Plugins for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom, PSP & others



Plugin Newsletter - March 2002





POLL RESULTS: Your favorite freeware plugin
NEW POLL: Preferred pixel size of digital photos




Dear Reader,

This month's newsletter announces our special easter offer, the opening of our Discussion Forums (which we hope you will join for a contribution) and other updates of The Plugin Site. As always we thought of a topic for a new poll, which might be of general interest, placed new image contributions to the Visitor Gallery and let you know about the latest free plugins and graphics tools we came across. There are also news of some commercial products that are announced in the Graphics News section as usual.

I hope that you will enjoy this newsletter. Comments or suggestions about it are welcome at any time.

Wishing you Happy Easter holidays,
Harald Heim

The Plugin Site - Your guide to image and video effects


As a special Easter offer you can buy all three Photo Galaxy CDs for just $54.95 which is more than 20% off the regular price. This offer is only made available for the readers of this newsletter and lasts until Saturday, the 6th April 2002.

If you have not yet heard about it: Photo Galaxy is a collection of more than 3300 royalty-free digital photos on three CD-ROMs. It currently consists of three volumes: "Nature and Human Life" (1200+ photos), "Photo Textures" (1100 photo textures) and "Dark Season" (1000+ photos). You can use the photos for different purposes. For example, you can use them as material for graphics artwork or multimedia projects, as decoration for web sites, brochures, flyers or other print products, as desktop backgrounds and many other things. The photos are provided at a resolution of 1760x1168 or 1600x1200 pixel (which is 4 x 6 inches or 10x15 cm at 300 dpi) as high quality JPG files. The Photo Galaxy CDs can be used on Windows as well as Macintosh computers.

For more information please visit:

To order this special offer, please go to


Not long ago we added some discussion forums to The Plugin Site. It consists of several different forums. The General section contains a General, Visitor Gallery and Resources forum. There are forums for discussing Photoshop-compatible plugins, video plugins and other plugin types, forums about different graphics applications like Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, PhotoPaint, for other graphics tools as well as forums for Premiere, After Effects and digital video in general. Last, but not least, there are several discussion boards for discussing our own products.

At present there is not very much activity, but I am sure you can contribute to these forums with your comments, questions and replies. Most forums do not require a registration, although registering is very easy.

To visit the Forum just use this link:



The Polls 2001 and Polls 2002 pages have been updated with the results of the latest polls. If you missed these polls have a look at them at:

Harry's Gradients is available for download again. The broken download link was fixed. Harry's Gradients is a collection of over 70 gradients for creating amazing transition effects in Adobe Premiere, After Effects and many other video applications.

Harry's Papers, a collection of over 50 textured papers for Corel Painter, can as well be downloaded again.


30 new impressive images have been posted to the Visitor Gallery. They were contributed by Constantine Figueroa, Don Zangerle, Michael Brooker, Oliver Dale, Yannig Van de Wouwer, Stefan, Pia Lier, Ginny Riker, Andy Taylor, Frank Black, Jack Cat and Duncan Long. Especially the 8 surrealistic images by Stefan which remind a bit of Dali are very interesting. Don't miss a glimpse at these pieces of artwork!


POLL RESULTS: Your favorite freeware plugin

This poll was already mentioned in the last newsletter issue, but it was further conducted for some more weeks. The final number of voters increased to 235 and produced some slight shifts in the ranking. The final results on the question "Which is your favorite freeware plugin?" are as follows:

1. Plugin Galaxy Free Plugins 15%
2. Eye Candy 4000 Free Filters 13%
3. Flaming Pear Freebies 10%
4. EyeCandy 3 Special Edition 8%
5. Ulead ArtTexture 7%
6. Fantastic Machines Paint Engine 5.5%
7. TV Effects 5 %
8. Xenofex Free Filters 5 %
9. DragonFly's Plugins 4.5%

Unfortunately some of these free plugins are not available anymore like the EyeCandy 3 Special Edition and others have become commercial like TV Effects.

Previous poll results can be viewed at


NEW POLL: Preferred pixel size of digital photos
The question of the latest poll is "What pixel size should digital photos from a photo CD have to fit your needs?". You can vote for several sizes between 320x240 and 6144x4096 pixels. As the poll is available for some days now there's currently a trend towards the bottom and top sizes with not much in between. Maybe that will change with more votes.

Please cast your vote at



Boxtopsoft offer two free Macintosh filter plugins for Photoshop. "WebClipper" corrects the color drift from Web safe colors that often happens during color reduction and allows you to create hybrid images combining custom and Web safe colors easily. Hybrid images allow for greater image quality than those color reduced to the Web safe palette, while still largely eliminating most unwanted dithering when images are viewed on 8-bit Windows systems. "PhotoHTML" converts any image to an HTML table. Each pixel in the image becomes a 1 x 1 pixel colored cell in the table.

WallPampered 2.0 (for Windows) by Brian Victor Fernandes is an automation plugin (.8li) for Adobe Photoshop only, which allows you to set your Windows desktop wallpaper instantly from within Photoshop itself. When the plugin is installed you activate it from the Automate sub menu found of the File menu in Photoshop. It lets you choose how your picture will be placed on your desktop (centered, tiled, stretched) and some other options. WallPampered is Shareware or Honorware as the author calls it, but has no nags and no time limits. The registration fee is USD 5.

