Adobe Illustrator CS3

Adobe Illustrator CS3

Wonder what your graphic would look like in metallic colors? Illustrator CS3 knows.

 

Graphic artists who rely on Adobe Illustrator for their daily bread will be pleased with Illustrator CS3 (also known as version 13.0.0), which adds numerous small features throughout the application and a few whiz-bang winners. As with other members of the CS3 family, Illustrator also changes the appearance of palettes, now called "panels," in ways that are sure to be controversial. But overall, it's an excellent update to the last professional vector-based drawing application left standing.

 

Illustrator is aimed primarily at working graphics-arts professionals and has never been terribly friendly to new users. Even after you learn how to control Bézier curves, Illustrator's dizzying jargon and panoply of options can send a neophyte running from the room - or at least toward a simpler drawing application, such as Lineform or Intaglio. However, several improvements ease the way: Document setup is simplified in a templatelike system, Internet-based instructional videos are a couple of clicks away (by way of Adobe Bridge), and hints from online experts appear in a floating palette - er, we mean panel. Selecting anchor points in complex documents used to require a microscope and the dexterity of a surgeon. Now they light up when you mouse over them - or not, if you change that setting in the new Selection and Anchor Display preferences. Also new is an Eraser tool borrowed from Photoshop and Flash, giving bitmaplike control over your vector graphics. Finally, some frequently used features have been brought to the fore, such as the Select Similar Objects tool in the Control panel, which was formerly just called Same and hidden under the Select menu.

 

Illustrator's changes go beyond usability, and the most eye-catching new feature is Live Color. In the Live Color window, all the colors used in a document are charted on a color wheel. You can alter each color individually, or (here's the amazing part) move them all at once in a way that maintains their harmonic relationship to one another. In either case, Illustrator updates your artwork while you muck around, giving you new, kaleidoscopic views of your creation. The end result is color combinations that automatically make sense and look good, even after radical changes. For those with poor color sense, Live Color can also suggest color-theory-based configurations and provides color-wheel models ranging from the straightforward (Bright) to the whimsical (Ice Cream).

 

Illustrator also has important changes in how it interacts with other applications in Creative Suite 3 - the most notable being its interaction with Flash, which Adobe acquired when it bought Macromedia in 2005. In truth, many of these improvements - such as the ability to reliably preserve gradients, Symbol properties, and characteristics of interactive text - would be considered bug fixes if the two apps had a common lineage. But they don't, and so getting them to work together so well in CS3 represents an impressive feat of engineering.

 

Now for the controversy. The new Illustrator has minimized the size of all the palettes - d'oh, we mean panels - and stuck them in a dock to reveal significantly more of the artboard. That's good. And enhancements to the Control panel (formerly the Control Bar) further clear the way. But these panels and their controls seem to be getting smaller and smaller with every new release, presenting difficulties for the new or vision-impaired user. Fortunately, you can save multiple workspaces once you've figured out what's best for you, and the old-school CS2 workspace is one of the preprogrammed choices.

 

The bottom line. In a sense, Adobe shot itself in the foot by producing such good recent versions of Illustrator: Most users won't have a pressing need to upgrade unless they design for mobile devices or use Flash. But nearly everyone will enjoy Live Color, the improved interface, and numerous other small improvements that make Illustrator CS3 a skilled performer.

 

COMPANY: Adobe
CONTACT: www.adobe.com
PRICE: $599 à la carte, $199 upgrade, available in five CS3 bundles ($1,199 to $2,499)
REQUIREMENTS: G4 or faster or Intel processor, Mac OS 10.4.8 or later, 512MB RAM, 2.5GB disk space
Color exploration easy with Live Color. Usability improvements. Flash integration greatly improved. Universal binary.
Interface can be overwhelming and obscure.

 

 

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It provides an information on Employment that would be considered bug fixes if the two apps had a common lineage. But they don't, and so getting them to work together so well in CS3 represents an impressive feat of engineering.

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It has been consensus among quite a few computer drawing artists for awhile that Illustrator is only superior to competitors because Adobe pretty much killed them all. Freehand had a much better UI Sohbet Chat Sohbet (strangely Illustrator's described as merely overwhelming and obscure without preventing it from being awesome) and most of the same functionality, but died a death of neglect started by Macromedia and hastened by Adobe.

