IcoFX: Easy icon creation with professional results

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IcoFX is an icon editor that was designed to deliver high-quality results while remaining intuitive and user-friendly. This powerful graphic application has all the functions needed to create and edit icons and cursors from basic selection and color correction tools to customizable effects and brushes. Like any respectable image editing software, IcoFX also supports batch processing of files and layer based images.

Installation & Requirements

The first setup window of IcoFX contains the end-user license agreement, which is the standard for most applications. At the bottom of the window there is a small checkbox that allows the user to enter the custom installation. This lets you choose the installation folder, desktop and Start Menu shortcuts and file associations. The install process is straightforward as these are the only settings that the user has to perform.

The installation directory of IcoFX is 21 MB large, rather small for a program with its capabilities. As a result IcoFX runs smoothly on all versions of Windows XP, Vista and 7 with no hardware requirements other than the ones of these operating systems.

Interface

At first use, a Welcome screen appears, allowing the user to quickly create a new icon, cursor or image project, open existing files, extract icons from files, create Windows/Macintosh icons and cursors from images and create new icons/cursors libraries.

IcoFX’s interface may seem confusing for someone that’s never worked with a graphical editing application before but its layout is pretty standard when compared to similar programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Corel Draw. Found at the top of the interface, the menu bar contains all of the program’s settings, features and options. Shortcuts for some of the most frequently used features such as open, new, save, copy, paste…etc. are available on the toolbar right below. Also, the properties of the currently selected tool are displayed above the editing area.

The default workspace shows the content area between two sidebars. The left sidebar displays all the tools and the right one contains a preview, colors, swatches, brushes, gradients, history and other features, organized as tabs.

IcoFX has some really great icon editing features. You can create Windows and Mac icons but also convert between them. The program lets you extract icons from many kinds of files, import or export to/from several formats and work with multiple files simultaneously thanks to its batch processing capabilities.

Pros

– Easy, adware-free install process.

– Small and lightweight program with low memory usage.

– Allows you to extract icons from EXE, DLL, OCX, Mac Binary, AppleSingle and AppleDouble.

– Supports import and export to PNG, JPEG, TIFF, GIF, JPEG2000 and BMP image formats.

– Open/save is supported for the following formats: ICO, CUR, ANI, ICNS, ICL, CUL, IFX (the native IcoFX format).

Cons

– None worth mentioning.

Alternatives

Axialis IconWorkshop

– Greenfish Icon Editor Pro

Conclusion

Users accustomed with the freeware status of IcoFX previous to version 2.0 might be disappointed by the fact they now have to pay for it. Other than that IcoFX is a highly capable icon editor that can even be successfully used as an image editor with certain limitations of course. Bottom line, its rich array of features and intuitive use make IcoFX worth paying for.