15 Useful Batch Image Processors

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Whether you’re a Web developer, Web designer or blogger, you’ve probably had to deal with the headache of converting many images to different sizes and formats. It’s not much fun if you have to convert all of them by hand. Batch image processing can reduce this process from hours of work to just a few simple clicks.

With batch image processing, you can specify a size or file type, and then a script runs to convert the images. You can process hundreds or thousands of images with just a few clicks. And nearly every image processor comes with a unique feature set.

Many of the articles here on Smashing Magazine have screenshots that have to be resized and configured to fit within the website’s layout. We use batch image processors to quickly resize all of the screenshots and larger images that we feature in the articles.

Types of Batch Processors

Batch image processors usually come with some very standard functions:

  • Resizing images,
  • Scaling images,
  • Converting to different image formats.

Some image processors also perform some advanced functionality, such as graphic editing (rotating, blurring, borders, adding watermarks), and some can even create slideshows, display other types of multimedia and perform other advanced functions.

Image processors are worth their weight in gold if you’re a designer or developer spending a good chunk of time converting images by hand in Photoshop. Let’s take a look at 15 useful batch image processors for both Mac and PC.

BIMP Lite (Win, free)

BIMP1

BIMP Lite2 is a compact, small and simple Windows-application which performs batch processing at its best. The tool allows you to create thumbnail images, add a prefix/postfix (with meta variables such as image width, image height, sequential number etc.), rename using a sequential number, change the case of filenames, replace/remove spaces & underscores, flip or rotate images and also apply anti-aliasing, inverse, greyscale and bevel effects. An FTP-Manager is integrated as well.

The thumbnail resizing allows you to force a specified width or height and keep the proportions, or define fixed image dimensions. In addition, the program can also convert the file format to GIF, JPG, PNG, BMP, MIFF, TIFF, PCX or TGA. All of the actions can be performed individually, or combined. BIMP Lite is freeware and contains no spyware.

Phatch (Mac, Windows, Linux, free)

Screenshot Phatch3d3

Phatch4 (which is a combination of the words photo and batch) is an open-source batch photo editor that can be used on Linux, Mac OS X and Windows. Phatch features an excellent user interface that’s easy to use and understand. What makes the tool different from other batch image processors is its extensbility. If you know Python, you can create Phatch scripts to perform some common Phatch actions on the fly.

Phatch handles all popular image formats and can duplicate (sub)folder hierarchies. It can batch resize, rotate, apply shadows, perspective, rounded corners and perform 35 further actions automatically. The Phatch website has extensive documentation5 and also allows you to install specific extensions6. Because of Phatch’s excellent documentation, any user from beginner to advanced will find the software easy to use and extend.

ResizeMe

Resize Me7

ResizeMe8 is a batch image processor for Mac users. ResizeMe is simple and sleek, a no-frills application. It was created using the Cocoa framework, so it really feels like a Mac application.

With scaling you can create thumbnails for your website, decrease the file size of your photos, or resize your images to fit a certain size. If your images are all in portrait-mode, but you need landscape or you want to add a new angle to your photos, ResizeMe offers rotation effects as well. You can also batch flip your images horizontally and vertically.

The software gets the job done and does it well. You can download a free 10-day trial or purchase the software for $19.95.

photo Drop (Mac)

Section Photodrop9

photo Drop10 is a powerful application for bulk resizing images on a Mac. Essentially, you create “droplets,” which are specific configurations for photo resizing. This is perfect for saving presets that you’ll need over and over again, such as for resizing screenshots down to a 500-pixel width to fit blog layouts.

photo Drop is a free application and comes with almost every feature you’d ever need to quickly process a large amount of images.

