Adobe Photoshop CS5 redefines digital image editing thanks to a large number of new tools and functions. The quantity and quality of additions allow this new version to improve workflow, and thanks to the Creative Suite, your work using the Adobe Suite will be smooth and seamless. The new 64-bit online support will do the rest.
As usual, the program is divided into three parts: Adobe Bridge (photo manager), Adobe Camera RAW (plug-in for RAW format) and Photoshop. The three parts work perfectly together and are probably the best options you can find available right now. After 20 years, Adobe’s flagship is still on the top in this genre, and it seems that it will continue for some years to come.
The interface is very similar to the CS4 version, and that’s good news for those users that are used to this way of working. The workflow has been improved as well as most of the formerly available tools, keeping the same essence that turned Photoshop into the main professional photo editing software. In general terms, Adobe Photoshop CS5 can be considered as the pinnacle of the Creative Suites, not only because of the functions included by default but also by the multiple tools that can be added later for free with additional plugins.
How to Use
Once we install the new Adobe Photoshop CS5 on our computer, it will seem no different to previous versions. The layout is basically the same as CS4, just more organized, so you will have to start working with it to notice the changes. The mask tool, for example, is now more precise when you need to select complex contours. Also after CS2's success, HDR tools were enhanced for easy retouching and to make images more realistic with a better chromatic touch and no ghost halo.
Adobe is creating, step-by-step, a very interesting Suite where all its programs will work together and complement each other in the creation and design process
The range of tools is focused on professional users. Puppet Warp, for example, will let you manipulate picture cells quite easily when creating great publicity images. The Lens Corrector will improve professional photographers’ pictures, swiftly deleting any light noise and camera lens aberrations. However, the most important tool included in Adobe Photoshop CS5 is probably Content-Aware. This is quite an interesting tool, able to delete objects and fill the empty space with a matching background effect.
Adobe Photoshop CS5 is not the most revolutionary version ever seen, but it seems like a very acceptable product overall. Adobe is creating step-by-step,very interesting Suite where all its programs will work together and complement each other in the creation and design process. The competition amongst the top 5 image editors is quite fierce with the newest Coreldraw and Gimp versions now on the market and the new Lightroom coming soon. It would seem that even the most famous picture editors have no reserved seats.
Content Aware Fill
This massive tool presents a whole new world of possibilities the first time you have your hands on it. Adobe has created a dynamic tool that allows users to select an element in the image automatically and modify it the way you want. The grateful surprise comes when you start working with Adobe Photoshop CS5 and discover that, with this new tool, you will save a lot of time in erasing or modifying elements without leaving overly noticeable traces on the original picture. The Content Aware Fill solution will, as its name suggets, fill the blank area that an element would leave behind with the same pattern of the picture’s background.
Adobe has created a dynamic tool that allows the users to select an element in the image automatically and modify it the way you want
It comes very handy for simple replacements, but where it really stands out is helping the user with deep modifications. Refining an image for making it perfect in each sense of the word may take too much time. For this reason, the inclusion of the Refine Edge is important, since it makes possible to fix fuzzy edges much more quickly than before. In addition, thanks to the Smart Radius function you can make an automatic selection much more accurately than with manual tools; perfect for irregular silhouettes with detailed borders.
In this same section there has been an additional tool included that allows an advanced method for modifying photos: Puppet Warp. This new function makes easier to reshape and overlap different parts of the figure. Although it provides interesting possibilities, it is very difficult to use for professional photography if the user wants to create realistic human figures, but if you want to apply distortion on purpose or only move a limb, this tool is very suitable.
Camera Raw 6
Specially designed for professional and amateur photographers, Camera Raw 6 acts as a plug-in that allows the user to import pictures from a digital camera directly. This software allows, in addition to better file management, for retouching the original pictures with better noise reduction, amongst other effects. Camera Raw 6 for Adobe Photoshop CS5 supports more than 275 digital camera models with different technologies. This way you can import TIFF and large JPEGs with high resolution and RAW formats to exponentially enhance the final result.
Among the advantages of using Camera Raw 6, instead of other kind of additional software, is that the camera profiles are automatically incorporated in the plugin. Thanks to this, once you have loaded the profile of your digital camera, Adobe Photoshop CS5 can correct some of the usual issues with these kinds of cameras. For example, using Lens Correction you will fix image distortion from the lens that has been used, providing an image much more realistic than the original, without losing quality in the process. Using this feature you can make the most of your own photography equipment by combining it with the possibilities granted by this software.
Management and Performance
This Photoshop CS5 takes a step further towards the total integration how you manage your personal photo albums with the addition of CS Live directly from the application. Thanks to this feature, you can manage your local pictures and upload them to your personal online space as well as accessing to free tutorials from Adobe experts and utilize a forum where the Photoshop community gathers for offering advice and solving problems.
