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Which Photoshop to buy

Peter_West 6 248 United Kingdom
4 Sep 2011 1:21PM
Hi All, I am restively new to digital photography, and I have also enrolled in a night school course which stars in a few weeks, but not decided on which Photoshop to purchase, Photoshop Elements 9, or the Photoshop Elements 9 & Adobe Premiere® Elements 9, or Photoshop Light room 3, any advice would really appreciated. Pete

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SlowSong Plus
9 7.4k 30 England
4 Sep 2011 1:29PM
You can't go far wrong with the basic Elements 9. It'll have everything you need and more at a very affordable price.

The premier version is more for video editing and movies (which you might want, I don't know). If you're relatively new to imaging I can't see that Lightroom would be any use to you at this time. Maybe later when you've got some experience and know more about what you need.
sherlob Plus
12 2.9k 129 United Kingdom
4 Sep 2011 1:45PM
Hi Pete.

If you have enrolled on to a night school course that qualifies as a higher or further education provider are you aware that you could also qualify for an educational licence for Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3? This brings down the cost of CS5 to approx £150 and LR3 to approx £60.

In terms of which product... it all comes down to what you want - i.e. what level your are aspiring to work at, and what your workflow will be.

Most users of Photoshop Elements (PSE) say that it does all they need. However, in my opinion photoshop (PS) does offer more flexibility than PSE, but comes at the expense of an additional cost and a steeper learning curve. Premier Elements - if I recall correctly isn't a photography package, but rather a package for video editing (I could be wrong, but you should check out the Adobe site for more info) - so this is unlikely to meet your needs unless you use your camera mainly for video. LR3 is an excellent package that acts as a fantastic image database and can become the hub of your workflow system. It offers some powerful editing options, but however useful these are they remain limited. E.g. For my personal work I find I need to edit nearly every image in PS - even if this is just to apply a degree of sharpening.


Peter_West 6 248 United Kingdom
4 Sep 2011 1:46PM
Hi Slowsong, Thanks for advice, really quick, yes that's one that might be the best for me, the more i read up,Pete
Peter_West 6 248 United Kingdom
5 Sep 2011 9:13AM
Hi Adam. thanks for that info, will check out what you said, interested on what you say about further education though, i will try and find more info on that, Pete
User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
5 Sep 2011 9:31AM

Especially as you will be entitled to the Student price, I would thoroughly recommend using Adobe Lightroom 3 from the start. With it you have your Raw Converter, cataloguing, indexing and ranking system, and a very comprehensive set of photo-editing tools all in one package.

I use Lightroom as my main workflow management package but also have Photoshop CS5, SilverEfexPro2, HDR Efex Pro and Photomatix. That is gross overkill and I could do 95% of everything I ever want to do to an image in Lightroom.

You can download a full copy free from the Adobe website and try it out for a 30-day evaluation period.

5 Sep 2011 10:47AM
Elements with Premier Elements is a great package if you're interested in video editing. Student version of CS5 Extended cost me about £190 at student rate recently. Just starting out, I'd recommend CS5. Lightroom could come later, as Bridge is included with it. Some of my colleagues bought Lightroom and are well pleased with it, I've never needed it, Bridge does all I want.
Ewanneil 8 1.1k 2 Scotland
5 Sep 2011 10:58AM
Pete. You haven't told us what camera(s) you own or intend to buy. The reason I say this is that Lightroom 3 really comes into its own when dealing with raw images. Whilst you can work on JPEGs using LR3 you really only unlock its full potential when you import raw images.

It may be that your camera cannot shoot raw images or that you have chosen only to shoot JPEGs. If either is the case then I wouldn't go for LR3 at this stage. To me it would be a bit like buying an Aston Martin and only ever using it to nip down the street to buy a newspaper once a day. Don't get me wrong I absolutely love LR3 and when the time is right it should be at the top of your wish list.

In short, I would agree with Chris (Slowsong) and go with Elements 9 (or 10 if it has been released). You will be very pleasantly surprised by what it can do and the level of support available (on the internet and in magazines) is phenomenal.
SosFM 9 85 1 United Kingdom
5 Sep 2011 3:27PM
I believe the problem with the educational licences is that it expires or you are unable to update it after a while. I think if you are new to it all get PSE9 and buy Scott Kelbys book on how to use it. CS5 will just confuse you. I have just got LR3 and am thinking of using it in conjunction with LR3 because from what I have seen of it it will be all I need. Also from what I understand so far about LR3 (and I have only had it a week) there is no save/save as facility you have to export your image that you have worked on into another editing software to save it.
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
5 Sep 2011 3:32PM

Quote:I understand so far about LR3 (and I have only had it a week) there is no save/save as facility you have to export your image that you have worked on into another editing software to save it.

There's an "export/export with" facility which I don't use but I believe it does the same thing. (I could be wrong!)
As for CS5 being confusing, I'd say that, provided you've got some idea of how editing software works, it's a good deal easier to understand than Lightroom.

SlowSong Plus
9 7.4k 30 England
5 Sep 2011 3:41PM
Have you checked which software the course uses Pete? I bet they haven't forked out for full CS5. For learners I'd say it was far too sophisticated, but if you can get a good deal, and the lessons do use CS5, then you might as well get it. My money's still on Elements 9 (or 10) though. The college may even use earlier versions if they're strapped for cash.
User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
5 Sep 2011 3:53PM

Quote:Also from what I understand so far about LR3 (and I have only had it a week) there is no save/save as facility you have to export your image that you have worked on into another editing software to save it.

No, No, No....

The Export facility in Lightroom is totally self-contained. No other editing software required.

The reason it has no "Save as" is that it never alters your original file. That is one of the HUGE benefits. Once you have made all your adjustments, you use "Export" to save your file as a Jpeg, Tiff or whatever you want - but your original Raw file remains unaltered and you can create as many virtual copies of it as your want, treat them all differently, save (sorry - export) as many results as you want.

Incredible flexibility and , as a bonus, especially for a beginner, Lightroom is far more intuitive and easily mastered than Photoshop. But Chris's advice is good - check what the college use.
SosFM 9 85 1 United Kingdom
5 Sep 2011 5:48PM
LeftForum, I tried to private message you about your reply but your private messaging is switched off, i didnt want to clog the thread. I follow about exporting to CS5 or PSE for converting to jpgs or TIFFS and saving them but I dont understand what is the final action in LR3 when you have completed all your adjustments - how do you "finish"? if that makes sense.
By using "Export" as described earlier - that's the process of creating your output file. You select the photos you want to create a 'finished' file from and then export. The Export dialog gives you the various output option (file format, location for the output files etc etc)

Have you used the Lightroom 'Help'. It's very good and includes video instruction too.
Peter_West 6 248 United Kingdom
5 Sep 2011 6:56PM
Hi all, Now stop it your all cunfusing me lol, my camera is a Panosonic FZ100, not sure yet what the college are going to use, might have confused you all, i tend to do that with people, i am only doing a night school couse which last for 10 x 2 hour lesson's, but hopefully i will be able to use more of the settings, but really thanks all the advice much appreciated, and who knows one day I might be able to put one of my pics on here, instead of deleting them of my card. Pete

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