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CS4: getting closer

While trying not to be a bandwagon kind of blogger, I’ve decided to post a tidbit about CS4.  I’ve waited a couple of days before announcing that we’re announcing CS4.  I think many of us in Adobe land tend to chuckle when we see this – I mean "announce that we’ll announce? ;-)"   More importantly, is the information that will come with this announcement. 

To get the basics out of the way, Adobe has announced that we’re announcing CS4 on September 23rd.  It’s right there on the Adobe home page.  If you click on the link, you can register to see a live web seminar of the announcement.

I’m sure we’ll see some more stuff eek out during Photoshop World as alluded in John Nack’s recent post.

As for me, I’ll let one thing out of the bag right now that shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone:  AVC HD support.  Huzzah!  As we demonstrated at a local NY event on May 29th, we had AVC HD playing natively in the timeline.  This will be a boon to those who are embracing this new type of format.

Beyond this, I must say that I’m getting pretty excited about the apps. I’ve played with them or tracked their progress for many months now and the culminating crescendo will be the release of CS4 to the public. While Adobe field people may occasionally come off as secretive or uncommunicative, nothing is further from the truth!  We are aching, literally aching to talk and show you all of the Adobe goodness we’ve got packed in, so stay tuned, hang in there a little while longer and before you know it, you’ll get an early holiday present on September 23rd.


Common Im going crazy I preordered last week when is it going to ship I gotta know man I’m still on cs1 and almost just send me cs3 becuase im impatient how soon are the boxes ready to go out the back door or what?????

[DR – it’s out there now.]

I think adobe should either free upgrade when the person buy 1+- when new upgrade available.I have tested Adobe Dreamweaver cs4 beta.Normally vendor outsite US have to wait longer then counterpart here.They can check the registration date if appacable.Because normally the price is 399 and after
a month also 399 ,why the person should border to pay 199 for new upgrade?They should give free.


I am glad I found this blog while searching for the release date of CS4. I was so close to getting CS3 when I heard CS4 was going to come out. I am a complete newbie to all of the programs, and as a part of getting my employer to buy them, I have to learn to use them – at least at the beginner level.

I saw in a previous response that you mentioned CS4 would ship in October. Any idea when in the month? The job is footing the bill for a new Mac as well and I would like to get everything at once and start the learning process.

Thanks for any help you can offer.

[DR – I think the information is out there, but I can’t be any more specific.]

If you guys had told the truth about the release date, then I would not have spent a thousand dollars on CS3 and I would have waited until CS4 to come out. Must Adobe be so unscrupulous just to pawn off outdated software out of their inventory onto unsuspecting people. I would think that Adobe would actually want customers to come back and purchase upgrades and have a good feeling about it rather than feeling like they were abused in prison. Oh, the academic price is not that big of a discount. It is about the same bargain as buying used text books, on which the bookstore makes orders of magnitude in profit. Adobe could at least offer a free upgrade within a half a year of a new version or make their release schedule public knowledge so people can wait to purchase the most recent one. By the way, the version at the bookstore which had an Adobe sticker on it saying that it was the “new” version had Acrobat 8 not 9.

We truly live in the age of unbridled greed and unregulated avarice.

I wonder what Corel has to offer?

[DR – John I’m sorry about your situation. The simple fact of the matter is that Adobe is a publicly traded company and consequently we have an obligation to provide profit to our shareholders.

Because the education pricing is a fraction of the normal pricing we do not offer comparably priced upgrades, nor do we want to given that a new EDU license is less than an upgrade of a normal license. In essence, you can ‘upgrade’ at any time by purchasing a license.

I already sure that you don’t agree with the above and I respect that. Unfortunately, that is the way it is and all I can do is offer my assurances that we think very carefully before anything goes out the door. Hopefully, you’ll understand that.

Regards, D]

I purchased the educational version of the CS3 Master Suite before the beginning of the semester at my school’s bookstore (once you crack the plastic wrapper it is yours) because everyone was saying the next version would not be ready until next year. Now, the CS4 version is being release less than a month into this academic year? I don’t know about the rest of you but I cannot drop a thousand dollars every couple of months to have the current version, which I thought I was getting until now. If I had been told the truth about the release dates, then I most certainly would have waited to make my purchase. This is my vocational rehab; I am on disability. Will Abobe have some kind of program to get the new version? The bookstore has stated that it is not their problem.

[DR – John, typically educational versions are not entitled to an upgrade because the licenses are so drastically discounted. You could by two education MC licenses for what you normally spend on one in normal retail. Consequently, we don’t offer upgrades. My recommendation would be to call Adobe customer service and see what your options are.

As far as release dates are concerned, unless your information is coming from Adobe, you’re probably shouldn’t bet on it. Adobe announced that we were going to announce in early September and of course officially announced CS4 yesterday with a ship date in October.

