Extensis is now shipping its XTension for QuarkXPress 4 and 5: QX-Tools Pro. New features for the collection of productivity XTensions for QuarkXPress include the ability to import Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint graphics and tables, and a palette that allows faster access to keyboard shortcuts. QX-Tools Pro also includes preflighting via Extensis’ Preflight Online service.
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With the new QX-Import feature, publishers can now import Microsoft Excel or PowerPoint documents without having to recreate them in QuarkXPress. Users just import the preexisting piece into their QuarkXPress document using the QX-Import tool. Each page is imported as an EPS image 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.
Since XPress’s abundance of keyboard shortcuts can be overwhelming, QX-Tools Pro’s QX-Shortcuts helps users expose buried shortcuts and execute those commands used most frequently. With QX-Shortcuts, users can view all shortcuts organized by category or search the entire library of QuarkXPress shortcuts for the ones they need, then create custom sets of their favorites.
With QX-Collect&Send, any QuarkXPress user that works directly with prepress or print houses can use the QX-Collect&Send tool to make sure every outgoing document has complete files. This tool collects all fonts and images (including fonts and images used in EPS files) from a QuarkXPress document, preflights the document and allows users to upload files to their printer’s FTP site. Users can also create shortcuts for various FTP sites for quick transmission of their job.
And as mentioned, QX-Tools Pro includes a free, single user subscription to the Preflight Online service that lets users preflight their QuarkXPress 4 jobs before sending them to the printer. The app offers a limited number of standard inspection profiles that flag common output errors. A fully customizable version of Preflight Online is available to users for an additional price.
The English version of QX-Tools Pro is now available for download from the Extensis Web site at suggested retail price starting at US$199.95 for the full product. Upgrades from previous versions start at $59.95 US. French and German language versions are due the second quarter of the year.
QX-Tools Pro runs on Mac OS 8.6 – 9.x and is compatible with Mac OS X Classic environment (sorry, there’s not yet a Mac OS X native version, similar to QuarkXPress). And it operates with QuarkXPress versions 4.11 – 5.0.