Use Photoshop CS3 to Batch Convert Images

Batch Photoshop11

Adobe Photoshop is far and away the most popular image processor for designers, so some might prefer the option of using the native tools provided by Photoshop. Photoshop comes with many advanced features, and one of them is the ability to batch convert image files. According to the Photoshop documentation12, it’s as simple as choosing either:

  • File > Scripts > Image Processor (Photoshop) or
  • Tools > Photoshop > Image Processor (Bridge),

and then selecting the images or file that you want to convert. Once you’ve selected them, select a location where you would like to save the files, select the file types you’d like to convert to along with any other configuration options and click “Run.”

You can read more about batch image processing at the Adobe website13.

Advanced Batch Converter (Win)

Advanced Batch Converter214

Advanced Batch Converter15 is a Windows-only program that can convert images to over 120 different file formats on the fly and can convert over 25 different types of images. Aside from the ability to convert images, the software can also do basic photo editing, such as cropping and resizing images. There is a 30-day free trial, and after that the software costs $49.95.

Irfran View (Win)

InfranView216

Irfran View17 is a freeware application for Windows users. Aside from converting images, Irfran View has many unique features18, like a multimedia player, hotkeys, and many more. Infran View also allows you to extend the software by using plug-ins19.

DBP – David’s Batch Processor (Linux, Mac OS X, Win)

Dbp FileSelector20

David’s Batch Processor21 is a Gimp plug-in that performs batch editing functions on images. Instead of having to download a separate program, Gimp users can simply call the plug-in from within Gimp. The user simply selects the images that he or she wants to resize and creates a quick ruleset that will process the images.

However, the plug-in is only intended to resize RGB images, not indexed images. The plug-in is licensed under the open-source GPL license.

FotoBatch (Win)

Fotobatch22

FotoBatch23 is a quick Windows batch photo processor that offers all of the basic photo editing capabilities and additionally some nifty features. You can create scripts so that all of your images have the same enhancements and adjustments made to them. The tool offers over 30 imaging functions such as resize, rotate, blur, add border, text watermark, image feather, etc. The tool offers batch conversion, can be integrated in context menus and can generate slideshows and PDF-files.

A user license costs $39.95, but you can try the software first with a 15-day trial.

Image Converter.EXE (Win)

Image Converter Exe24

Image converter.exe25 is a free image converter that is set up slightly differently than other batch processors in that it offers a Conversion Wizard. The Conversion Wizard allows users who don’t have much experience with batch image processing to quickly and easily convert and rename images.

EasyBatchPhoto (Mac)

Screenshot26

EasyBatchPhoto27 is a fast and responsive batch image processor for the Mac. EasyBatchPhoto can easily watermark images as well, which is a function that many image processors don’t have.
The tool takes care of many repetitive tasks by processing images with a single drag-and-drop. A single license costs $24.

Using Automator on a Mac

Automator28

If you’re a Mac user, you can batch edit images using a program that comes bundled with OS X: Automator29. Automator essentially allows you to create tiny applications for specific purposes, and you can create one of these applications just for resizing images. eHow has an excellent tutorial30 on how to create an Automator action that resizes, names and saves your images to a folder, without having to open Photoshop.

Sizerox (Mac)

Sizerox31

With Sizerox32 you can drag and drop images or folders into a simple graphical interface, and it will convert the images quickly and rename them if you’d like. You can use Sizerox to resize, rename, crop, rotate and watermark hundreds or thousands of images with a single Drag-and-Drop.

Sizerox uses Apple Quicktime to save the resized images, so the quality of the resized images is high. You can also use the Renamer engine to rename the images while resizing them. Because the software costs only $10, it won’t break the bank either. It’s simple, yet effective.

QuickScale (Mac)

Quickscale33

QuickScale34 is another Mac-only application that is simple and easy to use. Like photo Drop, QuickScale has the ability to create “droplets” (saved resize presets). It may not have as many features as some other batch image processors, but it has all of the basics and has a short learning curve. It’s perfect for the user who only needs basic batch image processing functionality. A license for QuickScale costs $15.

FastStone Photo Resizer (Win, free)

FSResizerScreenShot

FastStone Photo Resizer35 is a fairly robust image processor. The software is free for home users and runs on the Windows platform. It offers a nicer graphical interface than some of the other image processors and also supports droplets.

