One of the most common upgrade questions we see out there is asking what’s new, what’s different, what’s better, what’s changed between Adobe’s just-launched CC 2017 release and the previous CC 2015.5, CC 2015, CC 2014, CC 2013, or 2012’s Creative Suite 6 – or even the older CS5, CS4, CS3? Or more fundamentally, what are the key new features and advancements in CC 2017 versus prior versions?
Now that the new CC 2017 milestone release is shipping worldwide, everyone is entitled to either a free upgrade or a new free trial for 7 days. Ongoing access to these tools requires a Creative Cloud membership (either for one app or for all of them), with discounts available for education customers. Adobe says that if you look at all of the changes since CS6 to the current CC 2017 release, there have been thousands of significant updates – meaning new and enhanced features, added capabilities, and performance boosts – to the key creative applications.
Now that the Adobe CC release is becoming widespread with over 8 million paid customers, some folks are asking us whether the new versions of the tools in the Creative Cloud can read or save older data/document/project file formats like CS6, CS5.5, CS5, CS4 & CS3…
In fact, now that Adobe’s flagship creative toolset CC 2015 (aka CS9) is three major releases past CS6 from 2012, file version compatibility can sometimes be an important decision point in moving forward.
In the past, new Adobe product versions have often brought different or expanded file formats to support significant new features – and customers want to know if their existing projects will easily carry forward with them when they upgrade, or if they will be able to save back to older formats for coworkers or clients who may still be running an earlier revision of the programs…
OK then, here’s how it works. Generally, your new CC tools will be able to open and use any and all earlier CS project and data files – including CS3, CS4, CS5, CS5.5, and CS6 files – with no problem or loss of information. In other words, all Adobe software is able to read or import file formats from previous versions of the same program – and it should happen seamlessly and automatically. The only exception to this is Premiere Pro, where it’s best to open/edit projects in the same versions that created them.
One of the most common upgrade questions we see out there is asking what’s new, what’s different, what’s better, what’s changed between Adobe’s just-launched CC 2015 release and the previous CC 2014, CC 2013, or 2012’s Creative Suite 6 – or even the older CS5, CS4, CS3? Or more fundamentally, what are the key new features in CC 2015 versus prior versions?
Now that the new CC 2015 milestone release is out worldwide, everyone is entitled to either a free upgrade or a free 30-day trial (possibly up to 60 days). Ongoing access to these tools requires a Creative Cloud membership (either for one app or for all of them), with discounts available for education customers. Adobe says that if you look at all of the changes since CS6 to the current CC 2015 release, there have been well over 1,000 significant updates – meaning new and improved features, added capabilities, and performance improvements – to the key creative applications.
With one year wrapped up and a new one just beginning, it seemed a great time to put together a comprehensive review of the best and most-shared posts published here since our site launched in 2009.
These are the top posts that consistently have the highest readership on our site, month after month, covering all major Adobe software products… They’re broken out by topic below in case you’ve missed any, or are new here – so bookmark, share, and enjoy!
Free Adobe Books
- Adobe CC & CS6 Design Basics, Free! Download 202-Page Book
- Free 87-Page Book! Get the Lightroom Quick Start Guide
- Learn Adobe Dreamweaver CC + CS6 – Download New Book
- Get Free How-to Books: the Acrobat Pro Tutorial Guides
- Download Now: The InDesign New Features Guidebook
- Free! Download 20 Adobe Books at No Cost, Learn All Products
Creative Cloud (CC)
- New CC 2017 Release Now Available – What You Need to Know
- Compare Versions: What’s New in the CC 2017 Release vs. CS6?
- Are Adobe CC Files Backwards Compatible with CS6?
- The 10 Most Common Myths About Creative Cloud
- What’s the Difference Between CC for Teams vs. Individuals?
- The 13 Ultimate Adobe Keyboard Shortcut Cheat Sheets
You most likely already know the news that Adobe ended the Creative Suite line (no CS7), and that new releases of all the CS tools (and more) have been relaunched as “CC” – and these new versions are available only via a Creative Cloud membership…
At the same time, Adobe is continuing to sell 2012’s CS6 version for people that prefer the traditional licensing model instead of CC subscriptions, though statistically fewer than 1 in 5 customers are still going that direction.
