WORKING WITH IMAGES

If every photo in your pile needs to be rotated, brightened, or re-sized, it’s a pain to do them one by one. It’s much easier to use what’s called a “batch converter.” We have two recommendations, one free, one $25.

The freebie is IrfanView. It handles just about any file you throw at it, including the so-called camera RAW images. It also converts sound, movies and other files into something you can actually play. The catch is Irfanview can be as tricky as its odd name.  We had to read their “Frequently Asked Questions” to figure out how to do a whole batch of pictures at once.

An alternative if you don’t mind paying $25, is ReaConverter. It’s fast and – what is always a biggie with us – easy. First make a list of images and then choose what you want to have done to them: rotate, resize, sharpen, add some special effect, etc. There’s a huge list of options. We tried resize, which does not change the size of the pictures but simply reduces the number of pixels and makes them faster to send and less room to store. In our list of five photos it reduced file size by 50 percent; they still looked the same to us. When we tried doing this in IrfanView, however, our slideshow was fuzzy. There’s a free trial of ReaConverter at ReaConverter.com.

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