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Anyone using Photoshop CC?

I started off down the road of trying to perform focus stacking on macro images. Currently my editor is Photoshop Elements 15. It has a quasi "focus stacking" capability which in reality involves using various capabilities of Photomerge. Not a true stacking capability as Photoshop CC has built in. This led me to researching the capabilities of PS CC and what it would cost to get into it.

Adobe no longer sells one-time licenses for its pro products, but has gone to subscription based. The cheapest plan that gets you PS CC costs $10 a month. I can justify swinging that if there is enough about the program to make it worth the step up from Elements. It would actually not be a bad way to start considering the older versions of PS cost well into the multi-hundreds.

Just checking if anyone is using these new plans and what you like or dislike about them. Thanks in advance!
 

Esox

I didnt know
I use CS6 with the Google Nik tool and filter pack which is quite good, and a free add on.

I'm not sure which effects or tools you're looking for in particular, but I thought I'd make the suggestion all the same.
 
I use the CC plan in India. They call it "Photography essentials plan" and include lightroom, photoshop and one more software which I dont really use too much. It costs me the equivalent of $10 per month and I think its a bargain deal considering that you get to install on two machines as well as mobile versions on Android (for me). I have it installed on the Windows desktop as well as my laptop for on the go processing. Its a no stress commitment as the latest versions always flow to me and this way I can focus on photography and post processing without having to worry about the next latest greatest versions with new features.


Lightroom gets used 90% of the time for post processing along with the awesome Topaz plugins ( I have the suite of Topaz plugins). Photoshop comes in when I tend to do "destructive" editing rather than "Non-destructive" processing of Raw files from my Canon cameras. I have used stacking extensively and its a joy to use.
 
If the proposed plan includes Lightroom I would think it well worthwhile. Personally, I am not using PS at the moment as most of my work is analogue but Lightroom is a wonderful cataloguing tool.

My guess would be that 90% of Photoshop users make use of less than 10% of its capabilities- the more that you learn and explore, the more useful it becomes.
 
If the proposed plan includes Lightroom I would think it well worthwhile. Personally, I am not using PS at the moment as most of my work is analogue but Lightroom is a wonderful cataloguing tool.

My guess would be that 90% of Photoshop users make use of less than 10% of its capabilities- the more that you learn and explore, the more useful it becomes.
Yes it does. I think you're right on the mark with the ratio of people who unlock it's actual potential, including myself.
 
I use the CC plan in India. They call it "Photography essentials plan" and include lightroom, photoshop and one more software which I dont really use too much. It costs me the equivalent of $10 per month and I think its a bargain deal considering that you get to install on two machines as well as mobile versions on Android (for me). I have it installed on the Windows desktop as well as my laptop for on the go processing. Its a no stress commitment as the latest versions always flow to me and this way I can focus on photography and post processing without having to worry about the next latest greatest versions with new features.


Lightroom gets used 90% of the time for post processing along with the awesome Topaz plugins ( I have the suite of Topaz plugins). Photoshop comes in when I tend to do "destructive" editing rather than "Non-destructive" processing of Raw files from my Canon cameras. I have used stacking extensively and its a joy to use.
Yep, I think that's similar to the one I'm looking at. I believe this is a done deal. They make it too attractive an offer not to take advantage of. Great to hear and thanks!
 
I have considered "upgrading" and probably will before long. Last version I have is CS5, been a buyer for about 20 years. Great if you are an astro photographer, but there are some dedicated astro packages now that minimize the need for PS. I also do a lot of photography, but find myself using DXO and AcDsee Ultimate more than PS there too. I have Gimp on a Linux machine, all the capability of PS at no cost, Windows version is available.

But, PS is still my goto to solve problems, do graphics, and such.

The CC actually may be cheaper than what they used to do, seemed there was an upgrade about once a year for $150, and that was only for PS. If you also had Lightroom, or other CS products, the upgrades ran into serious $$$.
 

Esox

I didnt know
I've been using ACDSee since v3.1. I still have it installed on my machine and prefer it over v12 for what I use it for.

GIMP is a very good program and one I've used off and on.

I looked into focus stacking and focus bracketing for macro photography yesterday. I've never done any of that, but the most popular program seems to be this one: Helicon Focus - Helicon Soft

I installed and played with the 30 day free trial and it seems like a very good tool.
 
Well I reviewed the subscription requirements. If you cancel within 14 days you get fully refunded. If you cancel after 14 days they charge you 50% of the annual subscription fee (one year contract commitment). I opted for the $9.99 plan which gets billed at $10.61 a month after taxes.

After signing up and being congratulated, the next page informed me, "This PC does not have the necessary specifications to run Photoshop CC" or some such verbiage. I went ahead and canceled so I can ponder this some more. So I looked at their support page for PS CC requirements:

  • Intel® Core 2 or AMD Athlon® 64 processor; 2 GHz or faster processor
  • Microsoft Windows 7 with Service Pack 1, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10
  • 2 GB or more of RAM (8 GB recommended)
  • 2.6 GB or more of available hard-disk space for 32-bit installation; 3.1 GB or more of available hard-disk space for 64-bit installation; additional free space required during installation (cannot install on a volume that uses a case-sensitive file system)
  • 1024 x 768 display (1280x800 recommended) with 16-bit color and 512 MB or more of dedicated VRAM; 2 GB is recommended*
  • OpenGL 2.0-capable system
  • Internet connection and registration are necessary for required software activation, validation of subscriptions, and access to online services.
My computer (a Dell XPS 15 laptop) meets or exceeds all specification in processor, processor speed, OS version, RAM, available disk space, graphics resolution---but my graphics RAM falls short. I just checked and though I have 1696 Mb graphics memory, I only have 64 Mb of dedicated video memory.

So I guess for now my plan to try PS CC is on hold. I don't want to upgrade the hardware I'm on as long as this 8 year old laptop is still kicking, and just can't justify the economics of upgrading at this time when PSE 15 and Canon Digital Photo Professional are working very well. It would have just been cool to explore the options in PS CC.

Oh well...thanks everyone for your thoughts!
 
Small update...after updating my Nvidia graphics driver and setting it as global versus my Intel HD driver, I decided to download the 7 day trial of PS CC. So far it is running without any notifications that it "can't do something" as a result of PC specs.

So this will give me a few days to play around with it and decide. One thing I noticed right away is this program has a mind boggling tool set in the layout. Along the lines of what David said above, I'll be lucky if I grasp 10% of this in the next 7 days :w00t:
 
So I think I'm going to keep PS CC for a while. Other than the fact I'm bumbling around trying to figure out the interface and where once familiar (from PSE 15) tools are located, the first effort at focus stacking went extremely well. PS CC did a brilliant job of aligning 4 differently focused images.

These four shots were all taken with a Canon 100mm f2.8 macro as full res .jpg (26 mp):



This is the stacked image:



Being that I'm fairly well addicted to macro, this sort of capability will be extremely handy for certain images. I have 6 days remaining in the trial but I haven't seen anything that would make not want to try it for at least a year!
 
Thats a Google pic but it is impressive yeah. I dont have the equipment for that sort of photography. Thats a picture thats been put through the Helicon Focus program.
Indeed very impressive shot.

Depth of focus has always been issue with macro shots. Between digital cameras that permit rapid, LCD window based composition and control and amazing tools like PS, today's photographer has never had it better :thumbup:
 
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