Full-feature download manager

DownloadStudio is a well-designed program that will impress you with its customization options and usability features, but doesn't pass our tests when it comes to its primary purpose of downloading files.

DownloadStudio is an attractively designed application with a number of thoughtful touches that both intermediate and advanced users will appreciate. Unfortunately, when it came to actually downloading files, we ran into some problems.

DownloadStudio impressed us most with its plentiful tips, Help information, and its plethora of customization options. Novices may still have trouble navigating all the terminology and options, but this isn't really a program designed for the new user.

The program opens by default to a Quick Start view that provides links to frequently used download actions and tools. In this view, actions such as Download File will start a simple wizard interface with plenty of descriptive information. An Expert mode provides additional fields and, like the wizard, offers a Help button that takes you to the relevant Topic. Browser integration allows you to grab files while surfing, and an optional "drop target" lets you drag files from the Web.

In addition to downloading files, you can explore sites directly to find downloads and subscribe to RSS feeds. For each feature, DownloadStudio offers many options. One great thing is the capability to specify settings, such as bandwidth limit, for each download, rather than for only all downloads as a whole. You can save a group of settings as a Download Template.

We were able to download individual files, including a 140MB .mov file and several smaller files, successfully. But when we tried to download two large (greater than 300MB) files simultaneously, we received the dreaded Not Responding parenthetical. In further trials, the application slowed or hung on multiple occasions, including during multiple-file downloads.

DownloadStudio looks and feels like a top-notch application, but, sadly, it didn't live up to our expectations. There's a short 15-day trial, though, for users to take this downloader for a test drive on their own to see if their results are better. As it is, we suggest power downloaders wait for the issues to be resolved before investing in DownloadStudio.

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