today announced the release of a new plug-in for Adobe Photoshop and After Effects. Called j2k, the new plug-in enables those applications to support the JPEG 2000 file format. What’s more, it’s free.
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JPEG 2000 is a new, updated version of the popular JPEG image compression format that uses newer compression techniques to store images in smaller files with higher quality than the older JPEG format allows. JPEG 2000 sports features like alpha channel transparency, optional lossless compression and support for 16 bit-per-channel images.
Fnord Software said its JPEG 2000 plug-in works with Mac OS 8.6 and Photoshop 5.5 and later, and it’s Carbonized too, so it runs natively on Mac OS X with Photoshop 7. It also works with Adobe After Effects 5.5 on Mac OS X.
Fnord Software is careful to differentiate its JPEG 2000 plug-in from the JPEG 2000 support incorporated into Apple’s recently released QuickTime 6 Public Preview. “That support, however, does not extend to leading image applications including Adobe Photoshop and Adobe After Effects, nor does it extend to QuickTime 6 on Mac OS 9, making the release of j2k particularly well-timed to fill this gap,” said the developer. “Standard 8-bit JPEG 2000 files are completely compatible between j2k and QuickTime 6, although Apple’s implementation is currently unable to read JPEG 2000 files that use alpha transparency or 16-bit color. j2k also provides more compression options than QuickTime 6 Public Preview.”
Fnord Software has also released SuperPNG, another free plug-in that supports enhanced reading and writing of PNG-format images. SuperPNG supports 16 bit-per-channel PNG files, variable compression, and more.