Author Topic: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?  (Read 2425 times)

Offline haxago

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 3
    • View Profile
To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« on: March 03, 2018, 01:51:02 pm »
Hello everyone,

I am hesitating on buying Photo Mechanic.
Here is why. Few reasons that may be valid or not depending on the point of view.

Version 5.0 was released in 2012(?)
We are in 2018 and the current version is still 5.0.

Six years for one version that seems like a lot for an app. Certainly, there have been builds addressing bugs and system compatibility, but have there been any miles stones during those past 6 years? Any customers feature requests integrated into the app?

I've seen here some users are asking already years ago about versions 6. And the answer was, more or less: "Yes we are developing but not communicating about the future of our app"

Versioning and mystery in here are not very reassuring. $150 might not be a fortune for a good application, but still, I am not sure I would like to invest in a kind of a "Zombie app" (hope it's not :)

When trying the demo, I have this feeling: powerful functions, speed is just stunning. All this with a very ugly face - GUI is kind of old and the ergonomy is from past ages.

For developing my RAWs I am using Capture One 11 now. Cataloging and culling Capture One 11 too. This app is one of a top choice for RAW development and is better and better for culling. Yet, I've been recently trying Keenai service - it's intelligent and smart functions could give some ideas to CameraBits developers.

So could we have some deeper insights from CameraBits developers?
Yet, the new CameraBits website is maybe a kind of hint that customers will see something new about the Photo Mechanic in the near future? Or 5.0 is here forever? LOL ;)

Cheers,
Haxago


Offline MickO

  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 264
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2018, 09:41:40 am »
Hi there haxago,

You do make some interesting observations and assumptions.  One thing you seemed to leave out is what we think is perhaps the most important question:

Does Photo Mechanic help you do your job better?

If the answer is yes, then I'd say buy it. If not, then no.

The rest is very philosophical, and that's fine. But at the end of the day, we're trying to make useful software, not conform to a Platonic ideal of a software company. If the end product is useful for you, that's awesome.  If not, that's fine too. We will keep trying to improve, at the best pace we can.

Thanks for the post,

Mick
----------------------
Mick O
Camera Bits

Offline RogueMD

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 23
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2018, 01:39:57 pm »

Does Photo Mechanic help you do your job better?

It seems many don't understand what PM's role is. If they don't then I suspect they either don't need it, or don't know they need it...

I've tried a few of the new programs but nothing, absolutely nothing, performs the IPTC data functions that PM does, and since that has not changed in years, the only fixes needed are to keep it working the same as the OS's shift beneath it.



Offline Vaterfreuden

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2018, 02:56:28 pm »
I unterstand what the Thread opener  means. I think about the same.
6 years is a lot for one version. There is no discussion about that in todays world.

The graphical User Interface has a little old touch. The question on this also ok.

No question about the Performance and Speed. That is really great. I tested it today.


I think the Thread opener and me want to know if a Future Version is planned / in development and if there will be good Support in future before  spending the money
« Last Edit: March 05, 2018, 03:00:32 pm by Vaterfreuden »

Online Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 18264
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2018, 06:06:06 pm »
I unterstand what the Thread opener  means. I think about the same.
6 years is a lot for one version. There is no discussion about that in todays world.

The graphical User Interface has a little old touch. The question on this also ok.

Could you and the creator of the thread specify what exactly you find wanting in the UI?

I think the Thread opener and me want to know if a Future Version is planned / in development and if there will be good Support in future before  spending the money

PM6 is definitely in development and our support for our products is considered by many to be the best in the industry.

-Kirk

Offline Vaterfreuden

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2018, 11:57:57 pm »

Could you and the creator of the thread specify what exactly you find wanting in the UI?

PM6 is definitely in development and our support for our products is considered by many to be the best in the industry.

-Kirk

With the UI - i think the green and blue arrows seem to be a little old design - but i like them to be so big.

That PM 6 is in development --> This is one of the things we wanted to hear i think. Also the fast response here in the forum and my asking for a new trial code (last one expired in 2015) was answered immediately.

So for that i thnik it is an easy decision to say BUY IT.  ;D

Offline haxago

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 3
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2018, 08:36:14 am »
Hi there haxago,

One thing you seemed to leave out is what we think is perhaps the most important question:

Does Photo Mechanic help you do your job better?

If the answer is yes, then I'd say buy it. If not, then no.


Mick


Hello Mick, Hello everyone

Thanks a lot for your reply. I left the question "of the job well done" for the purpose - there is no doubt Photo Mechanic do what it was meant to and with a great speed. One hour with the app to be convinced about is already sufficient.

If I have turned my question the way you do Mick, IMHO there would be no discussion - "does PM5.0 help to do a better job?" - the answer is "yes".
If we stick with such a conclusion, Photo Mechanic 5.0 will do the job next ten years too.


And here is the point. When I buy an app, I subscribe not only to the "job well done" of the app but the whole environment that goes with it. As a photographer, I use RAW editors, bitmap editors, portfolio managers, backup solutions, every single day. I care about tools I use, so this is why I ask questions being a regular user or when I think I will be ;)  I am happy when the app I use propose new better solutions - my work is then easier, simpler. I can go quicker through technical concerns and concetrate on the conceptual side of the photo work. 