The tool can convert and rename images in batch mode, resize, crop, change color depth, apply color effects, add text, watermark and border effects and rename images with a sequential number.

Pixillion Image Converter (Win, free)

Pixillion36

The Pixillion Image Converter37 can convert just about any image file type, including PDF. It has a few nice features that other batch image processors don’t have, like allowing you to right-click an image and resize it from anywhere. Pixillion is a free application for Windows users. (al)

Footnotes

  1. 1 http://cerebralsynergy.com/download.php?view.52
  2. 2 http://cerebralsynergy.com/download.php?view.52
  3. 3 http://photobatch.stani.be/
  4. 4 http://photobatch.stani.be/
  5. 5 http://photobatch.wikidot.com/
  6. 6 http://photobatch.wikidot.com/extensions
  7. 7 http://resize-me.com/
  8. 8 http://resize-me.com/
  9. 9 http://www.aramk.net/photodrop/
  10. 10 http://www.aramk.net/photodrop/
  11. 11 http://livedocs.adobe.com/en_US/Photoshop/10.0/help.html?content=WSfd1234e1c4b69f30ea53e41001031ab64-7426.html
  12. 12 http://livedocs.adobe.com/en_US/Photoshop/10.0/help.html?content=WSfd1234e1c4b69f30ea53e41001031ab64-7426.html
  13. 13 http://livedocs.adobe.com/en_US/Photoshop/10.0/help.html?content=WSfd1234e1c4b69f30ea53e41001031ab64-7426.html
  14. 14 http://www.batchconverter.com/
  15. 15 http://www.batchconverter.com/
  16. 16 http://www.irfanview.com/
  17. 17 http://www.irfanview.com/
  18. 18 http://www.irfanview.com/main_download_engl.htm
  19. 19 http://www.irfanview.com/plugins.htm
  20. 20 http://members.ozemail.com.au/~hodsond/dbp.html
  21. 21 http://members.ozemail.com.au/~hodsond/dbp.html
  22. 22 http://www.keksoft.com/fotobatch/index.htm
  23. 23 http://www.keksoft.com/fotobatch/index.htm
  24. 24 http://www.stintercorp.com/ic.php
  25. 25 http://www.stintercorp.com/ic.php
  26. 26 http://www.yellowmug.com/easybatchphoto/
  27. 27 http://www.yellowmug.com/easybatchphoto/
  28. 28 http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2488
  29. 29 http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2488
  30. 30 http://www.ehow.com/how_2101532_images-photo-editing-program-mac.html
  31. 31 http://www.sizerox.com/
  32. 32 http://www.sizerox.com/
  33. 33 http://www.codingmammoth.com/quickscale/
  34. 34 http://www.codingmammoth.com/quickscale/
  35. 35 http://www.faststone.org/FSResizerDetail.htm
  36. 36 http://www.nchsoftware.com/imageconverter/index.html
  37. 37 http://www.nchsoftware.com/imageconverter/index.html

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Glen Stansberry is the editor at Web Jackalope, a blog about creative Web development.

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  1. 1

    I’ve always used the little Windows Powertools resizer. It installs as a right click context menu item which is nice if you don’t want have to launch a separate application. I’m also a huge Irfanview fan.
    ACDSee had an nice duplicate finder which I don’t see any of these apps having, which can be handy if your picture collection has grown with a more or less adhoc organic organizational structure over the year and you can’t remember what you already have copies of.

    0
  2. 52

    IrfanView rocks, most of the time. It’s super fast and light-weight, unlike Photoshop.

    0
  3. 103

    Obligatory Quicksilver comment: If you’re on a mac and you use quicksilver, you can enable the image resize plugin, then you can invoke quicksilver and do stuff like “resize -> 200w as jpg”. You can even do it with multiple files selected. Really handy for quick stuff!

