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Old 2008-06-13, 17:52   Link #1
Ledgem
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Photoshop vs. GIMP

Greetings all,

I'm sure that this topic has been discussed in various threads, but there has never been a definitive discussion examing the two and perhaps more importantly, going between the two. The closest thing I could find was a discussion comparing OpenCanvas to Photoshop.

I think that everyone here knows what Photoshop is. GIMP is a free, open-source competitor to Photoshop that, in spite of its not-so-catchy name, is rising in popularity.

Photoshop is something of an industry standard, and many of us have spent a lot of time learning how to use it for even basic tasks. However, GIMP's cost of absolutely nothing makes it very appealing when one considers that Photoshop is an incredibly pricey program.

I'm a Photoshop user who isn't pleased with Photoshop's performance under Mac OS X and is very tempted and curious by the fact that GIMP is free. Before I go cluttering up my system with something that I may find unusable, I'd like to ask the opinion of GIMP and GIMP/Photoshop dual users - does GIMP really feel like a poor man's Photoshop? Is it roughly the same, if not better? Stability- and resource-wise how do you find that GIMP compares with Photoshop? To what level of users would you recommend GIMP to (beginner graphic artists, intermediate, advanced, etc.), if at all?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 2008-06-13, 18:21   Link #2
Solace
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Photoshop is a professional design program and GIMP is open source...while GIMP has made a lot of inroads towards coming close to Photoshop it falls short on overall features and plugin support.

For the standard user, such as a signature maker or someone cleaning up photos, both programs can get the job done just fine - we even have some tutorials for GIMP in the sticky tutorial thread.

Performance issues tend to stem from loading large image resolutions and numerous fonts/brushes - from experience I've not noticed GIMP having that much smaller of a performance hit than Photoshop. But that's coming from a Windows user, I can't speak for a Mac environment.

Still, free is free. Unless you use "alternate methods" of acquiring Photoshop, GIMP is one of the best free programs of its kind.
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Old 2008-06-13, 18:27   Link #3
escimo
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As a PC user and a long time PS user, I can't really think of any pros that Gimp would have over PS apart from price and slightly smaller memory usage. However I can come up with quite a list of cons. Though I do have to admit that most of them aren't exactly shortcomings in features but purely matter of personal preferences.

Photoshop's performance is a bit of an issue. If I'm not completely mistaken Mac version of the PS doesn't support Core Animation which could help with the performance. I believe it'll be implemented in the CS4 and to my understanding there's going to be somewhat similar hardware acceleration system on PC as well. I haven't had any problems with Photoshop's stability. CS3 hasn't crashed even once. Gimp isn't bad, not by a long shot, but I've had some stability issues with it.

What it comes to my personal preferences PS wins quite hands down. As said there's not much difference performance wise and in majority of the cases I've found Photoshop's performace better. I absolutely hate Gimp's UI. I just can't handle it. In my opinion it's much clumsier than Photoshop's. One thing that keeps me as a photoshop user is the better interconnectivity with Illustrator which I need to use, much to my irritation. Since Adobe bought Macromedia they dropped freehand which I very much preferred. Acrobat compatibility is superior as well though that's a PoS I'd rather not touch at all.

So other annoys me to death just by it's existence and the other just makes me wait until I die of old age.

I'm hoping that CS4 would actually provide the performance increases Adobe is promising.
One funny observation I've made is that Mac is no more superior platform for Photoshop. In PowerPC days it pretty much was but nowadays PC version of the Photoshop actually seems a bit faster.
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Old 2008-06-13, 18:37   Link #4
Faeyice
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I've been using GIMP ever since my computer crashed and I was unable to recover anything on my computer, including photoshop. GIMP does it's job for cropping, and slight editing for me, but I hate it for making graphics. Normally, a project like I'm doing now would take maybe, thirty minutes. It's been over four hours since I started the project with GIMP. I find myself unable to make graphics in 'my' style anymore. I have to resort to using backgrounds found on the internet, as opposed to making my backgrounds from filters and actions. A lot of the tools I used to make my graphics in PS are not in GIMP.

In other words, for me it sucks. Terribly. If I still had PS, I would have never even considered downloading GIMP.
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Old 2008-06-13, 18:45   Link #5
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Everyone thinks there is better and whatnot to software but in reality there isn't. GIMP is just as good as photoshop, I can do anything in gimp that I can do with photoshop, it just matter of skills. There is really not a whole lot to discuss here, what comes out is really just matter of skill not the software you are using. So the main point is, don't rant about the software when it is matter of your skills.
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:07   Link #6
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I prefer Paint.net, because Gimp have a very confusing and obsolete interface. Photoshop is too complex to hobbyists and very expensive.

