PCDIP - a PhotoCD Index Print plugin for Photoshop

version 1.0

Frog Enterprises author: Glenn Davis

Download now: PCDIP10.ZIP (113 KB)

On every Photo CD is a file - /PHOTO_CD/OVERVIEW.PCD - that contains the thumbnail images for all the images on the the CD. Photo CD viewers (such as Magic Lantern ™ from Incat Systems) use this file to display the thumbnails. PCDIP is an acquire plugin for Photoshop that combines the thumbnails into a single image that can then be printed (or saved) from Photoshop as an index print (contact sheet). The thumbnail size is 192x128 pixels, and all the pixels are present in the final image.

The standard index print that comes with a Photo CD has a fixed size of 42 thumbnails per print, arranged as a 6x7 array. The left and right sides of the thumbnail are cropped for an aspect ratio of 6:5.

PCDIP makes an array of any size, preserves the original aspect ratio of 3:2, and overlays index numbers in any font (or no index numbers at all). The purposes are at least 2-fold:

1) When copying a Photo CD with a CD writer, a new index print can be made at the same time. (click to see actual image, size 271KB)

2) A large index print, e.g. 8.5 x 11 inches, can be made that shows any number of the images, not just 42.

(click to see actual image, size 631KB)

The thumbnail array is arranged on a card and an array of cards is arranged on a page. After printing, the cards can be cut out with any paper cutter. The cards can be any size, and standard card sizes are provided for the front and back of a CD jewel box. The card background can be any shade of gray. When printing both front and back, the index numbers can be shifted so there is no overlap between the two cards.

Photoshop 3.0.4 (or later) for Windows, and knowledge of the import plugins folder. This folder is visible on one of the File->Preferences dialogs. The folder name is usually similar to C:/Program Files/Adobe/Photoshop/plug-ins/import-export/ or C:/photoshp/plugins/ (for Photoshop versions earlier than 4.0).

Close Photoshop. Unzip PCDIP10.ZIP and copy the 2 files - PCDIP10.8BA and PCDIP10.HLP to the import plugins directory.

When Photoshop is restarted, PCDIP should appear on the File->Import menu item (File->Acquire in Photoshop 3.0.5 and earlier).

The unregistered copy has two limitations. Only 4 images can be acquired for each Photoshop session, and the settings are not saved.

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Page created by Glenn Davis, 1997-2003.
For additions, corrections, and comments send e-mail to < gdavis@gluonics.com > .

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