    0
  4. 154

    Nice! I’ve been using BatchImageResizer for awhile and it looks like its time to make the switch to get better results.

    0
  5. 205

    Another vote for imagemagick. It should be in the list

    0
  6. 256

    I just had to resize a photo yesterday and found an option inside Picasa2. Just go to: File – Export Picture to Folder. There you can change quality and pixels, etc. I haven’t tried it with more then one photo but I would imagine that it would work since Picasa also has more complex photo batch editing. (and of course it’s free too!)

    0
  7. 307

    Are there any programs out there that do batch conversion but look for patterns int the photos? The problem is, I have loads of pictures of people I have to convert to one size (a profile pic), and the pictures are all different sizes. I’m wondering if there is a program out there that searches for where the head is and then crops and re-sizes the image.

    Thanks!

    0
  8. 358

    Fireworks, folks… great batch processing.

    0
  9. 409

    Nice post.

    0
  10. 460

    I use XNview for basic image editing It offers also script and renaming capabililities
    Another application with batch capability it is photoscape – it is not so strong with optimizing but have nice borders no only the classical margin

    0
  11. 511

    personally, i use bridge. but, if i didn’t already have it, i wouldn’t pay for software that comes free as part of osx. namely, sips which can also flip, rotate, etc. see man sips for all options.

    0
  12. 562

    Thanks, that was helpful!

    Regards,
    Gopal

    0
  13. 613

    Thank you for info. Although I am not a batch worker but I like to keep links on my side coz you never know when you need it. I generally use batchrename pro for renaming files etc. But dont edit in batch. I can probably use some references here.

    Roshan
    Freelance Developer

    0
  14. 664

    Really nice thanks for sharing

    0
  15. 715

    Very much well compiled but i would like to add Arles Image Web Page Creator in your list, im using it for years and very much helpful in making thumbnails

    0
  16. 766

    I’ve always used Downsize, which works for Mac.

    0
  17. 817

    thanks for the tutorial. i always do it by manual. now that i know, i can use it :)

    0
  18. 868

    Great Thanks Guys,

    This is really interesting.. was looking for batch converters like this from a long time now

    Cheers :)

    0
  19. 919

    very nice:) i like Phatch Photo editor …works fine for me

    0
  20. 970

    I’m an Easy Thumbnails user too. Easy no hassle image resizer.
    http://www.fookes.com

    0
  21. 1021

    I am fan of Smashingmagazine.com ….Very nice :) it’s very useful to us. thanks for sharing.. keep sharing………

    0
  22. 1072

    nice post, thanks ;)

    0
  23. 1123

    One of my favorite batch processing tools, because I often use Fireworks: factorycity.net/projects/pngcrushrrr/

    0
  24. 1174

    this is very useful.thanks a lot for this list

    Ronald

    0
  25. 1225

    thanks

    0
  26. 1276

    For simple batch resizing Preview works great too.

    0
  27. 1327

    It’s been mentioned before, but I’ll say it again: ImageMagick makes nearly all of this redundant. Try it.

    0
  28. 1378

    I use the Batch Process tool in Fireworks. It’s got plenty of useful options and you can save oft-used sequences of edits to your desktop as quick shortcuts. I’ve not needed another batch editing tool.

    Jason King

    0
  29. 1429

    xnview.exe is the best image manager and convert tool for me :) its small and usefull

    0
  30. 1480

    Yea that o{ne tw{o tree business was getting annoying lol

    0
  31. 1531

    RapidoResizer for Mac (free)
    link

    0
  32. 1582

    Devilsapprentice

    October 7, 2008 1:00 am

    Photoshop lets you set up ‘Droplets’ (File>Automate>Create Droplet) Which created a shortcut that you just drag your images onto from any file or folder and it’ll batch process them for you.

    Just record your actions, go to automate>create droplet, define what actions and locations of start/end files and save your droplet where you want it – its simplicity in a teacup.

