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#1 2012-07-07 11:46:13

ninquitassar
Member
From: Italy
Registered: 2012-05-30
Posts: 29

The GIMP vs Photoshop

I read by many amateur photographers and professionals (many of which, however, support opensource world) that the GIMP would be much less potent as an instrument with respect to Photoshop (of course with regard to the photographic postproduction). In any case I never read a real tecnical argumentation of the question. Someone of you knows something about? My suspicion is that the writers of this kind of thing does not know the universe of existing plugins for the gimp. Anyway I do not know so much. Opinions? smile


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#2 2012-07-07 12:10:38

graysky
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Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Photoshop is commercial software and gimp is free.  There is a lot of overlap in features, but honestly, PS is a much more robust product.  Can you use gimp?  Sure.  Is it as powerful for an amateur photographer?  In my experience, no.  That said, I nuked my windows partition a few years ago and have used gimp for my post processing needs.


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#3 2012-07-07 12:20:43

karol
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Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Not sure what's the situation atm, but PS had always had tons of courses, books and tutorials for both beginners and advanced users while Gimp seemed more esoteric.
Many people used a pirated version of PS so they haven't paid a dime for the apps they used anyway.

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#4 2012-07-07 14:09:04

ngoonee
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Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

karol wrote:

Many people used a pirated version of PS so they haven't paid a dime for the apps they used anyway.

Which is probably true but discussion of this particular aspect is not very helpful (and will result in moderator action) anyway. Stick to GIMP/photoshop please. If anyone's been following GIMP's development, its clear they're looking at more professional use-cases. Not being in any way a photo/image-editing professional, I can't comment on that.


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#5 2012-07-07 14:15:38

Grinch
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Registered: 2010-11-07
Posts: 265

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Well as far as photography and post-production goes, afaik the problem with using Gimp has been it's lack of 16-bit color space per channel. This is being rectified by Gimp transitioning to use GEGL, an image processing library which allows for up to 32-bit per channel and non-destructive editing.

That said, while Gimp is great and an amazing achievement given it's meagre development resources, obviously it can't realistically compete with Photoshop which is developed by 20-30 full-time programmers who are likely handpicked for their expertize.

On the other hand it also costs quite alot and probably 99% of people using Photoshop on their home computers today make no use of the extra capacity Photoshop has when compared to Gimp, however just like karol said there's a huge amount of piracy surrounding Photoshop which means that cost is most often not part of the equation.

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#6 2012-07-07 14:26:26

graysky
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Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Grinch wrote:

That said, while Gimp is great and an amazing achievement given it's meagre development resources, obviously it can't realistically compete with Photoshop which is developed by 20-30 full-time programmers who are likely handpicked for their expertize.

Very true and well put.


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#7 2012-07-07 20:16:26

swanson
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From: Sweden
Registered: 2011-02-05
Posts: 759

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

I've worked on an advert agency and did a lot of inhouse repro in PS. Today I use gimp only (private use) and all the most important tools are there. What is most important is how the print shop wants the file. EPS? CMYK? TIFF? That should decide your choice.

On a sidenote, Photographers were seen as conservative and didn't like digital repro in early days. So they were slow in adapting to computers and photoshop. Today it's a whole other ballgame. But maybe Photographers still are conservative but stick to photoshop!

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#8 2012-07-07 20:44:46

uc50ic4more
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From: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Registered: 2011-03-21
Posts: 50

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Photoshop has 1) an entrenched presence in professional shops, 2) works on both Mac's and PC's, 3) has a large user base of professionals, 4) has a wide range of documentation and training, 5) has a surrounding ecosystem of loads and loads of 3rd-party plugins and extensions (both low and very high quality), and 6) has more features (CMYK being the deal-breaker for me).

The GIMP, in my experience and in my opinion, is prohibitively complex and confusing for casual users and not even close to Photoshop for professionals. Pro-sumers might be the golden niche for The GIMP!

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#9 2012-07-07 23:14:41

WorMzy
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From: Scotland
Registered: 2010-06-16
Posts: 5,361

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

As a web developer, the GIMP does everything I need it to do, for free. Photoshop would do the same, but I'd need to use a different OS (or wine) to run it, and fork out several hundred Pounds for the privilege.

