Author Topic: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions  (Read 11317 times)

Offline Paul Smith

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Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« on: July 05, 2012, 06:45:17 PM »
I've just been going through the preference settings for the new PMv5. It looks great so far, I love the ability to keep the preview window open on a second monitor and have the thumbnail strip on the side. Rotating crops looks great and also being able to prepend information to the caption field.

One quick question. I've set up the background, selection and text colors to my liking but can't find any way to change the colors in the IPTC stationery pad or the IPTC info shown on the right panel of the preview window. I don't know if it's just me, but I hate white text on dark backgrounds! I just find that it strains my eyes. I'd really like the option to be able to change this to black text on lighter grey background. Am I missing a setting somewhere?

Cheers,

Paul

Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2012, 06:54:34 PM »
Paul,

I've just been going through the preference settings for the new PMv5. It looks great so far, I love the ability to keep the preview window open on a second monitor and have the thumbnail strip on the side. Rotating crops looks great and also being able to prepend information to the caption field.

One quick question. I've set up the background, selection and text colors to my liking but can't find any way to change the colors in the IPTC stationery pad or the IPTC info shown on the right panel of the preview window. I don't know if it's just me, but I hate white text on dark backgrounds! I just find that it strains my eyes. I'd really like the option to be able to change this to black text on lighter grey background. Am I missing a setting somewhere?

No, there is no way to override the general look of PM 5.

-Kirk

Offline Ben Curtis

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2012, 11:44:52 PM »
I don't know if it's just me, but I hate white text on dark backgrounds! I just find that it strains my eyes. I'd really like the option to be able to change this to black text on lighter grey background. Am I missing a setting somewhere?

Totally agree. I find the white on dark grey theme to be very hard on the eyes. Given that most of the other colors are customizable, would it not be possible to add an option (for those that want it) to return the "look" back to 4.6 style?

Offline Major Tom

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2012, 12:09:32 AM »
Another agreement and wish to be able to customize the stationery pads and other dialog boxes. Light on dark is very hard to work with for text (though it's good for images). That's one of the problems with doing any kind of metadata work in Lightroom (that and the tiny boxes).
The overall look is nice, and my favorite new thing so far is being able to keep the detail/enlarged view up in my second monitor, but please give some more thought to the UI of the text boxes. Thanks.

Offline ImageGroupLA

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2012, 12:34:35 AM »
Now that I am old and my eyes are not what they use to be, I too would rather have black text, especially after editing thousands of images and captioning hundreds a day.  I find the black background and white text hard to read and stressful to my eyes.

I LOVE the ability to have the thumbnails on the side or bottom...Well done!

Offline davidgordon

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #5 on: July 06, 2012, 12:46:52 AM »
No, there is no way to override the general look of PM 5.

I'm a long time PM user and I've been waiting to buy a new licence once version 5 is available, so I guess that's now then!

However if PM5 is going to look like the beta does I'm not paying. The dark background with white text hurts my eyes and the icons look like something from a cheap PC application. Are you trying to make PM look and feel like an Adobe product? Being as I've not been using PM for the past couple of months it seems I can do 99% of what I need using Aperture. I'd like to have PM5, but I don't think I could use something as visually annoying as this. To be honest I'd rather use Adobe Bridge (where I can control its general look) than PM5. That's harsh and I'm not enjoying saying this. I really hope CameraBits aren't starting to lose their way. PhotoMechanic is (was) a killer application.

Offline JS

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #6 on: July 06, 2012, 03:03:52 AM »
Sadly another example for new isn't always better. The new features are great and would help a lot, certainly worth buying a new upgrade. But this dark and black look really frightens me. Are we in hell already? Even liked Your old homepage better. So I have to stick to 4.6.9. Since I work with jpegs mostly no problem. But the catalogue tool? Huhu.

Best
John

Offline Tony Hall

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2012, 03:55:52 AM »
I have to agree, I'm not a fan of the new look and feel. (It may well be that I'm turning into an old fart and starting to resist change!)

While I'm sure I'll get used to the white text on dark background look, the inconsistency of drop down menus being black text on a light background really irritates. It also bugs me that you can see the old PM peeking through in odd areas eg. the 'Variables' pop out, the clicky bits (whatever they're called) in the 'Time and Date' section of the IPTC input etc.