    I have a droplet set up for each batch process I have – then drag drop and go, don’t even need to open Photoshop first

    0
  33. 1633

    hey guy, really useful post! but..
    what about a tool to automate the banner production? Everyday I have to create many wap banner, many files of different dimensions in many different folders. Have you got any advice? Thanx a lot! :)

    0
  34. 1684

    Christian Menniss

    October 7, 2008 6:09 am

    Great collection!

    I think any batch image tool which includes an FTP is super useful for photographers who share their photographs online. It used to take ages to download from camera, edit and resize manually and then upload. Now it can be done automagically!

    Thanks!

    0
  35. 1735

    Great article.. If only I had known of some of these earlier, would of saved me hours resizing images.

    I used to run an e-commerce store where resizing images was a tedious job that had to be done.. I manually edited thousands of photos… What a waste of time! I wish I had known about these back then…

    0
  36. 1786

    Any one app cannot meet all the various batch image processing requirements. Unfortunately none of the new tools are quite that good. Most of these are ideal for just one or two processes.

    If you count out the two biggies, Photoshop and Fireworks, there are some that have stood the test of time.

    Compupic Pro hasn’t been updated for some time but is one of the best. It’s fast and has some very powerful batch processing functions, some of which are absent in the others. ACDsee is one of the fastest image management tools–though it doesn’t have as many features as Compupic.

    Among the new ones, Faststone image viewer is very fast and has some excellent functions. This is the only one that gets my vote today.

    0
  37. 1837

    I stick with Photoshop when resizing large quantities of photos…thanks for the list anyway…might help someone

    0
  38. 1888

    I frequently use the free tool “Power Batch” from UniDream
    It will resize, rename, watermark, crop, rotate, and a bunch of other stuff I rarely use.
    Really fast and efficient.

    0
  39. 1939

    i use XnView, easy & fast

    0
  40. 1990

    If you use MacOS X you can use Sips, which comes by default in MacOS X, for image batch processing. Here you are some examples (in Spanish):

    0
  41. 2041

    I dont know that ps3 have a script for photos. helpfull and thanks

    0
  42. 2092

    I am a windows luser, I just wasted precious time scrolling past software only for uptight-snobby-mac users.

    -4
  43. 2143

    Wow! FastStone Photo Resizer (Win, free) will save me lots and lots of time. Thank you for the tip!

    0
  44. 2194

    A special thank for your article.

    I got my last xmas gift today. It is Sizerox for mac. A great powerful friend for your photos.

    Happy xmas and have a nice new year.

    0
  45. 2245

    I’m trying to batch resize 166.667 images. All ranging from 5 to 7kb. The problem is no program or script I found could handle this much. They all crash. It´s probably a memory issue but is there some way to dodge this? Any ideas?

    1
  46. 2296

    I’m trying to find a program similar to ‘rename fairy’ that works on Vista. Batch renaming made simple. Any ideas?

    0
  47. 2347

    Helpfull and great article.
    But I’m missing a ToC where I can pick a a programme for my OS, Licence, whatever. I’m not interesst reading about a mac programm when I use Linux.
    Also there’s no “real” statement about the licence (freeware, shareware, copyleft etc.).

    Thanks Simon

    0
  48. 2398

    Gold-Software Development’s Advanced Photo Batch and Keksoft’s FotoBatch both crash on launch in Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit. Several emails to the software developers for support or refunds over the course of two weeks have gone unanswered. Please consider removing these two programs from your list of recommended software.

    0
  49. 2449

    I agree with someone above. You can create a Photoshop action and then “Automate” or whatever they call it File -> Automate or similar. My wife’s a photographer so I have wedding galleries that need to covert from 4000×3000 to web size, plus add a watermark. I also got the action to handle vertical vs horizontal photos and apply a background frame. So now I just set it loose on the folder and come back an hour later to 500 photos that each had half a dozen processes performed. I was amazed at how easy it was.

    0
  50. 2500

    Irfanview kicks ass!!!

    0

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