Adobe Photoshop is the industry standard for photo manipulation, and this latest version suggests that isn't going to change any time soon: it's full of new features that will help to make short work of many photo editing problems.

The program does a great deal to ensure you'll start with a higher quality image, for instance. The Camera Raw 6 plugin now supports more than 275 raw image formats; improved HDR handling lets you more accurately merge multiple images, fixing exposure issues and removing any ghosting; and a revamped Lens Correction filter uses camera and lens profiles to automatically fix barrel and pincushion distortion.

Powerful new manipulation tools start with Content-Aware Fill. Select an unwanted object, choose this command and Photoshop will examine the surrounding area, then attempt to fill the hole with content that matches its lighting, tone and noise. The results will vary in quality depending on your background, but in many cases they're faultless, and in many others you'll at least have a starting point that can be further tweaked yourself.

New painting effects include the Mixer Brush, for on-canvas colour blending, and Bristle Tips, for more realistic brush strokes. And a host of smaller improvements include more powerful batch renaming, automatic image straightening, and an onscreen colour picker.

And as this is the Extended edition, you also get new 3D tools. The new Adobe Repoussé engine will create 3D objects from any text layer, selection or path. You're able to extrude, twist and manipulate these, then customise them with different materials and apply different lighting effects until you get the look you need.

Note: in order to download the Photoshop CS5 Extended trial you must create an Adobe account, if you don't have one already. Follow the download link, click Download Now, then Create an Adobe Account and fill in the form. Once you've finished you can log in and download Photoshop CS5 Extended, along with any other CS5 components you might like to try.


Photoshop CS5 sees some excellent new features: Content-Aware Fill and automatic lens correction are particularly useful. Whether the Extended version's 3D features are worth the price premium is another matter, but it's definitely worth downloading the trial to check it out for yourself