Need advice: Which Photoshop version should I get?

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bj nick

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So... I need some guidance. I want to get back into photography, an old passion of mine, and one thing I want to do right away is start by mastering Photoshop basics. My primary focus will be on optimizing photos I take, though I'm sure what I learn will also wind up being applied to other areas. But the focus is images. I don't need a huge, expensive suite....I just want Photoshop.....I have also been advised not to just get Elements; to bite the bullet and get the full program. Any advice/guidance on this much appreciated.
 
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bj nick

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Just to add.....I also would like advice on the best book to get to learn PS. I've been told that "PS Classroom in a book" is "the best." But that in order to use it properly through accessing the tutorials, etc, I need to have a unique code, which a used copy will not provide. I understand that it is extremely comprehensive, including movie editing, etc. I really want to focus on images, and not waste time on a ton of stuff I won't need. I work best in a really linear way, going through a book methodically.Thoughts?
 
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Noyb

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Why Not Photoshop Elements ?
Why Not just YouTube tutorials ?

Photoshop Elements has ~~99% of the image editing tools of the CC $10/mth version...
And you own it.
It is missing some Web tools and Animation.

I'm using Photoshop CS5 and see no reason to (upgrade)
For Movie editing, I use Premier Elements.
There is a problem with Premier Elements 2018 and a Sony camera if you're not using W10
Try the free trial first.

It's about time for an upgrade, there maybe some good sale prices on Elements now.
 

bj nick

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Thank you for this. Just so I understand: If I devote months of time to learn Elements well, it all transfers over to full-on PS?
 

Noyb

Jay
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All the procedures/tools are the same ....
But the tools (menus) are relocated/renamed.
A permanent change over will be irritating - but once you know how Adobe thinks,
it'll only slow you down a little to start with.

For anything Important that I may want to rework, I keep my original Photoshop psd files.
At least, If you don't want to pay rental all your life, you will still have software that works and won't loose all you Photoshop work.

It's my impression that Adobe can't add any new tool that makes me want to pay big bucks for
So to make money, they must rent it. (same as forcing me to pay for upgrades)

It all depends on how far into Image editing you will eventually go and how many years it takes you to get there.

Some of these Photoshop Gurus are way over my head but mostly anything they do could be done in Elements.

For my Video Editing, Premier Elements does what I need and I don't need to pay monthly for the full on CC Premiere.
 
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Noyb

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Just checked .... looks like the sale prices are on ...
September is usually the time for an update.
But What is your operating system ?
What image viewer/editor are you using now ?
 

bj nick

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Hi, thanks again for this guidance. Yes, I noticed that I can get elements some places for $59 and that's pretty darn reasonable. As far as what I use now, I'm embarrassed to post it in public. I use MGI photosuite which was brand new in like 1998! But the thing is, for the last 20 years or so, I have done nothing besides crop, resize, enhance, Etc. I am ready to put in the time and learn how to do genuine photo editing and I really look forward to it.
 

bj nick

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After reading your advice, I did some researching on my own, and what I get is that for virtually all needs not at the highest professional level, elements would be just fine. I am not going to be a professional, though I would like to create professional level work. I can't see elements holding me back, and if 5 years from now it does, it's a simple matter to go and get Photoshop. I believe what I need to do right now is put in the time to learn the techniques and understand what goes into photo editing.
 

Noyb

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That's what I'm thinking also.

And I'd suggest learning the free Irfanview for all you basic viewing and editing work.
I have it set up as my system default viewer and basic editor.
I use it to run my scanner, grab screen shots, view/convert photoshop images, all printing work and most batch processing.
When viewing an image, you can tell Irfanview to switch to Photoshop.
Windows is not smart enough to view or work with a psd file ... Irfanview is.

If you're not scared to edit the Irfanview registry ....
You can customize the R click context menu for all images.
I can select many photos and with one right click - one left click, open them all in Photoshop.

Also, in the ole days, when adobe had a new tool worth shouting about ...
(paying money for) (like Content Aware) .. It showed up in Elements first.
 

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bj nick

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I have two basic needs: to work with some of the hundreds of images I've taken over the years that I have on my hard drive, and 2) the most important one--I want to create beautiful landscape and nature photography, and optimize my very best images and frame them to put on my wall. That's what I want to do.
 

Noyb

Jay
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Irfanview to replace MGI >> and PS Elements.
Gives you the simplest/fastest basic >> and the best .. (they both cover the middle)
Much support here at TSG for both.
I'd suggest to avoid the Organizer
 

bj nick

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Thank you for your response. I did read up on Lightroom and it seems that my needs are best met in elements or photoshop. It seemed to me from my reading that Lightoom is 100% appropriate for professionals who are working with a lot of images and need to produce professional work. That's not really my focus. I will mainly be working with an image at a time, not processing hundreds of wedding images. (That was one of the specific examples given.)
 

Noyb

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FWIW ...
A few years ago, My wife found a coupon for a professional family photoshoot.
Here I set with some good cameras and Photoshop, but I knew better to say anything ..
Just go along :D

It was interesting to watch them work. The photographer quickly ran thru the photos adjusting the levels Automatically, Then proceeded to try to sell us the $500 package over our $50 coupon.

She ran thru the batch of Photos letting us select the ones we wanted and adjusting to the photo size she was suggesting we purchase.

After it was over … I asked her which version of PS Elements was that … The version she mentioned was several versions old.

I think the software she was using to display, size and sell the package was something like Lightroom.
It doesn't work :D :D ... We left with the $50 coupon package :D
 
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Johnny b

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My two cents as only an amateur that edits digital images for a monitor screen, not for print on photography paper.
Irfanview works well .
Have used older Paintshop Pro 7 to edit/repair old and aged family photos into digital images with good results.

I have Photoshop CS2 suite from when Adobe distributed it free, but have never bothered to use it.

Basically, imo, it just depends what satisfies your 'wants' and 'needs'.
And you need to consider free and cheaper solutions to see if they satisfy or not.
Some might, some wont.
 
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