Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended

By Jim Rapoza  |  Posted 2007-04-10 Print this article Print

Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended If theres one thing that Adobe knows how to do really well its how to release new versions of its core image editing platform that maintain the basic usability and interface of Photoshop while adding enough new features to make it a must upgrade for graphics professionals. And Photoshop CS3 Extended is a perfect example of this type of upgrade.
On the surface, it is classic Photoshop, and anyone who has ever used Photoshop should be very comfortable jumping right in and editing images.
And although a lot of the features in this release dont offer anything new that couldnt be done in Photoshop before, they make a lot of things much easier to do and should offer lots of time savings for graphics professionals. A good example of this is the new smart filters feature. Using this capability, we could easily apply effects and changes to an image and go back and forth without having to start all over again from the beginning. We also were surprised at how good the automatic layers alignment feature was at letting us combine multiple versions of a photo to get one good one. The new Quick Selection tool was good at outlining complex areas of an image to make it quicker to pull areas from an image for masking and other alterations. In general, we found that, for most shapes, it did a good job at outlining on the first try. Another cool feature in Photoshop CS3 Extended made it much easier to combine multiple images to create a panorama. In this new version, we were able to build a panorama that looked surprisingly good in probably half the time it would have taken us in previous versions. Adobe Illustrator CS3 Illustrator also has seen enough new improvements to make it worth upgrading to for graphics professionals. One of the biggest new features is in its ability to manage and edit color options. The new Live Color feature makes it much easier to find, create and save new color combinations for use in Illustrator. It also made it possible to quickly apply and edit these colors while working on images. There have been a lot of small but welcome improvements to the wide assortment of drawing and editing tools within Illustrator. One of our favorites is how the eraser tool has become much more of a drawing tool within Illustrator. We could use the eraser tool in much the same was as we would a brush to essentially add, rather then remove, from an image. Adobe Bridge CS3 While all the applications in CS3 use the Bridge digital asset management tool, none benefit from it more than Photoshop and Illustrator. When combined with Version Cue collaboration server, the Bridge, which was introduced in CS2, provides some very capable enterprise-class features for managing digital media assets. For the most part, the Bridge has seen only small cosmetic improvements in this release. We liked the ability to group multiple images together into a single stack. Also, new filters made it easier to parse through large image collections to find only those that meet specific criteria. Next Page: Adobe InDesign CS3.

Jim Rapoza, Chief Technology Analyst, eWEEK.For nearly fifteen years, Jim Rapoza has evaluated products and technologies in almost every technology category for eWEEK. Mr RapozaÔÇÖs current technology focus is on all categories of emerging information technology though he continues to focus on core technology areas that include: content management systems, portal applications, Web publishing tools and security. Mr. Rapoza has coordinated several evaluations at enterprise organizations, including USA Today and The Prudential, to measure the capability of products and services under real-world conditions and against real-world criteria. Jim Rapoza's award-winning weekly column, Tech Directions, delves into all areas of technologies and the challenges of managing and deploying technology today.

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