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Minimum Hardware Requirements:

  • Intel Pentium II 400 MHzProcesor
  • RAM Memory: 512 MB
  • Disk free space: 1 GB
  • Monitor colours: 24 bits


Recommended Hardware requirements:

  • Intel Pentium III 1000 MHz Procesor
  • RAM Memory: 1 GB
  • Disk free space: 2 GB
  • Monitor colours: 24 bits


Operating systems allowed:

  • Windows XP
  • Windows 2003 Server
  • Windows Vista
  • Windows Seven


For previous operating systems download a precedent version at:
http://descargas.hofmann.es/VersionAlbum5_9.exe

NOTE:
The system updating is recommended. Last downloads and updatings are available at:
http://microsoft.com/windowsupdate

Downloading is easy and you only have to access to the Software Download level and click on the “Download” button.

Once you have downloaded the installer do double-click on it and follow the instructions until you finish the installation.
If you have an ADSL connexion the downloading will take around 4 minutes. If, instead, you have a modem this process would need around an hour. Once it has succeeded the software will be ready to use.
To run it, do double-click on the “Hofmann” icon installed on your Desk.

After the installation the Hofmann icon would appear on the Desk.
If you do double-click on the icon the software will start; follow the instruction of the assistant.

Working environment
Hofmann software working environment (see the picture down here), as the Windows environment does, appears to have a toolbar, an icons bar with the most usual options and a state bar in a lower position to show information. It also includes a folder explorer panel, a picture visor panel, a tools panel and the working space itself to design photo books and digital posters.
Depending on the preferences you could re-shape the panels.

 

Hofmann Software Running

We show the photo book inteface, but its content is valid in whatever other product.

Folder explorer panel
It allows the selection of the folder containing the pictures we want to work with. When clicking on a folder, automathically its pictures will be shown in miniature on the picture visor panel.
Once the folder has been selected, it’s possible to gain space if we hide the explorer panel by clicking on the icons bar “Explorer” button. With another click the explorer will be visible again.

Picture visor panel
It shows all the pictures placed at the selected folder by the folder explorer.
Picture visor has different functions, among which:

  • Allows the selected pictures visualization
  • Shows information of the picture when leaving the mouse over it
  • It indicates through a green mark if the picture was already used at the project
  • Allows the dragging of the pictures with the mouse all around the project.
  • According to their name or date you can place in order the pictures on the “See” menu.
  • Enlarge the picture by doing double-click.

Working space to design photo books, posters or digital canvas
Here you could visualize covers, the double pages of the open photo book, the poster or the canvas where the templates, photos, text boxes and backgrounds must be dragged. At the photo book base you’ll see what page you’re working in; on the left and right two blue arrows permit to move forward or behing the photo book.

Tools panel (covers, page templates, double page templates, frames, cliparts, backgrounds, masks and text)
Tools panel contains the elements which alllow to carry on a project.
Most of the actions to be taken on the project consist on “drug and release”, which means that if we want to place a picture on a template, we might click on it and, without stop pressing the mouse button, drug it to its desired place and release it there. The same action might be repeated with covers, backgroudns, templates, frames, masks and texts.
It’s possible to exchange two already placed photos position by drugging one to each other.

Covers(only for photo albums)
If you press on the tab “Covers” you’ll have access to the covers design offered by the software, as well as to the one by default showed at the working space. If you want to have a look on the whole list of available covers you only have to move the scrolling bar or the tools panel.
Almost all the covers could contain three photos: one at the title page, another at the lower part of the spine and finally at the back page. To know where to insert your photos at these picture boxes look to the template pictures placements (showed as a palm shadow). There is a text box on the spine and on most of the covers, too.
You cannot add more pictures or texts that the ones showed by the templates. You can’t move or re-dimension them, neither.
As happens with pages, if you don’t introduce a photo or text at the cover the printing will be done with the background. The “preview” shows the accurate picture of the printing product.
To place a photo at the whole cover surface use the Cover nº007 option (as the sixth option).

Backgrounds
If you press on the tab “Backgrounds” you’ll have access to the backgrounds proposed by the software. “Drug and release” in whatever place, because the background as such will be immediately installed.
If you desire to add a photo as a background, drug it from the pictures visor panel and release it between the pictures boxes (at the background). This is also a way to place a photo with a double page extension in the photo books, because pictures boxes are only guides to place them. Don’t forget to check in “Preview”!

