Photos Extensions, Yes!

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I have been waiting patiently for the Photos app to implement it’s Extensions capabilities. This was activated in El Capitan and some software companies are providing us with their solutions. One of those Extensions is Intensify by MacPhun Software. Let me show you how cool this Extensions functionality is.

 

Overview

Since Apple’s Aperture App is going away I have been trying several photo editing apps like Corel AfterShot Pro, Emulsion and others. They all have their strenghts and weaknesses. What I have been looking for is a little deeper photo editing capability than the Photos app, but especially the ability to create Presets of editing settings for different cameras. Presets are a big deal for me.

Enter the Photos app Extensions, Intensify in particular. Take note, other photo editing companies are going to be making Extensions as well including Affinity Photo. Intensify is $59, a little pricey, but I got it on sale. Here is how all this works.

Extensions

I am not going to go through all of Photos editing capabilities here. I just want to show you the Extensions feature. Once you get into the Editing area of Photos you will see the Extensions area at the bottom of the list.

When you click on it you receive a dropdown menu of your Extensions. In this case Intensify and Snapheal, both from MacPhun Software.

If you don’t have any Extensions then you have to install them first, of course (more on that in a bit). Here are some images of the Intensify Extension in Photos.

There are all kinds of adjustemts you can make on your photos. This app (Extension) is quite sophisticated let me tell you. But, the thing I like the most about it is that it has Presets.

When you first open the Presets area it goes to “Default”. There are a ton of pre-designed Presets in the “Default” area. Don’t be afraid to play around with them, some of them are pretty cool.

As you can see under the “Custom” area I have some presets for my iPhone 6s and my Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 DSLR. The DSLR shoots in RAW mode so most of the photos need some TLC before I use them anywhere. Individual photos can be edited further after using a Preset and of course, you don’t have to use one at all. But, overall having the capability of Presets saves me tons of time.

Extensions Install

An app like Intensify can be used as a standalone app or an Extension. When you double click to intall it or get it from the App Store it installs the Extension version in your Extensions Pref Pane:

If you go into the Extensions Pref Pane and click on Photos in the sidebar you will see all the Extensions available to the Photos app.

It really is a very nice working system that Apple has designed here. I am sure I will be adding more Extensions for Photos as time goes by, but for now I am really pleased to have Intensify and Snapheal.

Keep in mind that Intensify is also a standalone application. You can boot it up separately. The standalone version has more bells and whistles including batch processing capability.

Conclusion

If you only need basic photo editing then the built in capabilities of the Photos app will be just fine. But, if you wish to take it to the next level of sophistication and use Presets as well then an app like Intensify is right up your ally. No, this setup is not Photoshop, but for many people it will be just the thing.

 

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