image viewer in Nero may seem quite simple at first, that of loading up images and showing them to you, but as it is the case with all photo viewers nowadays, this sort of software must have a few more features than this basic one. In the case of Nero PhotoSnap Viewer, the options are as simple as they can be, since it addresses the average user and not a professional one. But even so, the application manages to provide information about the currently loaded image, lets you zoom in and out up to a certain point, rotate the picture by 90 degrees to the right or left, and of course, send it to the printer.

Picture information reading is one of the most important features in Nero PhotoSnap Viewer, especially for a photography aficionado, as it gives the size of the picture, resolution and metadata details like orientation, software used to modify it, last modification date, or EXIF specific data. As far as supported graphic formats go, the viewer is perfectly capable of loading all popular file types and some of the less known ones to the general audience (DIB, JFIF, PCX, PPM, TGA, WMF, CUT, DDS, IFF, KOA, PCD, PBM, RAS, etc.).

Although there isn’t much to expect from an image viewer, the latest standards impose the possibility of slideshowing the files. Even the default alternative under Windows comes equipped with such a feature. However, there is another downside in the application, that may leave new users disconcerted and that is the hotkey map for handling the viewing. None of the options in the menu bar benefit from shortcut association and you will have to guess your way, unless familiar with the buttons that are generally employed in such apps. In the case of Nero’s photo viewer you can use Page Up/Down when in full screen to move to the next file or the mouse (which is more intuitive).

Image viewer aside, there is a much important part to linger on and that is PhotoSnap program, the light image editor offered in Nero suite. Snap into it through the “Edit” button of the viewer (far left part of the toolbar).

Editing images with PhotoSnap is no complicated thing because of the intuitive interface and extremely easy to use set of tools. These are all waiting to be accessed in the right hand part of the application window, allowing the view of the loaded picture. Any modification of the current graphic file will not be automatically applied, leaving this in your hands, whenever you are content with all the changes. The beautiful part is that PhotoSnap lets you view both the saved content as well as the copy you work on. Undo/Redo options are available, but, as expected, work only for the current copy of the image on which you make the changes and as soon as you save them, reverting to the original state is out of the question.

The tools sported by the application are among the most diverse, although not at the best standards a professional might expect. This is, after all, an editor designed for quick fixing an image by the average user. The fairly large amount of tools present (29) is split into two distinct sections: main and other. In the first category you’ll find utilities for modifying exposure, color balance, resize the image, crop it to a specific dimension, adjust lens distortion, play with brightness and contrast levels, remove or add noise, sharpen it up, remove red eye effect, fix hot pixels, or rotate the photo.

In the other team, you get more effects than tools to enhance the picture to a better look. Included here are embossing, gray scale conversion, color inversion, vignetting, and aging effect, glowing, posterizing, solarizing or applying a watery look. One of the best features in the application is previewing of all the changes made. In this respect, you can check the mini window in the lower right part of the screen or go with the larger, split preview which displays the original file and the modified one side by side.

Handling any of the tools or filters present requires no strong experience with image editing. In fact, working with them is so easy that a beginner user would feel quite comfortable. The only information required, though, is about what each option does and how it impacts on the picture. Regarding overall quality of the filters, a trained eye will realize the distance to a professional result.

Nero PhotoSnap provides a plethora of filters and effects to play with and reach a result very different from the original file. It is extremely easy to work with and makes the changes in no time. Auto fixing options can make a big difference by modifying the colors, exposure and noise of the photo. However, the application must not be taken for anything different than a comfortable and easy way to hastily add some effects or correct certain parts of a picture.

The Good

All popular image formats are supported, and then some, as less used picture types can be loaded. Picture information area reveals the specifics of the file.

Image editing lets you save different settings profiles that can be applied as many times as you need a specific look. The amount of filters and tools is truly impressive.

The Bad

The image viewer lacks slideshow function which nowadays has grown in importance, especially with the possibility of switching the view to larger screens.

Although PhotoSnap is packed with filters able to apply the most varied effects, it is clear that they are not Nero’s strongest point.

The Truth

If the viewer lacks some features that are nowadays added by default in software alike, it comes with editing features above the ones in the regular image viewers on the market. The sheer number of effects is overwhelming for the average user, though not impressing a professional. However, it makes for a good option when looking for quickly applying some pretty cool effects like aging, duotone, solarizing, or a combination of all these.
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user interface 5
features 4
ease of use 5
pricing / value 4

final rating 4
Editor's review
very good
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