64 Bit Photoshop!

Posted by Scott

A senior Project Manager at Adobe (John Nack) has announced on his blog that Photoshop CS4 will in fact be available as a  64-bit version on the Windows Platform.  What does this mean? The ability to reference all of your installed memory for one, that is assuming you are running a 64 bit flavor of Windows. Nack quoted that overall performance would increase around 8-12%. I would have to imagine that would get higher when working with very large files and a very large amount of RAM. You could theoretically have all of your temp data reside in RAM and never touch a physical swap drive. Above is a leaked screen-shot of CS4 which I’ve included simply to have a graphic for this post. I can’t vouch for it’s authenticity. (source) I have to say though, that looks just like CS3 and from what I remember from my time at Adobe, when I walked by the PS development area and saw some of the interfaces they were working on, they looked a lot different than this. Although this could just be an un-skinned development version, or it could be complete BS. During a search for this image I also ran across some articles stating that the program itself has been leaked onto the internets.

Here’s the scoop from the original source, John Nack’s blog.

So here’s the catch, and it’s a big one: OS X will not be getting 64 bit Photoshop. Crazy! As I have continually tested the speed of my OS X machine versus that of Windows XP using Photoshop, XP wins handily each time. This new development could widen that gap even further. But at the end of the day, OS X is light years beyond XP in terms of user experience and stability so I want to stick with it. But once CS4 comes out, if the speed tests are better by a significant margin I might have to make the switch back, because really, it’s all about raw performance when you’re trying to crank through the big files.

More on this as it develops.

15 Comments Leave A Comment


PT says:

April 3, 2008 at 6:12 pm

Interesting stuff, I don’t know much about this sort of stuff but.. i think i’ll stick to my Mac..? Ha


Alberto Orsini says:

April 3, 2008 at 7:01 pm

I highly doubt that Adobe uses such bad designs to present their new CS… Even the STONEHENGE font looks weird… and that neon green on the bottom? Anyway, I’ll stick to my Mac, I just made the switch from PC like 2 months ago, and trust me, I am a happier person now.


damo says:

April 3, 2008 at 7:07 pm

I can sense your frustration, as my own with shifting contentions on production of technologies and choosing a dependable resource…especially when any large corporates are purely focused on producing for profit…I can not for the life of me understand why [other than greed] can’t most large corporations co-operate toward a larger purpose in life and amalgamate, as a large super global entity within this economic climate to achieve the best and most affordable technologies for not just the short term profit of the consumer but the more immediate change of living, lifestyle and advancement of knowledge for all. Why haven’t we gone back to the moon? simply because businesses are getting greedier and more selfish and introverted, no more sharing [any recent ad campaigns that emote this is a lie, most adverts are lol] and do not want to combine forces to achieve a result! Communicate and collaborate! and most large companies who dictate that will never actually do it! There is always safety in numbers, in any circumstance!….well thats my little rant :/

But also I was lead to believe that MS also bought Adobe recently? I guess the path to 64bit…

Also recently I have been watching some Brit documentaries on ‘The history of Art’ and ‘How Art Changed the World’…very interesting on how humans visual perceptions have evolved…for example it all extended into politics from Alexander the great being the first to create his own brand, by adorning his head on coins!

Scott have you considered a Australian tour? you could engage with the Semi-Permanent expo? Maybe an event and lecture more aimed at Universities in each state city? I’m sure there would be a great deal of enthusiastic support to see and hear your lectures here in Australia :)

cheers to you Scott!


b says:

April 3, 2008 at 7:20 pm

Switch back to Windows, Scotty!
It’s all about performance, my friend. PERFORMANCE!! :D


Ben Blood says:

April 3, 2008 at 10:07 pm

From Daring Fireball in regard to John Nack at Adobe:

Apple cancelled 64-bit Carbon:

As we wrapped up Photoshop CS3, our plan was to ship 64-bit versions of the next version of Photoshop for both Mac and Windows. On the Mac Photoshop (like the rest of the Creative Suite, not to mention applications like Apple’s Final Cut Pro and iTunes) relies on Apple’s Carbon technology. Apple’s OS team was busy enabling a 64-bit version of Carbon, a prerequisite for letting Carbon-based apps run 64-bit-native.

At the WWDC show last June, however, Adobe and other developers learned that Apple had decided to stop their Carbon 64 efforts. This means that 64-bit Mac apps need to be written to use Cocoa (as Lightroom is) instead of Carbon. This means that we’ll need to rewrite large parts of Photoshop and its plug-ins (potentially affecting over a million lines of code) to move it from Carbon to Cocoa.


Daniel Carvalho says:

April 4, 2008 at 1:58 am

Recently we’ve had in our office PC to MAC conversions, and honestly I don’t see the reason. I find my PC outperforms the MAC’s considerably and development on it faster. This coupled with the fact I’ve had no stability problems with my PC and found that the MAC’s have had more than enough issues already since their inception.

I must say I am really enjoying your sober and seemingly unbiased judgment of the two platforms for development. I’d just like to know exactly why quite a number of design studios are all MAC, every person I’ve asked doesn’t really come up with any decent reason. It seems very preferential.

Although in asking this, I’d hate to ensue a PC vs MAC debate, because those get ridiculous.

– Daniel


Cameron says:

April 4, 2008 at 2:05 am

I prefer OS X because its a nicer OS and faster to use then windows. Its sad that the market has to be so slit.


Vaughan Marais says:

April 4, 2008 at 3:19 am

Without getting too into the OS debate, I am a web designer. Developing enjoyable and functional user interfaces is what I love. Of course it’s totally preferential, but I would never downgrade to a PC.

As for 64-bit Photoshop for the PC, if the performance is that much greater than the Mac version all I’d be tempted to do is install Windows on a partition on my Intel Mac just for Photoshop.


Sven says:

April 7, 2008 at 1:23 pm

Seriously; look(!) at the splashscreen. Adobe wouldn’t make such sheit ever! I love CS3 though; either on PC or MAC.



Scott says:

April 7, 2008 at 1:43 pm

real or not, the idea is that this is a screenshot from an internal working version of the app in development. At that stage it’s just a bunch of programmers so I wouldn’t put it past them to have bag graphics. The massaging comes later.


Rob says:

April 27, 2008 at 8:47 am

I highly doubt Adobe will work towards lightyears of advancement with CS4 for windows in preference over Mac. It simply does not make any sense. 64bit for windows. I am sure Vista is not going to have any problems, HA! quite possibly the worst OS ever created, you need for 4 gigs of ram for it to operate smoothly, now how much does that free up for adobe to utilize? not to mention the one million glitches that windows already faces just running its own microsoft created software. I would go back to OS 9 before ever attempting CS3 on Vista.