It’s also worth noting that the software also lets you share the slideshows (and still image galleries) via Nero’s Photoshow Circle website – when you buy PhotoShow Deluxe 4 you get a premium membership. Once uploaded you can invite people to go and have a look – the site uses Flash to display your Photoshows.
Of course as well as the slideshow features, the software also throws in a number of other tools, but given that this package costs just £15 it’s surprising to discover that they’re not just there to make up the numbers. The photo management software can’t match the facilities of Picasa – it’s largest thumbnail size isn’t really big enough, for example, and the application window can’t be expanded to run full screen without it choking the resolution of the whole screen down to 800 x 600 – but its Quick views feature, which lets you look at photos by year and month, recently viewed and so on is a doddle to use and works really well.
The image editing facilities are a pleasant surprise too, and include a range of Photoshop-like filters and tools (there’s even a clone tool here) on top of the usual red-eye reduction, brightness and contrast tools. You can also add animated captions to individual images that can be automatically incorporated into Photoshows later.
Add to this backup tools, the ability to create screensavers from photoshows, a desktop background that cycles through your photo collection, and photo emailing facilities and you’ve got a surprisingly comprehensive digital photo toolkit.
I’m not going to pretend that PhotoShow Deluxe 4 is a tool for the serious photographer or even keen amateur. I’m not even going to make out that it’s perfect in every way. You can get more powerful management and photo editing tools without spending a penny and some areas of the package – such as the thumbnail view and lack of proper full screen mode – could do with a bit of spit and polish.
It is, however, easy and fun to use and offers an enjoyable alternative way of organising and viewing your photographs – in fact it might just bring that massive and unwieldy digital photo collection back to life. And for just £15 it’s also extremely good value for money.