Information required on Desktop Software for Newsletter?.

  spuds 15:14 PM 20 Nov 12
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We have a community newsletter that is published approximately 4/5 a year. At present we use software like Serif which does the job intended, but we are thinking of going slightly 'better'.

Any suggestions for a software pack that will do the job to a better level, finance and expertise is limited.

  Woolwell 15:45 PM 20 Nov 12

I produce a quarterly magazine using Serif PagePlus X6. I also use it for a two sided weekly news-sheet and have used it for large (64 page plus) booklets. The export to pdf is very useful and I wouldn't move to anything else for the type of job you want. Any 'upgrade' is likely to more towards a commercial piece of software which could be quite expensive.

  spuds 18:02 PM 20 Nov 12
Answer

Woolwell

You appear to use a similar method that we are using. We did check into other 'ready for the printer' software, and this was going to cost in the region of £500.00 which the council will most probably 'purchase' for us as a community funding scheme. We thought that we could and would use that money better elsewhere?.

A system that we are running is for the 'community' to have access to a computer, and so put their bits and pieces to the newsletter, with the proof reading before printing. So the method of printing must be easy and universal, if you know what I mean!.

  Woolwell 21:46 PM 20 Nov 12

spuds - You mentioned "ready for the printer". I find that my publications produced in Serif PagePlus are ready for the printer. For the last 5 years I have had a booklet commercially printed. I have exported it as a pdf file, put it on a memory stick and taken it to the printers. Every time they have no quibbles, have easily opened it in their software (Adobe Indesign, I think) and have not had to make any alterations. It is easier with PagePlus 6 than the earlier versions.

There are pointers on design in the resource guide. I avoid their templates though and prefer to create my own publication. I find it important to avoid fancy fonts and try to keep it simple. Almost all of my publications are in black and white because of the cost of colour printing. I will use colour for small one off runs.

  Woolwell 21:48 PM 20 Nov 12

Should have added that I have had less success with exporting as an epub. However I'm still learning on that!

  spuds 00:21 AM 21 Nov 12

Woolwell- I have just conducted some rather pleasing internet work on reviews including some youtube tutorials on X6, must say it looks very impressive with good results and high score ratings. Price wise seems to range from £55.00 to £82.00, with product prices being much cheaper in the USA. Think that I might contact Serif as one of their 'valued' subscribers, and see if they can do an offer for X6?.

I like the memory stick idea. Will take further action on that.

One review seemed to suggest Scribus as a free alternative, so I have just downloaded a copy, so as to see what the interests of that product might be?.

Mar7- The newsletter we are presently producing is getting rather aged,even though its far far better than our first attempts many years ago with the hand crank duplicator. Some of our other newsletter community competitor's are having rethinks on their methods of production and costs, so we are thinking of following the same trend, but within finance limits.

Thanks both for the interest shown, very much appreciated.

  BT 08:56 AM 21 Nov 12

If you get onto the Serif Email mailing list they will often give you 'Special Prices' on their software.

As a 'Valued Customer'I had PagePlus X6 offered at £29.95 this week, so a considerable saving over the prices you have found.

As to being a 'Valued Customer' I have to say I have NEVER bought anything from them just used the free downloads. If you do phone them don't be pulled into buying anything you don't want. They can be very persuasive. Someone I know was persuaded into spending far more than he intended.

  spuds 09:13 AM 21 Nov 12

BT

I have used Serif for many years, and use to have very regular discount offers from them,including freebies and trials, but I seem to have missed out on the latest PagePlus X6, hence my comment "see if they can do an offer".

Doing some checks yesterday, there appears to be a good supply of X4 and X5 available, with one possibly others brand new sealed X6 on auction finishing soon.

  Woolwell 10:31 AM 21 Nov 12

Don't forget that you can get a free trial with Serif.

  spuds 13:11 PM 08 Jan 13

Final Update

Just thought that I would inform you that we were offered a Serif package consisting of PagePlus X6, Full comprehensive manual, Place Plus Image Collection for £29.95. Whether this is the same package offer BT mentioned or later promotion offer to get rid of stock, I wouldn't know.

Perhaps a better and improved PagePlus X7 is on the horizon for 2013?.

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