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ImageJ

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ImageJ is an open source software intended primarily for image processing with some image analysis tools.

Here we have a comparative analysis of ImageJ's and Pixcavator's image analysis capabilities.

Tasks and features

ImageJ

Pixcavator

Analysis of the gray scale image after binarization

Yes

Yes

Computation of binary characteristics of objects/particles

Yes

(A specific binarization in ImageJ has to be found first by thresholding or another method.)

Yes

(The characteristics are computed for all possible thresholds.)

size/area

Yes

Yes

circularity/roundness

Yes

Yes

centroid

Yes

Yes

perimeter

Yes

Yes

bounding rectangle

Yes

No

(not used in such applications as microscopy where the results should be independent of orientation)

Analysis of the gray scale image without prior binarization

Limited

Yes

Detection of objects as max/min of the gray scale

Yes

Yes

Filtering detected objects (in order to deal with noise etc)

Yes

(with respect to contrast only)

Yes

(with respect area, contrast, roundness, and saliency)

Counting objects/particles

Yes

Yes

Image segmentation method

Watershed - for either max or min but not both (dark or light objects but not both)

Topology (both dark and light objects)

Computation of gray scale characteristics of objects

No

Yes

contrast

No

Yes

center of mass

No

Yes

saliency/mass

No

Yes

average contrast

No

Yes

Automatic analysis

Yes

Yes

Semi-automatic mode

No

Yes

(based on objects found for all possible thresholds)

Manual mode

No

Yes

(full control over found objects)

User interface

Hundreds of commands in drop down menus

6 sliders, 7 buttons

User experience

“Wrong image format!”

“Threshold first!”

“Results unsatisfactory? Start over!”

Move sliders, click buttons

Screenshots

ImageJ

Ss-imagej.jpg

Pixcavator

Ss31small.jpg

Support

From the programmers via email list

From Pixcavator's creator via email and phone

Documentation

NIH site

This site

Open source

Computer code

Mathematics (and computer code)

Platforms

Windows, Mac, Linux

Windows only

Price

Free (the development of ImageJ is funded by the US government through the NIH)

$245 (free trial), free student edition

An ImageJ ticket:

Wayne [Rasband] had an idea for a command called “Analyze Image” that combines filtering, background correction, segmentation, particle analysis, etc. It would work something like the closed-source, Windows-only Pixcavator program. As Wayne said, “It would not be an easy thing to create but it would be very popular with ImageJ users”.

decline

See also other Image analysis software.