We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Digital photo software Reviews
15,670 Reviews

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0

£69 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Adobe

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 is a sophisticated image editing application with new editing modes that will appeal to beginners. But it doesn't have much that's fresh for people upgrading from previous versions.

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 is a sophisticated image editing application with new editing modes that will appeal to beginners. But it doesn't have much that's fresh for people upgrading from previous versions.

Many image-editing applications claim to offer the power of Adobe Photoshop but at a far friendlier price. Nearly all fail. But in an ironic twist, Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 adds beginner-focused features that seem very similar to those in one of its main competitors, Corel's Paint Shop Pro Photo X2.

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 has a couple of new features for people who have used the software before, but the main focus of this update seems to be a serious attempt to attract new, novice users - a strategy that rival image editors such as Paint Shop usually pursue.

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 is a better choice for novices than Paint Shop, but if you've used Elements before, you may be disappointed with this version of it.

The UK edition of Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 is actually cheaper than the £79 inc VAT Paint Shop Pro Photo X2. Like Paint Shop, Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 has a darker default interface than its predecessor, though Elements 6 won't let you adjust the shade to your preference. But the most striking similarity between this program and Corel's is in the packages' lead-you-by-the-nose editing modes, Express Lab in Paint Shop and the new Guided Editing in Elements 6.0.

You can perform more functions in Elements' mode, including lightening shadows and darkening highlights, touching up scratches and blemishes, and removing colour casts, and it provides helpful text describing each adjustment's function. But it lacks the Preview box found in most Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 functions (it does offer an option to see before and after versions of your image, but we prefer the Preview button because toggling it shows your changes on the same image - you don't have to look left and right).

Unlike Express Lab, Elements' Guided Editing lets you edit multiple images at a time: Just highlight as many images as you want, and select a fix. However, if you decide you like the effects on one image but not the others, you have to undo your work on all of them.

Of course, if you don't find Guided Editing sufficiently powerful, you can choose Full Editing, which gives you all of the application's tools with no hand-holding. And in case you find neither Guided Editing nor Full Editing to your liking, you can choose Quick Editing, which has four general editing areas that overlap with features from the other modes. Adobe says the revised interface is "streamlined" but we think the multiple modes add to the clutter.

Adobe has added the Quick Selection tool it first made available in Photoshop CS3 to Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0; the tool can make creating a selection (a roped-off section of an image to which fixes are limited) pretty easy, but since it has no tolerance (sensitivity) setting, it can be useless on some images. On the plus side, the Refine Edge feature we loved in Photoshop CS3 came along, too. It isn't quite as sophisticated as CS3's, but it does a fantastic job of cleaning up the edges of selections so you don't have to spend as much time handling stray pixels.

NEXT PAGE: photo-blogging and verdict > >

Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 Expert Verdict »

Intel Pentium 4
Windows Vista/XP
1.3GHz processor
1.5GB hard disk space
256MB RAM (512MB recommended)
  • Ease of Use: We give this item 9 of 10 for ease of use
  • Features: We give this item 7 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 8 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

Our overall impression of Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0 is similar to my impression of Adobe's new Premiere 4.0 video editor; Adobe expended great effort trying to make the application accessible to novices who have never laid hands on it, and in doing so, diluted some of the program's power and flexibility. We think that move will likely irritate users of older versions who have already learned how to use the app. Personally, we'd be perfectly happy using the previous version.

  • Adobe Photoshop Elements 7.0 review

    Adobe Photoshop Elements 7.0

    Adobe Photoshop Elements 7.0 continues to straddle the line between novices and more seasoned users, offering three levels of editing: Full Edit, Quick Fix, and Guided Editing.

  • Photoshop Elements 6.0 review

    Photoshop Elements 6.0

    The long-awaited update to Photoshop Elements 5.0 successfully incorporates Photoshop CS3 tools into Adobe's consumer photo-editing tool.

  • Adobe Photoshop Elements 9 review

    Adobe Photoshop Elements 9

    Adobe Photoshop Elements 9 is designed to make managing and editing your photos easier and more fun. Updated, 9 June 2011

  • Adobe Photoshop CS4 review

    Adobe Photoshop CS4

    Adobe Photoshop CS4, the latest version of Adobe's flagship image-editing program, will hit the streets practically on the heels of Photoshop CS3, which debuted a little less than 18 months ago.

  • Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2

    Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2

    Corel's Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 image editor, with its darker interface, looks better than previous versions did, but the new shade is the only visual tweak. What the interface needs is a complete overhaul - it's so jam-packed with overlapping options that it's hard to wade through.


IDG UK Sites

Best January sales 2015 UK tech deals LIVE: Best New Year bargains and savings on phones, tablets,...

IDG UK Sites

Chromebooks: ready for the prime time (but not for everybody)

IDG UK Sites

2015 visual trends: 20 leading designers & artists reveal what should be inspiring us in 2015

IDG UK Sites

Mac tips tricks & hacks: 10 things you didn't know your Mac could do