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Old 12-16-2006, 06:41 AM   #1
Howard White
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Default Photoshop CS3 Public Beta

Adobe released its "public beta" of Photoshop CS3 Friday. It's available for download by anyone with a valid PS CS2 serial number -- you need to get a new number through the Adobe site to run the beta for more than a couple of days.

It looks like it will be well worth the bucks to upgrade, whenever that opportunity arrives. For MacTel users, it's Universl Binary, and fast. For everyone, the new selection tool is just brilliant; lose the Tragic Wand, just "paint" to get a good selection and use the refine tools to clean it up.

"Smart Filters" also look cool, though I haven't done much with them yet. And the new Bridge seems considerably better.

I'm not telling any tales out of school; it's a public beta, and there are already good tutorial videos on lynda.com and the NAPP site.

And our old friend John Cornicello seems to be honcho of the beta forum.

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Old 12-17-2006, 07:23 PM   #2
Cristen Gillespie
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Howard: And our old friend John Cornicello seems to be honcho of the beta forum.
Poor fellow. The people who say that CS2 was nothing more than a patch for CS, which is why they didn't buy it, and then demand Adobe release the beta to them, are more than enough reading on the U2U for me. The logic of demanding access to a beta when you didn't think the previous version good enough for you escapes me, but it's probably what poor Cornicello is going to have to figure a response to.

That and the umpteen "why does this early beta have bugs in it" comments. LOL

   
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Old 12-18-2006, 06:00 AM   #3
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The most annoying thing about the beta whiners' forum is that people whine without first looking to see if others have had/solved the same problem.
e.g.: "I can't get a serial number." (The server was broken for a while but it's fixed now.) "It keeps telling me I have to disable Twainserver." (Yes, we know...just use Activity Monitor to kill it.)
But the number of messages in just a few days suggests lots of people are trying it.
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Old 12-18-2006, 12:22 PM   #4
Cristen Gillespie
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Originally Posted by Howard White View Post
The most annoying thing about the beta whiners' forum is that people whine without first looking to see if others have had/solved the same problem.
e.g.: "I can't get a serial number." (The server was broken for a while but it's fixed now.) "It keeps telling me I have to disable Twainserver." (Yes, we know...just use Activity Monitor to kill it.)
But the number of messages in just a few days suggests lots of people are trying it.
HW
Well, people are a bit too impatient to read installation instructions, let alone do a web search to find out if anyone else is suffering along with them<G>

It does indeed appear that despite Lightroom, PSE, Aperture, Capture NX, Capture One, DXO and all the rest, quite a few people still care about what's going on with PS. And the majority seem to be being civil enough about the beta quality of the software. But it is a pity that there are some who can't be banned. We'll never get to issues wading through their diatribes. U2U can definitely be worse than anything on Dpreview<G>

   
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Old 12-17-2006, 08:42 PM   #5
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I wish I could take a look, but I didn't upgrade from CS.
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Old 12-18-2006, 06:06 AM   #6
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I wish I could take a look, but I didn't upgrade from CS.
Well, you can still look at the tutorals. I like Deke McClelland's on lynda.com.
In addition to the selection tools and smart filters:

1. Brightness/contrast now works without destroying the image.
2. Tools for cloning/ghosting images together are nice.

Drool.
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Old 12-18-2006, 08:16 AM   #7
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Unfortunately, I can't view the tutorials, or even launch my copy of Photoshop to speculate on this. Could you explain the brightness/contrast change?

Note: Since writing the above, I was able to view the tutorial for Brightness/Contrast. I'm glad to see the way Adobe did this. They provided an easier alternative to Levels/Curves, and included a Legacy check box for those of us who need the old linear methods for channel and mask adjustments.

Last edited by Andrew B.; 12-18-2006 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 12-18-2006, 12:11 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Andrew B. View Post
I wish I could take a look, but I didn't upgrade from CS.
You'll still get to read more than ever before the release of a version, see it with video, and get the full 30 day trial when the time comes. And since you're buying a new computer, or have bought one, I doubt hardware will be an issue for you when they do finally release it.

I gather the reason they didn't make it available to more had to do with serial numbers and keeping control of the activation -- I don't really know or understand any of the complexity involved. I can certainly understand more than CS2 users wanting to take a look, but saying CS2 was a real dog that had no features worth purchasing, and then saying that they still ought to be allowed to participate in the beta just doesn't make sense. What's their hurry? Perhaps they are hoping to be the first on the block to denounce CS3 as yet another dog.<BG>

   
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Old 12-20-2006, 08:59 PM   #9
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Well, I've had more time to look at the demos.

I like what they did with Curves, especially displaying all the curves without having to pop into R, G, and B. The new selection tool looks very impressive, although I wish refine selection interface could be used on any selection. The B&W feature is an improvement over the tools it had before, and better than most plugins (but not all).

OTOH, I am very unhappy with what they did with the nondestructive Smart Filters. One of the nice things about adjustment layers is that I can see a live preview of how it will change the image, regardless of where in the stack this adjustment layer falls. With Smart Filters, the preview turns off every effect that sits above that filter. I'm sure the claim will be that it takes too much horsepower to manage the preview, but imo, this is a dummy-down way of doing things. The are many cases where it will not be slow. Such as stack of three with the middle one being Gaussian blur. And for those cases where it will be painfully slow, let the user have a choice to turn on the preview and live with it. Or Photoshop could provide a less-than-full preview like Neat Image does. Because their effort to save us from slowness (if that is the reason) has made things even slower. It is not faster to require the user to adjust without seeing the effect of the other layers, save the setting to see the result, open the filter again, make another small move, close to preview, open again, etc.

Anyway, what I saw in the demo movie was the preview turning off within the stack of a single smart object. Maybe one could put other layers above this, and it would work as I described. But I am not in a position to test that.
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:30 AM   #10
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Andrew: although I wish refine selection interface could be used on any selection.
It can. It is intended to be used with any selection. Currently it is available on the Options Bar with the Lasso, Marquee and Quick Selection/MagicWand tools. But if you create a path and turn that into a selection, you can still reach Refine Edge through the menu Select > Refine Edge.

Quote:
Andrew: With Smart Filters, the preview turns off every effect that sits above that filter.
If you want to rerun a filter below a stack of filters, yes. But each of these filters has to be rerun over the change. If I make a change to the bottom of an 8 filter stack, each time I make a slight change I have to click Preview or something to update? and then wait several minutes, maybe many minutes if 3rd party filters get in on the act, while the whole thing is recalculated?

Having the option *might* be nice, but it could get ugly pretty quickly. I think having an understanding of how the filter is effecting the outcome with the other filters and making a change in parameters that works in the right direction, clicking okay and watching the filters update, then going back in, is probably every bit as quick as clicking a Preview button. You stay in the dialog that way, but you sure as heck don't want a live Preview or you'd be stuttering and watching the beachball or hourglass spin on any complex set of filters before you'd even managed to make a partial move in the right direction.

So while yes, you do have to exit, I'm not sure there's an alternative that is really that much better. You have to exit to put your filter into a blend mode or adjust opacity, which I find a bigger deal. I'd much rather have that available before I click okay, but every single filter in PS and every single 3rd party filter would have to be rewritten to do that.

And while they're at it, they can give me a mask on each filter layer, too, but that may take some time to get from them. I'd like to be able to mask the effects of running a Box Blur on a Rough Pastels filter before I run Find Edges, but I don't see any way to mask each filter separately, apart from doing it the old fashioned way -- running them on separate image layers instead of stacked, which means trashing ALL your image layers above the one that you want to change, starting over.

   
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