I know this isn’t what you want to here. Hopefully, Customer Service can help you out.]

Adobe has to pay for the buyout of macromedia so now they will be releasing minor upgrades every year..

because they were so innovative and golive was a piece of crap

[DR – My aren’t we a bit feisty! Everyone is entitled to an opinion (hence why I post yours), but…]

Hi Dennis,

CS4 has been a long time coming and I am sure it will be as great as all of the past releases of Adobe’s flagship products have been.

I was wondering if you may know if Adobe plans on making the announcement video available on the website after its live broadcast? For me it is at an inconvenient time during my commute to work. It would be nice to come home in the evening and be able to watch it in its entirety afterwork. Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe they did do this with the CS3 Announcement, especially since they had issues with the broadcast. It would be nice if they made it available on the Adobe Media Player.

Hopefully all goes smoothly. Oh will you be presenting or a part of this announcement on Tuesday?

One thing that I hope will be in CS4 – will be that all included apps in the Master Collection or total suite bundle – whatever it is called, will be completely cross-platform (OSX and Windows). And most importantly that the Core Apps (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, After Effects, Flash, Dreamweaver, Fireworks) continue to be Universal Binaries – me still being on a PowerMac G5 system.

Anyhow good luck for Tuesday and I look forward to what’s on the horizon at Adobe!

[DR – I don’t know if they’re planning on making the video available after the live announcement but as you said, it would sure make sense, so I’m guessing that they will.

As for cross platform, you should continue to be able to move projects from one platform to the other without any problems. Of course, Adobe will continue to keep licenses (copies of software) separate – meaning if you want Mac and PC, you will have to purchase two separate licenses.

Core apps continue to be universal binary but change is in the wind! Apple wants you to purchase a new computer and Adobe is going to help them sooner or later…My guess would be that this is the last version but that’s all it is…my personal uninformed guess. Also, I believe one of those apps you mentioned will NOT be universal binary….

Thanks for the well wishes and the comments Terry…


I can’t wait to see if this newer vesion addresses many of the FLASH issues that existed pre and post Macromedia, I was one of those that felt ripped off to have to pay for macromedia AGAIN after Adobe aquired it, just for Vista compatability….. lets hope they do something to allow gurus like me the ability to AFFORD it!!!

[DR – I’m no Flash expert, but from what I’ve seen, I think this will be a profound Flash release. Only time and you will be able to tell if this is true. Thanks for your comment.]

Hi Dennis 🙂

Good News!!! Adobe will refund my CS-3. There is a 30 refund policy, which I met, so there is no problem.

When asked why I was returning it, they seemed to have no problems at all when I told them it was because of the AVCHD issues. I felt like they must have heard this problem many times…lol

Anyway…it will take approximately 3 – 6 weeks for the money to be returned to the visa. I just have to fax them a form stating I will destroy the current downloaded software….and everything will be fine.

Then when CS4 comes out….and IF it really does support AVCHD….I will be able to order it and start my new life 🙂

Thanks so much and hopefully this will help others also, if they have recently purchased the CS-3.

I am very excited and HOPEFUL that CS4 will indeed give me the editing that works with my camera.

I think MANY people will be very happy with it and the Adobe name will continue to live on as “the best” in the business 🙂

Thank you again,

Heather 🙂

[DR – Hurray!

Yes, Adobe will do AVCHD natively and I hope that you’ll be as excited about it as we are.]

Man am I glad to hear this news!!! I am wondering if you can tell me since I bought the CS-3 on Sept 5….and finallly figuring out it wasn’t ME…it was the lack of AVCHD componets that was causing me all this frustration…..Am I able to return the CS-3 and then re buy the CS-4?

I have not used it because as we all know it just would not work. I am terrified I will be stuck with this purchase and never be able to edit my videos.

I bought the CS-3 via the download options….and because I assumed premiere pro worked on ALL video formats.

Will I be punished for being too excited and buying too soon…..? I honestly have no funds to buy an upgrade….this was going to be my answer incase I can never work again due to health issues. I could at least use this and work from home. My hopes were high and I took a chance. I was encouraged to buy the best to go with my Sony HDR SR-12. I instantly thought of Adobe.

Please tell me I will not be put in a situation of more money….I do not have it. Since it is from the download site (which took DAYS!!) they should be able to tell I haven’t used anything in the suite. All I did was try and try to figure out how to see my videos from my camera.

Will I have to wait until Sept 23 to find out what I can do? Or is there a basic return policy that I still fit in the guidelines with???? If you can send me in the right direction I would appreciate it because I don’t want to wait too long….and then have them tell me it is all my fault for waiting so long.

