JPEGmini Review: Cutting Photo Sizes

The presence of numerous photo-related apps give you an insane amount of editing options. One of which is JPEGmini, an app which, in a nutshell, reduces photo file sizes without sacrificing quality.

This is not exactly a consumer app, but it’s a must for photographers and studios who take thousands of pictures a day and are dealing hundreds of gigabytes worth of photos. Though there are cloud storage services like the iCloud and Google Drive and hard drives which have terabytes of storage space, it’s always best to find a way to maximize the storage space.

So, how does JPEGmini fare? There’s nothing quite like it in the market and grabbing it might be a priority if you’re starved for storage space:

Differentiating the regular and Pro version

First off, there are two versions of the app: the regular version which is priced at $20 and the Pro version which is at $149.

The regular version is capable of giving you your basic needs, such as downsizing regular photos, resizing them, and saving up disk space, all without reducing their quality. The Pro version meanwhile, comes with three essential and exclusive functions/changes, which are:

  • Ability to support and downsize photos which are up to 60 megapixels in size. No matter how you look at it, 60 MP is huge, but wedding photography services and real estate companies regularly use photos as large as this. This includes photos taken from high definition digital cameras, collages, and panorama shots.
  • Processes eight times faster. This depends on the type of photo taken as well as the file size. We’re not sure exactly how much time it needs to work on a single 60 megabyte photo, but we tried it out (read more to find out the results!)
  • A plug-in for Adobe Lightroom. It allows you to view, retouch, and organize numerous photos at the same time.

Note that it the tests, we used the Pro version.

Setting it apart

Photo editing software, including Adobe Photoshop, can compress images and save them as smaller files. However, they do so while sacrificing quality: they compress every pixel in the photo without any regard for quality. JPEGmini does things differently: it does the same thing, but only in areas of the photo wherein the changes won’t be visible to the naked eye.

Issues, downsides, and reminders

With regard to compressing photos, we have no issues with how JPEGmini did it: there are no noticeable changes to the overall quality of the photos we tested and the file sizes were drastically reduced. However, there are a few issues we took note of:

  • As its name suggests, it can only compress and downsize images with a JPEG format. It ignores other formats, like PNG and GIF, and it’s impossible to downsize these.
  • Even the Pro version does not have support plug-ins for Adobe Photoshop and Apple Photos. On a positive note, you can easily import files from them by simply heading over to the menu bar: select File then Open and select the photos you want compressed.
  • When you’re editing and retouching photos, be sure to put this process in the final phase. Why on earth would you compress a photo first then edit it? Note that this should be the other way around.

Compared to other issues other photo editing apps face, the above mentioned are minor. These won’t heavily hamper or affect your workflow.

The test

I crammed up 40 gigabytes worth of photos which take up the entirety of my college photo library. After procrastinating due to bouts of nostalgia, I tried the app out.

First off, the whole process is intuitive and fairly easy: you can simply drag and drop photos or folders into the queue, or do it the long way by selecting Choose in the app’s user interface. That being said, it’s pretty intuitive and it warns you that it will start compressing and the original photos will be replaced.

If you’re having second doubts with the app, you can easily copy and export the compressed images into another folder or location. However, this usually took more time than compressing the original files, considering that the program needs to create newer files instead.

Anyway, here are the results:

  • It took 3.5 hours to compress all the 40 gigabyte photos. This is actually pretty good, considering that it only took a few clicks and didn’t require me to check on the progress every half an hour. Note that there were no errors that stopped the compression process.
  • The 40 GB library was reduced to only 12 gigabytes after JPEGmini was done. And yes, this is an amazing result – it saved me 28 GB of storage space.
  • I didn’t find anything wrong with the compressed photos. These look similar with the original ones to my eyes. But hey, remember that I’m not much of a photographer or a graphics artist!

Overall, using JPEGmini is highly recommended if you’re short of space.

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