If all you want to do is make DVDs of your photos, Xtreme PhotoStory does the job, but we'd prefer to be able to create attractive online galleries too.
This slideshow-creation program is geared towards sharing photos on CD and DVD discs.
The DVD Video format is a good choice for sharing photos, as practically everyone has a DVD player, but its meagre 0.4-megapixel resolution means pictures won’t look their best.
Xtreme PhotoStory can create online albums, but it saves slideshows as WMV video files at a paltry 400×300 (0.12-megapixel) resolution. The online gallery space it proves is strewn with Google Ads. The first thing we saw when we visited our online gallery entitled ‘Brighton’ were the words ‘Seeking Lesbian Love?’ The software can upload to YouTube, but this feature is hard to find and has the same quality limitations, even though YouTube now supports HD video.
At least it handles its primary task – slideshows on DVD – reasonably well, creating plain but functional slideshows using a four-step wizard. There’s no photo library management, though. Photos are simply browsed by folder, and it’s only thanks to Windows’ thumbnails that selecting them is remotely practical.
If you’re unhappy with the wizard’s results, you can edit the slideshow using what is essentially a fully blown video-editing interface. You have a choice of 33 transition types, a titles designer, colour correction and some outlandish effects. It has pan-and-zoom effects, but they are clumsily implemented, as you can set the start or end position but not both. Various other editing features are clunky, confusing or not particularly relevant to slideshow creation.
This package gets slideshows on to DVD Video discs efficiently, but as it’s a video-editing package at heart, it can’t handle other photo-related tasks such as library management and high-resolution online galleries.