Hello and welcome to the first episode of the Adobe Creative Suite 6 review sessions. On April 23rd 2012, Adobe made the big announcement of the upcoming CS6 upgrade. It’s been close to 4 months since then. While designers and tonnes of other user waited impatiently to get their hands on the new upgrade, many wondered what was the new upgrade and was it worth the buck ? I have migrated from CS5.5 to CS6 and I have one word for you – REMARKABLE. Adobe has really packed a punch in CS6. With some major upgrades and new tools, Adobe has rolled out a fleet of digital tools that push the creative boundary even further within the digital and print loop.So the big question is should I move to CS6 ? Is the upgrade worth the price ? This is what the review session is aimed at. Episode by episode we will dive in deeper into a few selected softwares from the Adobe Creative Suite Master collection 6. We will run through everything good and bad about the CS6 softwares. Most importantly, anyone can follow these reviews. It’s not from a testing or technical point of view, rather from a user point of view. So buckle up and dig in.
What will you find in Episode one ?
- What CS6 has to offer compared to CS5 – Same tools new look ?
- What are the technical requirements for CS6 – Should I worry ?
- Cost and new softwares in CS6 – Value for money ?
- Visual aspects of CS6 – Eh, why does CS6 look so different ?
This episode we run through the look and feel of CS6 leaving aside deep and major upgrades in tools and features. We analyze the new branding and visual appeal that Adobe has put into CS6. Along with that from the next episode we will start reviewing new features in Adobe’s Photoshop CS6 and Illustrator CS6. So tune in and don’t miss on any.
1. What CS6 has to offer compared to CS5
As compared to CS5, Adobe CS6 Creative Suite Master Collection consist of 11 updated softwares and 2 new softwares. Most of the previous softwares have undergone some major changes, while a couple have had minor tweaks. We will also look into 2 new softwares that Adobe has bundled into the Creative Suite Master Collection CS6.
Softwares included in CS6 Master Collection :
- Photoshop CS6 Extended (Updated)
- Illustrator CS6 (Updated)
- InDesign CS6 (Updated)
- Acrobat X Pro
- Flash Professional CS6 (Updated)
- Flash Builder 4.6 Premium Edition
- Dreamweaver CS6 (Updated)
- Fireworks CS6 (Updated)
- Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 (Updated)
- After Effects CS6 (Updated)
- Adobe Audition CS6 (Updated)
- SpeedGrade CS6 (New)
- Prelude CS6 (New)
- Encore CS6
- Bridge CS6
- Media Encoder CS6
Here is a preview of the softwares included in the Creative Suite collection
So what the CS6 offers is 11 major updates and 2 brand new softwares – Speed Grade CS6 and Prelude CS6. To understand more of the CS6 upgrade checkout product page.
2. What are the technical requirements for CS6
A major question on everyone’s mind. Will the new upgrade survive on my existing system conifg and specs ? Well surprisingly the new CS6 does demand for a more advanced and strong configuration, but works relatively fine with the old chaps too. To get a complete list of the technical specification required checkout the adobe product tech spec page.
What’s my opinion on the system requirement for CS6. Don’t worry too much. If you are working on Windows, your major concern should be your RAM, Disk Space and Processor. Okay you can worry a little bit.
- Processor : 64 Bit Required but 32 Bit also works. Pentium4 or AMD Athlon 64 processor with 64-bit support and Intel Core 2 Duo or AMD Phenom II processor required for Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Encore; Core i7 processor required for Adobe SpeedGrade CS6. In simple words, it works best with a 64 bit processor. 32 bit guys, don’t feel bad.
- RAM: CS6 requires 8GB RAM to truly enjoy its full potential. However, you don’t need to break your piggy bank to change that RAM. 32 bit guys, it works fair enough with a 2 GB RAM. However Adobe suggest a 4 GB RAM for 32 bit. For the hip 64 bit guys, 4 GB RAM is ok, but a 8GB RAM is awesome.
- Disk Space: So how much disk space do you need ? To quote adobe – “14.5GB of available hard-disk space for installation; additional free space required during installation (cannot install on removable flash storage devices). Additional disk space required for disk cache, preview files, and other working files (10GB recommended).” Yes the installation does take a lot of time, but its worth the wait.
I am currently running the Adobe Creative Suite Master Collection CS6 on my laptop which has an i3 Processor and 4 GB worth of RAM along with 500 GB disk Space. Works perfect and smoothly.
