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Developer(s)ACD Systems
Stable release(s)
ACDSee Home2021 (build / 9 September 2020; 3 years ago (2020-09-09)
ACDSee Professional2020 (build 13.01.1381) / 18 December 2019; 4 years ago (2019-12-18)
ACDSee Ultimate2020 (build / 18 December 2019; 4 years ago (2019-12-18)
ACDSee Photo Studio for Mac6 (build 6.1.1536) / 18 December 2019; 4 years ago (2019-12-18)
ACDSee Free1.0 / August 2012; 11 years ago (2012-08)
Operating system
  • ACDSee: 2 GB
  • ACDSee Pro: 2 GB
  • ACDSee Pro Mac: 4 GB
  • iOS: 96 MB
TypeImage organizer, image viewer and image editor

ACDSee is an image organizer, viewer, and image editor program for Windows, macOS and iOS, developed by ACD Systems International Inc. ACDSee was originally distributed as a 16-bit application for Windows 3.0 and later supplanted by a 32-bit version for Windows 95.[1] ACDSee Pro 6 adds native 64-bit support. The newest versions of ACDSee incorporate modern Digital Asset Management tools like Face Detection & Facial Recognition (Ultimate 2019).

ACDSee's main features are speed, lossless RAW image editing, image batch processing, editing metadata (Exif and IPTC), rating, keywords, and categories, and geotagging. Judging the image quality of a picture is fast due to next/previous image caching, fast RAW image decoding and support for one-click toggling between 100% and fit screen zoom mode anywhere inside the image. Most of ACDSee's features can be accessed via keyboard.

ACDSee displays a tree view of the file structure for navigation with thumbnail images of the selected folder, and a preview of a selected image. ACDSee started as an image organizer/viewer, but over time had image editing and RAW development (Pro version) capabilities added. The thumbnails generated by ACDSee are cached, so that they do not need to be regenerated, and stored on disk as a database.[2]

ACDSee's database can be backed up, and exported/imported as XML or binary. Each database and its associated thumbnails can also be loaded and saved as separate entities.

The photo manager is available as a consumer version, and a pro version which provides additional features,[3] and additional image editing capabilities.[4] In 2012, ACDSee Free was released, without advanced features.[5]

ACDSee is pronounced the same as AC/DC.


ACDSee was first released in 1994 as a 16-bit application for Windows 3.1. In 1997 32-bit ACDsee 95 was released for Windows 95. 1999 saw the release of ACDSee 3.0. Version 5.0 was released in 2002, and 7.0 in 2005.[6] Development of this line continues, with version 20.0 released in 2016.

This early version of ACDSee is sometimes known as ACDSee Classic or ACDSee 32.

ACDSee Pro was released on 9 January 2006 aimed at professional photographers. ACD Systems decided to separate its core release, ACDSee Photo Manager, into two separate products; ACDSee Photo Manager, aimed at amateur photography enthusiasts, and ACDSee Pro which would target Professionals by adding a new package of feature sets. ACDSee Pro's development team is based out of Victoria, British Columbia and was originally led by Jon McEwan, and more recently by Nels Anvik, who oversaw ACDSee Pro 2.5 through to Pro 5. The original ACDSee software was created by David Hooper, who also added a number of features to ACDSee Pro, such as Lighting correction (formerly known as Shadows and Highlights) and Develop Mode (in version 2.0). ACDSee Pro is written in C++, with the interface built using MFC.

Free version[edit]

In August 2012, ACD Systems released ACDSee Free, which retains all viewing features for the most common image formats (BMP, GIF, JPEG, PNG, TGA, TIFF, WBMP, PCX, PIC, WMF, EMF); it lacks a thumbnail browser, and support for RAW and ICO formats.[5] A reviewer at BetaNews found it "fast, configurable and easy to use".[5] The version runs on Windows XP or newer.[7] The product was discontinued in August 2013.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Aquino, Grace (1 November 2007). "ACDSee Pro 2 Photo Management Software". The Washington Post. Retrieved 16 March 2016.
  2. ^ Phillips, Jon (June 2000). "Image Archivists: Fast Flipping through Thumbnails is Fun, Fun, Fun". Maximum PC. 5 (6). Future US, Inc.: 88. ISSN 1522-4279.
  3. ^ Chan, Adrian (April 2008). "Alternatives &choices: ACDSee Pro 2 Photo Manager". PHOTOVIDEOi. SPH Magazines: 30. ISSN 1793-2394.
  4. ^ "Best Fit Guide" (PDF). ACDSee. Archived (PDF) from the original on 1 June 2010.
  5. ^ a b c Williams, Mike (11 August 2012). "Need a quick-and-easy image viewer? Try ACDSee Free". BetaNews.com.
  6. ^ Elias, Rupinder Matharoo, Danhui Wu, Emily. "ACD Systems - Photo Editing Management Software". ACDSee Community. Archived from the original on 11 February 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  7. ^ "ACDSee Free system requirements". ACDSee.com.

External links[edit]