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Supermodel-fiddling tool Photoshop CS6 flinged in free beta

Hide those blemishes, play with video editing

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Adobe has lobbed out its latest refresh of Photoshop as a free download for Windows and Mac users. Photoshop CS6 beta will run for a limited time until the product launches in the summer.

It's not first time Adobe has released a major product as a free public download - Lightroom and a few previous versions of Photoshop have come out as public betas.

"We're really keen to get people's feedback on this," the Adobe spokeswoman told El Reg.

The beta of CS6 comes a month after the company posted a drop in quarterly profits from its products division, and six months after Adobe announced plans to lay off 750 employees. CS5.5 had lower take-up than expected, and Adobe attributed the disappointing sales figures to customers choosing to wait for CS6.

Photoshop CS6 has a new interface, boasts enhanced "content-aware" Patch capability for blending pixels to disappear blemishes, and what it describes as "blazingly fast performance" on key tools such as Liquify, Warp and (believe it or not) Crop, speeded up by a new Mercury Graphics engine in the software. New design tools enforce consistent formatting with type styles and there's medium video editing capabilities and a search option for layers.

Several features that will end up in Photoshop CS6's Extended version, but not Photoshop CS6 standard, have been packed into the beta version, including 3D image editing and quantitative image analysis capabilities.

You can grab it here. ®

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