To professionals, Photoshop of course.

PS: Sorry if the discussion is not about Paint.net.
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:24   Link #7
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Not to say anything against any of you--but how many people exactly pay for Photoshop, considering its price? Even more considering that most people doing wallpapers and other kinds of hobbyist designer works are probably teenagers unable to come up with a sizable income. And given the general public perception that all software is free, I wonder... if the popularization of Photoshop due to piracy hadn't occurred, what sort of GIMP would we be seeing today? Open source programs advance at the rate of their userbase--the more people using them, the more people will be interested in hacking on them. I'm sure we would be seeing a very, very different GIMP today.

I'm no graphics designer, though I've been toying around as of late with the GIMP due to its inclusion by default on Ubuntu. It serves my needs--image editing. For creation, I've been told there's a quite extensive library of third-party brushes which can possibly outbound the capabilities of Photoshop--but don't take my word for it.

Other than that, the actual technical limitations of the GIMP lie within the lack of CYMK and more than 8-bit per pixel support. My dad has used Photoshop his whole life, but he's a pro designer--he needs those two features.

There's also the GIMPShop, which is supposedly a reworking of the GIMP GUI to resemble that of Photoshop.

By the way, there's Inkscape for those looking for an Illustrator alternative.
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:33   Link #8
Faeyice
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Quote:
Everyone thinks there is better and whatnot to software but in reality there isn't. GIMP is just as good as photoshop, I can do anything in gimp that I can do with photoshop, it just matter of skills. There is really not a whole lot to discuss here, what comes out is really just matter of skill not the software you are using. So the main point is, don't rant about the software when it is matter of your skills.
That depends on the person and how they make their sigs, and what techniques they use. Most of the filters and actions I used in PS are not in GIMP. Therefore, it DOES depend on software, but it also depends on skill as well.

Quote:
Not to say anything against any of you--but how many people exactly pay for Photoshop, considering its price?
I received my version of photoshop last year at Christmas. My father paid for it. ;____; He's the one who actually receives the income for photoshop/computer stuff... He works at the college down the street from my house, and teaches online classes and stuff....
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:39   Link #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Faeyice View Post
That depends on the person and how they make their sigs, and what techniques they use. Most of the filters and actions I used in PS are not in GIMP. Therefore, it DOES depend on software, but it also depends on skill as well.
Rofl, you wanna see me get the same result of the filter in gimp? What filters are is simply doing a process of things compressed into a little tool option. As long as you can make a pixel of color you can always produce the same result. Seriously, for example look at this vid. It really just a matter of skill, kid.
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:48   Link #10
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I haven't used GIMP, but I have been a satisfied user of Photoshop... Elements. I have version 5 though it is up to 6 (I compared what I had to what 6 promised, and decided to stay put).
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:49   Link #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by escimo View Post
I'm hoping that CS4 would actually provide the performance increases Adobe is promising.
Yes, it will. If you have more than 4gig ram and are using windows vista.


Quote:
Originally Posted by WanderingKnight View Post
Not to say anything against any of you--but how many people exactly pay for Photoshop, considering its price?
Yeah right. There's a 30 day trial. Since most of the ppl here don't use it commercially it's no problem.


to gimp: I tried it some times at school since we just have gimp there and the only thing I can say: I hate it.
The windows are appearing and disappearing and everything looks so unfriendly imo -.- Furthermore I didn't find the stuff I'm used to use so it is absolutely annoying me.
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Old 2008-06-13, 19:59   Link #12
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Quote:
Yeah right. There's a 30 day trial. Since most of the ppl here don't use it commercially it's no problem.
Umm... you seriously expect me to believe most teenagers can learn the whole thing and produce good quality stuff only in that timeframe? What would you tell me of the whole of Deviantart?

