Alan Cooke looks at a useful utility that compresses the size of your PowerPoint files.
No matter how large your hard drive, no matter how fast your files can hurtle through cyberspace, the fact of the matter is we will always be short of space and short of speed. Whether you are a home user wanting to email a photo album or a business needing to send a presentation to a client’s mobile, small file size and speed are paramount.
When it comes to PowerPoint presentations, I think it fair to say that these files are amongst the largest we have to send or save, especially when sound or video clip files are embedded. Does reducing a PowerPoint file size from 32MB to 4.5MB get your interest? Well, read on, this review will convince you, I’m sure.
Neuxpower has the solution when it comes to optimising not only PowerPoint presentations (.ppt file types) but also any Microsoft Office file type from Office 97 to 2010. NXPowerLite will also optimise ‘.jpg’, ‘.jpeg’, ‘.pdf’ and ‘.zip’ files. However, because jpg’s, pdf’s and zip files are already compressed the degree of optimisation may vary.
For example, a regular PowerPoint file of 32MB was reduced to 4.5MB. My presentation test file was a photo album using large images. I am sure you would agree that emailing a 4.5MB file is preferable to a 32MB one, most certainly for home users who have limited bandwidth and are very often using a smartphone. Optimising a 1MB ‘pdf’ file reduced the size by 1%, another reduced by 15%. My 4MB ‘jpg’ shrunk to a measly 2.4MB. Not bad for an already compressed file/image. In all of the above I chose ‘Screen’ as my optimising method and the quality was perfectly satisfactory for presentations.
The ‘Mobile’ option reduced the image file size from 4MB to 164kB. My presentation of 32MB reduced to just over 3MB. An excellent result and the optimised files did not show any signs of degradation on a regular laptop screen or monitor.
On the left is the main file collection screen. On the right of the ‘Drag’ window are buttons to select files or folders. Or you can simply drag and drop them into the window. A clean uncluttered interface makes for ease of use.
The help menu offers the usual options such as entering your registration code, a link to buy NXPowerLite and, what I really appreciate, an FAQ link (internet connection required). In case you are wondering how many files you can drag or select – no less than 100!
Under ‘Tools’ is the ‘Settings’ option with three ‘Tabs’ – Image Optimization, Hidden Content and Optimized Files. Here you can set your default compression methods.
Hidden Content has only two options, both of which are straightforward but nevertheless important. If you have embedded documents (documents within documents or layered images, as in PhotoShop for example), you can accept the default ‘Ask me’ option or elect to have either ‘Never’ or ‘Always’ as the default. The same three choices apply to whether you want to have your private data embedded in the ‘pdf’ files or not. Optimised files can be saved and consequently NXPowerLite provides the user with folder options for saving the files as well as control over the optimised file name. One can add text to the original file name, an excellent idea as it acts as a safeguard against overwriting your original file. To end this section, NXPowerLite provides useful ‘More Info’ assistance where appropriate.
NXPowerLite is not only about optimising PowerPoint presentations, though. Once it is installed, your Microsoft Office applications will all have the NXPowerLite Add In, as can be seen here.
In other words, NXPowerLite covers all the bases and integrates seamlessly with Microsoft Office and alleviates any need to compress/optimise outside of the application being used.
Now that makes for a great program in my book.
To download visit the NXPowerLite web site.