- UPGRADE INFORMATION: You can upgrade to Adobe Photoshop CS3 from Photoshop 7.0, CS, or CS2.
Adobe Photoshop CS3 Upgrade [OLD VERSION]
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- Builds on Photoshop CS2 with dozens of improvements
- Boost your productivity with a streamlined interface, enhancements to raw-image processing and asset management workflows, and more
- Experience unrivaled editing power with nondestructive filters, more precise color-correction controls, and more powerful cloning and healing tools
- Easily create rich composites using new tools for automatically aligning and blending layers and making quick selections
- Ideal for photographers, graphic designers, Web designers, and print service providers
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- Platform: Windows Vista Home Premium / Vista Business / Vista Enterprise / Vista Ultimate / XP
- Media: DVD-ROM
- Item Quantity: 1
Adobe Photoshop CS3 software accelerates your path from imagination to imagery. Ideal for photographers, graphic designers, and web designers, the professional standard delivers new features such as automatic layer alignment and blending that enable advanced compositing. Live filters boost the comprehensive, nondestructive editing toolset for increased flexibility. And a streamlined interface and new timesaving tools make your work flow faster.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Since this review is for the upgrade, I assume you have used Photoshop before and have basic familiarity with how it works. Primarily, you should ask yourself whether the increased functionality of CS3 over CS2 (and possibly older editions if you haven't kept up with past upgrades) is enough to justify the purchase. I'll cheat a bit and tell you up front that it is easily worth it and then spend the rest of the review trying to explain why.
The first big change that I noticed came when I opened my first file into the Camera Raw utility. Two new sliders have been added. One helps recover blown highlights and the other retrieves blocked shadows. These functions certainly have limits but both proved themselves useful almost immediately. Within reasonable limits, you can definitely push exposures further while maintaining the integrity of your photos at the highs and lows than you could have dreamed of in the past.
Also, you can now use the Camera Raw utility on JPEG and TIFF files as well. It is important to remember, however, that it will not be as effective. Raw files are literally raw and unprocessed so that you can set the assumptions in your computer instead of the camera locking it in when processing the image. Since some of the original data is discarded in the process of making a JPEG file, you won't get the same benefits but this is still a worthwhile tool.
The next benefit I found in CS3 was the addition of filters that can now be used similarly to adjustment layers. Never again will you have to apply a filter and leave a permanent effect that can neither be reviewed nor edited in the future. CS3 allows us to convert layers into Smart Objects and any filter applied to that layer will then be stored and available for editing, deleting, etc. I am most grateful to the folks at Adobe for what is surely one of the most requested upgrades in the history of Photoshop.
Beyond the few items I've mentioned already, there are many other changes. Everything from the Print screen to the basic user interface has gone through an overhaul and in virtually all cases I would suggest that the change is an improvement. Bridge thumbnails have been sped up dramatically, a new Quick Selection tool is a huge help, a major breakthrough in converting color images to Black & White has been implemented... and on and on. I wasn't kidding when I said it would take a book to cover it all. In the final analysis, let me say that in just a week of using this program, I'm already 100% sold on it. I know that I have not yet uncovered many of its benefits and it will probably not be until some of the CS3 reference books hit the street that we can start mining the program's full potential. But I would buy this if I all I got was the new Camera Raw program and the non-destructive filters. Everything else (and there is a LOT) is almost gravy after that. Anyone serious about editing photos should buy the upgrade to CS3.
I've been using Photoshop since version 2 and have been teaching Photoshop classes for over 10 years, and this is the worst upgrade ever (two stars since, well, it IS Photoshop afterall).
Photoshop's most touted new feature--non-destructive filters--is implemented very poorly. Rather than working like adjustment layers currently work, SmartFilters, as they are known, convert the underlying Photoshop layer into a SmartObject and places the SmartFilter on top. You CS2 users know that you can't edit a SmartObject in Photoshop--you have to go to the object's native application. So to edit the image under a SmartFilter, Photoshop opens it in a new document window (meaning you can't see its interaction with layers underneath as you edit it, and can't see how the various SmartFilters make the changed composition look until you save and return to the original document, and you can't see the effect of the SmartFilter as you edit the underlying art.
Adobe quietly retired ImageReady, so there is now NO way to open an animated GIF and edit its multiple frames in Photoshop CS3!
I've summarized the dissapointing bugs in a review of the whole Creative Suite (type "cs3" in the search field).
The new Bridge and Photo RAW are great improvements over CS2. You can now open jpegs in Photo RAW and have more controls available in general. In Photoshop itself, the Quick Selection tool is great, as well as the new Black & White Image Adjustment. I haven't used it too much yet, but I think the Smart Filters option seems like a very good idea. Overall, I am very pleased with this Upgrade.