updated 02:00 am EDT, Tue September 25, 2012
New interface, separate modes aim to please all levels of users
Adobe late Monday announced the new Photoshop Elements 11 and Premiere Elements 11, the company's consumer-level photo-editing and video-editing programs. The new versions have both been given makeovers in the user interface once again, with modes separated by skill levels (three in PS Elements, two in Premiere Elements) and new effects. The workflow has been re-thought to make the editing quicker and easier to use for both Mac and Windows users, and both include more sharing options than before, including Vimeo.
Photoshop Elements 11 offers Quick, Guided and Expert modes along with a range of new one-click options and a focus on bigger buttons to help users get to what they want to achieve quickly. In a strong nod to Apple's iPhoto, PS Elements now lets uses organize photos by events (time-based groupings), people or places (using Google maps for manual geo-tagging if the photo doesn't include the information). New templates for making photo keepsakes such as books and calendars have also been added.
Extraction engines have been improved to make separating parts of one photo to place in another much more accurate, even if the selected image contains hair or other difficult-to-trace elements. Illustration filters including Pen & Ink and Comic have been added, and the Guided Edits offers easy vignetting, tilt-shift and other common photo effects such as digital "depth of field." The new version also lets users share photos through email, Facebook, and slideshows through YouTube and Vimeo.
Premiere Elements 11 also revamps the user interface, borrowing elements but not copying the look of Photoshop Elements. The program both edits video and helps create playable DVDs, making it a candidate to replace the iDVD program Apple made for years but which it no longer includes on new Macs and has stopped updating. Users can add themes, transitions, effects and titles similar to the way iMovie does, but can also create disc menus, apply slow- and fast-motion effects and apply "FilmLooks" that simulate well known Hollywood styles. Sharing to Vimeo, a new organizer and a feature called "Smart Trim" that automatically removes bad footage have also been added to the new version.
The two programs are available now directly from Adobe as downloadable copies and will soon ship in mid-October retail outlets. A bundle containing both programs will sell for $150 while each individually will sell for $100. Upgrade pricing for previous users is $80, or for previous bundle buyers at $120. Training videos are available from Adobe's video website.