First Look: Inside Photoshop CS3

First Look: Inside Photoshop CS3

Filters with Brains

 

One of Photoshop CS3's show-stopping new features is also the one that will most directly impact daily production and creative chores. The new Smart Filter implementation addresses one of the longest-standing requests of Photoshop users over the years: the ability to use filters nondestructively, leaving the underlying pixels of an image unaffected by experimentation. Anyone who has used Adjustment Layers in the last few versions of Photoshop is likely familiar with the flexibility of applying color corrections that can be changed at any time without subjecting the pixels to the major stress of reprocessing the color values over and over. The Smart Filters feature extends this notion to the Filter menu, with the notable exceptions of the Liquefy, Extract, Pattern Maker, and Vanishing Point commands (which have never really been treated as standard Photoshop filters in the traditional sense).

 

Get smart. Smart Filters work on a specific selected layer, unlike Adjustment Layers, which apply their color-correction setting to all underlying layers. The layer must first be converted to a Smart Object (a feature introduced in Photoshop CS2), allowing layers to be scaled, rotated, and stretched in a nondestructive fashion. Once you convert the layer, applying a specific filter creates a new entry in the Layers palette. Underneath the processed layer, a white box (representing the layer mask for the filter operations) appears, and the applied filter appears immediately below. You can stack the filters up, and even reorder them by clicking and dragging them to new positions in the stack. A button lets you toggle the filter effect on and off, and an editing button to the right brings up the dialog for that filter when you double-click it. Filter settings can be modified at any time, as long as the image is saved as a Photoshop file.

 

The order of filters in the stack is important - the processing happens bottom to top, with the topmost filter being the last to affect the image. For example, if you plan on sharpening a layer with Unsharp Mask, it should be placed at the top of the filter stack, and always on top of any Blur filter. The area of the layer that is affected by the filters can be controlled via a layer mask, which is displayed in the white box to the left of the Smart Filters label.

 

Five different filters have been applied nondestructively to this image, using Smart Filters.

 

Next: Filters with Brains (continued)

 

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Motorcycle Guy

Good thing it isn't made by apple or you would already be taking these pictures down.

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Wi-Fi

In my opinion, Apple TV should support for more video formats (for which we do not need any helps from video converter) and include personal video recording functions also.

http://www.apple-tv-converter.com

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bilogic

I agree with both camp on the subject of breaking pages. May be a extra option to chose between long or short pages would please both sides..

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rmyslewski

The main reason that we run multi-page articles when the pages are image-heavy is to ease the page-load times for those poor folks who are not yet on broadband. We purposely use fairly large images to make sure that our articles are well-illustrated, but we don't want to strangle slow dial-up connections. Hey, if you're on broadband, what's a few extra insta-clicks between friends..?

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climbonrock

If I am on a slow connection I would rather wait for 2-3 long page loads than 15 medium-long page loads. It is much less frustrating to wait 2 minutes 2-3 times than to wait 30 seconds, read, click, wait 30, read, click, wait 30, click.....you get my point.

just my opinion. great preview!
climbonrock

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Anonymous

it's not about giving you the best reading/user experience. This is about ads paying the bills. It's not about quick loading times either. There's a business side to all this creativity as well. Revenue. You wankers, stop wining about the ads between the free review or go somewhere else where you can pay to get the same information without the advertisement interruptions. To all others - keep up the creative work in this hard business world ;-) Cheers. M.

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Anonymous

Seriously? If you really cared about dial-up users as your excuse for short annoying pages, then would you really have all those ads.. those ads are probably 3 - 4 times as large as your article pages..

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Realist

Hey, anonymous, get real. If there are no ads, there would be no web site -- and then where would you complain?

In any case, back to the main reason for these comments: The really good Photoshop story. Does anyone know when we'll be able to get our hands on the final version? What it'll cost? If we can just buy Photoshop without having to buy everything else?

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S. Mahrer

Yes, you can buy Photoshop as an individual package! The upgrade from earlier versions is around $200. It's supposed to be available in April.

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Jack B Nimble

Brekaing up an article over 15 pages was really annoying, especially since they were short pages. It would have been nice to have 2 or 3 pages.

Good review though. It will be nice to see what else CS3 has in store.

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Jim Stone

David, your peek under the hood is well-timed and VERY appreciated! Test-driving the CS3 beta didn't really get me going, but now I am actually excited about upgrading. Can you do a follow-up on Illustrator, please?

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Carl Hudson

Wow. Thank you for a well written article with a lot of coverage of what's new in Photoshop CS3. Adobe (& the old macromedia ppl) have been very busy making this a significant upgrade. I personally am looking forward to seeing how much of this translates into the new Adobe Dreamweaver CS3. C'mon Adobe, make your announcements! :)

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MediaRoots

Looks like you covered pretty much everything! Good job, not covered the stuff about photoshop extended though, go video!

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eri

re "C'mon Adobe, make your announcements!"
well they have, sorta. CS3 announcements were made on the 22nd March but it was in a whisper room at webDU. Sorry, can't share they made everyone in a jam packed room sign NDAs. Think the official announcements are due tomorrow.

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