Meanwhile, the 15 new CC applications have brought hundreds of new features and enhancements compared to CS6, with more being added all the time through ongoing upgrades that are included free with all memberships… Thus far, the latest CC tools have been getting nearly 5-star reviews from customers, as they sign up at the rate of 65,000 per week. But still, because of the relative newness of the Creative Cloud offering, some confusion abounds and there remain a few big myths floating around out there.
So all in all, there has been a lot of change to digest over the past year, and folks often ask us which route is best to take – what are the pros and cons of each option?
When Creative Suite 6 arrived in 2012, there came with it a new way to buy Adobe software that the world had not seen before: the Creative Cloud. Traditionally, most Adobe products had only been sold with “perpetual” licensing that doesn’t expire. The flip side is that these best-in-class tools often come with a steep price tag that is out of reach for many folks – though there have always been substantial discounts when upgrading from recent older releases, plus much lower pricing for some market segments like students and teachers…
When Creative Cloud first entered the scene, there was (and still is) some uncertainty about what it meant and where it was going… But despite that skepticism, the Cloud has since gained strong adoption to become the company’s dominant product line with most customers choosing it over CS6, which Adobe still continues to sell for people who want it. With Creative Cloud you receive the newer “CC” release that succeeds CS6 as the latest and greatest toolset, and generally gets high ratings from users.
Related: Compare Features – What’s New in Adobe CC vs. CS6?
Adobe CC is available only via a subscription model which, yes, is cloud-based in some ways – but the name has been called confusing and misconceptions abound because in fact the major applications are not online or web-based, but still run locally on your computer as before. What’s more, the company has been clear that powerful tools like Photoshop may add some online capabilities but will never run completely in the cloud.
[UPDATE (Nov. 2016) – These still work to download the CS6 trials plus Edge Animate 1.5. We also now have Adobe’s all-new CC 2017 Direct Download Links!]
Creative Suite 6 is now available for instant download and direct shipping, and there are many important differences in this release compared to Creative Suite 5, including hundreds of new features added to the individual applications.
Here we’ve put together a complete set of Adobe CS6 direct download links for all the new products (Windows and Mac OS), for instant easy access and the ability to use your own download manager or download assistant if you have any difficulty with what Adobe normally employs and need to get the trials without it…
Whether you’re considering buying a full version or will be upgrading from a prior CS release, or even if you’re getting a volume license or joining the Creative Cloud, you can always use these free trials to install, run, and activate the CS6 software on your system, without needing to reinstall. All of these CS6 trials will run fully for 30 (or possibly more) free days after initial launch.
The 2015 edition of the Creative Cloud is the most powerful and versatile toolset Adobe has ever produced and we’re seeing a lot of demand for good training resources to learn how to best use this fast-growing product…
Last year we posted details on over 1,000 pages of free ebooks for CS6. But if you’re just getting started with the core CC 2015 design tools, what’s better than a step-by-step book that will teach you the essentials of Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign from the ground up?
Fortunately there’s a very helpful new book you can download that will teach you all of this for free, courtesy of author Professor Thomas Payne… The way the book does this is by introducing and explaining the tools in a logical way that builds upon what is previously learned. These applications present a vast array of buttons and gadgets that can be overwhelming to the new user. This book makes sense of it all, not showing how everything works, but instead giving a foundation and a path to learn about all those controls and what they can do for you.
Ever since it was announced seventeen months ago, Adobe made it clear that Creative Cloud was going to be a new way of purchasing their software, an avenue for anyone to use a complete collection of the most recent versions of all of their industry-leading creative tools with a set membership plan.
Last May the company rolled out the offering, and we’ve seen the Creative Cloud continuing to gain momentum – in fact, recently passing millions of members and signing up tens of thousands more every week… Meanwhile, the traditional option of buying a one-time Creative Suite license has remained for those customers who prefer that path.
Since the launch, Adobe has issued numerous free updates to Creative Suite programs (as is customary), as well as several rounds of entirely new CS product features that are only available to Creative Cloud members:
Adobe has just unveiled the new “CC” release to follow CS6 (it’s not CS7) – and one of the upgrade questions people are asking is what’s new, what’s different, what’s changed in CC (Creative Cloud) compared to the previous version? The company says it “brings together everything you need to create your best work with incredible new versions of our flagship desktop tools, services that take publishing content to the next level, and making it easier than ever for creatives to collaborate and share their work worldwide.” So our job here is to give you a quick “cheat sheet” on top new features, to help you decide about upgrading…