December 18, 2014, 02:40:43 PM

Author Topic: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser  (Read 1525 times)

WilliamRuting

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Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« on: August 05, 2014, 09:18:51 AM »
I am in contact with Canon's Executive Response Team about their abandoning Zoombrowser for Imagebrowser.  I understand that Canon has made an upgraded version of Zoombrowser but it is only avialable to high-end camera customers.  I would appreciate any feedback from others on this issue.  Thank you.

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Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« on: August 05, 2014, 09:18:51 AM »

mackguyver

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2014, 09:32:35 AM »
I haven't heard anything about a special version, but I used and loved ZB for many years because it's so fast & simple.  IB is a bloated piece of crap that is always "updating the library" for 30 minutes before you can use it or downloading & installing updates and asking you to connect your camera via USB.  It makes DPP seem like the best application ever written :)

scottburgess

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2014, 04:12:24 PM »
I haven't heard anything about a special version, but I used and loved ZB for many years because it's so fast & simple.  IB is a bloated piece of crap that is always "updating the library" for 30 minutes before you can use it or downloading & installing updates and asking you to connect your camera via USB.  It makes DPP seem like the best application ever written :)

Yeah, I find waiting on IB too frustrating as well.  I would prefer a wholesale integration of all three (ZB, IB, DPP) into a single Lightroom-like application.  I would like to see a database used, as that greatly simplifies searches and almost anyone with Photoshop can use Bridge if they don't want a DB.

Why would I like this?  I don't believe I can dispense with Photoshop at this time.  And I think both amateurs and pros would appreciate a single application which facilitates reviewing, searching, lens corrections, and simple edits.  For early amateurs, it might eliminate the need for further software.  For advanced amateurs, it would streamline the Canon software ecosystem and make it more usable and attractive.  I think those could push increases in market share, too.

I would also love an application which accepts plugins.  Okay, maybe they won't be Photoshop/Lightroom plugins, but if a software writer could quickly modify those to work with the Canon platform, I'm sure at least a few of them would and it would open up opportunities for third parties to hook into the Canon software.  I can see that generating excitement for Canon products.  Can you imagine if Nik/Google suite apps were useable in your Canon software?

As I've noted before, I suspect that dropping support for older cameras was necessary (at least initially if not permanently) as part of the ZB move to 64-bit.  I own an older camera, but I am still happy with this decision by Canon because I can continue to use the older version of ZB if I choose.  I generally don't choose to use the Canon software because it is too time consuming to wait for IB, and no individual application has enough features by itself.  If Canon wants to invest time on the software, I think upgrading to a single, more fully featured platform is preferable to making newer software backward compatible with earlier cameras.  From a business standpoint, I am not clear why Canon is offering three separate applications.

jprusa

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2014, 05:09:55 PM »
I haven't heard anything about a special version, but I used and loved ZB for many years because it's so fast & simple.  IB is a bloated piece of crap that is always "updating the library" for 30 minutes before you can use it or downloading & installing updates and asking you to connect your camera via USB.  It makes DPP seem like the best application ever written :)
+1
The reason it is always updating is because they are always fixings problems. :)

pwp

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2014, 10:46:14 PM »
I wouldn't use either in a fit. Canon are close to unrivaled when it comes to cameras & lenses, but as software developers they really need to go back to school or out-source the whole area. At least it's free with your camera.

Some of the Canon software has an initially attractive looking GUI, but when it comes to deep functionality from a workflow perspective, most busy photographers will run a mile....usually in the direction of Photo Mechanic or the PC-only Breezebrowser Pro. Both of these offer generous test-drive periods, blinding speeds and modest cost of entry. Even Bridge CC feels slow and cumbersome by comparison.

It should've come as any surprise that Photo Mechanic is far and away the preferred browser software for busy photographers anywhere on the planet. Not quite as full-featured but very light on your system plus dazzlingly fast, Breezebrowser Pro is a great buy. I use both.

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mackguyver

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2014, 09:37:57 AM »
It should've come as any surprise that Photo Mechanic is far and away the preferred browser software for busy photographers anywhere on the planet. Not quite as full-featured but very light on your system plus dazzlingly fast, Breezebrowser Pro is a great buy. I use both.

-pw
I really like Photo Mechanic as well and the thing spits out thumbnails and displays RAW previews so fast it's amazing.  It's a bit pricey, but I like all of the metadata management tools as well.  Embedding IPTC data, geocodes and adjusting for daylight time mistakes and other clock issues is super easy.  I've tried Breezebrowser but didn't like it as well.

scottburgess

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2014, 01:50:03 PM »
I really like Photo Mechanic as well and the thing spits out thumbnails and displays RAW previews so fast it's amazing.  It's a bit pricey, but I like all of the metadata management tools as well.  Embedding IPTC data, geocodes and adjusting for daylight time mistakes and other clock issues is super easy.  I've tried Breezebrowser but didn't like it as well.

Okay, a couple quick questions about Photo Mechanic:
1) Can one edit the lens used in the metadata editing?  That is one specific edit most programs don't support even when they support metadata changes.  But I have a few nonstandard "lenses," so it matters to me.
2) Does Photo Mechanic support Canon's latest .cr2 format?
3) Their website indicates that export to Lightroom is possible.  How about Photoshop, and will Photo Mechanic then preview the returned .psd file in the contact sheet, or at least create an entry for it so I know it's there?