Pages templates and double pages templates
By pushing on these tabs a large choice of page/double page templates are displayed; they can be drugged into your project. Templates can be changed however many times we want, even if we had already placed photos on them. In that case, photos would be relocated in the new template.
If you don’t place any photo over a template the existant background will be the only element to be printed. This is a very interesting choice ir we’re looking for a photo to be the background, and place over it templates with different boxes, some to be filled and some others not to, in order to don’t interfere on the main element vision, the background photo.
Pictures and text boxes coming from “Page Templates” can only be moved aroud the present page but they can’t pass to the next one. It would be necessary to create a new box (right mouse button) to move them from one page to another one.

Frames (only at posters)
This tab contains different models to frame the poster. By drugging the frame on the project it will be placed to show the final enmarcado effect.

Cliparts
Over 200 colour full pictures will appear with just a double click at this tab. They are very useful to decorate your photos of special events as birthdays, parties, trips, etc. After “drugging” them on the photo book they could be modified to fit more in the photos:

  • Proportional Enlarge.-click on a node from a corner and stretch it until you reach the desired size.
  • One dimension enlargement.-click on a central node and stretch.
  • Rotate.-Right mouse button -> select Rotate box -> clic on the angles selector
  • Turn.-Right mouse button -> select horizontal or vertical. An interesting possibility to consider if you wish add “speech balloons” would be writing on them by using the software text editor.

Masks
It contains a big quantity of shapes for the photo edges. If you drug a mask over a picture it confers very interesting shapes to its edges. The last masks appearing at this tab are useful to “melt” different photos with the blur of the beginning or the end of the picture, depending on the selected mask.
To take off them push on the picture with the right mouse button and select Mask and then “take off”. If the picture is placed again it will also disappear.

Text
If you push this tab a text box will appear, which indicates to drug it on the project. If this is done the text editor will be opened at the interface lower left part, allowing the introduction of the desired text. Once you have selected the letter, colour, size, etc., push “Accept” to let the text appear on the project. Drug this text box to place it whenever you desire, even inside the photos. It’s recommended to check if the text is visible (you can use the preview option). If any part of the text is not visible we recommend the re-dimension of either the text box or the letter size.
If after introducing a text it doesn’t appear at the project, we probably would have used the same colour for the text and the background. Check with a double click on the text box and change the colour.

Almost all the functions of this bar are displayed on the Icons Bar and the right mouse button, and will be explained in next chapters. There are, however, two interesting functions in the menus:

In the menu File/ Project Propertiesyou’ll find three tabs:

  1. Project properties.- You could change a digital printing photo book to a photographic one or vice versa. You can also change the number of pages.
  2. Edges.-Colour and size of the selected edges will be applied to all the photos we would place since then. 
  3. Picture.- Allows the activation or deactivation the automatic improvement. We recommend to our non-advanced users to leave it activated.

album settings

They are the most usual on the Windows environment and they allow a quick access to the most frequent software functions. They are the following:

Icons Toolbar

  • New: To open a new project.
  • Open: To open an already existing project.
  • Save: To save the project in a folder.
  • Undo: when you click on this icon you “undo” the last action carried out. The number of times you can undo is unlimited.
  • Redo: Recover the last “undone” action so many times as you “undid” it.
  • Explorer: hides and shows alternatively the Windows explorer to select the folder with the photos.
  • Edges: allows the addition of a white or coloured edge to the photo with a variable largeness. We recommend this option in cases of dark backgrounds or when different photos are superposed.
  • Number of Pages: Press this icon to change the number of pages of your photo book to whatever of the given options.
  • Preview: Allows the visualization of the project to have a look of its final result. It also permits to advance or move back over the pages, and modify their preview size.
  • Order: once your project has been finished press this button. First, the software will indicate if any page has remained without photos. If pertinent, return to the page(s) indicated and check it. Then, the software will ask for your conformity to save the project, which is highly recommended to keep a field of the project. At that time the assistant will start the order, the sending of the project field online and the safe payment process with VISA or MASTERCARD.
  • Prices: press this icon to establish a connection with the Hofmann website prices section.
  • Quick help: allows the knowledge of the most interesting functions of the software...in 5 minutes!
  • Help: press this icon to establish a connection to download the User Manual from the Hofmann website.

To a more comfortable use of the software we have implemented the following hotkeys:

  • teclas_rapidas.jpgF5 to access to the preview
  • Av Pag to go to the next photo book page
  • Re Pag to come to the previous page
  • Start to go directly to the photo book covers
  • End to go to the back page
  • Delete to delete the selected items
  • Ctrl+Z Undo
  • Ctrl+Y Redo
  • Ctrl+X Cut
  • Ctrl+C Copy
  • Ctrl+V Stick

 

For advanced users, another substantial improvement is the possibility to insert .PNG format pictures, which allow the inclusion of transparencies and semi-transparencies in part of them.

