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 Ulead GIF/JPEG Smartsaver

Type of Program:Graphics
Supported Platforms:Windows 95/NT
Company Name:Ulead Systems
Version:1.1a
Price:$29.95 (Free for PhotoImpact Users)
Installed Size:1.5M
Download Size:1.3M

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If you own Ulead PhotoImpact 3.0, this excellent Graphics optimizer installs as a permanent addition free of charge. If not, you have to pay $29.95 for the use of it after 30 days as it is time-limited.

GIF/JPEG Smartsaver is a standalone program in addition to being a Photoshop and PhotoImpact Plugin. It does what no other programs does ... gives you a dynamic preview of your initial file and the output GIF/JPEG file while you adjust settings to get the optimum compression and image quality. The final file size is also reflected so you can see whether the settings you applied have added or subtracted from the file size. What I like about it is its innate support for the Netscape and Internet Explorer Palette for GIFs which makes it a one-click method of optimizing GIFs for these 2 browsers. You can also pick multiple colours for GIF transparency instead of restricting yourself to only one.

This program is a must if you do WWW work and save time as the dynamic preview is accurate and takes a lot of the guesswork out ofdetermining the balance between image compression and image quality.

You can purchase it online using your credit card by pointing your browser to http://www.ulead.com. There are a couple of mirror sites but I have chosen to exclude them as Ulead Systems regularly update the program and few make it to the mirrors as they use the same filename for updates. My advice would be to log on to their ftp site using a FTP client and take a look at the file date to check whether your version is up-to-date.

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Reviewed by Stephen Chen


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