April 17, 2013

Photoshop Sneak Peek: New De-Blurring Tech

Here’s a brief look at new image-sharpening technology the Photoshop team has been developing (previously hinted at during the last Adobe MAX):

Posted by John Nack at 2:20 PM on April 17, 2013


  • RobertM — 4:03 PM on April 17, 2013

    Cool stuff. I believe Adobe has talked about this technology before. This demo seems to be much closer to a production implementation though.

    Anyone else notice the Camera Raw Filter menu option? I wonder if this is a product implementation similar to Dr. Browns “Edit Layers in ACR” script.

    • ProDesignTools — 6:45 PM on April 17, 2013

      Indeed, it’s a much-further developed version of the tech Adobe first demoed at MAX 2011…

      But wow, so much easier and smoother to use – automatic even. The MAX demo 18 months ago was a plug-in with a bunch of manual fiddling and parameterizing.

  • Rick Popham — 5:56 PM on April 17, 2013

    This is seriously cool.

    BUT… Rumored to be only available to “Cloud” subscribers (per Shantanu Narayen). Really?

    • James Sinks — 5:22 AM on April 18, 2013

      I’m not surprised. Adobe are determined to kill the perpetual licensing model, and if that means screwing over their long-term core customers, they’ll do it. The loss of goodwill is more than offset by the revenue gains they get from suckering idiots into renting software forever rather than buying it once every couple of years.

      • Nat Brown — 9:58 AM on April 18, 2013

        For some of us idiots, the Cloud has been a game changer.

        I suspect that for shops that crank a high volume of work through a narrow range of Adobe products, it may not make sense.

        I was a solo Photoshop user who wanted to pick up Illustrator. I calculated the Cloud to increase my Adobe expenses over three years by a factor of two and to be a break even with purchasing the two packages individually. I picked up some cost offsets in storage and hosting. For that, I got access to the whole Creative Suite plus more.

        The surprise for me was InDesign. I never would have spent the money on it but it is quickly becoming my most valuable piece of Adobe software. I’m currently wrapping up an InDesign project that takes 1000 pages of federal Department of Labor regulations & commentary and wraps them into an 80 page interactive PDF. This one project alone will pay for the whole Cloud purchase — not just this year but for the next two as well.

        • ProDesignTools — 11:51 AM on April 18, 2013

          Great going Nat, and that sounds a bit like what one reader wrote on our site recently:

          ‘If I can’t make $1 a day from having the latest CS Master Suite & more, I might need to find a different line of work.’

          • James Sinks — 8:40 PM on April 18, 2013

            I suggest you look at Adobe’s treatment of customers from CS4 to date. If you think you’ll be able to pay $1/day for the master collection in a couple years, you’re deluded. Once Adobe have enough people out of the reduced-cost upgrade loop for perpetual licenses, they’ll raise the cloud subscription price (probably concurrent with the announcement that perpetual licenses will no longer be available), and then fragment the cloud suite and start selling essential features as optional extras.

            And on top of it all, they’ll probably still be shipping products with 5+ year old bugs. But I bet 3D Flick Panning in Photoshop CS9 will be really awesome.

            Cheap subscriptions are a trojan horse.

  • Pixel_K — 1:44 AM on April 18, 2013

    This single video sold me the next upgrade (I hope this feature will make it into CS7).

  • Jim Hoerricks — 7:19 AM on April 18, 2013

    You know that I’ve been bugging every developer for years about adding user-controlled deconvolution, PSF corrections, and FFT functions. Nice to see some movement in this area. Any chance that there will be some control and measurement of the PSF parameters, as opposed to just an automatic filter?

    • Josh — 2:10 PM on April 18, 2013

      Uhhh…please translate to English for the neophytes. PSF? FFT?

      • Nat Brown — 3:07 PM on April 18, 2013

        I’m not a techy but I think it has something to do with the noise a beer bottle makes when you open it.

        [Hah! “FFT” = Fast Fourier Transform. –J.]

  • ProDesignTools — 9:02 PM on April 18, 2013

    Well naturally you’re entitled to your opinion James, but your ‘hypothetical’ on the Cloud sounds like certifiable FUD.

    • James Sinks — 10:02 PM on April 18, 2013

      And if, six or seven years ago, I had told you that Adobe would probably eliminate the ability to upgrade from more than one version back, you would’ve called my FUDmonger.

      I’m just looking a Adobe’s recent past behavior (cutting upgradability without warning, not fixing long-standing bugs for new releases, withholding critical security updates from _very_ recently superceded software, and terrible customer service) and their current behavior (killing boxed products, withholding features from perpetual licensees, pushing the cloud very hard, not fixing long-standing bugs for new releases, and poor-to-average customer service), and extrapolating. I don’t think any of my predictions are far fetched, and I expect a great deal of what I wrote will be borne out in the next five years or so.

      It’s not like John hasn’t been talking about modularizing Photoshop so that there will be multiple versions with different feature-sets depending on how much you want to pay (not like Elements/PS/PS Extended split, but fundamental differences in the basic tool set available). Not that he was crass enough to say that it was about money. He couched it as making the product easier for customers to use.

      I’ve been an Adobe customer for a _very_ long time, and the company has done a great deal to earn my distrust.

      • foljs — 4:12 PM on April 22, 2013


        If you run a photocopy shot, you’d have to pay some $10,000 in paper every year. If you run a restaurant, you’d have to pay some nice money to napkins, ketchup, straws, etc. If you run a funeral service you’d have to pay a lot of money to buy flowers.

        If you are a graphic designer or similar, you have to pay around $2000 to Adobe every 18 months (or pay the upgrade price). That’s the business.

        $50 dollars/month for the Cloud thing? That’s like 1/5 the monthly utility bill of some one person businesses. People pay more for their mobile subscription. Heck, in 3D/CAD etc, to give you some perspective on another profession, software comes in $2000-$3000 dollars for just ONE package — not a whole suite.

        If you work in the US, and cannot justify such a cost, then either use something else or maybe find another line of work. That said, I know people who still use CS4 for creative work just fine.

        • James Sinks — 4:29 AM on April 23, 2013

          I can afford the Creative Cloud. I can also afford to update the Creative Suite every 12-18 months, which is what I do. Cost is not my concern–renting software is my concern. I would never rent a tool I use every day. Especially not a tool that can only be rented from a company that has burned through every iota of good will I ever had for it.

      • ProDesignTools — 11:12 AM on April 26, 2013

        Re: Changing upgrade policies

        Several years ago, Microsoft Office killed upgrades entirely.

        Soon, Quark will be moving permanently to a one-version-back upgrade policy.

        And a year ago, Corel also majorly tightened their upgrade policy.

        So these things are in flux all over the software industry, not just at Adobe – though it’s natural that customers aren’t likely to welcome it anywhere.

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