The Adobe Storm Clouds Continue

If there’s one thing for certain, judging from all the comment on many online forums, it’s that the Adobe’s decision to move their software to a subscription-only model is a highly contentious issue. Some love it, others hate it. There doesn’t seem to be many fence sitters on this one. I’ve already expressed my opinion here.

If you find you’re vehemently opposed to the mandatory subscription-only model you may wish to add your name to this online petition and spread the word around. I’m not sure how much good it will do, or whether Adobe will even take note, but there are currently of 33,000+ names of disgruntled Adobe customers on the list. I for one would like to see a choice from Adobe. We can but try.

The move by Adobe however, is music to the ears of potential competitors who must be jumping for joy. Many (and that includes me) will be looking at alternatives to Photoshop from now on, so this has provided a massive opportunity for third party software developers. Adobe is going to leave a huge gap in the market that may cause many an amateur or hobbyist photographer to jump the Photoshop ship in the coming months. Already we are seeing a far more attention paid to potential comparable products, which just a few weeks ago may have struggled to gain such notoriety. One particular product rapidly gaining a good reputation is the recently released Pixelmator which reached a whopping 500,000 downloads in just a single week. This no doubt assisted by Adobe’s announcement and which lead to the following statement being issued from Pixelmator. Currently priced at  just $14.99 it sounds like a bargain, so definitely one App I shall be test driving. Unfortunately for Windows users it’s MAC only.

Storm Cloud Approaching From Adobe

Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe May Upset Hordes of Photoshop Users

If you are a serious photographer then there’s also a fair chance you are a user of Adobe Photoshop too. If you are then you maybe in for a shock, as on the 6th May 2013 Adobe announced that they no longer plan to sell retail versions of this software and all future editions will be available by cloud based subscriptions only.

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Nik Software Announce Silver Efex Pro 2

Software Release

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Yesterday Nik Software, the makers of several well known Photoshop plug-ins announced the impending release of version 2 of their highly popular black & white conversion software Silver Efex Pro. For those of you who don’t know Silver Efex Pro offers an All-In-One workflow to convert your RAW images to monochrome. The program can be run from Adobe Photoshop or accessed from within Apple Aperture or Adobe Lightroom RAW images processors. Not only does it provide superb B&W conversion, but offers a multitude of accurate film emulations, toning, grain, vignettes, burning and the ability to add local adjustments via Nik’s rather clever U-point patented technology.

Version 2 promises to be just as popular, and whilst improving on many current features with new improved algorithms, many new features have been added such as a History Browser, new Fine Structure, Soft Contrast, Dynamic Brightness, and Selective Colour, and it can now add Natural Image Borders. There’s also support for full 64-bit processing.

You can pre-order Version 2 from the Nik Software website which is currently offering a 10% discount. Version 2 is to be released on the 11th February, but if you purchase version 1 now your upgrade is free.

The full price is to remain at $199, which is pretty expensive for just a plug-in. However, if you’re looking for a one-stop quick monochrome conversion facility with realist film emulation and more, you be hard pressed to better Nik’s offering. The u-point local adjustments work very well, but the interface in version one was a tad clunky in parts. You can download a 15 day trial of version one from here. Lets hope the version 2 delivers the refinements Nik promises.

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