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The Photoshop CS3 beta is quite different from the Photoshop Lightroom beta, according to John Nack, Senior Product Manager for Adobe Photoshop. Adobe's effort here is to provide customers with a smooth transition to the new Mac and Windows platforms and not to significantly alter the feature set through open community feedback. While feedback is encouraged and useful to the team, the ability to make significant changes to the shipping version of Photoshop CS3 will be limited, he says.
"Adobe has never taken a major product and made it available in this way," Nack says. "It's a water shed event, but we want to show dedication to the Mac platform. Adobe has a long-standing commitment to the Mac community and this release is Adobeâ€™s way of delivering native performance to our Mac customers many months earlier than we otherwise could have done," Nack says. "Over the years, Photoshop has consistently done right by Mac customers, offering a free PowerPCÂ¨ update for Photoshop 2.5 and a free G5 update for PS 7, even though new versions were right around the corner. Making the Photoshop CS3 Beta available to all of our Mac-based Photoshop CS2 users is a further proof of our commitment to the platform. Since a large portion of our customer base is on Windows, Adobe is simultaneously releasing a Windows version of the Photoshop CS3 beta to Windows XP and Vista users."
The Photoshop CS3 beta is available in English only but to Photoshop CS2 users worldwide. It's available to licensed users of either the Photoshop CS2 (full, upgrade, and education), Adobe Creative Suite 2.x Standard or Premium (full, upgrade, and education), Adobe Production Studio Standard and Premium (full, upgrade, and education), Adobe Video Bundle (full, upgrade, and education) or Adobe Web Bundle (full, upgrade, and education). You'll need to provide your Photoshop CS2, Creative Suite, Production Studio or Bundle serial number in order to get a Photoshop CS3 beta serial number, enabling you to activate the Photoshop beta and use it beyond the two-day grace period.
The minimum Mac system requirements are: a PowerPC G4 or G5 or Intel-based Mac; Mac OS X 10.4.8; 320MB of RAM (512MB is recommended); 512 minimum of RAM if you are running Adobe Bridge as well; 64MB of video RAM; 1.5GB of available hard-disk space; an 1024 x 768 monitor resolution with 16-bit video card; DVD-ROM drive; Internet or phone connection for product activation; and QuickTime 7 software for multimedia features.
The beta includes such new features as Non-destructive Smart Filters, a Quick Selection tool, Refine Edge, Automatic layer alignment and blending, Vanishing Point with multiple, adjustable angle perspective planes and Black and White conversion. Since it's a beta, Adobe won't be providing any technical support for the Photoshop CS3 beta. If you would like to exchange ideas with other customers using the beta, go to the [url=http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/photoshopcs3/]Adobe Labs page[/url] for links, including the Photoshop CS3 beta forum, and [url=http://blogs.adobe.com/jnack/]John Nackâ€™s blog[/url]. If you have a question or want more information about mobile authoring in Photoshop software, visit [url= http://www.flashdevices.net/mobileauthoring/]Bill Perryâ€™s blog[/url]. Perry is manager of Adobeâ€™s developer relations for mobile and devices. If you have questions about Adobe Bridge, go to the [url=http://blogs.adobe.com/bridge/]Bridge teamâ€™s blog[/url]. If you find a bug in the Photoshop CS3 beta, please file a bug report via the form on [url=http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/photoshopcs3/]Adobe Labs[/url].
Adobe doesn't plan any additional beta releases for Photoshop CS3 before the finished product is announced and ships. The CS3 beta will expire soon after the launch of Photoshop CS3 in spring 2007. Sorry, but there are no discount planned for Photoshop CS3 Beta users.