Clz Movies in Review – Your whole movie collection at the tip of a finger!

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You know, I have quite a large movie collection. And sometimes it’s impossible to remember if I have a specific movie that I want to watch, so going to the store is a pain. Well, Collectorz.com has provided a tool for this! Now you can reference your movies anywhere, anytime, and at the touch of a finger.

Clz Movies is an iPhone application that allows you to browse your movie collection in an extremely user-friendly way. But there’s a catch. You can only do the entire list of manipulations on the OSX or Windows desktop versions of the app.

Anyway, we have to play the cards we’re dealt so here are a few words about the desktop version. The overall impression is very good: the amount of data you can store about movies should be enough to satisfy the most die-hard movie fan and all of it remains easy to use and access. The desktop version could use a little bit of visual polish as it really looks like it was constructed somewhere around the beginning of the XP era.

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Adding movies works reasonably well; you can add the movie either by entering its barcode (numerically or using an external bar code scanner) or by searching by title. Unfortunately, only the proprietary Collectorz.com database is used (unlike the older versions which also allowed to search IMDB) and it is missing a lot of local movies and series (at least the Russian ones). The good news is that for all of the global movies I searched, I found complete details with no problems when using a combination of title and bar code search. You can also fine-tune search results at a later time.

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Another applicable function I wanted to talk about here is iPhone exporting. As I said above, it is only one-way, so don’t expect to do any correcting on your “Jesus” phone. It seems to be very easy at first: you only need to have your desktop and phone connected to the same Wi-Fi network and Bonjour.  Next you open up the iPhone app, switch to the import tab and in the CLz desktop app, press the export button. You’re almost there! Now just select your phone in the destinations, choose the appropriate options and a final push of export! Aaaaand, it may not work. At least it didn’t about the first dozen times for me. But finally, after some rebooting, it did.

And it’s finally time to move to the iPhone application. As said above many times, the iPhone application is read-only. So there’s no way to track any changes, use the great loan tracking feature of the desktop app or even keep a wish-list! If we distance ourselves from this, the app works great. The interface is lightning fast and provides multiple ways to browse your collection. You can sort by year, index, or title; or browse the collection by genre and status through a variety of selection fields. An excellent search function is provided and the cover browsing looks simply amazing. And the movie details are also always at the tip of a finger.

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Unfortunately, there is a serious problem! Localization is screwed, meaning that all information, entered in Russian was completely garbled up. And what’s more, the field “Original title”, which is supposed to keep the movie title in English, is not transferred to the phone. In such cases, you’re left with only the cover to define the movie.

You know, I have mixed feelings about the whole suite. On one hand, the desktop version works very well and though being a bit expensive ($49.95), it is probably the best software out there to keep your movie collection in order. On the other hand, its companion iPhone app is really overpriced at $9.99, especially considering that it is view-only and the desktop version is MANDATORY and so pricey. IMHO, the iPhone version should’ve been free, or at the very most $0.99. And I would really like to have at least some editing capabilities on the iPhone; options like keeping a wish list, status editing and loan tracking would be great. And if barcode reading via the iPhone’s camera was implemented (aka RedLaser) it would really boost the suite’s usefulness.

In the end, I would recommend the suite to those who know what they’re doing and have an extra $50 lying around, but this suite is asking a lot and not returning the goods.

With this I declare Clz Movies officially touched!

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App Summary
Title:Clz Movies (v.1.1)Developer:Collectorz.com
Price:$9.99 (+$39.95 for the desktop version)App Size:1.0 MB
  • Excellent interface
  • Very good amount of details transferred
  • Beautiful cover display
  • Requires the expensive desktop version to work
  • Read-only access to the collection
  • Localization and synchronization issues
  • Some useful fields not synced

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  • jccowboy

    DVDLister is better and doesn’t cost you $9.99 + $49.95

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