May 10, 2010
Adobe CS5 Powers 20th Anniversary of PhotoShop
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Susan Smith - Managing Editor

by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
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Industry News

Adobe CS5 Powers 20th Anniversary of PhotoShop

By Susan Smith

Adobe recently released its Creative Suite 5 (CS5) product family, designed for workflows for many different user types. According to the press release, the Adobe CS5 product family is powering the creation of content and applications for the upcoming releases of Flash Player 10.1 and Adobe AIR 2, which are optimized for high performance on mobile screens and designed to take advantage of native device capabilities. Adobe Creative Suite 5 products also integrate with Adobe CS Live*, a set of five online services that accelerate key aspects of the creative workflow and enable designers to focus on creating their best work (CS Live services are complimentary for a limited time).

The Creative Suite 5 line-up includes five new versions: Creative Suite 5 Master Collection, Creative Suite 5 Design Premium, Creative Suite 5 Web Premium, Creative Suite 5 Production Premium, Creative Suite 5 Design Standard, as well as 15 point products and associated technologies.

The Creative Suite 5 line-up includes five new versions: Creative Suite 5 Master Collection, Creative Suite 5 Design Premium, Creative Suite 5 Web Premium, Creative Suite 5 Production Premium, Creative Suite 5 Design Standard, as well as 15 point products and associated technologies. Creative Suite now includes a brand-new component, Adobe Flash Catalyst, a professional interaction design tool that allows designers to rapidly create expressive Web application interfaces and design interaction without writing code.

In an interview with Zorana Gee, PhotoShop product manager, AECWeekly covered those new features of the release that would impact the AEC industry, namely PhotoShop and Extended 3D, also touching upon some of the other important aspects of the release.

PhotoShop Family

In the PhotoShop family Adobe now has, a free online service that allows for simple editing as well as simple ways of sharing images with the different communities a user is involved with. Adobe PhotoShop Elements, Adobe's hobbyist version of PhotoShop, includes more user driven content, more tutorials, tips & tricks directly in the application. Lightroom, Adobe's professional photography tool offers a complete solution for professional photographers, from bringing images in to editing them, and finally outputting them into an ftp site or gallery or contact sheet for print.

PhotoShop celebrated its 20th year in February 19, 2010, and is in its 12th release.

A big announcement for Adobe is 64 bit support for Mac and Windows, so PhotoShop will now run natively on both Mac and Windows 64 bit systems. “What this means is that all that RAM that is coming out on these new machines, even some of the older machines, PhotoShop can now address,” said Gee. “For people doing imaging processing you can expect up to 10% speed improvements on day to day tasks, or if working with really large images, it means that PhotoShop can now access that memory and use it to process their images. PhotoShop is now using 3 GB of memory, which was never possible before CS5.”

Gee said the new release has over 3 dozen user driven features, content preferences, settings and shortcuts.

The ability to select multiple layers and select opacity for all layers at one time, If you want layer styles to be sticky as preferences they will remain as they were the last time you used them. Nested folders have also been increased.

Four areas that Adobe focused on for this release:
  • Productivity boost - to 64-bit support, and customer driven workflow improvements that increase productivity.
  • Powerhouse photography - this feature is the product's core competency, and offers maximum creative impact for architects who want to make presentations.
  • Innovation in 3D--This release bridges the gap for everyday designers who want to begin using 3D tools. CS5 has a powerful rendering engine that enables users to flexibility in working with 3D objects, such as changing lighting, materials, etc.

  • Pricing and availability, $199 upgrade, full $699 for Standard $999 for Extended.

    System requirements are basically the same although CS5 offers 1 GB RAM, up from 512 RAM for 3D usage is now required, as well as more V RAM than for regular PhotoShop.

    ACR Adobe Camera Raw is Adobe's hub for all photo editing in terms of professional photographers. A digital negative format image can be brought into Adobe Camera Raw where basic edits can be made. Improvements include the ability to add grain back into the image, for stylistic reasons.

    Post crop vignetting is not new in this release but the algorithm is new, in terms of intelligently adjusting for exposure at the edges rather than just splashing on black and white pixels. Users will see a more natural vignette but they can add stark black pixels or stark white.

    HDR images - or high dynamic range imaging -photographers will take multiple pictures, because they want to capture the most data they can in terms of having a low exposure or a high exposure of details in light and dark areas. They can also access this through PhotoShop. In the example given, ten images through the bridge merge to HDR Pro. Often photographers can't get that broad range of exposure data in a single image so they might want to take single images and merge them together. With HDR, Adobe has cleaned up the dialog which allows users to match what the eye can see with details in the dark areas and details in the light areas.

    “In past versions this was difficult to use; it was not discoverable and we didn't have that broad range to allow customers to get that realistic look, or the super hyper surrealistic look,” said Gee. “Sometimes with HDR they want the crunchy Harry Potter look.”

    Another HDR ability is to remove ghosting, taking ten images of approximately 3 Mb each together on a tripod and the user will see the alignment causes a little bit of blurring and “ghosting” between the images. Photoshop will define a single image and reference it from which all images will snap the pixels to to clean up that blurring.

    Puppet Warp is about meshing warping for more precision in warp in PhotoShop. “We've always had the ability to warp pixels but people were complaining that that wasn't precise and the pixels kind of get warped in an undesirable way,” explained Gee. “I've taken this giraffe cut out, then choose edit Puppet Warp. PhotoShop draws a mesh on top of this giraffe. If I'm doing a composite and something isn't positioned the right way, I can use mesh warping to precisely manipulate the pixels in a more realistic way.”

    Content-Aware Fill allows users to clean an image up. By leveraging GPU acceleration a user can draw a rule of thirds for compositing objects in an image, or choose a grid. Users can crop the image, removing objects like power lines. Users can remove an image element and immediately replace the missing pixels with Content-Aware Fill. New stroke options allow Adobe Illustrator CS5 users to create strokes of variable widths and precisely adjust the width at any point along the stroke.

    Painting tools features a new tool called Mixer Brush which allows users to actually mix colors together on canvas.

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