Many users prefer to edit and share their photos on the move and if you're one of those, you maybe interested in our review of the Android version of XnRetro. However personal computers boast greater power and XnRetro takes advantage to offer additional features that are not available on the Android app.
By the end of this article, I hope you'll be able to judge whether this is an app that you should download for yourself.
The workspace is intelligently laid out and the icons, while not ultra slick, are easily understood and unlikely to date too quickly.
In common with the Android version of the app, there is a carousel towards the bottom of the screen that displays the various options. Also shared with the Android app, you can view different filter effects and frames in this area, selected by tabbed buttons immediately below the carousel.
Where the desktop version of XnRetro departs from the mobile version is in offering additional options for selecting different types of vignettes and also a new feature for overlaying various light effects onto your photos.
Furthermore, the app takes advantage of the greater space available on computer monitors to permanently display the image adjustment tools.
Image AdjustmentsHaving all of the image adjustment tools in view all the time makes it very easy to tweak and adjust your images as you apply different effects and lights. There's also a wider range of tools on offer here which opens up plenty of options for adjusting the appearance of the default effects, such as editing the color balance of the individual red, green and blue channels. The Noise slider makes it easy to replicate the appearance of grain that is a common feature of old photos taken with film cameras.
If you reach the point where you've made too many adjustments, you can just click the Reset button and start again.
There are 20 separate retro effects that you can see applied to thumbnails of your photo in the carousel. Clicking on a thumbnail quickly applies it to the main photo and if it doesn't look right, just click on another thumbnail or tweak it with the image adjustment tools.
The Light tab displays graphics that show the different effects independent of your photo, so you have to click to apply them if you want to get any idea of how they will look. You can always click the Original thumbnail to the left to remove Light effects or reduce the opacity using the Light opacity slider.
The next tab is for vignettes and this offers a small range of different vignette styles. The Vignetting slider in the image adjustment tools allows you to vary the intensity of the vignette to your taste.
This ability to combine three different types of effect and to tweak them independently is a very powerful feature that opens up a huge range of different effects. Unfortunately, if you find a combination of effects and image adjustments that you really like, there is no way to save the settings so that you can apply them to other photos.
When you've got the photo styled just as you want it, you can add a finishing touch by applying a frame to the image. There's a reasonable range of framing options covering several different styles which should keep all but the most demanding users happy.
I think that the only fault I can pick with the app is the inability to save your own effects so that you can reuse them in the future. That is all that stops me giving XnRetro full marks and so it gets 4.5 out of 5 stars. However, if the option were to be added to save your own filters, then I'd have to give this app full marks.
You can download your own copy of XnRetro for Windows or OS X from the XnView Forum.