I have no doubt CameraBits has put huge amounts of work into the programming of PM5, but users constantly interact with the GUI and it's also extremely important. The whole look and feel of this beta gives the impression of it being inconsistent, rushed and cheap. If this was an early beta I wouldn't worry, but it looks like we'll only have a week or so before it finally ships.

My GUI observations of only looking at PM5 (Mac) for 10 minutes, not got around to actually playing yet, but this is posted under 'First Impressions'. So far...
  • Black text/light background drop down menus - jarring & inconsistent with UI.
  • Variables slide out drawer - inconsistent with new UI and look varies as to where it's being called from (different look in IPTC pad and Upload section).
  • 'Name' button in Favourites & Navigator - gradient on button renders text difficult to read.
  • Show All/Selected Thumbnails buttons in Preview pane - graphic on buttons illegible.
  • Keywords panels - transparent background - why?
  • Toolbar icons - cheap & tacky and not all of them will display a smaller version when you customise the toolbar.
Sorry to be so negative, but the fit and finish of PM5 leaves a lot to be desired.

PM5 offers me no incentive to upgrade…yet! A few nice evolutionary improvements, but no killer new features. I'm hoping the cataloging add-on will be an absolute 'must buy' (I've been patiently waiting for it for years now), only time will tell.

Cheers,
Tony
« Last Edit: July 06, 2012, 04:01:16 AM by Tony Hall »

Offline chardinej

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #8 on: July 06, 2012, 04:04:57 AM »
Give the interface colours a chance. I moved from Photoshop CS5 to 6 recently and went from a light to dark interface. It took me a while but I much prefer the dark interface now. The idea I think is that the dark interface does not compete with the image and allows more accurate image assessment.

Having said this, an option to change the interface for users who just can't deal with white letters on grey would be a good thing. Oh I see you can do that in the Contact sheet and Preview windows.

So far I like what I see in PM5.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2012, 04:20:11 AM by chardinej »
John

MacBook Air i5/10.8 (Mountain Lion); PM 5 latest build

Offline Tony Hall

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2012, 05:14:18 AM »
I'm feeling a tad guilty for being too pernickety earlier. But I've just been back to PM5, and this stuff just bugs me.

I've attached a screen shot (please ignore the naff snaps on display!) marking a few of these visual anomalies. I don't want to negate all the hard work of CameraBits staff, I really appreciate it, I just want PM5 to be the best it can.

I'll shut up now!

All the very best.

Cheers,
Tony

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Offline Woodie

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #10 on: July 06, 2012, 05:32:12 AM »
Add me to those who don't care for the new look. I'm sure just as many will like it as dislike it but I'm in the "old is better" camp on this issue.  The old look was plain and professional looking.  The new one is to artsy for me and the new icons verge on cartoonish.

The new version does seem a little faster but not enough for me to switch.  My only reason to upgrade is the catalog so I can use one app rather than two for that function.  So, I guess I'll still be waiting.

Offline Ben Curtis

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #11 on: July 06, 2012, 05:53:31 AM »
I also don't want to be too negative. The new functions are most welcome, and the new gui/theme may well be liked by some. But others won't. So I just think letting people choose is always the best option...

Offline benem

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #12 on: July 06, 2012, 06:15:16 AM »
I really like the new crop rotate feature and the Save&Upload Button.
However i would also like to have the "old" colors of the IPTC Stationary Pad Window back, or at least a way to change the colors. White text on dark background is hard to read for the eyes and fatigues the eyes.

Offline jimb

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2012, 06:18:00 AM »
After spending some time with the new PM5 I've concluded it isn't worth spending another $90 to upgrade. Here's why:

Other than the non-modal Preview mode (desperately needed!) there really isn't much in the way of improvements that are going to help my workflow (others' mileage may vary, obviously). Given the amount of time that has apparently gone into this development effort, I was hoping for more.

The new interface is ridiculously hard to read and is more of a serious distraction rather than the "professional look" described in the Readme document. The lack of any way to change it is a major omission.

The beta expires on July 18, a mere two weeks from release.

Some serious reconsideration needs to be given to your recent design efforts. I can't emphasize enough how difficult the new version is to use because of the poorly designed UI presentation. Even your new and improved web site is very difficult to read, and not at all a good experience when visiting it.



Offline chardinej

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Re: Photo Mechanic v5 First Impressions
« Reply #14 on: July 06, 2012, 06:24:36 AM »
You can change colours of BG and text etc in Prefs under Contact sheet and Preview.

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John

MacBook Air i5/10.8 (Mountain Lion); PM 5 latest build