Adobe has put some effort in giving this version more stable and reliable software
The Mini Bridge included in this CS5 version allows the user to manually manage your folders and pictures that are in your own computer. This way you can access all your pictures directly from the application without having to exit the program to your local folder explorer. Although it may seem not so useful since this Mini Bridge isn’t an impressive feature, the truth is that it saves you lots of time when you need to access several pictures thanks to the customization options it offers.
Adobe has put some effort in giving this version more stable and reliable software, though in truth the previous one didn’t offer too many troubles. With CS5, the overall performance has been improved in exchange for a longer launching startup time. For those users that will work with CS5 in its native 64-bits version, they will notice that the program runs a lot smoother demonstrating that the developers have focused on this aspect.
Adobe Photoshop CS5 Features
This is a trial download version. Feel free to check the full version's latest features to check the popularity of this program:
- Enhanced Quick Selection tool that offers an intelligent way for retouching picture’s elements much faster than with manual functions
- HDR Pro support adds a new technical color treatment with additional presets offering high quality results
- Better workflow and quicker system performance making this CS5 version a comfortable Photoshop edition
- Improvements regarding the Content Aware Healing tools for retouching pictures without leaving traces of the previous version behind
- New Camera RAW support that automatically enhances pictures taken by one of the 275 digital camera models supported
- Black-and-white conversion has been enhanced, offering new presets and an improved performance
- New Puppet Warp that allows the user to move or resize parts of a figure in a picture
- Large number of new brushes that allows compositing a new project from scratch using Adobe Photoshop CS5 as the primary tool
- 64-bit support that not only enhances the performance of the software but also the final results
- Extended compatibility with JPEG and TIFF formats for working with high quality files for impressive results
- Interesting 3D tools to work with After Effects and other applications from Adobe like Lightroom
For more information about the product and to get free online tutorials before downloading the free trial version, please check the developer’s website .
Photoshop plug-ins you will need
The following are freeware Photoshop plugins for photographers, illustrators and graphic and web designers. Stop your search… they really work!
- Perfect Effects Free : 73 photo effects to be used and mixed for Photoshop, Lightroom, Aperture and even as a standalone app. Stylize images in the most versatile and easy way. Control the blending, painting and masking and get a retro effect for your pictures. Just install it and access Perfect Effects 4 through Window > Extensions > onOne.
- 3D Shadow : create different types of 3D shadows from letters, shapes and other kinds of forms. Easy to use, control transparency, perspective, color and X/Y/Z position and angles. Get the viewers’ attention with this efficient plug-in.
- Pixel Bender Plugin : get an Oilpaint effect and transform photographs into oil painting images. Use the few simple sliders and start to play with brushes' size, scale or even amount of stylization. The GPU support (part of the Pixel Bender technology) will make the adjustments faster and smoother than before.
- Mr. Stacks : create storyboards and presentations in few simple steps. Just choose your images, presentation size and format and this plug-in will automatically organize your file in different pages or as a proper storyboard.
- GuideGuide : stop dealing with annoying grids. This plug in will create pixel-accurate rows, columns, baselines and midpoints with the click of a button. Multiple types of measurements are supported and can be saved for repeated use.
- Stereogram Lab Filter v1.0 generate the always surprising image stereograms with this plug-in. Stereogram Lab Filter can very be easy to control and can be used for commercial and non-commercial purposes.
- ICO Format : as easy as it sounds. Create Windows icons and save them in its format (.ico). Manage your software, favourites and shortcuts with a unique style.
To download the plug-ins, just download the files from its developer’s websites, then open Photoshop and select Edit>Preferences>Plugins. Right after that, a screen will pop-up. Select the Additional Plug-Ins Folder and click Choose. Pick the plug-in file, accept and restart Photoshop. Our plug-ins will be safety installed and ready to be used.
Before downloading Adobe Photoshop CS 5, please check if your computer has the following minimum system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows XP with the Service Pack 3 installed or later
- Processor: Intel Pentium 4 or AMD Athlon 64
- RAM: at least 1GB
- Hard Drive Space: at least 1GB for the installation.
- Graphic Card: 1024x768 display with OpenGL graphic adapter. 16bits and 256MB VRAM
- Some GPU graphic functions may require Shader Model 3.0 and OpenGL 2.0 compatibility
- QuickTime 7.6.2 is a must for some multimedia functions
- Broadband connection is necessary for free online services
- Content-Aware Fill works
- Good number of online tutorials to help you make the most of the program
- The new tools are quite interesting…
- …but maybe quite professionally focused
- The program is getting bigger and more resource-hungry
- It is quite expensive