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Photoshop CS5 gets new lens fixes, raw support

The raw-image plug-in can now automatically fix problems such as chromatic aberration. Also: support for Canon T2i, Sony A450, Panasonic G2 and G10.

Photoshop CS5 is getting the ability to automatically correct lens flaws in raw images.
Photoshop CS5 is getting the ability to automatically correct lens flaws in raw images. screenshot by Stephen Shankland/CNET

Adobe Systems has released the final version of an update to its new Photoshop CS5 that gives the program the ability to automatically correct lens flaws while editing raw images.

Photoshop CS5 already could correct geometric distortion, vignetting, and chromatic for ordinary image files, but the Camera Raw 6.1 plug-in lets photographers do the same with the Photoshop module geared specifically for handing raw images from higher-end cameras. The update, released Tuesday, is on the update site.

Raw images taken directly from camera sensors offer more flexibility and quality than JPEGs that have been processed by the camera, but they also bring headaches since some editing is required to make them useful for sharing with others. Another headache: software companies must continually add support for the proprietary raw formats that come with the unending parade of new cameras.

The update also adds support for raw file formats from several cameras already supported in Photoshop Lightroom 2.7, a sibling product geared specifically for editing and cataloging photos. Those cameras include the Canon Rebel T2i, aka the 550D, the Olympus E-600, the Panasonic G2 and G10, and the Sony Alpha A450. Those cameras, except the Olympus model, were supported in Camera Raw 5.7, but Adobe couldn't build that into Photoshop CS5 because of product release timing matters.

The forthcoming Lightroom 3.0 also will get the lens correction feature, Adobe has said.

The update ships with only a "handful" of supported lenses, but people can create and share their own using Adobe's Lens Profile Creator utility.

The update reflects the fact that software, even mammoth applications such as Adobe's CS products, are becoming more fluid with Internet updates.

Another indicator: Adobe also released a Photoshop CS5 "Knowledge" panel over the weekend, though people must log into the new CS Live service to use it.

"This tool delivers interactive step-by-step guidance, walking you through some 70 tutorials written by expert authors," said John Nack, Adobe's former Photoshop senior product manager and now the chief of its iPad software efforts. The controls in the tutorials can trigger the appropriate actions directly in Photoshop, he said. The panel automatically installs only for those with English versions of Photoshop.

Update, June 2 at 1 a.m. PDT: with details about the Knowledge panel.