Internet has become a vast community that, just a few decades ago, not many had thought would turn into what it is now. You can instantly communicate with friends, family, coworkers, acquaintances, professionals and even strangers on social media, VoIP or IM apps, approach your clients online without actually meeting them, exchange emails with your colleagues, play games, and do a bunch of other stuff you like. Among the many advantages internet provides, sharing photos is probably one used by a vast majority – even those who don’t use many other online services. But sometimes, sharing photos can become quite a tedious task due to image size limitation of the photo sharing or file transfer service that you employ or even worse, if your monthly internet data cap is already dipping in the lows. That’s where tools like VJC come to rescue because if you can’t share the original file, why not just compress it first?
You might be wondering why you should use a separate image compressor when a myriad of other tools offer this facility as an add on. Well, most such tools either come with a price tag if they’re really good at the task, or include a plethora of additional options usually deemed unnecessary and even confusing for the casual user. VJC is not only very lightweight, but its compression capabilities are fairly great as well. It allows you to reduce the file size of JPEG images without losing a lot of quality, and provides a side by side comparison of the original and compressed versions. You can reduce image size by specifying either the desired quality or the max file size you want.
Using VJC is extremely easy. To get started, simply drag and drop the file on the application window. You will see that it provides real-time previews of original and compressed versions of the image. You can scroll the image horizontally and vertically. But there’s one caveat I faced during testing – the app doesn’t let you zoom in or out the preview, which can be a bit problematic for very large or very small images.
You can control the compression either by specifying the output quality of the image or by max size. Though I found ‘by quality’ method a bit more convenient, since you can see the difference in the output for several quality levels instantly before deciding upon a level. You can also disable auto preview if you like; however, that won’t really offer any help. After adjusting the output according to your liking, just hit Save and specify the destination directory. VJC can export images in JPEG format only.
Although VJC is a really nice application for what it does, it would have been nice if it also let you change image dimensions. Though this is by no means to call the tool a slouch. Another limitation is the lack of support for PNG files, as it is one of the most commonly used image formats, in addition to JPG/JPEG. On the bright side, VJC is a portable tool, making it easily usable on the go by carrying it on a USB thumb drive. Moreover, it produces a decent output image without any major loss in quality. It works on Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8.