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Ableton Live 6

You can do so much with Live 6, it’s hard to know exactly where to begin describing this masterful software sequencer. So we’ll start at the top. With just a few clicks of an in-application help system, we were up and running with the program’s Operator add-on, creating notes and beats that sound as though they were pulled straight from a Keith Schofield music video. Awesome.

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PixRecovery 1.0

You should have known it was a bad static-electricity day when balloons stuck to your clothes and your socks clung together as if they were made of Velcro. But you decided to pull the memory card out of your digital camera anyway, didn’t you?

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Pinnacle Studio MovieBox Plus

We weren’t kind when we reviewed Pinnacle’s Studio 10 in our April 2006 issue. It was buggy and unstable, and we couldn’t fully install it on our Athlon 64­–based machine.

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Mojopac

Congratulations, Mojopac. You have left us bitter and broken, but in the best way possible. For as much as we tried to find fault with, or otherwise break, your portable Windows virtualization software, we have returned from the war sans spoils. You win.

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Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0 and Premiere Elements 3.0

If you’ve been computing long enough, you can probably tick off some of life’s touchstones that occurred around the time of each major Photoshop revision and on occasion tell yourself, “Wow, I remember when Photoshop was just born, err, released.”

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ProShow Gold 3.0

ProShow Gold has long been the, umm, gold standard for wedding, portrait, and studio photographers who want to show work to clients on a DVD, and we can see why. With its smooth user interface and dizzying number of effects and customizations, ProShow Gold instantly became our favorite slide-show program.

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FXhome EffectsLab Pro

This awesome pieces of software is like a Glock in a box for your home movies.

M-Audio Session

Rock out with your sound loops out using M-Audio's Session. It's no Acid, but budding artists have to start somewhere!

Notion Protégé

If you're trying to be next Ben Folds, you would be wise to stay away from Notion's Protégé.