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Software Review – Adobe Photoshop Plug-in Plug-In Suite 3: Intellihance Pro 4.2 From onOne Software

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This is the second of a four part review of the products that are included in the onOne Plug-In Suite 3. The first review covering Genuine Fractals 5.0 is also available on Blogcritics. This review is on the product Intellihance Pro 4.2

Intellihance Pro 4.2 is the latest version of the plugin from onOne Software that for quickly and dynamically enhancing images to make them look their best. It gives you the ability to compare and print up to 25 professional enhancement variations at once. Version 4.2 adds native support for Photoshop CS3 and Intel-based Macintosh computers as well.

Intellihance Pro 4.2 requires you to have Windows running XP SP2 or Vista or Mac OS X 10.4.8 or later. You will need Photoshop CS2 (v9.0.2), CS3, or Photoshop Elements 4 or later. Also you must have at least 512MB of RAM and 12 MB of hard-disk space. Installation is very easy and is all automatic.

Overall, Intellihance Pro 4.2 gives you control of your image enhancement. It provides you with a large range of options going from completely automated to completely manual. In auto mode, it analyzes your image and determines the best settings. As you can see from the image below, there are many preset items to choose from on the right image as well as plenty of options on the right panel bar.

Image Courtesy T. Michael TestiIntellihance Pro 4.2 can be run as a standalone workspace from within Photoshop as well as just applying the presets alone. From within the Intellihance workspace you can also select layouts from a single pane to a 5×5 matrix. Then from within each pane you can change the effects so that you can compare the changes and adjustments. When you find something that you like, you can save it as a preset for future use. Each enhancement can contain up to 50 different Photoshop functions at once.

With the Quick Enhance option, your image can be quickly analyzed and automatically adjust the contrast, brightness, saturation, color cast and sharpness. From there you can tune your image just the way you want. By having the ability to lay your image out in a variety of panes, you can color-correct your images visually instead of using levels or curves.

From here you can go to the "Fine Tune" mode. In this mode you have the ability to get down and dirty and really work with brightness, contrast and noise reduction among other items. You can in a word, fine tune your image. While you might have more control for some of these corrections in Photoshop, you don't easily have the multi-view ability. That is what makes Intellihance Pro 4.2 so nice to work with.

There is also a new "Power Variations" mode which allows you to perform actions across all of the images displayed on the screen. That is if you want to adjust the brightness by 10% on your working image, it will automatically adjust the one above/next to it by another 10% the one below/next to by -10% to all of the panes. That way you can see where something works and does not.

Intellihance Pro 4.2 will enhance images from any source whether they are from scanner, digital camera, camera phone, or even still frames from digital video.

So what is new for version 4.2? Obviously Intellihance Pro 4.2 now supports Photoshop CS3. There is an updated Intelligent Adjustment Engine which improves the quality of automatic adjustments. They have now added "Show Me How" tutorial videos within the system so that if you are unsure about how to do something, you can watch the video. Finally they have added Automatic Update Checking that will alert you to new versions that are available and prompt you to download them.

To me Intellihance Pro 4.2 is a very powerful product that is also easy to use in the auto mode. Even more importantly is the fact that you can ease your way into the manual mode as you feel comfortable. Just as easily, you can jump in head first and just start pushing buttons and seeing what happens.

Whether you want to do a quick process with out a lot of trauma, or you want to have a lot of control of the output of your images, Intellihance Pro 4.2 provides the best of both worlds.

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About T. Michael Testi

Photographer, writer, software engineer, educator, and maker of fine images.