Photoshop Review: Photoshop Creative Suite vs Creative Cloud

Rating: 5.00 based on 1 Rating
  By Julian
Photoshop Review: Photoshop Creative Suite vs Creative Cloud

Hi Guys, welcome all.

Today I wanted to discuss a topic that I haven’t touched upon yet, and it’s maybe one that some of you out there are actually thinking about or have read about in the recent past, so I’m going to give my two cents on it from a Photoshop Freelancer on this.

Not only do I want to always write straight up Tutorials on Photoshop but I’d also like to keep you all up to date with what’s currently happening with Photoshop so if you are thinking about moving from just having fun with Photoshop to a more serious stature then hopefully this Review will help you plan out and understand the realities of the current product market when it comes time for you to buy and plan things based on that.

So the way Adobe used to do its products was that they had their product called Adobe Creative Suite, which you bought in total and you got all the programs in there for you to install yourself as you needed them.

Once you bought it, it was yours and you owned it, but things are not like this anymore, they have now what’s called the Adobe Creative Cloud.

So what’s the difference?

Well the different now it that when you by you will no longer be able to own it, what they have you do now is to rent it and then you pay a subscriptions monthly as you need it.

This seems to the be trend that all the major companies have been following and Adobe joined the trend.

I myself currently still use Adobe Photoshop CS6 and I can’t see myself getting rid of it anytime soon as I am very happy with my old purchase as it still does exactly what I need it for, I guess I’m an old Dinosaur stuck in the mud but I guess it shows how good of a product CS6 is.

When I first heard of the subscription based change I was a bit 50/50 with the decision.

But there is a plus to this change, instead of Adobe having to release a brand new product what they can do now it just release the update as it comes along making the program seem like it’s in a constant state of growth.

The problems I see at the minute with the subscription based service is the pricing.

So if you rent the full Creative Cloud you get in that package over 10+ different applications, so for a Graphic Design business that uses a lot of these apps then it works to a point depending on the business and how much it makes.

I use only Photoshop, Lightroom and on the very odd occasion Illustrator.


If you only use one app, so for this we’ll say Photoshop.

You can pay by the year which will average around $20 a month but you are now tied to that contract, if you choose to pay by the month only then the prices raise $10 higher.

The bad is that if you don’t tie yourself into the yearly contract and your month then runs out what happens if you only need Photoshop for a quick 30 mins of small changes that the client has come back and asked for.

Well, you will not be able to open your files now to make those changes because you will not have the program! you would have to now pay another $30 to get the program for the month just to do 30 minutes worth of work.

Lucky for Photographers, Lightroom is still sold separate so at least you can still own your own copy of Lightroom once you buy it, so if you just need some basic editing then you can perhaps switch to Lightroom instead of taking on the full Creative Cloud for now.

But that is just for the very basics edits, such as enhancements etc.

Lightroom is good but it is still not Photoshop at the end of the day. For me personally, I would prefer to own my own Lightroom as I would all the products but what they are saying which would be tempting if I was solely a Lightroom user is that there will be a good few more feature in the Creative Cloud version of Lightroom compared to the stand alone version.

I know from experience that a lot of Photographers I know stay primarily within the Lightroom platform and only branch out into Photoshop for very specific things so this would be good for them to have this option available to them.

Another topic I want to raise with this is that with Creative Cloud you do not need to be online to use it, you download it the first time and from then on in until your time runs out you will have a user and password with it.

There is one huge advantage with this that I do really like, if you upload all your presets etc to you Creative Cloud only and you have to travel to another office or location/Client you will be able to log on from their location with all your presets already synced.

So what I would be able to use this for is with my business we could be in different parts of the world being Freelancers and would have the exact same Presets all ready to go.

In review

As a Professional myself I am using Photoshop every single working day so I think personally I will have to move on to the subscription based payments eventually.

My CS6 is still going strong and from what I can do on it I think I will be able to get a good few more years out of it, I think once you know the ins and outs of the program you are able to do more with less, at least I’ve found this in my work day, i feel that it almost takes me longer to learn something new than it does to quickly smash out what I’ve done a thousand time previous.

So the updates and things really for me aren’t that big a deal and I like having my own Photoshop that I own and have paid for, that way their will be no surprises or unforeseen extra charges/payment plans in future.

As for people who just like to do Photoshop for fun, I think it’s much better that they leave the whole subscription thing alone, I think for that type of user the prices are pretty ridiculous.

So my advice there would be to seek a second-hand copy if possible and to just learn all the basics and use the time to learn as much as possible so that you don’t need these updates, look I have used Photoshop for years and I still use the basic Tools, I don’t bother with any updated Tools at all really and if I do I’m usually doing it just for the heck of it.

Another this perhaps would be to start looking into other alternatives, for me this would be a hard choice but for somebody just starting out I don’t think it would be a huge blow to your output, you would be able to start applying the basic knowledge and language to Photoshop if you ever decided to change over to Photoshop.

If you wish to check some of these Alternatives out then use the key words “Photoshop Alternatives” in google and I’m sure you will find a massive list with plenty to check out on in, then take it YouTube to see reviews etc, the one I know works well as I have a friend uses it all the time for his work is GIMP.

Anyway, I hope you got a good deal of knowledge out of this, article, I just wanted to express my views and hopefully help a few of you out there to make some decisions regarding where to start or where to continue.

Rating: 5.00 based on 1 Rating
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Graduated from college in 2002 with a degree in Art & Design, I started exploring my way in Graphic Design and Professional Post Production. Full-time freelancer since 2011.

Comments (3)

  1. houniao Guest

    photoshop is mostly about creating new images, which you can still use but not modify once your subscription is up. lightroom, on the otherhand, is mainly for digital asset management. in addition to basic adjustments, its meant to help you organize hundreds of thousands of photos. once you add an image to your lightroom database, you’ll need lightroom to access it forever (technically you could use other tools, but lets not worry about that). the original image is still there, but the tags and modifications are only in the database, or sidecar files.

    I’m a hobbyist photographer not getting paid and have no intention of ever making money. I usually editing photographs on Photoshop and Lightroom . I have a XP-Pen Deco Pro Drawing Tablet for work on my desktop. For Photoshop it’s powerful and well integrated.

  2. Julian H Verified buyer

    Appreciate your addition.

  3. Andre Guest

    I think you should mention the photographer package, consisting of Lightroom and Photoshop. They together cost about 13 euro a month.