imgcurses: Best of most worlds

My quick run-in with img2xterm yesterday reminded me that I have another curses-based image viewer in my list: imgcurses. If you’ve ever used something like fbida or fim, imgcurses might strike you as the best amalgamation of a framebuffer image viewer and a strict console environment.

With imgcurses you can get from this to any of these:

2014-09-02-6m47421-imgcurses-01 2014-09-02-6m47421-imgcurses-02 2014-09-02-6m47421-imgcurses-03 2014-09-02-6m47421-imgcurses-04

imgcurses has four “modes” that it supports, in the way it renders the image to text-only format. Depending on the image, one mode or another might be the best representation. (The last mode, “detail,” can be somewhat taxing to render, so be patient when you switch to it.)

The best parts of imgcurses are in the simple controls it offers. Left and right square brackets zoom the image in your viewing window, “m” changes the mode and “q” quits the program.

You can see a small on-screen display too, showing the original dimensions and zoom setting, and the mode you’re using. That’s about it.

imgcurses fills in a lot of the gaps that some others — like img2xterm — omit … like fitting an image to your available terminal space. So you won’t have to resize your image before you view it.

I don’t see controls for some higher-level image functions, like rotating or flipping, so you might have to rely on imagemagick for that. And according to the home page, imgcurses only handles JPEG, PNG and TGA formats.

I like this though, and plan to include it on my next text-only systems. It handles the task gracefully, gives a few options for display, and doesn’t overburden my system. Good show all around. Have a star:⭐😉

2 thoughts on “imgcurses: Best of most worlds

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