Desktop Publishing: MAGIX Photo & Graphic Designer 5

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magix_xtreme_photo_5_The two main contenders in graphic and vector editing packages have to be Corel and Adobe.  However these packages are very expensive for the average user to spend out on and if  you want to undertake projects but without the large outlay for either of the above there are alternatives, which although reduced in their features, are just as capable of producing good results.

One of these alternatives is MAGIX Photo & Graphic Designer 5, a suite of applications that offers an excellent range of tools for image manipulation and optimisation.  The suite comprises MAGIX Xtreme Graphic Designer 5, MAGIX Xtreme Photo Designer 7, MAGIX Photo Manager and Reallusion Face Filter 2 SE (a slightly reduced version of Face Filter 2 reviewed here).

MAGIX Xtreme Graphic Designer 5 offers a range of tools for pixel image and vector graphics in a similar, but slightly more limited imitation of Adobe Photoshop.  The interface is somewhat dated but has all of the main facilities required and the ability to import and export an extensive range of file formats including flash videos and animated GIFs.  All of the features are easy to follow and use and all are explained fully within the manual.

MAGIX Photo Designer 7 offer the benefits of a full scale photo editor similar to Adobe Imageready, providing all of the tools required for optimisation and editing of photos for publication.  In addition, the included Reallusion Face Filter 2 SE provides an advanced set of tools for the improvement of facial photos and portraits.

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However, the main and best feature of the package in our minds is the very simple launcher application that lists all of the features across the package in order that the correct application is opened for any chosen task.  This includes access to a multitude of templates for easy desktop publishing, from newsletter publication to home stationery design and many other features.

MAGIX Photo & Graphic Designer 5 would suit the vast majority of user who require a simple set of tools for the production of professional level publications (It would be an excellent choice for students wishing to try their hand at publishing).  The support available across the package is extensive in the form of a hard copy manual and also various web based documents.  Priced at only £49.99 (at the time of publication) we felt that the software offered very good value for money and given the features and vast collection of templates included we were surprised to see that the minimum system requirements were very modest, making it suitable for use on any system from a basic web book or laptop to an older desktop.

Available from:

Amazon: Magix Xtreme Photo and Graphic Designer 5 (PC DVD)