Richard Castillo
Downloads: 375
Posts: 31
Smile Score: +54
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Richcastillo commented on 29 Dec 2010
I have owned this app for the last 2 previous versions. I don't use it a lot since I am very comfortable in Photoshop. Maybe if I explored the app I would find some unique things it will do.

However, Graphic Converter has saved my rear on a number of occasions. Occasionally, I will have an image file that is slightly corrupted and Photoshop will not open it. On all of these occasions GC has been able to open the image and resave it back so that PS can open it. That alone is worth the price of admission.
[Version 7.0.3]


Richcastillo reviewed on 16 Nov 2010
My review of 2 years ago is still accurate. This is a serious piece of software for the professional. It has been continually and frequently updated over many years. I have been using it for about 4 years. Note that it is not just a GUI for Panorama Tools, although it started out that way. It has its own stitching and blending engines now, but the user may select open source engines as well. That said, I believe one should not disparage a program that is principally a GUI if it makes a complicated tool easier and or faster to use. After all, Mac OSX is at its heart a GUI for Unix and learning new tricks in photography is a lot more productive for me than learning the command line interface for Unix. For the causal user there are cheaper stitching tools and Photoshop itself keeps getting better and better but when you need a high degree of control over the process and results I have found nothing better than this software.
[Version 9.0beta5]


Richcastillo reviewed on 26 May 2010
I have a very early (first edition) Mac Pro & it has always run hot, really hot. It has had a motherboard and graphics board replacement under Applecare, which I suspect were heat related. The computer has also been unreliable in terms of refusing to quit and refusing to restart. I also suspect that these problems are worse in the summer.

Doesn't help that I don't have air conditioning and in my office here at 8pm it is still 86 F. However Temp Monitor is reporting that my memory modules are all running about 170 F. That's hot enough to burn flesh! One thing that I have noticed and has caused me great concern over since buying this Mac is that the fan speed never goes beyond idle, even when the room temp is in the high 80s and the box is hotter than blazes.

Obviously, I'm not the first MacPro owner to get the idea that my fan speed is inadequate to keep the temps from soaring. So, I did a search and found this little app. Just for a baseline, I set the fan speeds to max (about 2900) and the temps of my memory modules dropped from 170 F to 120 F in less than 8 minutes. I then lowered the fan speed to about 1500 and after about another 10 minutes the MM temps are still down around 125 F. and I can barely hear the fans above the evening traffic noise.

Just because this app works exactly as expected, fills such a critical need, and is free, I am awarding 5 smackers!
[Version 2.2.2]


Richcastillo reviewed on 05 Nov 2009
I have been using the MacUpdate website for several years and I love it. I place a lot of weight on the user reviews in making software purchasing decisions. So, when MacUpdate Desktop came out in v5 I was persuaded to finally anty up and become a paying member. However, I am generally unhappy with this desktop application. It does not feel like a refined v5 app. It feels like a 0.9 beta because it has so many rough edges and bugs. Since I am using it on 3 computers between work and home I believe the problems cannot be attributed to my computer, except that the common thread is that they all are running Snow Lep.

On my MacBook Pro with Airport connection the program barley functions. It will be downloading 2 updates with an advancing progress bars while 2 others update complain that I have lost Internet connectivity. On all of the machines, when any event takes place like the completion of a download, it will bounce back to the beginning of my list, loosing the place I was working at. If you have a dozen apps downloading this can be a real irritant. There are at least 50 programs in my list that have no lookup and most of them are mainstrean apps that are referenced on the MacUpdate website. Some programs such as Email Commander simply will not update, just return an error. When downloading a dozen updates at a time frequently half of them will install and half of them will give a timed out error and I'll have to go back and do them one at a time.

This app has great potential to be a huge time saver in keeping my Macs maintained. However, it has so many irritating rough edges that I cannot give it better than 2 stars right now. I hope the developer is able to resolve all of the issues and make this a solid app.
[Version 5.0]

Richcastillo commented on 28 Oct 2009
Beware of one star reviews.

Although I have not used Icefields, I have known about it for years. It was around back in the '90s when I owned an imagesetter. This is a very specialized application that produces a frequency modulated halftone (a random halftone). Basically, it is a RIP. Most RIPS for imagesetters (a machine that writes to film to make halftone negatives for offset litho or contact photo printing) produce amplitude modulated halftone screens. This is a real problem if you are trying to print a catalog with fabric samples because the regular pattern of the AM halftone screen combines with the regular pattern of the fabric (assuming you have enough resolution to resolve the fabric pattern) and the result is an awful MOIRÉ. This is a French term for an interference pattern. It is a THIRD pattern that is synthesized from the overlapping of two other patterns. Since the FM screen is random (actually, pseudo random) it does not combine with the fabric pattern to create a moiré. This is the value of a program like Icefields. If you think photographing fabrics is a rare situation then consider that interference patterns (moiré) are also a problem when reproducing to print brick walls or anything with a regular pattern. I used to love blowing away my students by taking two sheets of AM (amplitude modulated) imagesetter film and superimposing them over a light table. When you rotate one film against the other, the resulting moiré is nothing short of psychedellic! Hope this helps. I had to write it because I hate one star reviewers who don't understand the reason for a software app.
[Version 4.3]

