Tuesday’s Creative Suite 3 Launch party in New York really impressed me. No, it wasn’t the screwdrivers that they were serving that won me over, it was actually the presentations. While the speakers didn’t delve in to all of the new features, they did present samples of some of the kick ass new functions that CS3 brings to the plate. It’s funny how most of these new features are things that I never would have thought up on my own, but now that I’ve seen them in action, I can’t wait to use them. Also, aside from these new features, over all integration between the different software programs has been greatly improved.
Anyway, here are some of the new features that stood out for me:
• You can now export a DVD menu created in Encore to a Flash file which can be interacted with on the web. That is enough to make me want to move to Encore for all of my DVD creation needs.• If you are working on an After Effects project, you can bring that file right in to Premiere without having to render it out first.• The new Puppet Tool in After Effects allows you to stretch and manipulate a static image to create a surprisingly natural animation.• You can bring Photoshop PSD files directly in to Dreamweaver and even choose between layers.• Dreamweaver now supports AJAX, and there is improved CSS support as well.• The new Live Color feature in Illustrator allows you save color schemes which can be automatically applied to projects.• The new eraser tool in Illustrator not only erases objects, but leaves behind anchor points to make your life easier.• And finally, animating Illustrator files in Flash is now a lot easier.
So does all of this mean that I’m an Adobe fan girl now? Almost. They had me until I saw the pricing - the prices on the new suites are pretty overwhelming. However, Adobe feels that the inexpensive Elements versions of Photoshop and Premiere will be adequate enough for consumers. I don’t know if I agree. While I understand that software like After Effects and Premiere probably come with high price tags because they are mostly used by production companies with large budgets, other software like Photoshop and Dreamweaver are used by everyone from big budget studios to home users, and $649 for the full version of Photoshop feels like too much for something so widely used. Still, I can’t wait to upgrade -which means I better start saving. Thank goodness for educational pricing, it makes you want to go back to school just for the discounts alone.
For those of you who want to see some of the new features in action, CNET has a video worth checking out which showcases some of the stuff I mentioned above.