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3.9 out of 5 stars
Photo and Video Pro Suite X5
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
BACKGROUND AND USE ENVIRONMENT

I am a part-time professional photographer with occasional need for video production that integrates image stills. I am a subscriber (and heavy user) to the entire Adobe Creative Cloud, which is often like using a grenade to just open a door; so, I thought I would check out this software for comparison. A possible point to consider in my comparison is that I import very high quality still images into video and need to maintain quality in upscaling. I am working with a Nikon D300s for both still and video.

GENERAL OBSERVATIONS

I found Corel Photo & Video Suite X5 to be powerful enough for 99% of all users and probably many users that are just turning "pro." Compared to Adobe Premier and Photoshop (and even Lightroom 4 to a lesser degrees)and all the intrinsic reported flaws throughout the versions, this software provides a welcome level of comparative simplicty. The learning curve is fairly minimal, especially coming from Adobe. This may be due to the years of use I have with Adobe and concede that possibility. However, this program seems to deliver to regular users as evidenced by the use of sliders, high-pass sharpening, noise reduction, and a myriad of Photoshop familiar features. For those unaware, the Photo software included in this suite is Paint Shop Pro X5. Paint Shop Pro has been around for many years and actually mimics Adobe Photoshop quite a bit.

PERFORMANCE AND USABILITY

Usability is the first word to come to mind in reviewing performance. I am using an Intel I-7 930 processor with Windows 7 and 16GB of RAM and the program seems solid and stable. When developing longer or HD movies, you will most likely encounter decreased performance, which is completely normal. Older versions of Adobe Premiere or Photoshop could most assuredly bog your system down for absolutely no reason and drive you crazy trying to troubleshoot. However, the latest versions are significantly improved. As I mentioned before, I deal with high quality image import (very large file sizes). Believe it or not, the older versions of Adobe Premiere usually gave me problems with retaining quality on import whereas this program does not. X5 also includes a number of video effects and more are available for free download from Corel. In fact, most users will probably never need more for their entire life, even if they start shooting pro (photo or video). Burning CD's can be an absolute nightmare with this program and I would another alternative. We are talking 7-10 hours burning. Forget it (I knocked off a star for this).

SUMMATION

This software comes at a great price point and will likely continue apply downward price pressure to competing products. I would recommend it to nearly all but the most advanced users. In fact, when I give photography classes, I typically tell my students to try free programs first, especially if they are not working RAW formats. It is somewhat unfair to compare Adobe Premier or Photoshop (full versions) because the intended user is much different and requires very advanced features. A key difference between this Video Studio Pro X5 and VideoStudio Pro X5 Ultimate is the absence of the special effects package. I did notice a few clunky interface issues in that I had to refer to the help functions or online information to figure out what I wanted to do. No big deal, especially since I do that a hundred times a day with Adobe Premier or Photoshop. I recommend you use the Corel Guide and included tutorials.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon November 20, 2012
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a decent program, and it handles a wide range of input files, outputting them to a variety of different formats. I am going to keep looking though, for the perfect program for me. My main complaints with this one were the extremely slow rendering speeds. It takes hours to process a video. I also did not care for the preset DVD menu templates. I was unable to create a custom menu, using, say, a background photo that I wanted. I could inset the background photo, but unfortunately, the program only lets you select pre-formatted menu templates, which include embedded movie images in your menu, which cannot be deleted.

I did find it pretty easy to edit out portions of a video clip. A couple snips where you want to cut, and you can delete segments of your video with ease. I also have to give kudos to Corel for having a lengthy .pdf users manual available for download online. The manual is ok, but the descriptions are pretty weak, and it uses lots of terminology that the writers assume you know, but which is not self-evident. For example, it will use the names of menus, which are not labeled on-screen, so you are not sure what menu the manual is talking about.

My laptop barely met the system requirements, and in fact, came in a bit under. So another recommendation would be to take very seriously the sytem requirements. The program worked for me, but it loaded very slowly, and crashed sometimes. You need a fast, new system to run this.

All in all, a solid program, but I know there are better ones out there.
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39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Corel's Photo and Video Pro Suite X5 comes with 2 CD's. One is Paintshop Pro X5 and the other is VideoStudio Pro X5. I only currently work with pictures so this review will be about Paintshop Pro, which deals with photo editing. I have used extensively Picasa from Google, which is a free simple photo management application. I use Picasa to store, download from my camera, and manage my photos, as well as email them through gmail. I have also used Serif Photoplus X5 which is much like this Corel software. I haven't used Adobe Photoshop, which is the professional and rather costly flagship of photo editing. First of all, Serif and this Corel software have a rather slow learning curve to fully use all the features. This offers many tutorials through Youtube and help options to navigate throught the editing step-by-step.

My first impression is the Corel software has a much friendlier user interface, which to me, is extremely important. If your need is to just adjust the brightness, contrast or color, or fix red eye, mostly any photo software will do that. This software offers those functions by an "Enhance Photo" drop down list including One Step Photo Fix & Smart Photo Fix. These options do a great job if you want to keep it simple.

Corel also offers a very easy to use "Instant Effects" pallette, which allows one click adjustments to your picture and an easy to reverse to original arrow. There are many choices High Contrast to Skin smoothing for Portraits. This will yield some very creative and interesting photos.

For the advanced editor, which I've only scratched the surface, this software will use layers, work with RAW camera output, and basically do everything but take the picture.

Photoshop costs about $550 and this Corel software $125. For the amateur photographer, I would recommend trying this Photo Suite X5 and use the savings on some more equipment. Once you learn how to use this software, I'm sure this will bridge to Photoshop, if in the future you need more editing options.

