Corel PaintShop Pro X7 Review

4.5
August 28, 2014 | Matt Grayson | Software Reviews |

Introduction

Corel PaintShop Pro X7 is a new version of the popular photo-editing suite. New features in X7 include tools such as Magic Fill, Shape/Text cutters and XMP support for raw files, plus improved performance. Is Paint Shop Pro X7 still a worthy and much cheaper alternative to Photoshop? Read our detailed Corel PaintShop Pro X7 review to find out...

Less than 12 months on and Corel have launched PaintShop Pro X7 - the 17th instalment of the extensive photo editing suite. Featuring new tools such as Magic Fill, Shape/Text cutters and XMP support for raw files, other new or improved features include a New Image dialogue box, Drag & Drop layers and Smart Edge technology for brushes. Most importantly, Corel say that the performance has been improved which is really the only thing that has been letting the program down in the past. In this full test, we’ll be testing that performance improvement – and other features. Paintshop Pro X7 is available as a standard version for £59.99 or the Ultimate version (which we tested) for £79.99.

Installation and Use

Installation of PaintShop Pro X7 was tricky, however this wasn't on the part of the program. The desktop computer we used on Windows 7 Ultimate got an error code that we couldn't fix, so we tried it on a laptop running Vista. We also got an Error code from that and had to repair .NET framework but it eventually worked. It's unlikely that you'll come across this problem, but if you do, there are solutions online available to follow.

Corel PaintShop Pro X7New Project

Installation took around 8 minutes after downloading from the Corel website. That's not including the time it takes to read the Terms & Conditions. Registering the product will allow you to download some free products. We had three selections of a KPT Collection which is a range of plug-ins, a PaintShop Scripting guide and finally Creative Content which increases your range of brushes, gradients, line styles etc. They're pretty small with the largest file only 135Mb.

Corel PaintShop Pro X7Main Screen

If you've used Corel PaintShop Pro X7 before then you'll be familiar with the controls. If not, then it shouldn't take too long to get used to them. The program is split into three main sections which are tabbed at the top of the window. Interestingly, the third Edit page is defaulted to open first. Edit is accompanied by Manage and Adjust. Manage allows you to tag and amend information about the photographs you import. Tagging images takes a while to do and can be tedious, but is more convenient in the future when you need to find a certain picture. You can also rate images, add dates and people to them for easier searching later.

Corel PaintShop Pro X7Adjust Screen

In Adjust, you can change basic qualities to the pictures you have open such as white-balance, contrast or clarity. You can also tone map, reduce noise and high pass sharpen. To the right of the picture, there's also a number of creative effects.

Corel PaintShop Pro X7Importing

There are a number of new features available on Corel PaintShop Pro X7, so let's take a look at some of those. Magic Fill is a new feature that has a similar end game to content aware rescaling which was introduced to Photoshop on CS4. It's extremely easy to use by simply selecting the item you wish to have filled and clicking the Magic Fill button in the Tool palette. It's similar to the Patch tool but seems to work a lot better. The great thing is that you don't have to be precise with your selection. In fact, Corel recommend including areas of background so it can decipher between what it needs to remove and keep.

Corel PaintShop Pro X7Text Cut-out

The Text Cutout is an interesting feature that allows you to place text over an image and cut it out so that the backing image serves as a pattern on the text. Corel have managed to make this process immensely easy as well by placing the text over the image and clicking the Text Cutter in the Tool palette when you're ready. The new text image is created as a new layer with a clear background which can be saved ready to place over other projects.

Another notable improvement is XMP support for raw files. These files hold metadata and allow you to embed this information directly into your raw files.

Entry Tags

photo, software, image, photoshop, processing, editing, editor, program, post-processing, image editor, psp, Corel PaintShop Pro X7 Review, Corel PaintShop Pro X7, orel, psp x7, PaintShop X7 Review, PaintShop Pro X7

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Your Comments

12 Comments | Newest Oldest First | Post a Comment

#1 lonnations77

Awesome photo edit software, I use Corel PaintShop but old vertion software, thanks for share this.

7:47 am - Friday, August 29, 2014

#2 Lipsa Amin

I’m with lonnations77. And thanks for the sharing

1:09 pm - Friday, August 29, 2014

#3 Lipsa Amin

Great post Dude!

1:10 pm - Friday, August 29, 2014

#4 arturo

Trouble with X7 is…
If you have X6 then the additions to X7 are quite trivial and really not worth the amount of lolly required to upgrade X6 to X7.
So they’ll have to do a lot more to get me to part with my hard earned…

Arturo

6:24 am - Monday, September 8, 2014

#5 Omaans

I am not totally enthiousastic about PSPX7. Because the beautiful plug-in Super Blade Pro doesn’t work in PSPX7 64bits, therefore i am using PSPX7 32bits. I contacted already Corel because in PSPX6 64bits SBP was working. So it’s a step backwords for me. I am so sorry, because i work with PSP for many years and i am always happy when a new version is released.

9:17 am - Monday, September 8, 2014

#6 Mac Jackson

For this price, it should be compared Ithaca Photoshop elements, not cc.
I wonder why magazines only give advice on photo editing with Photoshop, never Paintshop.  I use Paintshop Pro x4. I also do not like the auto save.

7:48 pm - Monday, September 8, 2014

#7 Matt Grayson

Hi Mac,
I compared PSP X7 to Adobe CC because it’s a like for like product in terms of features.

With regards to why they always use Ps as the basis for techniques, I’ve often wondered that myself. ;-)

6:39 pm - Tuesday, September 16, 2014

#8 Dragon

Been using this program for years - in fact I’m still running X2 on Windows 7 as it’s still one of the better versions!

PS: Could have used a much cuter woman on the image used for the Adjust Screen - she looks like a nightmare!

1:21 pm - Thursday, October 2, 2014

#9 wyocntry

In regards to the comparision comments above, that is very frustrating for me.  My budget allows me to use the Corel products and therefore I can spend more on camera equipment and offer more reasonable client sessions.  However, it is nearly impossible to find compatible presents (aka the lovely fall overlays) and plug-ins!  I would love to see some more articles and reviews all about PSP add ons!!!Thanks for contributing!

1:34 pm - Friday, October 17, 2014

#10 Tilton

I use Nikon D800 raw photos.  I have 8 GB and an i7 quad processor for PSP X6…I get a shortage of memory warning when I try and load photos for creating a panorama image. Not sure what my problem is, but I really would like to know the type and file size limitations on what can be shoved through panorama processing.  Thanks…

11:34 pm - Saturday, November 15, 2014

#11 Mack

I’m interested to know if they have corrected the use if American English in the menus and help.  If they haven’t they won’t get money from me anymore.  I’ll use 12 and 13 and GIMP.  There’s no excuse when asking for cash not to have them display with correct spelling.  If Open Source software can do it then anything that takes ones money should do it.  JASC always has a UK version.

1:26 am - Thursday, November 20, 2014

#12 Gary Walmer

Buy this program at your own risk! I have been using PaintShop Pro for several years. I also use AfterShot Pro. I have always been happy with these programs, but…

I now have a problem with the functionality of the program. Keyboard shortcuts do not work, even though they are shown in the Keyboard Map. There is NO WAY to get any support from Corel unless you are willing to purchase a support contract. So unless you are willing to use a program that may or may not work, and be unable to get any support for the program when it is defective, I would suggest you purchase another program.

7:36 pm - Wednesday, November 26, 2014