Extensis released QX-Tools Pro, a hefty overhaul of its XTensions modules for QuarkXPress 4 and 5.
QX-Tools Pro offers timesaving features when working in QuarkXPress, according to Ginna Baldassarre, QX-Tools Pro product manager. New features include the ability to import Microsoft Excel or PowerPoint files into a new document, a palette for utilizing and accessing QuarkXPress shortcuts, and a collection and distribution feature for sending documents directly to a prepress or printing house.
With QX-Import, publishers can import Microsoft Excel or PowerPoint documents without having to recreate them in QuarkXPress. They can import the preexisting piece into QuarkXPress documents using the QX-Import tool. Each page may be imported as an EPS file and will be imported with the same attributes as the print preview window in those respective parent applications. EPS files will be imported as vector EPS files allowing for editing of those images in programs such as Adobe Illustrator.
The QX-Shortcuts feature is designed to help users find “buried” shortcuts (and QuarkXPress has LOTS of shortcuts) and execute ones the most frequently used ones. QX-Shortcuts boasts predetermined sets, which are organized the same way as Quark’s menus. They can also create a custom set of their favorite shortcuts.
Any QuarkXPress user that works directly with prepress or print houses can take advance of the new QX-Collect&Send tool, which collects all fonts and images (including those fonts and images in EPS files) from a QuarkXPress document and lets you upload files to an FTP site of their choice. Users can also create shortcuts for various FTP sites for quick transmission of a job.
There are other new features as well. The English version of QX-Tools Pro will be available for download from the Extensis Web site in March for a suggested retail price of US$199.95. French, German and Japanese language product will be available in the second quarter of the year. QX-Tools Pro supports Mac OS 8.6 through 9.x and is compatible with the Classic environment of Mac OS X. There’s no point in a Mac OS X native version as QuarkXPress has yet to come to the new operating system.