Color FX Pro review
While there are plenty of retro apps like Analog and Polaroid on the Mac store, they tend to a similar result from the same filter. The alternatives like XnRetro which do allow more manipulation lack grunge, damage and in the case of that particular app, a decent interface. Color FX Pro takes both sides of the retro case and mashes them up with over 70 preset filters, each of which can be tinkered with. The filters are split into Landscape, Nature, Architecture and Portrait categories, or you can trawl through everything at once. There are Lomo style effects, sepia, mono and general messing around with cross-processed colours. There’s also a selection of 20+ frames and borders which are nice, but lack variation. However, the trick up the sleeve of Color FX is that the overall effect has a strength slider and you can add a vignette to it. Then, there’s the fine adjustments that cover brightness, contrast, saturation, shadows and highlights, sharpening and softening. The only thing missing is direct RGB channel control so you could fine tune the colours.
As some of the filters simply add damage or texture, without changing the colours too much, it means that they can then be used in conjunction with other filters to build up a look through combining them. The strength slider makes this a subtle process, rather than just slapping one on top of the other. Specific tinkering with a filter can be saved as a new preset, though sadly a multiple-filter combination can’t. Finished photos can be exported or shared on Flickr, Facebook and Twitter.
Add grunge and distortion then use fine control on the colour effects to create an entirely new combination
With the flexibility and the grunge, plus a slick interface, this is a fast and fun way of applying retro effects with quite some variation.