Cheers
Haxago








Offline haxago

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 3
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2018, 09:00:40 am »
I unterstand what the Thread opener  means. I think about the same.
6 years is a lot for one version. There is no discussion about that in todays world.

The graphical User Interface has a little old touch. The question on this also ok.

Could you and the creator of the thread specify what exactly you find wanting in the UI?

I think the Thread opener and me want to know if a Future Version is planned / in development and if there will be good Support in future before  spending the money

PM6 is definitely in development and our support for our products is considered by many to be the best in the industry.

-Kirk


Hi again,

OK, I'll grab some info about the graphics interphase and will post it here later. That might take me some time ;) - days are shorts and lots to do ;)
Otherwise, the ergonomy questions should be revised at the same stage - GUI goes together with ergonomy: how easy is to accomplish a given task (number of mouse clicks...) The position of commands, visibility, the hierarchy of information and so on.

We have a chance to deal with something that is very aesthetic: photography. So the tools that serve photography should mind that aesthetical purpose: be as neutral as possible not to come in the way of what we are looking at.

I am very general now, but when concrete examples will come I think it's going to be clear enough ;)

Cheers
Haxago

Offline Kevin M. Cox

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 328
  • PM 5.0 Build 19094 on OS X 10.12.6
    • View Profile
    • Kevin M. Cox | Photojournalist
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2018, 02:39:57 pm »
...our support for our products is considered by many to be the best in the industry.

Yes, yes it is. Camera Bits sets the bar with direct access to the developer who is responsive and helpful. There have been dozens if not hundreds of user feature requests integrated into Photo Mechanic during the lifespan of PM 5.

So don't let some perception that it is a "zombie app" deter you because it most definitely is not.
Kevin M. Cox | Photojournalist
http://www.KevinCox.com

Offline Graham1

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2018, 05:38:05 am »

Could you and the creator of the thread specify what exactly you find wanting in the UI?

Take, for example, the structured keywords panel.  It insists on remaining always on top, even over other applications.  This is not polite software behaviour.

I have never noticed this before, working with a relatively small number of images and dual monitors.  But presently I am travelling with only my laptop and on a wet afternoon decided to do some basic keywording to several thousand images from my trip.  I thought I could apply the keywords then switch back to Lightroom, to continue with some developing, but no, that was not possible - the panel hogged the screen on top of Lightroom, and Lightroom (or any other application) in effect became unusable until the keywords had been written in full.  I doubt that these days many applications would behave like this (at least, I have not seen any).

Graham

Online Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 18264
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2018, 03:23:33 pm »
Graham,


Could you and the creator of the thread specify what exactly you find wanting in the UI?

Take, for example, the structured keywords panel.  It insists on remaining always on top, even over other applications.  This is not polite software behaviour.

I have never noticed this before, working with a relatively small number of images and dual monitors.  But presently I am travelling with only my laptop and on a wet afternoon decided to do some basic keywording to several thousand images from my trip.  I thought I could apply the keywords then switch back to Lightroom, to continue with some developing, but no, that was not possible - the panel hogged the screen on top of Lightroom, and Lightroom (or any other application) in effect became unusable until the keywords had been written in full.  I doubt that these days many applications would behave like this (at least, I have not seen any).

Thanks for the info.  I will look into it.

Can I ask you what OS you are running PM (and experiencing the described behavior)?

-Kirk
« Last Edit: March 11, 2018, 03:33:39 pm by Kirk Baker »

Offline Graham1

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2018, 07:10:50 pm »

Can I ask you what OS you are running PM (and experiencing the described behavior)?

My laptop is Windows 8.1 x64.  I have never noticed it back home on my Windows 7 x 64 system, possibly because it is faster and I modify less images at a time, or possibly because it does not happen: my guess would be that I have never had the window open long enough to want to switch to another application while PM is still working away at writing keyword changes.  I am afraid I cannot tell you which because I am still away.

Graham

Online Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 18264
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2018, 12:15:57 am »
Graham,


Can I ask you what OS you are running PM (and experiencing the described behavior)?

My laptop is Windows 8.1 x64.  I have never noticed it back home on my Windows 7 x 64 system, possibly because it is faster and I modify less images at a time, or possibly because it does not happen: my guess would be that I have never had the window open long enough to want to switch to another application while PM is still working away at writing keyword changes.  I am afraid I cannot tell you which because I am still away.

That's fine.  I tested on macOS and the problem did not occur.  I'll test later this morning on Windows and if I can reproduce the problem then I should be able to fix it.

Thanks,

-Kirk

Offline dbvirago

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 24
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2018, 06:11:15 pm »
This behavior is the same for me on Win10. Hasn't been an issue, but I can see where it would be annoying.


Offline cjpl2003

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 3
    • View Profile
Re: To buy or not to buy Photo Mechanic?
« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2018, 08:23:43 am »
Same problem for me (win 10) which I have listed in a separate thread