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Monday, December 13, 2004

eCovers Uncovered - Cover Factory is a Great Product!

Are you searching for e-book cover software? It isn’t easy is it? Cover Factory is a great product that I highly recommend because it met all of my criteria:

  • Flexible
  • Free demo
  • Functional
  • Easy to use
  • Inexpensive
  • Extensive user support
  • Text editing and drawing capability
  • Can create books, boxes, cds, reports, membership cards, ezines

Don’t be fooled by the look of the covers on Cover Factory’s website. I wasted a lot of time evaluating other programs because I thought (mistakenly) that the images on Cover Factory’s website didn’t appear professional.

Here's an e-book cover that I created with Cover Factory.

What’s my suggestion if you’re looking for an e-cover program?

First, decide what type of covers you want to create. Some programs only create boxes and books, others can handle boxes, books, e-zines, cds, DVDs, reports, and membership cards.

Next, decide if you want flexibility in the angle, shadow, and reflection of your e-cover. Some programs offer customizable choices, others offer inflexible yes/no choices.

Then, determine how creative you, personally, want to be. Most programs come with generic templates for fast cover creation. If you’re more creative, an e-cover program with more features will be give you more satisfaction.

While it’s not necessary to use a drawing program with Cover Factory, or any of the other programs I evaluated, using Real Draw Pro or Compact Draw (both shareware), in conjunction with an e-cover program can produce some stunning effects that e-cover software alone cannot handle.

Finally, download the free demos of various programs based on your personal criteria—cost, type of covers available, user-friendly, etc. If you’ve never used e-cover software, download the free demo version of eCover Studio first. It is the easiest to use and will familiarize you with the terminology/steps of most e-cover programs.

Other programs that I evaluated and considered unacceptable were:

eCover Studio ($97)—NO SUPPORT—Although I liked this program based on the demo version, I had serious questions about the legitimacy of the seller because my e-mail to the sales contact was returned “undeliverable” and all other e-mail attempts to contact the seller went unanswered.

eCover Generator ($97)—LITTLE FLEXIBILITY—I found this program could not vary the angle or shadows of my covers and text-editing could not be done. More importantly, even though an updated version is advertised, I was sold an older version and provided an upgrade only when I asked for it. For $97 I expected to get the latest version!

OPERATING ISSUES—All of these programs had demo versions. I found them difficult to use and/or encountered operating problems with Windows 98: Virtual Cover Creator ($89.99), eCover 3D ($69.95), eCover Engineer ($38), eCover Constructor ($49), and The eBook and Box Cover Creator ($59.95).

Download the free demo of Cover Factory and decide for yourself.

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