Again, this is very powerful software for the money with a user friendly interface, but will take some time to utilize it's full capabilities.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2012
Format: CD-ROM
User friendly and pre-loaded with tons of useful videos, photos and music.
Available tutorials are relevant, short and to the point.
Adding your own videos, photos and music is a snap.
.
Granted 12 hours to process then burn the first 1-hour, 25-minute DVD-DL is using the dual pass method. Still, single pass still takes around 6 hours.
Thankfully, subsequent copies were around 20 minutes per. (However ANY change - such as adding/removing one second of content -
and guess what: you're back on the 12 or 6 hour treadmill!) So preview and three-view before clicking that "Share" tab.
.
For that patience, you ARE REWARDED with a very impressive, artistic and professional looking project.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon November 2, 2012
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is a package with two separate programs inside (on individual disks). The first being PaintShop Pro and the second being Video Studio Suite. Both programs are perfect for both the novice photographer or movie maker as well as those more experienced. I'll start with the review of PaintShop Pro.

PaintShop Pro

I have owned PaintShop Pro since the late 1990s when it was owned by Jasc Software. I loved it and what I could do with photos from the moment I loaded it. Alas, as digital pictures became more and more higher resolution and computer OSes continued to grow - it became obvious that my beloved PSP would no longer work. (Gave it up completely when I grew into Win7). So when I was offered this by Corel (which bought the program and distribution rights in 2004) - I jumped.

Boy, has this program come a long way. It can handle any photos I throw at it including Raw format files. (Although Corel's AfterShot Pro does even more). Simple and intuitive to use, even the newest novice can be manipulating pictures soon after the install is complete. Run into trouble and there are plenty of tutorials online at the Corel website as well as an extensive help section within the program.

No, this isn't comparable to Adobe Photoshop - but may well be to Photoshop Elements. I do know that PSP does not have the learning curve of Elements and that is a good thing for someone who just wants to sit down and make their photos better. PaintShop Pro is also a huge step from Picassa, which is the free program from Google. If you can use Picassa - PSP will be simple for you to adapt to in a very short time.

VideoStudio Pro

This is the program to buy if you don't want to hand over the cash for a 'professional' video editor such as Adobe Premiere or Sony Vegas Pro. Like all Corel products, you can sit down and begin making movies from your video clips in a very short time as the editor is very intuitive. Big step up from Microsoft Movie Maker or Apples iMovie.

While there are a number of products out there that are comparable (CyberLink's Power Director and Sony's Vegas Studio come to mind), VSP is the program to get if you are just starting out in making your own movies. Tutorials and help abounds both within the program and online at the Corel website.

Bottom line - if you just want to touch up your photos or make simple movies - either of these programs will work wonderfully for you.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 5, 2012
Format: CD-ROMVerified Purchase
Could not install since both installation disks had errors, had a chat with Corel customer service and they said they would replace the installation disks but would required a "Small fee". WHAT !!!! brand new installation disks came with errors, the box had no physical damage...and to top it all I wasted more than 3 hours...

I just lost $50 dollars, but will never buy a Corel software again...small fee...what if the replacement disks came defective too, another "small fee" would apply...no way...I am not wasting more time or money...

I want my money and time back !!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2013
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Corel Photo and Video Suite X5 has all the potential to be great software. From what I was able to do with it, it seems to work fairly intuitively and batch processed all of my .RAW files easily into .JPG format. My issue with this software is that it says that 2GB of RAM are required to run this software, with four or higher recommend. I've currently got 4GB in my machine with a 2.4 Ghz processor and I didn't have enough steam to smoothly run the program. Everything felt stilted and glitchy. It works, but the lag time made me switch back to GIMP. They should up the requirements to 4GB necessary with 6GB recommended. As soon as I boost my system with some more RAM, I think this will be my go-to editing program.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
It's always great to get your hands with one of these programs. With a family of 6, this Photo and Video Pro Suite X5 is a great program to touch up your photos or make simple movies that help give professional results to your media efforts. The instructions are easy to follow for both the photo and video editing tools features. It is hard to fully share all of the features packed into the software there are so many. Photo editing not only includes the expected adjustment tools for retouching, filtering, lighting and color but also offers bonuses like a small selection of royalty free images, custom photo book and more.

Video editing has a range of tools and even includes the ability to make 3D movies and view them with 3D specs, which is also included in the package. One very nice feature of this Photo and Video Pro Suite X5 is the sharing feature. You can post photos directly to your Facebook and Flickr directly from the software. You can also post your homemade videos to YouTube, Facebook, IPhone and other sites. Highly Recommended.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format: CD-ROMVerified Purchase
The advertisement for this product included:

Product Features

- Enhanced! Manage, adjust and edit modes
- Including award-winning NIK Color Efex Pro 3.0 photographic filters
- NEW! Single RAW Photo
- NEW! Graduated Filter effect
- Use new social media integration to instantly share your creations on

Color Efex Pro is only included with Paintshop Pro X5 Ultimate! I feel ripped off!!!

Photo and Video Pro Suite X5
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Format: CD-ROMVine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The major difference between this VideoStudio Pro X5 and the VideoStudio Pro X5 Ultimate is the absence (in this version) of the special effects. In my book, that's all right, because the special effect add ons included in the Ultimate version amount to much ado about nothing. They install only with great difficulty, causing endless hassles with popups and system hangups. Not to mention, the Ultimate version includes no instructions on how to use all those troublesome, not to say useless, extras.

The Corel Guide includes tutorials for the novice, although the novice will also need extra help from outside sources. If you buy this program, expect to need more instructions than those offered here. Apart from that need, this is a nice program.

The added benefit is that --- for under $100 --- you ALSO get PaintShop Pro X5. For that too, novices will need a manual and very likely some outside assistance.

But at this price --- with all the benefits and none of the "add on" hassles of VideoStudio Pro X5 Ultimate --- these two programs in one box are a very nice deal.
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