I'm not disputing the legitimacy or not of piracy... I was merely commenting on the fact that, for most people, the "freeness" of the GIMP is no feature at all.
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Old 2008-06-13, 20:03   Link #13
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GIMP and Photoshop are practically do the same stuff but the different thing about them is that photoshop has more things to it like editing pictures really good. I don't know if Gimp does the same but I like using GIMP. Its free and quite easy.
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Old 2008-06-13, 20:17   Link #14
Izayoi
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Originally Posted by lsley View Post
Sry, I didn't know there were people unable to reinstall
Umm the data for the trial doesn't go away after reinstalling, well it will if you do something about it but not reinstalling. Reinstalling really doesn't help. The thing about learning Photoshop in 30 days? Seriously, it is not hard. Nothing comes in codes or anything. When you click smudge, it smudges. I don't know how deep is that but some people are just shallow.
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Old 2008-06-13, 20:17   Link #15
Solace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WanderingKnight View Post
I'm not disputing the legitimacy or not of piracy... I was merely commenting on the fact that, for most people, the "freeness" of the GIMP is no feature at all.
I'd say it's a feature for those without large bandwidth or people who don't "pirate" and are debating on cost versus functionality.
Quote:
However, GIMP's cost of absolutely nothing makes it very appealing when one considers that Photoshop is an incredibly pricey program.

I'm a Photoshop user who isn't pleased with Photoshop's performance under Mac OS X and is very tempted and curious by the fact that GIMP is free.
From this I can surmise that "freeness" is a feature to Ledgem.



@Setsilya - Awesome. That's some mad skills in that vid.
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Old 2008-06-13, 20:34   Link #16
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Quote:
From this I can surmise that "freeness" is a feature to Ledgem.
Yeah, but he is only one person. I'm sure the ratio of legal Photoshop users vs illegal ones is low, very low.

Quote:
I'd say it's a feature for those without large bandwidth or people who don't "pirate" and are debating on cost versus functionality.
I understand that... but still, that's not a lot of people. As I said, I'm sure most Photoshop users are casual hobbyists that aren't really willing to put that much cash into something that, as the general perception of software goes, is easily available for free. That's why I point out the fact that, perhaps, if Photoshop hadn't become so widely popularized due to piracy, the GIMP would have improved a lot.
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Old 2008-06-13, 20:40   Link #17
Faeyice
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Originally Posted by lsley View Post
to gimp: I tried it some times at school since we just have gimp there and the only thing I can say: I hate it.
The windows are appearing and disappearing and everything looks so unfriendly imo -.- Furthermore I didn't find the stuff I'm used to use so it is absolutely annoying me.
That's basically the problem I have. It's harder for me to use since I don't know where everything is and such. I'll probably become used to it eventually, but I still prefer photoshop.

This whole debate is all going to depend on personal opinions and such though, so it's basically a never ending argument. o.O

Quote:
Rofl, you wanna see me get the same result of the filter in gimp? What filters are is simply doing a process of things compressed into a little tool option. As long as you can make a pixel of color you can always produce the same result. Seriously, for example look at this vid. It really just a matter of skill, kid.
I'm not talking about the same result by making it on your own pixel by pixel or anything. I'm talking about the program not having the same filters and such. I'm not willing to spend tons of time on making a few sparkles when it takes a second for a filter.
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Old 2008-06-13, 21:13   Link #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Faeyice View Post
I'm not talking about the same result by making it on your own pixel by pixel or anything. I'm talking about the program not having the same filters and such. I'm not willing to spend tons of time on making a few sparkles when it takes a second for a filter.
It doesn't take a lot of time to make whatever either, just because you skill is low and that is what result in your inefficiency(time in this case). Simple, no offense or anything. I have several friends who even likes GIMP more than PS, it just matter of personal preference. Not having those filter really doesn't hurt, you can always do it some other way at the same speed with the same efficiency. What software does is basically try and cover those without skill's ineffectiveness.
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Old 2008-06-13, 21:23   Link #19
lsley
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Originally Posted by Setsilya~ View Post
you can always do it some other way at the same speed with the same efficiency.
Yeah, I know someone with 130 kilo who defeatet Usain Bolt in a 100m sprint. He knew a shortcut. ~ Irony

What I want to say with that: Theres a reason why gimp is free and ps not, why all professionals use ps and not gimp.
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Old 2008-06-13, 21:34   Link #20
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Originally Posted by lsley View Post
Yeah, I know someone with 130 kilo who defeatet Usain Bolt in a 100m sprint. He knew a shortcut. ~ Irony

What I want to say with that: Theres a reason why gimp is free and ps not, why all professionals use ps and not gimp.
And how many professionals do you know? ROFL. I seen a lot of Freelance uses GIMP too, there a few professional use them interchangeable.

Edit: Oh just you know, no one really cares because PS/Gimp is simply for touch up and most people uses AF
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