Left button:

  • Double-click over the “Miniature pictures” of the pictures visor to open a preview view of the picture.
  • Double-click over the photo to open the pictures editor (have a look of this section later on).
  • Click over a picture box to make appear the corners nodes and a central cross. Corners nodes let to re-dimension the box by stretching them. The central cross serves to move the box.


Right button:click over a photo, a text box or a background to display a panel with all the available options for this element.

  • Undo: “Undoes” the last action carried out
  • Redo: Recovers the last “undone” action an unlimited number of times.
  • Cut: Copies the selected element and remove it after sticking it
  • Copy: Copies the selected element without removing it.
  • Stick: Sticks the copied or cut element. 
  • Add picture box: allows the addition of new oval or rectangular picture boxes that can be scrolled around the double page by drugging them from the central cross or with the scrolling cursor tapes. To make easier its exact alignment with the existing boxes a red virtual line will appear.
  • Add a text box: allows the addition of new text boxes that could also be scrolled around the double page.
  • Box content edition: opens the picture or text Editor, depending on the content.
  • Box content Removal: Removes box content.
  • Box Removal: removes both the box and its content.
  • Box rotation: allows the inclination of the pictures or text boxes the degrees we desire.
    Take to the front: when pictures are superposed it puts on the front the photo we keep clicking.
  • Edges: allows the addition of a white or coloured edge to the photo with a variable largeness. We recommend this option in cases of dark backgrounds or when different photos are superposed. Click over the photo with the right mouse button and select “Edges”. A window will be opened. Select the colour and largeness of the edges and accept. After that this option will be applied to all the photos placed since then. If we choose the option “no Edges” since that moment photos won’t have edges.
    Shadows: click this option to make appear the controls to orientate, colour and give depth to the shadows.
  • Mask: interesting shapes to the photos edges. This control can be used from the “Mask” tap placed on the lower tools panel.
  • Melted: used to provoke a transition at the selected picture from the opacity to the transparency. It’s very useful to “melt” different photos among them.
  • Turn pictures: to turn the photo 90º on you left or your right, or 180º.
  • Background picture edition: In case we placed a photo as a background, it opens the picture edition to allow its edition. The software backgrounds cannot be edited.
  • Remove background: Removes the existing background.
  • Background colour: opens the colour selector to choose the background colour. Once you selected a colour on the colour spectrum palette consider the arrow on your right, and scroll it vertically to get darker or lighter the selected colour.
  • Go to page: indicate the number of the page you wish to go.
  • Insert page: add two pages before the one you are.
  • Remove page: removes the two open pages and add two blank pages at the end of the photo book.
  • Scroll a page on the left: moves a double page to the left to the desired position.
  • Scroll a page on the right: moves a double page to the right to the desired position.
  • Save template: you could save the designed templates. To have access to them you will have to click on the “My templates” tab, placed next to the “Covers” tab.
  • Number pages: click to this option to open the assistant which allows the numbering of all the photo book pages where you wish.

Pictures editor is the tool to rotate, turn or change the appearance: bright, contrast, intensity, colour filters, etc. All these changes will be made on a copy done by the software, in order to never modify the original photo.

The following picture shows the aspect of the Pictures Editor:

Pictures Editor

 

Functionalities of the Pictures Editor are the following:

  • Horizontal and vertical turning: “mirror effect” in horizontal or vertical.
  • Undo changes: the photo recovers its original aspect.
  • Left or right rotation: rotates the photo in 90º steps.
  • Proportional framing: adjusts and cuts out the photo to the template picture box. If you desire to modify the framing size, place the mouse over the red corner until the cursor gets the inclined arrow; drug it from the centre to the selected position.
  • Free framing: with this option all the photo will be visible but logically it won’t fill the totality of the template box. The photo can be cut out and moved as the explained in the previous section, but in this case the framing is free: it’s not adjusted to the template box proportions.
  • Contrast, bright, intensity: they can be customized.
  • Picture automatic improvement: vary precedent levels in the best proportions.
  • Colour filters: grey scale (white and black), sepia (colour sepia), Watermark (usually used as a background). Three other bars allow the selective modification of the colours Red,
  • Green and Blue, but its use is only recommended to the advanced users.
  • Take out of focus of the photo: only used for background photos.
  • Relief: three-dimensional aspect of the picture.
  • Red eyes: correction of the red eyes effect provoked by the flash. Click at the centre of each “red eye” and then “Apply”.
  • Advanced filters: apply to the photos theatrical filters (po art, impressionist, bas-relief, etc.). These filters can be applied jointly to almost all the others editor functionalities, in order to potentiate their utilities. We might emphasize on the “pop art” effect which, if combined with the right bar, has a result surprisingly effects.
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