I am like the rest….I just thought it was my fault that I couldn’t make my camera and premiere pro work.

I pray you are able to answer me….(none of this secret stuff)….I am so anxious and so scared I have lost almost $3,000 by purchasing CS-3..a few days too soon.

Thanks for your time and thoughts on this matter.

[DR – Hi Heather. I understand your situation and certainly hope you’re able to do something. However, I do not know for sure one way or the other.

My recommendation is to get in touch with customer service right away, mention your lack of ability to edit AVCHD and your need to use CS4. Let me know how you make out by posting here again. Thanks for your support!]

Lets hope that CS-4 is more Vista friendly than CS-3. I had the most nightmarish experience with that. Every update seemed to bring new issues. Finally had to go back to XP-Pro and that cost me a bundle in lost time! PS, your tech support in India sucks! (Vista business version) Does CS-4 so 64 bits?

[DR – I am sorry to hear about that. As to CS4 being vista friendly, I would expect that the answer is yes, but then again, I say that about CS3. I’ve not had any problems with Vista business 32]

ooops, did I say panther!! Of course I meant to say Leopard!

[DR – Oops! I got you covered…Leopard is okay for CS3 and moving forward]


We are considering purchasing CS4 when it comes out. Can you tell me if we need to upgrade our OS to Panther for this?

Also I presume we need more RAM for this…what would you recommend upping to?

Incidentally we are currently running CS2, so is it possible to upgrade straight to CS4 or is there a free upgrade to CS3 when we purchase CS$?


[DR – Hi Pete, all will become clear after the 23rd, but let me take a stab at it.

OS – Panther is like 10.2 so if that’s what you’re using, then yes, you will need to upgrade. It is fully supported on Leopard (10.5).

RAM – more is always better in my opinion, but if you’re not using the video apps, then perhaps less so. I would say that having at least 2GB is important no matter what you do in this day and age. 4GB is a nice number to have.

upgrade from CS2 to CS4 – I can’t go in to the details, but we do try to account for many different upgrade scenarios including people who skip a given version.

Typically, after the official announce, customers who purchase CS3 can get a free upgrade to CS4, but you’ll have to wait until 9-23-08 for finding out for sure.]

Someone stated:
just wondering if CS4 will have more photo editing options or will it be more the less the same as CS3? would it be worth it to upgrade to CS4 since all i do is edit photos?

Can you comment on this part?


[DR I’d be delighted to Monkeybun.

There are ALWAYS great things about Photoshop that will get customers excited. That being said, perhaps the best advice I can give is for you to look at Lightroom 2.0 if your interested in managing and presenting your photos.

Also, for photo editing, a lot depends on what your needs are. For example, the quick selection tool is something that I would point out in Phoroahop CS3 that would be important for most photo editors, yet not everyone would agree with me. So, what I could mention might not align with what you’re interested in.

So…look at Lightroom 2.0 and watch the presentation on 9/23/08 to learn if Photoshop CS4 is right for you. DR.]

Doh! Like a few others, I’m in a tenuous position as well. I’m on the cusp of dropping off the upgrade cycle to be eligible for any kind of price break. I have the old Web Collection (PS7, Illustrator 10, GoLive(!), etc). Today, I can upgrade, but on 9/23, I could drop off the list and be faced with full price. I know you can’t divulge secrets but if you were to recommend to a hypothetical friend, who just happens to be in the same hypothetical position as me, whether or not to buy CS3 today or wait and see what glorious announcements are coming on the 23rd, what would you hypothetically suggest?

[DR – Hey Jim, that’s a tough one and unfortunately, I can’t be entirely too clear though I wish I could. On a basic level, Adobe really goes out of our way to not ‘punish’ people for skipping versions and yet at some point you’ve got to draw the line and move on.

I will say that you can still buy CS3 after the announcement on the 23rd and so your best bet may be to wait and see what the upgrade options for YOU will be and then purchase CS3 or CS4 depending on your needs.

Sorry if I’m being hypothetically vague. 😉 Thanks for your support friend!]

Hi, I’m a college student and currently have CS3 Master Collection, and was wondering if there will be an upgrade with a price for students?

Thanks! Can’t wait for this version to come out!

[DR – Hi Daniel. With EDU licenses, there is generally no upgrade available. The reason is that a new EDU license is cheaper than non-EDU upgrade. So in the end, you purchase a new license of CS4 and now have the ability to use both CS3 and 4.]

Hi, I have CS3 and I am a Photographer, I dont do anything in video editing, just Photos. This might sound really stupid.. but What is AVCHD-? just wondering if CS4 will have more photo editing options or will it be more the less the same as CS3? would it be worth it to upgrade to CS4 since all i do is edit photos?
thanks so much for your time.