Richcastillo commented on 25 Aug 2009
I have to stand by my previous comment. To drag and drop is such an integral part of the Mac experience that any program that is missing it.... Well, belongs on Windows.
[Version 1.0.5]

Richcastillo commented on 24 Aug 2009
I like this developer and they have some outstanding apps like MacPilot, for example. I own their whole utility suite. However, I have to agree with the negative reviewers. Pretty much everything they said is true. This program does feel like a 0.4 alpha. It is not at all intuitive and is very limited, despite the impressive looking list of functions on the website. It feels like a skeleton of an app. The drawing function seems on par with 1984 MacPaint . You can't even drag a graphic to the canvas or the editor; you have to import it through the menu. This app should not be for sale. It should be a free alpha. An example of this genre done right is eZediaOTI & eZediaMX. Unfortunatly, that developer is no longer in business but the software can still be found. It was light years ahead of Proj Canvas. So, in summary I think this was a misstep by Koingo who generally does a good job. Not this time, boys.
[Version 1.0.5]


Richcastillo reviewed on 16 Jul 2009
Not so useful for me. Would not read a Photoshop .pdf file even though it is really a raster image. Would not read an Illustrator file or an .eps. Preview will easily work on raster or vector formats so it impossible for this app to replace Preview in my workflow.
[Version 3.3.2]


Richcastillo reviewed on 23 Jun 2009
I refuse to use my MacBook without this program. It is no exaggeration to say that this is an absolute must have for MacBook users, as you can throw your screen just like in the iPhone.

OSX updates occasionally break it. Not the developer's fault and they have been VERY quick to issue fixes but the pain of not having this app working for even an hour is enough to make me put my MacBook away. Guess, that's a backhanded compliment.

What would make this even better than perfect is if I could somehow throw the window with my Wacom tablet on the MacPro. I think you genius guys at Marcoini could do that if you set your mind to it.
[Version 3.1.1]


Richcastillo reviewed on 06 Jan 2009
Very disappointed! I gave up using the previous version because of constant freezes & crashes. This version gives me nothing but grief, as well. I spent about 3 hours with v2 this afternoon. In that amount of time the program crashed at least 50 times when deleting duplicate fonts. It froze almost as many times for no apparent reason. Perhaps my library of 7000 fonts is too much for this app but for a graphic designer I don't think that is unreasonable. FEX is virtually unusable for me. Shame, because I like the interface.
[Version 2.0]

Richcastillo had trouble on 11 Sep 2008
I am happy to report that I did receive my license, about a day and one half after my purchase. I am looking forward to using this application and will post a fair review in the future.
[Version 3.6.7]

Richcastillo had trouble on 08 Sep 2008
STOP! If you are considering purchasing the MacUpdate promo to get this program. There seems to be a problem getting the license files emailed out. I followed the procedure to the letter and did not receive the license file and it has been over 24 hrs. First of all, I object to the concept of a license file, almost as much as I hate Adobe's activation system. There was no mention of this on the developer's website. It was a nasty surprise when I plugged in my newly purchased serial number and received a message that I will be emailed a license file. It is especially frustrating because I first demoed the app some time ago and I can't run it at all now because it has expired. I tried entering the serial number again and received a curt message that the license key had already been emailed to me. Oh, and of course I know to check my junk mail filter. I found a lost key form on the developer's website and submitted but the key was not immediately mailed to me. Do they actually have to have a human process these requests. That is just not acceptable in this day and age. So many developers now provide you with your license immediately after purchase that those of you who don't will fail to be competitive. I'm almost upset enough to onestar you. However, I will wait and do a real review if I get my license. Note that a few onestars will really hurt future sales. I purchase weekly on MacUpdate and weigh user ratings very heavily. I suspect that is true of others. Objective Decision, please get your act together because this looks like a sweet program (if I ever get my license).
[Version 3.6.7]

Richcastillo had trouble on 12 Mar 2008
This is a very RUDE app.
Very difficult to completely uninstall.
No uninstall app.
No uninstall info on ReadMe or web FAQ.
Developer's email not immediately obvious on website.
I trashed it but now every time launching Safari, a dialog appears asking me to reinstall
Nothing named saft found in Activity Monitor.

I'm mad! Almost mad enough to review this with one star but I'll wait and see if somebody can tell me how to get rid of this annoyance.
[Version 10.0.5]

1 Reply


Richcastillo replied on 19 Mar 2008
Thanks for the uninstall suggestions. There is no uninstall option that I could find upon running the Saft installer program. However, I was able to remove it from the Input Managers folder. I was unfamiliar with this folder. Although I did a Spotlight search search on "saft" it did not find it. I don't know why Spotlight does not find things that I know are somewhere.
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