The UnWired or WBMP file format plugin (for Windows) lets you quickly and easily save wireless bitmap (WBMP) files e.g. for use in WAP sites. The plugin can be used with Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro or any other application that supports .8bi file format plugins.

The ECW v2.0 file format plugin (for Windows) enables you to read and compress Enhanced Compressed Wavelet (ECW) v2.0 images from within Photoshop. The Open Standard ECW technology is a large-image compression technology that enables applications to compress imagery. The plugin allows reading compressed ECW images of any size. However, as Photoshop has a limit of 32,000 x 32,000 pixel for image size, the plug-in will automatically reduce the image size to less than this size if you open a larger ECW file. You can create compressed ECW images by using File->Save to the ECW format from within Photoshop. This plugin restricts the image size being compressed to 500MB.

DotColor 3.0 (for Windows) is a free small tool for web designers. You can zoom any area of the screen with it, examine the color of the pixels under cursor and even copy part of the screen on the clipboard. If you want to know how your HTML page looks on a different background, you can use the color mixer and change certain pixels on your screen to a different color.

"The Screen Calipers" (for Windows) are a on-screen measurement tool with a fully skinable interface. So they resemble real life calipers in both form and function. They can be used with any program where fast and accurate measurements are required. Originally created for graphics and web design, the Screen Calipers are also used for CAD drawings, architecture blueprints, illustrations or even on X-Rays scans. Pixel-perfect accuracy is ensured every time simply by aligning the Screen Caliper's pointers around an object. They can be used with any program as they float above other applications allowing quick and easy measurements. Screen Calipers are free to use for an unlimited time, but there's also a fully featured commercial version.

Clic 2.0 is a freeware icon editor that supports 24bit color icons with transparency. A screen capture function lets you grab an icon from anywhere on screen in real-time and a Paste-to-Fit function auto resizes your picture. It also offers grayscale conversion, mirror, flip and rotate features and a multilingual interface.

Drive Rescue is a free undeletes and data recovery tool for Windows. It can find any lost and deleted data on your drive (e.g. hard disk) even if the partition table is lost! Lost Data which is the result of a system crash can also be recovered. However it cannot find any data on a physically damaged drive and isn't very effective if your drive is very fragmented. Supported file systems are FAT 12/16/32 (used by hard disks, disks, Smartmedia, Compact Flash, Memory Stick and other). A second hard disk is recommended for recovery, but a floppy disc will do it, too. Supported languages are English, German and French.

Version 5.0 of DivX (for Windows, Macintosh and Linux), the highest-quality, highest-performance video technology available, has been released. DivX 5.0 introduces a host of new features, including new technologies and tools that make it easier than ever to create DVD-quality video at very small file sizes. There are two different versions of DivX: DivX and DivX Pro. DivX is free while DivX Pro is the professional-level product with advanced encoding features. DivX Pro exists as a free ad-supported version and a commercial version. All versions include the DivX Player 2.0, which is unfortunately a slightly unstable alpha version.



Light! Plugin from Digital Film Tools
The developers of this Mac/Win plugin tell us that: "Unlike anything you've seen before, the Light! Photoshop filter adds light to the scene just as if you were adding a light at the time of shooting. Relying on proprietary image slicing algorithms, isolation of specific parts of the image is quick and easy. Once isolated, light or shadow is introduced." Hype? Download the demo and find out.

AutoCorrect 1.0
This Mac/PC plugin for Photoshop-compatible apps from Human Software is designed to provide efficient one-click color correction. It claims to employ a unique technique that provides better image enhancement, for crispy (?) and life-like images. No demo, alas.

Panopticum Figure 1.0
For the Win/Mac versions of Adobe After Effects, this lets you create different effects for a figure: several painting modes, extruding, shadows, glow and other effects. Demo download.

Sapphire Innovations Nozzles Pack Vol 6
The folks at Sapphire Innovations seem to release an addon product almost every week. The current volume provides 100 royalty-free line/glow line nozzles for use in Painter Mac/PC.

Digital Hotcakes Vol. 7 Grids & Grunge
This CD consists of 40 seamlessly looping video animations that include high tech grids, grungey abstracts, matrix-like animations, random patterns of dots, melting numbers and more. On sale for $97 until April 12. Many more CDs are available from the developer, TriLab Productions.

Robotfunk Flowmotion 1.0
Here's something different. Flowmotion is a live video performance instrument that can operate in a musical context. It is playable like an instrument in the sense that every aspect including the (pre)loading of video files happens real-time and does not interrupt the output flow. Currently for PC with a Mac version to follow. Snag the demo and have some fun.

Ulead DVD Workshop 1.0
Ulead says that this is "powerful, yet flexible DVD authoring software designed for creative video professionals and enthusiasts. Output sophisticated DVDs, VCDs, and SVCDs with features such as motion menus, special text effects and highlight color customization." It looks actually pretty good for a version 1.0 release. Windows only, with a huge downloadable demo available.

Text Recovery Plugin
Annoyed when importing text files into Adobe Illustrator at having the text convert to 'point' text, making modifications difficult? Text Recovery for Mac/Windows solves this and also gives you the ability to create paragraphs from a collection of point text items.


Back to the News Page


Still got questions ?