[DR – AVCHD is a consumer/prosumer video format that is HD. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AVCHD is also a good way to get up to date on what AVCHD is all about.]

Regarding AVCHD-support I agree with Jason and Brian. I understand your answers to, but as described on the adobe web-site, pinnacle studio support it for the last 2 versions. Could it be as a Plug-in for the CS3 users, or it would be quite expensive only to support a new format … it’s just my opinion as a Sony HDR and CS3 user.

[DR – Francois, I can’t comment on whether it will be available for CS3. One differentiator between us and many competitive products will be that it will be native editing and not a converted file type.]

i’ve notice that with other adobe products, if you purchase within like a month or so of the release date, you tend to get a free upgrade. so don’t worry, purchase it, sometimes you just need photoshop now now now.

[DR – This is generally but not exclusively true. So, to be on the safe side, I’d wait at least until the official announce.]

I’m so excited about the launch of CS4! We’ve been going crazy at work about this as well. Testing the MC beta has been a blast. 🙂

Also, PRE and PSE (betas) look fantastic! I hope the customer base likes them as well!

[DR – Glad to hear we’re hitting the mark. thanks for the comment]


I need to make a purchase-and was going to buy CS3…but will wait if the product is available for purchase on 9-23…will it be??? Thanks, Yvette

[DR – Hi Yvette. Unfortunately, I cannot comment on when product will ship. I value my job! ;-)]

I have a very old version of PS (V.7). I know I’m really behind the 8-ball on updates but it has done what I needed it to. I’m looking into upgrading to CS3 and now see CS4 will soon be out. Will PS7 be upgradable to CS4, or do I go with the CS3 upgrade as planned?

[DR – Honestly, I don’t know. We try not to penalize customers for being version skippers as many of our products are very mature. But, to answer your question directly, I do not know at present. It’s a gamble but I would wait and determine what your options are before making a decision. You might find that you want to upgrade to a suite instead of just photoshop… or you might find that CS4 has so much stuff that you’ll be upset if you upgrade to CS3.

Wish you the best in your decision. 😉

Well announcement is one thing… when will CS4 ship?

[DR – well we haven’t even officially announced. When it ships is another matter – one that I am not allowed to comment on. Sorry.]

Regarding AVCHD-support I have to agree with Jason. Using AVCHD-support as an selling argument for CS4 is provoking for all CS3 users. We should be tempted to upgrade to CS4 because of new functionality and features. Not “forced” because of a format that isn’t supported in CS3 (bit should). Sorry, just my opinion.

[DR – thanks for the comment. Let me give some responses.

1 – I’m not providing a selling argument for CS4 in my entry. A blog is to give information even if it is ‘state sponsored.’ 😉
2 – In the sense that AVCHD is new functionality and a feature, you can make the case that you should be tempted. It just didn’t make it into the current version you have.
3 – The fact that AVCHD didn’t make it into CS3 is a bummer to those who have it, I totally agree. However, during CS3 not only did we improve HDV editing but added DVC Pro 50, DVC Pro HD, XDCAM HD, XDCAM EX, and late in the cycle RED announced Premiere Pro support for their camera as well. So, I hope you recognize that Adobe wasn’t sitting on our thumbs during this time.
4 – Your opinion is just as vital as anyone elses and I thank you for taking the time to voice your opinion.


VERY NICE! AVCHD support will be worth the cost of the upgrade all by itself. Can’t wait to see what else CS4 brings.

Hooray for AVCHD support! I’ve read it will also include speech to text and more intensive meta data functionality. Nice.

Patience has paid off and by my estimate it is sooner than later. Thank you much adobe and especially you Dennis. Hope to see you in NYC.
Oh, concerning the never ending Blog, is it over or ever onward?

[DR – ever onward!]

will be available a new version of ADDT (dreamweaver developer toolbox)?

[DR – to be honest, I have no idea and if I did, I could not comment on it. Sorry.]

Chris, yea those kind of do I buy it now or later choices are maddening.

I just purchased another suite of CS3 – even knowing about this eventual CS4 release. Yep, its all good.

But the choice was made easy for me, I’m an instructor so can’t show up for class without the current PS on my new laptop.

I’m really disappointed in Adobe for lagging on AVCHD support and now putting it into CS4, forcing their existing loyal customers to pay for yet another upgrade just to get support for a standard file format. I don’t know about the rest of you but I’m going to stick with CS3 and pay the $50 to use AVCHD Upshift.

What! I’m literally at the checkout counter ready to buy CS3! What to do?

[DR – I can’t tell if you’re pulling my leg or not… If not, then I’ll say that it’s your call, but I’d know what I’d do.]

Can’t wait…I’m really excited about this!

I hope that Adobe doesn’t make us wait too long after the 23rd before we can get our hands on it. If I could place my order now, I would.

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