Friday, 28 June 2013

Review: Printerpix Photo Books

With all the photos we take of our adventures as a family, I'm always keen to try out new providers of photo products which bring the images on the external hard drive to life. A new kid on the block (to me) is printerpix, who gave me some photo product credits to play around with and test their products.

I went for a photo book, as it was my dad's birthday and as he's not close by and can't follow the children's adventures, it seemed a suitable undertaking.
So let's start with the finished product: It IS rather beautiful. I chose a scrap book style because I'd always meant to make a scrap book but never got around to it and the design appealed to me instantly (of course there are countless other designs to choose from, many with a particular theme in mind, really offering a wide choice). There are borders and frames around the photos which make the finished page look very special and catch one's eye, and of course it's that kind of thing that you simply can't do if you do it yourself. The colours are vibrant, the images all sharp and even the one image that came up with a warning of low quality looked very nice. At £43 for a hardback book, it's definitely competitively priced. And Opa liked it, which is not an easy achievement.

However, I had a hard time getting there. I do take my time over these things, wanting to do them just right. I also never just let the programme do its thing and just create something out of my uploaded photos. I do like to create themes, and to change layout to suit the theme/photo.

Now, all of the things I wanted to change/customise are doable, which is great. The software is definitely capable of a lot. However, it was a pain in the backside doing it: First of, in spite of a very useful short tutorial, it took me ages to find the zoom function to actually get a decent view of the page that allowed to make any changes at all. But even the zoomed in view was not detailed enough, so there were many mistakes made because I couldn't make out where I should click. I should say that I work on a notebook and on Firefox, so it is possible that the same issues may not be experienced with a bigger screen and a different browser. So after a while I gave up on adding descriptions because the view of the letters was so tiny that I couldn't check my spelling, and time was running out to get it done in time. Thankfully, it was easy to delete existing text boxes and their contents, if they were obscuring parts of a photo that I'd rather not have obscured. Other customisable elements were also hard to deal with, I struggled to apply a frame to a picture if it wasn't pre-set, and gave up eventually too (I'm sure if I had preservered, it might have worked, it certainly looked that it should be possible somehow).

I liked that you could easily save your project, so my stop and go approach wasn't an issue and no data was ever lost.

When it came to buying the book, it never appeared in my basket, which was rather odd, but was still in my projects. I had to contact customer service who were super quick to resolve the issue, so the customer support is ace (and had I known that they respond in real time almost, I would probably have asked them about the issues I had in the first place).

So overall I think Printerpix has some really high quality products to offer but the software interface could be made more user friendly by adding a zoom option. Of course, you could just let the programme do the magic and create a photo book for you and it'll be fine, but for someone who likes to be in control, it's a bit cumbersome.

Disclaimer: I received credits for Printerpix photo products in return for a review post.

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