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PSE versus PSP?

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  • PSE versus PSP?

    This is a question for Richard Lynch --

    In another thread you mentioned that you have provided support to people who are switching from Paint Shop Pro to Photoshop Elements (plus, of course, Hidden Powers!). I am interested in why people would do that.

    A little background -- I'm an enthusiastic user of Paint Shop Pro, now using the new version 8. I was under the impression that it had most of the capabilities of the full Photoshop, at least the ones that I would need for photo retouching and various excursions into photo art.

    I bought a new scanner, and it came bundled with Photoshop Elements 1.0. I installed it out of curiosity, then did some digging on the internet for PSE tutorials and other types of support. I came across the website, and then saw the book at a local store. I bought the book because I thought I could learn a great deal from it, much of which could be applied (I think) to PSP as well as to PSE. (I realize the tools work only with PSE.)

    So now I'm wondering why do people switch to PSE (or PS, for that matter) from PSP? What do they know that I don't?

    Thanks for a great book and many interesting threads on this forum!


  • #2
    Hi Pauline:

    Welcome to RetouchPRO.

    Just a heads up...

    Having a lot of irons in the fire with authoring, projects, travel, etc. sometimes Richard isn't able to monitor the forums on a daily basis.

    He always checks in. It may be tomorrow or the next day... or w/July 4 coming up, in a few days. It may be in 15 minutes. Just wanted to let you know so you didn't feel like you're being ignored.

    Richard's one of the good guys. He'll definitely reply when he can.



    • #3
      Danny, thanks for the kind words...I try but fail a lot...lots to do behind the scenes!


      I don't know exactly the context of the message, but there are several reasons for moving to Adobe products -- even if PSP is a good program. I haven't kept up on the cost of PSP, but that doesn't seem the biggest issue. PSP and Elements should be competetive.

      Photoshop is really the industry standard. If you are servious about the program and may have to use it professionally (design, web, photography, etc.), and you will be working for someone rather than freelancing, Photoshop or Elements can give you an advantage if you have experience with them. PSP, again, is not far off...but if you talk to someone in the interview that doesn't know it, you may be SOL.

      A huge reason is availability of information. Photoshop has over 600 titles listed on Amazon. Elements around 40, and PSP about 30. While there is some similarity there, I think you will see publishers opting to support the elements market more than the PSP market for several reasons: 1) Elements is cross platform -- if PSP has an achillies heel, this is it. No program that is supported only on PC will overtake Adobe because much of the art world is still on Mac. 2) Check out the rankings for the bestselling PSP books and the bestselling Elements books...there is no comparison. Adobe products will continue to be supported by publishers because they are more apt to make money. Beyond support from publishers, note the availability of tutorials and such for Photoshop vs. PSP. It is, as far as I am concerned, only a matter of time before Elements catches up. looking up answers quickly will be easier for Photoshop or Elements.

      There MAY be some behind-the-scenes reasons for switching, but I am not positive about those right now...suffice to say that Adobe has an extensive pre-release program to drive bugs from the system and gain support of users...JASC isn't slouching there, but remains behind. There are simply fewer PSP users. Adobe's willingness to compete by even making elements suggests they are taking PSP as a serious program and a serious threat...however, the competition by Elements may be enough to ward off any assault. That means the user base remains smaller and the $$ available for PSP research and development will necessarily pale compared to adobe. Long term, the advantage indevelopment is with Adobe. The probable numbercrunching and programming behind the scenes is likely with Adobe as well.

      There are yet other products that might creep into the market -- more likely to compete with PSP than Photoshop. Photoline32 for example is cross-platform and has advantages because of that. many products have been developed because of the digital camera revolution and one of those that gets good press and distribution at a low price could sneak in and steal a user-base. But this is all theory.

      Does that answer the question you were asking? Please let me know if there was something more specific you had in mind.


      • #4

        Thank you for the very thoughtful and informative reply.

        Regarding the much greater availability of both print and internet resources for Photoshop-family programs over PSP, I had already guessed that that factor might influence people's purchases. It's a compelling one, especially for those of us who like to engage in continuous learning, considering the commitment of time to learn these tools in depth.

        PSP seems to have a loyal fan base, to be sure, and Jasc obviously is committed to improving its products. But I take your point that the nearly complete domination of the professional market by Adobe has an important spin-off for us amateurs in the much greater availability of support resources. It makes comparisons of technical prowess between the two programs less significant.

        So it's suspicions confirmed -- thanks for you input!



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