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Adobe Photoshop 7.0 Launches

New bundles include OS X-native version By Dave Nagel
Adobe has now started shipping Photoshop 7.0, the latest release of the company's flagship image-editing application and the first to incorporate native Mac OS X support. In addition, Adobe has also announced new creative bundles that include Photoshop 7.

Adobe Photoshop 7.0 is the first version of Photoshop to support Mac OS X, the first to include AppleScript and JavaScript support and the first to incorporate a major overhaul of the application's paint engine. (You can read our coverage of the new paint engine here (part 1) and here (part 2).) The new engine also brings support for the tilt feature of Wacom's Intuos and Intuos2 tablets, while enhancing support for the ways in which pen pressure can affect a paint stroke.

But the new and enhanced creative tools don't end with brush strokes. The new version also adds a Pattern Maker and an enhanced "Liquify" tool, which adds zoom, pan and multiple undo capabilities.

In terms of new editing features, version 7 gets automatic color correction (which functions just like Auto Levels) and a new "Healing Brush," which is designed to help remove artifacts, such as dust, scratches, blemishes and wrinkles. Unlike the Clone Stamp Tool, the Healing Brush automatically preserves shading, lighting, texture and other attributes when cloning within one image or from one image to another. There's also a new Patch tool, which is similar to the healing brush but works with selections.

For workflow, the big news is support for AppleScript and JavaScript on the Macintosh and VB and JavaScript on Windows. The scripting plugin will be available as a download from Adobe's Web site.

The other major workflow enhancement is the new File Browser, which lets you search for images using thumbnails. It allows users to organize and retrieve images from hard drives, external drives, CDs and disks directly within Photoshop. It also provides metadata about the images displayed, such as date created, date modified and EXIF (Exchangeable Image File) information from digital cameras. It also allows for batch renaming, rotating, ranking and sorting images and manipulating image folders directly within the application.

Other new features include:

  • Enhanced output for the Web, including ZoomView technology from Viewpoint Corp. ZoomView supports high-resolution files for distribution online, and Photoshop 7 allows users to acquire a ZoomView license for free for non-commercial and limited commercial uses.
  • A spell checker that allows users to check the spelling of text and replace text in multiple languages in a single document and across multiple layers.
  • New Web galleries for outputting images for display on an HTML page, as well as automatic watermarking for security using the file name, copyright information or other parameters.
  • Ability to customize workspaces for individual users, including custom palette layouts.
  • Supports for XMP for repurposing, archiving and automating files in a workflow.

The new release also includes ImageReady 7.0, which incorporates several of its own new features as well. These include the ability to drive graphics with data and the ability to use dithered transparency in Web graphics.

Both programs are designed to integrate with Adobe's other creative applications, including After Effects, Premiere, GoLive, Illustrator and InDesign.

On the Mac side, Photoshop 7 requires Mac OS 9.1 or later or Mac OS X 10.1.3 running on any PowerPC processor. On the Windows side, it requires a Pentium III or better and Windows 98 or later, including XP. It adds enhanced support for multiple processors on both platforms. Adobe Photoshop 7.0 is available for all platforms for $609. Registered users of earlier versions of Photoshop can upgrade to version 7.0 for $149 (which is $50 less than the previous upgrade fee). Upgrades from Adobe Photoshop Elements and Photoshop LE are available for $499.

Adobe is also releasing new bundle collections that include Photoshop 7, including the Design Collection, Web Collection, Publishing Collection and Digital Video Collection. For more information, visit

Dave Nagel is the producer of Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; host of several World Wide User Groups, including Synthetik Studio Artist, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe LiveMotion, Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; and executive producer of the Digital Media Net family of publications. You can reach him at

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