After an excruciatingly long wait, Adobe has finally announced plans for a Photoshop Elements 6 – yes, 6 – show at MacWorld. The new software is great enough in that it is finally a Universal Binary, which means it won’t be clogging Intel Systems up, like it’s predecessor, Photoshop Elements 4, does while running through Rosetta emulation. However, it also packs new features that will most likely only be useful to amateur users.
First off, a group merge feature, which lets you take the best positions and facial expressions from a series of similar shots and merge them together: perfect for fixing that great picture where only one person is blinking. There are also three new “modes” for editing, on of which is the Guided Edit mode, which will probably provide functionality similar to iPhoto. Unfortunately, the look and feel of the new Photoshop Elements is less than optimal. It does not fit into OS X at all, sporting it’s own attempt at Apple’s light grey GUI style, and using orange, green, and purple color highlights.
Best of all is Photoshop Elements 6’s price. At $90, it comes in only $10 more expensive than it’s more than 2-year-old, slow, and dated predecessor. And if you own that laggy predecessor, the upgrade pricing is only $70, something I personally will be taking advantage of.
Photoshop Elements is Adobe’s watered down version of Photoshop CS3. I haven’t found anything yet that Photoshop can do that Elements can’t, with the exception of masking.