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Review: Extensis Suitcase Fusion 6 brings 'Fontspiration' to designers

Jay J. Nelson | Nov. 12, 2014
The font management market has matured, which means that upgrades to the leading products introduce fewer font-related features. Instead, products such as Extensis Suitcase Fusion 6 (and its competitors Linotype FontExplorer Pro and Insider Software's FontAgent Pro) are adding new features to keep up with the changing landscape of operating systems, applications, and cloud-based services.

While this isn't a "live" version of your Vault (it's just a frozen copy of your current setup), it does avoid the corruption problems that sometimes occurred when overly clever users tried to share their Vault in real time from a remote location.

Other features not to miss

Highlighted above are just the new features in version 6, which add to the previous version's unique and powerful features — such as QuickComp, which lets you preview your choice of fonts in dozens of common generic projects:

You can also preview new font combinations on a live webpages with the Web View feature, which displays any webpage and lets you change the font in any text block.

Sending font samples to clients is easy. Just type your preferred text into the QuickType view, set its size and color, then drag the little camera icon to your desktop to create a PNG file of that font sample.

In addition to creating font sets for projects, clients, or any other organizational use, Suitcase Fusion lets you create Application Sets that open a group of fonts when a specific application launches. You can also create a font Set from the fonts used in a document in Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator or QuarkXPress.

Google has an ever-growing collection of free fonts that you can explore, activate and download from within Suitcase Fusion. You can even use this ability in combination with Suitcase Fusion's QuickMatch feature to find fonts that look similar to any font you have.

Suitcase Fusion can also keep your font collection healthy by checking fonts for corruption, repairing them, and cleaning your Mac's font caches — useful when you've been adding and removing a lot of fonts or font versions, or when you suspect your apps are having font-related issues.

Bottom line

Suitcase Fusion 6 is a mature product that's keeping pace with new operating systems, applications, and the online community. If you have a new Retina display or are using the latest creative applications, you'll want this upgrade. Improvements in speed, stability, and font inspiration will make the upgrade attractive to all users.


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