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lightzone.jpg Light Crafts Releases LightZone 1.2.2
By Mike Pasini, The Imaging Resource
(Monday, March 27, 2006 - 10:19 EST)

Highlights of the new release include new Color Cast and Color Balance tools, new histogram and sampler views and conversion of grayscale images to RGB mode to allow use of all color tools on them.

Light Crafts has updated ZightZone, its cross-platform image editing solution based on the Zone System, introducing Color Cast and Color Balance tools in addition to improved noise reduction, new histogram and sampler views, a command to invert masks and some bug fixes. The new version also treats grayscale images as RGB to allow color tools to be used on them. A Help menu has been implemented as well.

For the Macintosh, this release is a Universal Binary. The Windows release no longer unnecessarily looks for a floppy drive on Windows 2000 installations.

New Features

The complete list of new features in 1.2 follows:

  • The new Color Cast Tool lets you pick a point in the image to be rendered neutral, and then makes the tonal correction to neutralize that point. The color cast correction is centered around the luminosity of the sampled point, so you can have separate Color Cast tools for highlights, midtones, and shadows. This is versatile for handling mixed-lighting conditions.
  • The new Color Balance Tool lets you adjust the overall color cast of an image. There is a midpoint setting which determines where in the luminance range to emphasize the correction.
  • Masks can now be inverted, so that the regions in a mask mark areas to be excluded.
  • Region points can now be placed and edited outside the image border, greatly simplifying editing of regions along the image edges.
  • Common Canon and Nikon SLR cameras now have default color adjustments.
  • The Histogram preview shows the distribution for the visible part of the image, separated into the red, green and blue color channels.
  • The Sampler review shows information about the color where the cursor is. The information displayed includes pixel coordinates, RGB values, luminosity, zone (on a 10-zone scale), Intensity, hue, saturation.
  • A Preferences dialog has been added, with settings for how LightZone interacts with its environment.
  • There is now a Help menu, with access to the LightZone help system.
  • LightZone now automatically checks for updates to the software. This check requires that you have an internet connection. The check for updates can be disabled in the Preferences dialog.
  • LightZone 1.2 is a Mac Universal Binary, running on Intel-based Macs as well as PowerPC-based Macs.
  • Each Tool now has its own dropdown menu with commands to expand, collapse, disable, and delete the tool. There is also a new feature to auto- expand only the selected tool in the tool stack while keeping all other tools collapsed.

The free update is available from the LightZone update page.

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