Franzis COLOR Projects free through July 10

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Franzis COLOR Projects free through July 10

SharewareOnSale has COLOR Projects Professional, non-destructive image processing software from Franzis Verlag GmbH, available for free through July 10. Normal price is said to be $140 US. (Interestingly, COLOR Projects currently doesn't appear in the product list at Franzis).

The download/activation process is unnecessarily complicated, involving signing up with two separate sites: one to allow installation and one to allow activation. It's very annoying, but at least you only have to go through it once. Also, you're required to sign up for emails from Franzis, and what I got were emails in German. It is, of course, possible to shut off the emails afterward. But that's confusing, too. You need to un-check everything on the page, then click the Save or Speichern button (depending on whether it's the English emails or the German emails you're trying to stop).

The software itself is sort-of in the same vein as LightZone. It's very focused on color and not very adept at B&W, which I suppose isn't surprising given its name. It seems to be "industrial strength" -- astoundingly comprehensive and terribly intimidating to get started with.

There are 85 separate tools, organized into 6 color-coded groups:

  1. Edge effects
  2. Geometric effects
  3. Exposure effects
  4. Color effects
  5. Smoothing effects
  6. Artistic effects.

The tools, of course, have adjustments and options you can play with. As in LightZone, there is a tool stack where you can enable, disable, rearrange, remove, and add tools, including adding extra copies of the same tool. The stack goes the opposite direction from LightZone, though: it builds downward.

To get you to a starting point more quickly, there are also 84 preset combinations of tools, organized into 6 groups:

  1. Natural
  2. Surreal
  3. Landscape
  4. Architecture
  5. Portrait
  6. Artistic

Of course, you can modify the tools that are activated by a preset, and you can create your own presets (they'll be filed in a seventh group, "Custom"). Normally, exactly one preset is active on a given image, but there's a feature that allows you to combine two presets on a single image.

There are also 35 color film emulations available: 5 Agfa, 15 Fujifilm, and 15 Kodak. No B&W film emulations are available. I found it a bit odd that film emulation is completely separate from the tool stack and from the presets. You can choose to have the film emulation applied ahead of the tool stack or after the tool stack.

The program includes Raw processing, although I still haven't figured out how to use the "Preparing" option to select the color temperature.

Documentation consists of a 13-page Quick Guide PDF and unusually comprehensive tool tips. For example, the tool tip on the Remove Shade tool says, "The shade removal function converts the shade of colour you select into greyscale while keeping the remaining colour range intact. If you want to remove several shades of colour, just use this effect again on the same image."

There are a few spots where some German leaks through the English translations, but I haven't had any trouble. The English uses British spellings, most notably "Colour." Which is odd because the name of the program uses the American spelling.

I think it's too heavy-duty for me. It seems to be built for professional colorists who'll get accustomed to it because they use it all day long. But if COLOR Projects Professional sounds at all interesting to you, give it a try and see what you think.

HDR Projects Platin free

Thanks for the information. Franzis HDR Projects Platin is also free at the moment:

Regards, dke

HDR Projects Platin free

Thanks, DKE. It looks like that offer is good until the end of August.

For those of us who don't read German, just click the big green button that says, "jetzt kostenlos runterladen" and it'll start downloading the ZIP file.

Unfortunately, at the moment the ZIP file seems to be corrupt and unusable. At least on Windows.

Any catches to the HDR Projects Platin offer?

Any catches to this, i.e. do you have to supply an e-mail address to activate it, etc....
I've not yet tried to install it so don't know if the file was only corrupt for Doug or if anybody downloading it at the moment is going to have a problem.
I have however uploaded it to VirusTotal and that gave the zip file a clean bill of health as far as virus checking.

Update - I have just tried to access the zip file and it does still appear to be corrupt.

Just been looking around for some reviews, found this from 2013

They seemed to quite like it, pity about the corrupt download!

Re: Any catches to the HDR Projects Platin offer?

Presuming they eventually fix the ZIP file...

Getting a Franzis program installed and running is, as I noted above with COLOR Projects Professional, quite the process. You'll need to create two accounts: one at Franzis to allow the installation, and one at Pixxsel for the activation. When you create those, you're required to authorize the sending of promotional emails.

However, after you've got it installed and activated you can go back and unauthorize the emails. There are separate authorizations for English and German emails, so I just wait until I get one of their promotional emails (it doesn't take long) and click the opt-out link at the very end. Then uncheck all of the options and click Save or Speichern -- depending on whether you're on the English page or the German page.

I just got their original version of ANALOG Projects Professional (they're at version 3 now) for free, and the setup process was the same. Of course, I already had accounts at Franzis and Pixxsel, so I didn't need to create more. But I did need to reauthorize the promotional emails, and shut them back off again when they started coming in.

If you're wondering, I can't really recommend ANALOG Projects Professional. I guess it's okay since I got it for free, but I've already got both CameraBag 2 (currently on sale for $10 US) and On1 Perfect Effects 9.5 (currently available for free), and both are a lot easier to use... and CameraBag 2 is a lot better performing. But then, I'm biased; I've been a fan of CameraBag 2 since it was in beta.

Re: HDR Projects Platin free

I found another source for this:

You'll need to use two links on that page: one to order the key, and one to download the software.

Unlike the other Franzis programs I've installed, this one came up in German-language without asking. However, CTRL-P brought up the Settings dialog, and selecting English for Anzeigesprache, clicking OK, then restarting the program fixed that up.


I've never messed with HDR, but I was surprised that on my second attempt -- with single-image HDR -- I produced something I was quite impressed by. Okay, it's not the HDR so much as the treatment afterward, but still, I like it.

HDR Projects Platin download

I reported the problem with the zip file to AL2C and I hope they will repair the download.

Regards, dke.

HDR Projects Platin download

Thanks for reporting the problem.