The GIMP 2.6 vs. Photoshop Smackdown - Adobe Photoshop CS4
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There are many who would argue that Photoshop is well worth its price. Aside from being packed with amazing features, it also has very strong ties with other widely-used media editing Adobe software. After all, Photoshopís native format is the .PSD, which can be exported to and from Adobe ImageReady, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Premier Pro, After Effects and Adobe Encore DVD, which is capable of making professional standard DVDs with non-linear editing and special effects services.
The new Photoshop CS4 comes equipped with content-aware scaling, which is revolutionary new technology that enables users to intelligently size and scale images with a simple drag of a mouse. Other new features include auto-align and auto-blend modes which generate composites based on extended depth of field and 360 degree panoramas with seamless tones and colors. Photoshopís path-bar navigation and workspace selection buttons allow you to instantly go to the right display of every task, while the camera import controls offer visual folder navigation and carousel view for larger image-group selections.
It should be pointed out that even if a consumer is willing and able to shell out the $700 necessary to purchase the new Photoshop CS4, the software isnít really designed for novices or those new to imaging software or photo editing. Sure, it comes equipped with helpful tools, like the pan and zoom features that allow users to edit images at the highest magnification possible, or the canvas rotation tool, which enables users to rotate and work on an image from any angle -- but the likelihood that a non-professional would need these tools or be able to master them on their own is very small.
The design of Photoshop CS4 is very clean, especially with the addition of its new unified application frame intended to keep work areas clutter-free and self-adjusting panels that make accessing advanced tools easy, but once again -- how useful are these new features if it takes hours and hours of tinkering to even make them semi-useful?
It goes without saying that the functionality of Photoshop is not very good. That is not to say that tasks are not executed seamlessly and that the program isnít beautifully designed, but unfortunately itís designed for professionals familiar with all of the incredibly minute and complicated technological aspects of photo editing. Casual photographers simply looking to perform very basic, uncomplicated image editing or altering will quickly be overwhelmed by the countless complicated tools and extremely advanced features offered by Photoshop.
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