If you're looking for instant wow factor with your edits, CyberLink PhotoDirector 365 is the way to go. It has tools that give you instant improvements and enhancements to your photos, and while not as exhaustive as some competitors, it's great for beginners looking to make their images stand out. It's one of the best photo editing software options, and is among the cheapest too. Pros may require more specialized features, and it doesn't quite have the breadth of the Adobe suite, but it's a good place to start if you're new to photo editing.
CyberLink PhotoDirector 365 review: Features
Using the Adjustment and Edit tabs, you can apply several standard edits to your photos. The program offers tools for color management, background removal and shapes. It also includes a skin smoother, a teeth whitener, a red-eye remover and a body shaper you can use edit the subjects in your photos.
The Layers tab allows you to work with and edit layers. There are also a bunch of blending modes and a selection of tools that add text, fills and gradients to your images. CyberLink PhotoDirector 365 has creative filters that add texture and color to your images, and you can also use the highlight and shadow adjustment tools to further transform your photos. There are cloning tools to help you remove spots or blemishes, although it doesn't have as many options as PhotoShop 2020. PhotoDirector can also create panoramic pictures and HDR images, although doesn't have the same 32-bit workflow as Affinity Photo.
If you have photos with distortions caused by your camera’s lens, you can use the lens distortion correction tool to fix them. And the software has batch processing, so you can apply the same edit to multiple photos at once. This feature decreases editing time significantly. It's easy to use, sure, but not quite on a par with Lightroom when it comes to depth and options.
The Library tab houses the image editor’s organizing system, and you can import photos individually, by folder, or directly from your camera and then organize them into categories. You keep track of your photos by applying tags and keywords to them, and there’s also a face-tagging function so you can search images with a specific person in them. Overall, it's a very complete package - not quite as deep as the Adobe CC suite, but it does have enough features for most users.
CyberLink PhotoDirector 365: Compatibility and export options
While the photo editor has a wide variety of editing tools, it lacks a lot of file compatibility. It can work with various video and audio files, but it only supports six photo file formats: RAW, JPG, PNG, PHI, GIF and TIFF. This limits the kinds of projects you can create, as well as what images you can import into the software.
As part of the CyberLink PhotoDirector 365 suite you get 50GB of cloud storage too, so you can access your projects and assets wherever you are, provided you have a WiFi connection.
CyberLink PhotoDirector 365 review: Price and support options
Ok, so you have a number of options when it comes to paying for CyberLink PhotoDirector. We tested and recommend the 365 version, which gets you PhotoDirector 11 along with 50GB of online storage for around $50 per year. You'll usually find this reduced to $35 per year, which is an absolute steal. If you want to pay monthly, this cost rises a little (depending on offers).
You can also buy a lifetime license for PhotoDirector 11 for around $150 but... we'd probably recommend going with the 365 option. Sure, you'll technically win if you use PD11 for more than 3-4 years, but you'll likely miss out on new features that come along with future versions, and you won't get the cloud storage.
CyberLink offers support for PhotoDirector both within the program and on its website. You can access video tutorials, product FAQs, and user forums that discuss common problems and solutions. The company also lists a support email address and phone number.
Should you buy CyberLink PhotoDirector 365?
We really like CyberLink PhotoDirector 365, especially given how much the '365' element adds to the overall package. PhotoDirector itself is powerful and simple enough for beginners, and it'll give you flashy results in a short amount of time. While it lacks the depth and compatibility of some competitors, it has enough features for all but pro-level users. We also love the pricing and the fact you get 50GB of cloud storage thrown in at the basic level package. While not technically 'the best' of the photo editing packages, this is well worth considering if you're just starting out.