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PowerStrip 3.90

Take control of every aspect of your display and graphics card

by Mike Williams

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License: Trial Software
Operating Systems: Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP
Requirements:

 

Languages: English, Bulgarian, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Czech, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Russian, Spanish, Slovak, Ukrainian
Software Cost: $29.95 (Windows)
Date Updated: 21 April 2011
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 4905
Developer: EnTech Taiwan
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Back up your data with Acronis True Image 2016 with a 1-PC LIFETIME license, only $29.99, saving 40%, from store.downloadcrew.com
PowerStrip 3.9
Take control of every aspect of your display and graphics card

PowerStrip is very powerful tool that provides complete control over all your graphics card settings.

At its simplest, you could just use the program to overclock your card and tweak a range of speed-related settings, ensuring you're getting the maximum possible performance.

You can also create multiple profiles to, say, adjust the brightness, contrast, gamma and temperature of your display to suit different circumstances. So if it's bright around your PC sometimes, dark at others, then you don't have to find one group of settings to cover them both. Just create "Day" and "Night" profiles, say, then apply them as appropriate from the program's system tray icon in just a second or two.

Other profiles might configure various screen resolutions with the appropriate refresh rates, though, and while you can do this with your regular display driver, PowerStrip goes much further. You get considerable control over display timings, for instance, far more than any driver provides. You may even be able to set up custom video resolutions, depending on your setup (this only works occasionally).

And, best of all, you can link selected profiles to the launch of a particular application. So running Excel might change your screen resolution to display more data, say, or launching a media player might overclock your card for better speeds. And the program can apply other tweaks to improve application performance overall, including boosting its process priority or compacting your system memory before launch.

Just in case that's not enough, the program also some unexpected bonus tools, like the ability to save your desktop icon positions so they can easily be restored later.

And because PowerStrip has been around for a very long time, it's extremely compatible, and supports all the latest graphics cards, and most older models too. So whatever your hardware, it's likely that the program will work for you.

Verdict:

Highly technical in places, but still generally easy to use, PowerStrip is an excellent way to optimise your display both globally and for specific applications

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

Spektrel Art 1.0.0

Free Full Commercial Software

Spektrel Art is a stand-alone program and Photoshop plugin which transforms digital photos into "magical art that glimmers and gleams with intersecting lines of tapered light".

What does that mean? Essentially it applies a configurable mix of effects, enhancing edges, smoothing backgrounds and emphasizing colours. Take a look at the thumbnail for one example, and the official product page has more.

Spektral Art works much like any similar tool. Open an image, click one of the thumbnails to apply a particular preset, or click a few buttons and drag some sliders to fine-tune the results.

There's surprising scope for variation, too. For example, just switching from the "Light" to "Dark" theme can transform a bright and friendly image into something dark and sinister, at least in some cases (results vary depending on the source image).

Please note, the demo version doesn't allow images to be saved.

SPECIAL OFFER: as we write, the developer is offering Spektral Art for free. The offer expires August 29th. Please note that you must provide your name, address and phone number to receive your free license.

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