Thanks in advance for any help.  It sounds like the company may offer a DB as an add-on product soon, so this may be a product worth watching, provided the cost doesn't go too high.


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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2014, 01:50:03 PM »

mackguyver

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2014, 02:03:53 PM »
Scott, see my answers below:

Okay, a couple quick questions about Photo Mechanic:
1) Can one edit the lens used in the metadata editing?  That is one specific edit most programs don't support even when they support metadata changes.  But I have a few nonstandard "lenses," so it matters to me.
Not sure, but probably not.  The concept of PM is generally to preserve EXIF data while adding IPTC data.
2) Does Photo Mechanic support Canon's latest .cr2 format?
Yes - it has supported all current and old Canon RAW files I've thrown at it.
3) Their website indicates that export to Lightroom is possible.  How about Photoshop, and will Photo Mechanic then preview the returned .psd file in the contact sheet, or at least create an entry for it so I know it's there?
You can open your files in any application you choose and PM automatically updates the thumbnails and previews as soon as you save them to disk.
Thanks in advance for any help.  It sounds like the company may offer a DB as an add-on product soon, so this may be a product worth watching, provided the cost doesn't go too high.
They've been working on that for a long time, but the nice thing is that Windows loves all of the PM embedded metadata so you can search your indexed drives with it in the meantime.  I'm curious to see how the asset management tool ends up as that's a weaker point of my workflow right now.

pwp

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2014, 08:32:50 PM »
It sounds like the company may offer a DB as an add-on product soon, so this may be a product worth watching, provided the cost doesn't go too high.
They've been working on that for a long time, but the nice thing is that Windows loves all of the PM embedded metadata so you can search your indexed drives with it in the meantime.  I'm curious to see how the asset management tool ends up as that's a weaker point of my workflow right now.
I've been getting a bit impatient waiting for the CameraBits (PhotoMechanic) DAM (Digital Asset Management) package that has been months away for a few years now. It's been a longer wait than for the 24-70 f/2.8II and the 7DII.

But kudos to Kirk and the team at CameraBits for not releasing a product that they didn't have 100% confidence in. History is littered with ruined companies that rushed underdeveloped products onto market only to leave a previously good reputation in tatters. It takes years to grow such a strong reputation for rock-solid product and support that CameraBits has. But you can lose all that in a heartbeat with a mis-timed release.

Still, this is no reason not to commit to PhotoMechanic. It's the best there is. In fact, it's a certainty that holders of PhotoMechanic licences will get a loyalty ticket "nice-price" offer from CameraBits when the DAM package eventually ships.

-pw

mackguyver

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2014, 09:55:14 AM »
It sounds like the company may offer a DB as an add-on product soon, so this may be a product worth watching, provided the cost doesn't go too high.
They've been working on that for a long time, but the nice thing is that Windows loves all of the PM embedded metadata so you can search your indexed drives with it in the meantime.  I'm curious to see how the asset management tool ends up as that's a weaker point of my workflow right now.
I've been getting a bit impatient waiting for the CameraBits (PhotoMechanic) DAM (Digital Asset Management) package that has been months away for a few years now. It's been a longer wait than for the 24-70 f/2.8II and the 7DII.

But kudos to Kirk and the team at CameraBits for not releasing a product that they didn't have 100% confidence in. History is littered with ruined companies that rushed underdeveloped products onto market only to leave a previously good reputation in tatters. It takes years to grow such a strong reputation for rock-solid product and support that CameraBits has. But you can lose all that in a heartbeat with a mis-timed release.

Still, this is no reason not to commit to PhotoMechanic. It's the best there is. In fact, it's a certainty that holders of PhotoMechanic licences will get a loyalty ticket "nice-price" offer from CameraBits when the DAM package eventually ships.

-pw
It has been a long wait, though I fear the pricing, even with a loyalty discount!  Given the time they have put into it plus the cost of competing high-end DAM packages, I wonder if it will be affordable.

LDS

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2014, 01:25:59 PM »
I am in contact with Canon's Executive Response Team about their abandoning Zoombrowser for Imagebrowser.  I understand that Canon has made an upgraded version of Zoombrowser but it is only avialable to high-end camera customers.  I would appreciate any feedback from others on this issue.  Thank you.

Canon should reconsider its investment in IB, because AFAIK it is MS Silverlight based, and AFAIK Microsoft has abandoned Silverlight development. Support will be available until 2021, though. Maybe rewriting it with a different technology, maybe portable to devices like tablets, would be sensible today.

I understand the need for a browser separated from DPP for all those PowerShot/Ixus users who don't use DPP, but DPP users will also need tight integration into a browser application, and IMHO using different user interface frameworks for the products is not a good idea.

Just I believe it's difficult to deliver a product with an easy to use interface for amateur photographers, and a powerful one for prosumer and professional ones. Probably is better to leave IB as an entry-level, easy to use tool for the low-end market, and add good browsing/catalog/search functions to DPP, being able to work in a single application with different "perspectives" is better than switching from an app to another, especially if they also don't share a common user interface.
Just I don't know if the return from free tools for Canon camera users justify such an investment. especially many are probably using other tools like LR.

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Re: Zoombrowser v. Imagebrowser
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2014, 01:25:59 PM »