Joomla

6Gallery by Balboathemes (Review)

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This week, we had the opportunity to test drive 6Gallery, a gallery extension by the guys of Balboathemes.com. On their clean and modern website, they promise that 6Gallery is a modern and easy to use gallery – but do they deliver?

Joomla galleries come in all sorts and shapes, and 6Gallery comes in the shape of a module only. How does it stack up against the competition?

Easy to install

First things first, 6Gallery is easy to install. Simply install the package into Joomla and you’re done. There’s no funky extensions that need to be installed, no silly “frameworks”, it doesn’t depend on a component… the module just functions on itself, which makes it perfect if all you want is a module which displays a gallery.

Creating a gallery made easy

Managing your gallery is easy

Managing your gallery is easy

6Gallery claims to be a modern, easy to use image gallery – and after a test run I can’t disagree on either aspect. Setting up an image gallery in 6Gallery is pretty easy and straightforward. Galleries are all linked to a module; to add images to a gallery you simply go to the “Images” section, and upload the images you want to display. You can drag and drop images, if you fancy that. Deleting an mage from the gallery is as simple as hovering over the image and clicking the “X”. Reordering the images can be done by dragging them to the desired position. This is all pretty straight forward and simple

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If just images aren’t what you’re looking for, 6Gallery lets you easily turn the image in a slide. By clicking the “edit” button, you can add text to the image which will be shown to the right. This text can be formatted as you see fit. You can also add a link to the image.

Configuration settings

6Gallery is simply to configure. You can define the thumbnail sizes, the amount of images shown per page and whether you want to use pagination or not. A color picker lets you choose the color for the overlay on hover, and the buttons you see when you hover over the image. The options have been reduced to the absolute minimum, but still give you enough room to fine-tune the gallery as you see fit.

The result

Using 6Gallery results in a smooth gallery, which allows you to move between images without any noticeable slowdown. Since 6Gallery is a modern gallery, it’s responsive and it does play nice on mobile browsers. There are three gallery styles to choose from, and although we like the “Grid” the layout the best, the Metro Grid and FitColumn layout will have their own fans. All in all, the gallery you’re seeing on your page looks nice, fits with your template and is surprisingly fast (or we’re used to crappy gallery plugins for Joomla).

Optionally, you can filter images by category, if you’ve created those in the module. Once again, the transitions are usually very smooth without any noticeable lag (unless your hosting can’t follow).

One point of criticism

Update: The people of Balbooa pointed out that their documentation (which I failed to read) explains how to add a module to a an article.

While we love 6Gallery and it’s ease of use, there’s one thing that “bugged” us, and that’s that there is no plugin to embed the gallery into your articles. This can easily be worked around by using {loadposition someposition}, and perhaps the idea of a plugin (and then, logically following that, an editor button) doesn’t align with the philosophy of the minimalistic, modern and fast gallery that the people by Balboathemes are offering.

Conclusion

If you are looking for a gallery which is lightweight, looks great and which is easy to use, and which doesn’t have any funky dependencies, then 6Gallery is the gallery solution for you.

6Gallery is available for $21 from http://balbooa.com. You can see it in action by using their demo.

### Bonus

  1. Watch 6Gallery in action on our (temporary demo site) by going to Gallery or Gallery2. You’ll also find the module in the banner position

  2. Watch the video about how we setup the demo. It’s about 12 minutes long and there’s no talking but it gives you an impression of what the extension is capable of.

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