Font anti-aliasing tool

I frequently find the need to display headings and other small amounts of text as a GIF image on my website. I have used a demo of Fireworks MX 2004, which includes a menu to select how text is anti-aliased (strong, clear etc). I really like the way the text is rendered; much better than Corel PhotoPaint which is what I use to do my web graphics. I have heard that PhotoShop offers a similar feature.

I can't afford to fork out for either of these programs, so I am looking for an alternative. Any suggestions?
philwilksAsked:
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stellamartoisCommented:
If you frequently have to complete this task then i suggest Photoshop is the only way, it includes a package called Image-Ready which is basically like Fireworks and allows you to optimise graphics for web deployment, very, very useful.

If you can't afford it look at Photoshop elements which is a fraction of the cost and i imagine it will support anti-aliasing functions of Photoshop but probably doesn't include Image Ready. People are always selling used version of Photoshop on ebay, although this isn't strictly correct as software is usually only lisenced to the orginal owner.

martin
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bparnesCommented:
Here's a cheap approach that has a good chance of succeeding, though I can't say for sure it will.  Check out the following web site. It offers a Photoshop compatible anti-aliasing plugin (Photoshop calls them filters) for approximately $30:

  http://powerretouche.com/Antialias_plugin_introduction.htm

There's a wonderful freeware graphics viewer called IrfanView that is able to handle most Photoshop compatible plugins (filters):

   http://www.irfanview.com/

The Irfanview website has instructions on how to add filters to Irfanview and use them. I can help if you have specific questions, but I'm not up to repeating what is already on the web site.

It's a pretty cheap solution if it works, and I'm fairly confident though not absolutely certain that it will work. If you do choose to go this route, let us know how it goes. I've got Photoshop (of course) so I don't really need to purchase the power retouche plugin/filter.

It just dawned on me that I should say that this solution is Windows oriented, not Mac. Best wishes.

 
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