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Comparison of Graphics Mill for .NET and System.Drawing classes (GDI+)

You may wonder - why to use Graphics Mill for .NET instead of standard .NET imaging functionality (classes from System.Drawing namespace which wraps the GDI+ library). In fact Graphics Mill for .NET has a number of undisputed benefits as compared to GDI+. Moreover, Graphics Mill for .NET can be used not only as a substitute of GDI+, but also - as an extension. The additional features of the Graphics Mill for .NET are discussed below.

A Number of Ready-to-Use Effects and Transforms for Images

  • You don't need to implement them yourself every time you want to, say, sharpen the image, or apply distort to an image.
  • While GDI+ allows to apply some effects with color matrix or a Graphics object, Graphics Mill for .NET provides much more convenient and intuitive means which require less code writing to get the same result.
  • For such effects like resize, rotate, etc. Graphics Mill for .NET provides more interpolation modes which produce higher quality of the result.

There is also available a separate module - Red-Eye Removal which exposes red-eye effect removal functionality (including unique semiautomatic mode).

More File Formats

Graphics Mill for .NET supports more file formats than GDI+. The following file formats can be loaded by Graphics Mill for .NET and cannot be loaded by GDI+:

  • WBMP;
  • JPEG2000;
  • PCX;
  • PSD.

Saving of these formats is supported by Graphics Mill for .NET, but not by GDI+:

  • WBMP;
  • JPEG2000;
  • Animated GIF files;
  • PDF;
  • SWF (including animated).

Also, you can purchase Graphics Mill for .NET add-ons which will give additional format support:

More Pixel Formats (Including CMYK)

  • Graphics Mill for .NET supports CMYK images. It is especially important when you are preparing an image for printing. Using Graphics Mill for .NET you can convert RGB images to CMYK, load (as well as save) CMYK images directly from files, apply effects directly to CMYK images.
  • Graphics Mill for .NET supports grayscale images.
  • Graphics Mill for .NET can work with extended pixels formats (i.e. 16 bits per channel), such as 48-bit RGB, 64-bit CMYK, 16-bit grayscale, etc. Although GDI+ can read extended images, it automatically converts them to non-extended ones. On the contrary, Graphics Mill for .NET preserves extended pixel formats after loading, allows to apply operations, save, etc.

Advanced Conversion Between Pixel Formats

Graphics Mill for .NET allows advanced conversion between different pixel formats. When converting pixel format using GDI+ you cannot affect this process in any way. Graphics Mill for .NET allows you to specify conversion settings (leaving a possibility to convert pixel formats without taking care about it though).

  • When converting between RGB, CMYK, or grayscale (including converting within the same color space, e.g. RGB -> RGB) you can apply color management. You can specify ICC profile of the device or color space you are converting pixels to, and Graphics Mill for .NET will apply precise conversion with minimum color distortions. It is especially important for printing industry.
  • When applying color reduction (e.g. converting a 24-bit RGB image to an 8-bit indexed bitmap) you can specify the palette (or request to generate the optimal palette for this image), required number of colors, dithering settings. This way you get powerful tools for creating web-optimized images.

Possibility to Apply Lossless Manipulation to JPEG Files

Graphics Mill for .NET provides more advanced support of JPEG files compared to GDI+. You can not only load it as bitmap, but also apply certain operations to the compressed JPEG data. The main advantage of this approach is that JPEG image quality is not reduced (as opposed to the standard approach when you first decode the image and then encode it). Also, sometimes it increases the performance of your application.

You can:

  • Rotate 90, 180, or 270 degrees and/or flip the compressed JPEG image data.
  • Crop an image without JPEG decompression. The quality of the cropped JPEG will be the same as the quality of the original bitmap.
  • Copy some bitmap to the compressed JPEG image data. It will encode only the modified part of the image and leave all the rest intact. This way if you modify only a small section of the image (e.g. draw a watermark or remove red eyes effect), the overall quality of the image will not be changed.
  • Modify EXIF, IPTC, and XMP fields and Adobe® image resource blocks without decoding and encoding the JPEG file.

Powerful Visual Controls

  • Windows Forms image viewer control which allows to display image, scroll, zoom, pan an image. You can also put a rubberband selection on the image.
  • Printing Windows Forms control which allows to print multiple images on one page, automatically resize or crop to make these images of necessary physical size, automatically calculate image layout which is friendly to the paper consumption, etc.
  • Windows Forms thumbnail list view control which includes a big number of features, such as four view modes (thumbnails, icons, list, details), asynchronous thumbnail loading, support of entire Shell namespace (including virtual folders as My Documents and similar, removable media as digital photos, USB devices, etc), multiple selection, and many others.
  • AJAX image viewer control which provides almost the same set of features as the Windows Forms control. It allows to create highly interactive and user-friendly imaging web application.
  • Vector Objects which includes the Windows Forms controls which can host multiple objects like images, geometric shapes, texts, etc. This way you can easily build an application which allows the user to work with multi-layer vector and raster images. It includes such features as:
    • Pre-defined drawing primitives (rectangles, ellipses, polylines, images, text, etc), which are called v-objects (vector objects).
    • Support of multiple layers. Each layer can contain multiple v-objects.
    • Modification and transformation of the v-objects: move (also between layers), resize, rotate, skew.
    • Merge a multi-layer image into a single bitmap (e.g. to save it to JPEG, GIF, or other graphics file format).
    • Undo and redo support in the multi-layer control.
    • Extensible architecture which allows to create any kind of custom v-objects.

High-speed GDI Drawing Functionality

Provides drawing functions through GDI instead of GDI+. So there is no need to import appropriate GDI functions if you need fast drawing. Also, it has extended font and text related features compared to GDI+.

Source Code Can Be Purchased

Graphics Mill for .NET has a great benefit against GDI+ - you can purchase the source code. It gives you confidence in reliability of your application. If something doesn't work well, your programmers can fix it rather than search for workarounds.

But even if you do not purchase the source code, we provide much faster technical support compared to one provided for GDI+.