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Photo Mechanic 4.6 out of beta and now available for download, purchase  
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 | by Rob Galbraith
Photo Mechanic 4.6, the latest version of the powerful photo importing, browsing and transmitting application for Mac and Windows, has emerged from beta and is now available. The long list of changes since 4.5.x include a slick folder-watching Live Ingest function, a full-resolution loupe in the Contact Sheet view, additional upload templates for Amazon S3, Flickr, SmugMug and others, expanded GPS support, an option to export all program preferences for import into Photo Mechanic on another computer and much, much more. Photo Mechanic 4.6 is the most feature-packed new release in several years.

The full list of changes is below. Version 4.6 of Photo Mechanic is a free update for users who purchased licenses on or after February 1, 2008 (February 1, 2007 for education licenses). Upgrading to v4.6 from an older v4.x license is US$90. A new license is US$150. A demo version is available (registration required).

Version 4.6
(AP) Added customizations for the Associated Press for their controlled vocabulary lookup and IPTC Info and IPTC Stationery Pad enhancements.  Please note that this additional AP Custom functionality is subject to The Associated Press' terms of use.
Added a Live Ingest feature (JPEG only).  This command watches a set of folders for incoming photos (e.g. from a wireless transmitter) and "ingests" them with up to three separate Destination Processes.  Each Destination Process has its own source and destination folder path handling, file renaming, and IPTC Stationery options.  All photos up to two levels deep from the source folders will be moved.
Added Export/Import Preferences feature.  Nearly all preference settings can now be exported from one system to another, including between Mac OS X and Windows (although not all folder paths may transfer).
Added a Loupe tool in the Contact Sheet view.  In the toolbar menu you can choose between the classic Selection tool and the Loupe tool.  When the Loupe tool is active, simply click on a thumbnail to draw a 100% zoom.
Added upload status indicators in the contact sheet.
Added commands to select transferred photos and clear transferred status.
Photoshop PSD files are now loaded without QuickTime for most formats resulting in much speedier response for multi-processor computers.
Added keyboard selection in the Contact Sheet (Shift and Arrow keys extend selection).
In the Contact Sheet, you can start the "inline" renaming of a photo from the keyboard by having a single photo selected and pressing the "return" key.
Added Tab and Back-tab (Shift-Tab) for "inline" renaming to commit current rename and advance to the next or previous photo.
Added various options for notification when an Ingest is complete.
Added new Exporter templates: HTML Template, KMZ (for Google Earth), and Soundslides (Plus). Added various o
Added new Upload templates: Amazon S3, ExposureManager, Flickr, Gallery 2, SFTP (secure FTP), SmugMug, and Zenfolio.
Added {location} to the XML export template.
Added new header and footer text fields to the Text export template.
The Copy Photos and Save Photos as dialogs now have several options for the destination folder: Original folder, Create subfolder, Save to this subfolder + extension, and Always pick destination (the classic default).  Variables can be used for creating subfolders and for the extension of a specified folder.
The Save Photos as dialog now allows you to save from RAW files if the "Allow RAW previews to be used as source" checkbox is set and the resolution of the preview in the RAW file is good enough.
The JPEG quality slider now ranges from 0-100 instead of 0-10 so that there is much finer control in the lower quality range.
The Rename dialog is now resizable, allowing longer renaming strings to be displayed completely.
Added Preview window preference to disable the auto-centering of thumbnails in the thumbnail gallery.
Added Preview window preference to auto-advance after tagging, color classing, or rating.
Added a five star Rating contextual menu in the Contact Sheet and Preview windows.
Added Convert to sRGB and Sharpen checkboxes in the Upload dialog.
The destination path field of the FTP As dialog now allows variables.
Added a Set GPS Coordinates command.  The coordinates can be entered manually or a location can be chosen from Google maps.