The short story is that most computer 2D artists have been hoping for a better UI and product than Illustrator for years, but no competitor managed to survive. This does not make Illustrator an awesome product, just a very good one with no competition and the review should reflect this.

I'm sure Illustrator work well enough for those who have gotten used to its general horribleness UI-wise, but its horribleness should reflect in its rating.

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It is the best vector drawing program for sure , it may burn the hands as usual as other adobe products ;) ...

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Upgrading to Adobe Illustrator CS3 is a no-brainer for longtime Illustrator users. I was hoping that some of the older tools would get some tweaks—especially the 3-D tools and the color picker, and I’d love to see the ability to create multiple-page documents. But the Live Color feature alone is worth the price of admission, and the interface improvements and better performance will make all users very happy.

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No doubts.. Adobe Illustrator CS3 is simply the best vector drawing program on the market.

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Flo

The new Illustrator has minimized the size of all the palettes - d'oh, we mean panels - and stuck them in a dock to reveal significantly more of the artboard. That's good.

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Travis Ulrich

This review seems to complain (or maybe forewarn is a better word) about the new panels found in some CS3 apps and doesn't mention that you are able to use the old view you are used to in previous versions. While I use the tab-like panels in Photoshop, my interface looks almost exactly as it did in Illustrator 10.

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"Fortunately, you can save multiple workspaces once you've figured out what's best for you, and the old-school CS2 workspace is one of the preprogrammed choices."

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Anonymous

Sorry to burst your ignorance bubble but, Freehand STILL kicks the crap out of Illustrator AND indesign and it hasn't been upgrade for years.

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lessmind

Definitely, Adobe has done some phenomenol upgradations on the new Illustrator CS3 version, if we look back & compare it with the previous Illustrator versions that were good in performance but were lacking in the quality of User Interface. Although, Adobe Illustrator is a wonderful tool for handling vector graphics & a major part of the Illustrator's goodwill is because of it being an Adobe's product. But somewhere i feel that the Freehand tool can do much better than Illustrator if it is managed in a proper way.I mean if the open source devoloper community takes charge of enhancing this great tool, like the way they have done & still doing with the popular Mozilla Firefox Browser, then certainly the Freehand tool can outshine the Adobe Illustrator CS3 (& all its upcoming versions:D).

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Maclectic

It has been consensus among quite a few computer drawing artists for awhile that Illustrator is only superior to competitors because Adobe pretty much killed them all. Freehand had a much better UI (strangely Illustrator's described as merely overwhelming and obscure without preventing it from being awesome) and most of the same functionality, but died a death of neglect started by Macromedia and hastened by Adobe.

The short story is that most computer 2D artists have been hoping for a better UI and product than Illustrator for years, but no competitor managed to survive. This does not make Illustrator an awesome product, just a very good one with no competition and the review should reflect this.

I'm sure Illustrator work well enough for those who have gotten used to its general horribleness UI-wise, but its horribleness should reflect in its rating.

- Maclectic

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vijaysbhagat

You forgot the biggest thing of all. The PERFORMANCE is drastically improved. Screen redraw and overall responsiveness are vastly superior to recent offerings. That alone was worth the upgrade price.dating relationship In fact, if they wouldn't have improved this, we weren't going to upgrade at my studio no matter what the new features were. Adobe should be commended for finally addressing this issue.

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Zandt K

I would recommend the upgrade because there are a lot of little fixes/ enhancements that really help usability. It just feels better and works easier. Hope this helps, and I go back to Illustrator 88.

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JG

You forgot the biggest thing of all. The PERFORMANCE is drastically improved. Screen redraw and overall responsiveness are vastly superior to recent offerings. That alone was worth the upgrade price.

In fact, if they wouldn't have improved this, we weren't going to upgrade at my studio no matter what the new features were. Adobe should be commended for finally addressing this issue.

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knight1

It just feels better and works easier. Hope this helps and I go back to Illustrator 88.--------knight online

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