3. Cost and new softwares in CS6
So how does the new CS6 Master Collection cost ? The all new CS6 comes in at a whooping Rs. 1,76,436 for a complete fresh set. Where as upgrading will cost you Rs.35,665 So go ahead try out the new CS6 softwares for a free 30 day trial or purchase it at – Adobe Store For student discounts look at – Purchase . Also note worthy is that the Adobe Creative Suite 6 Master collection integrates with creative cloud services and the digital publishing suite. Moving on lets look at what CS6 had to offer in terms of completely new.
- SpeedGrade CS6 : I had no clue what SpeedGrade was until I read this and played around with it for a while. To put it in simple terms, what Speed Grade basically does is – Provides powerful color grading capabilities in order to render high quality output for any device. It’s a little hard to really explain how complex and sophisticated it really is. To get a better understanding download the trial and checkout this feature guide – View Honestly this is something for only the big boys as of now. It’s pretty complex to get around with. But it has some really cutting edge features and enhancements that take it to a whole new level. It however has a tight requirement as compared to the other softwares :
- Intel Core i7 processor with 64-bit support
- Microsoft Windows 7 with Service Pack 1 (64 bit)
- 4GB of RAM (8GB recommended)
- 1GB of available hard-disk space for installation
Prelude CS6: Another software I had no clue about. To be honest I really haven’t had the time to dig into Prelude as of yet, however the basic use of it is to streamline your production task. For those impatient to find out more, jump over to the feature page. Maybe in a couple of future episodes I may just do a small review on it, after using it myself. Its basic requirements are :
- Intel Core2 Duo or AMD Phenom II processor
- Microsoft Window XP Professional with Service Pack 3 or Windows 7 with Service Pack 1
- 4GB of RAM (8GB recommended)
4. Visual aspects of CS6
To begin with Adobe has given most of the softwares a major change in appearance not only in terms of new UI elements and buttons, but also a new set of interface backgrounds, splash screen and icon sets. Hell of a lot of visual changes !
To begin with Adobe has whipped a brand new set of icons for the CS6 softwares. I you look closely each software icon color is derived from the color wheel and slotted into specific locations. Adobe clearly wanted to build a set of icons that stood out on a desktop with any kind of background or wall paper. Personally I love the new icon colors. They make the desktop look more vibrant.
<image credit : View>
Not many pay attention or bother about the splash screen. But I do. I really love how Adobe puts in so much effort in designing their crazy splash screens. For those who yet have no idea what I’m talking about. I am referring to the small box that appears when you open an Adobe software. Yes, that is called a Splash screen. Now Adobe has gone to great lengths with the design of the CS6 splash screens. I do like them but I think they over did it. Personally I loved the CS3 Box and CS5 Geometric splash screens. The new CS6 splash screens are a little to abstract for me. Here is a small preview of what the CS6 splash screens look like :
Adobe puts in a lot of effort into branding their products. To understand the full nature of their branding process, check out this interesting article on the Adobe Blog. On similar lines, Adobe has put in a lot of design and new changes in the looks of individual softwares. Right from mouse pointers to tools in the workspace, Adobe has gone a great length to give the CS6 collection a new look. As we review the individual softwares, we will have a quick glance at what these softwares have to offer in terms of visual and interface changes.
So that’ about it with Episode 1. We have had a quick over view of what the new CS6 has to offer and how far has Adobe gone to brand the new softwares. We have also had a quick overview of tech specs and the 2 new additions to the Master Collection. Since this is the first episode I have kept it simple and brief. From Episode 2 we dive into individual softwares and see whats awesome and whats not so awesome. Do remember to tune into the next episode of the Creative Suite Review Sessions. Also feel free to drop any feedback, suggestion via a comment below.
You can also download this episode :
There is going to be a little break between this episode and the next set of episodes that follow in September. Do go through the upcoming schedule below and tune in for an interesting session with loads of resources to help you get started with CS6.
Episode 2 : 5 September 2012
- 1. Whats new in Adobe Photoshop CS6 Part -1
- 2. Whats new in Adobe Illustrator CS6 Part-1
Episode 3: 25 September 2012
- 1. Whats new in Adobe Photoshop CS6 Part -2
- 2. Whats new in Adobe Illustrator CS6 Part-2