Added an Import GPS Coordinates command to load GPS log files (GPX or NMEA) and match the selected photos against the GPS coordinate logs to guess the most likely GPS location for each photo.  The GPS coordinates can then be applied in batch.
Added a Set GPS Home dialog for setting the "home" GPS location for use by the following new GPS variables: {dist} or {distance} is the distance between a photo and GPS Home (useful for sorting); {brto} or {bearingto} for bearing (in degrees) to photo from GPS Home; {brfm} or {bearingfrom} for bearing (in degrees) from photo to GPS Home.  The units for distance can be set in the preferences (either miles, kilometers, or nautical miles).
When loading a snapshot, the dialog title reflects the name of the snapshot.
When saving a snapshot, a popup menu is available that lists the names of all the current snapshots (in the folder) making it easier to update/replace an existing snapshot.
Added a new preference for scaling the IPTC Caption field font size up to 200% (in the new Accessibility tab).
Added a snapshot button in the IPTC/XMP tab of the Preferences dialog (since this can be a rather complex combination of settings).
Added a snapshot button to the Find and Find and Replace panels.
Added auto-completion in the IPTC dialogs using words from popup menu lists, {variables}, and word lists.
Added preference to synchronize color class with the IPTC/XMP Urgency field (useful for third party applications such as Nikon Capture NX 2).
Added preference to use either a comma ',' or semicolon ';' for separating multiple items in the IPTC "repeating" fields (e.g. Keywords).  Also, spaces are always inserted after the separator to more clearly separate items.
Added an optional default replacement string for missing codes in Code Replacements.
Added new field selector capability for having multiple replacements for a single base code.  Now Code Replacement text files can have one code and several replacements each separated by a tab character.  To access the alternate replacements, use the 'field selector' to choose the replacement, like so:  \cd#2\ chooses replacement #2 for the code 'cd'. And \cd#3\ chooses replacement #3.
Added a Reload All button in the Code Replacements dialog, which reloads all of the code replacement files at once.
Added the option of a user-customizable path separator string (e.g. ' | ') to Structured Keywords panel.
Added a Sort checkbox in the collection text area of the Structured Keywords dialogs.
Added transparent image watermarking by positioning of custom "logo" image with alpha channel.
(Mac) Search panel (using Spotlight) can now limit searches to specific folders.
(Mac) The Quick Search toolbar item can now limit searches to the folders contained in the current Contact Sheet tab.
Added Delete Metadata command.  NOTE: this is intended for diagnostics or "repair" of photos with inconsistent IPTC vs XMP vs Exif information, or to mask identity for security reasons, not for stripping copyright or other ownership from photo metadata.
Added Convert RAW to DNG tool.
Added {clrc} or {colorclasscolor} variable to return HTML color value of photo's color class (e.g. #ff7e00 for orange).
Added Nikon Picture Control variables: {pcnm} for Name, {pcad} for Adjustment, {pcqa} for Quick adjustment, {pcsh} for Sharpening, {pccn} for Contrast, {pcbr} for Brightness, {pcsa} for Saturation, {pchu} for Hue, {pcfe} for Filter effect, {pcte} for Toning Effect, and {pcts} for Toning saturation.
Added {rand10}, {rand100}, {rand100} variables which generate zero-padded random numbers (useful to rename for the purpose of a random slideshow for example).
(Win) Fixed issue with code replacements where cursor ends up on the wrong line after replacement if there are multiple lines in the text field.
Label text that contain newline characters in it now have the newline characters removed.
(Win) Fixed issue where clicking on the Variables button didn't always bring the Variables palette forward.
(Win) Right Alt key shortcuts now work for non-European keyboards (those that don't have the AltGr key).
Added support for Lab color TIFF files.
For PSD files that QuickTime cannot load, you can still do basic operations with the photos (e.g. edit IPTC, tag, rename, etc).
Added support for Panasonic/Leica RW2 RAW files (e.g. from Panasonic DMC-LX2 and Leica D-LUX 3).
Added support for Leica RWL RAW files (e.g. from D-LUX 4).
Now uses libPNG instead of QuickTime to render PNG files.
Added support for captioning PNG files with IPTC and/or XMP metadata.

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