If you’re like me, or know someone who is, there is a collection of comic books lying somewhere in the house. Whether it is stored in long-boxes, displayed in protector bags with cardboard backing on a wall, or locked away in an old trunk, there is one inevitable fact; unless you go through each one it is hard to remember what you have. Now it doesn’t have to be. Here you will find a review on 3 software programs designed to help keep track of all of those priceless works of art; some free, some not so free.
First up is Comic Collector Live, an online website designed not only to keep track of what you have, but also what you want. There are several positive factors for this website, not the least of which is that it is free to register and use. It does offer a software program that can be downloaded to keep track of the comics you have, but it also offers areas for collectibles. You have access to hundreds of online comic book shops for those hard to find comics and they even offer a way for you to sell your own comic books and collectibles. Then there are the drawbacks. The all-in-one software program they offer allows you to search by author, event, inker, etc and is free to download and use for 30-days, after that they offer a $29.95 subscription for a year of updates. This is a good site whether I am sitting at home in Raleigh, NC or on vacation in New York, Florida, or anywhere with internet access. It still allows me to see what is out there.
Next up is Comic Book Collector from Duck Software. This program offers 17 customizable fields that can be used for issue number, category, publisher, condition, value, and more and each comic book has a separate entry for story, history, and a place to put a graphic of the cover. The software offers a few positive traits including an import export feature for other database programs, customizable fields, report creating with sorting options, and a graphic field. The drawbacks: graphics have to be entered from your computer so you have to scan each cover you put into the program or find it on the internet. Another thing to look at is cost. The website states it is shareware and free to download but the actual download page says it is the trial version. Unregistered versions only allow up to 20 entries.
Finally, there is Comic Collector from Collectorz.com. This is one of the most user friendly and simple programs out there for comic book collectors. It offers everything the previous two programs offer and more. You can browse your collection by series, issues, or cover art. One of the best things about this program is that all you have to do is enter the issue and the program does the rest, including adding a cover image. The program allows searching and sorting and you can view details about each issue. The “pro” version of the program can even be exported to an iPhone or iPod Touch. This appears to be the “top shelf” program for collectors but does have it’s drawbacks as well. The basic, free program only allows entry for up to 100 comic books, so if you’re just getting started this may be the way to go; however, if you’ve been collecting for years you may have to fork out a little money. There are three versions of the program including the free, standard, and pro editions. The standard edition is $29.95 while the pro edition is $49.95 and both offer the options of a CD-ROM (an extra $4.95) and Priority Support ($9.95 for 1 year). The programmers also offer software for collectors of movies, music, books, and games.
Everyone is different and has their own needs and uses and these are only three of the programs that are out there. There are dozens and most act and are used the same way and what it comes down to is a matter of choice. Are you aware of any I missed that may be better? I would love to know and I’m sure the readers would as well, so drop a comment below and let us know.