I can't speak for photographers, of course. But if I was one, I know which product I'd use: GIMP.


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#10 2012-07-08 00:40:12

uc50ic4more
Member
From: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Registered: 2011-03-21
Posts: 50

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

WorMzy wrote:

I can't speak for photographers, of course. But if I was one, I know which product I'd use: GIMP.

Does GIMP even handle RAW images natively? I thought it relied on a plug-in of sorts (gimp-ufraw or gimp-dcraw) and used one of those external applications to do RAW processing. Either way, even for a photographer I think Photoshop whoops ufraw and/ or dcraw for workflow and features.

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#11 2012-07-08 06:06:29

Bellum
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Registered: 2011-08-24
Posts: 230

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Hum. I really don't know that GIMP is competitive right now. For original art, it sucks. The UI is horrible. There are better solutions even on linux. Check out mypaint! For every-day joes needing to touch up a photo, Pinta probably provides all the features you need with much less hassle. The thread has already covered the use-case for professional photographers.

For now I avoid GIMP. Even 2.8 is not very fun to navigate

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#12 2012-07-11 23:11:03

kalio
Member
Registered: 2012-07-08
Posts: 7

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

I would agree with the artists in the OP; Photoshop is a better tool in almost every aspect. It has features, popularity, maturity, community, and support. I would say, if you only do simple image editing, try to learn GIMP. Although it was hard to adjust at first, nowadays I love using GIMP for simple to intermediate image editing tasks (usually graphics, not photo retouching). I would dual boot for Photoshop if I needed its features.

One thing I love about 2.8 is single-window mode. A much needed feature for a long time. But do I think GIMP is going to eventually catch up to Photoshop? No. That's what people thought five years ago, and nothing major has happened. I think there are two active developers right now. I think that success for GIMP would start with a roadmap and ideas for bringing in more developers.

Last edited by kalio (2012-07-11 23:15:57)

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#13 2012-07-20 07:48:28

Janarto
Member
From: Paris
Registered: 2008-09-23
Posts: 80

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Surely photoshop is a deeper software in terms of functionnalities. But GIMP is "good enough" for any amateur task I can think of.

If you're working in a pro studio, you most likely need to work with the same software as all your colleagues, so that would most likely be photoshop.
I don't know how it behave under wine or a virtual machine

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#14 2012-07-20 07:55:40

litemotiv
Forum Fellow
Registered: 2008-08-01
Posts: 5,026

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

For simple image editing i much prefer online tools such as Pixlr. I would probably use GIMP as well if it had complete PSD support, but now unfortunately i'm forced to keep a Virtualbox with Photoshop around for most design-related work...


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#15 2012-07-20 08:56:17

Awebb
Member
Registered: 2010-05-06
Posts: 4,426

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

GIMP and Photoshop are main the reasons why I never developed a real interest in 2D design. Photoshop was too big to comprehend for a beginner and all the tutorials I read or watched seemed to be aimed at… whoever, not me. I also never liked pirated software but the price made PS impossible for me to buy.

GIMP on the other hand was free, ran on Linux, was hackable and all the tutorials seemed to be written by and for people like me (maniacally self-absorbed geeks) and featured everything… but what I needed to find entry to the world of picture editing. The selection tool was a mess, the GUI the opposite of intuitive and all the FOSS fuzz didn't help me know more about design.

Yes, I have no idea what I have to do in order to make A look like B. Both tools failed to teach me what I can do with them. This is usually not much of a problem, but it seems that the moment my hand hits the mouse, my brain shuts down.

I now use gimp for small tasks like editing a Minecraft texturepack, maybe if something is missing or the gravel is too bright. Cropping, resizing and simple transformation is done with imagemagick, as well as brightness and such things.

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#16 2012-07-20 10:12:30

kalle97
Member
Registered: 2012-07-18
Posts: 80

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Hmm, I've always liked GIMP's interface. It is very easy to understand and very customizeable. Right click to get the menu with all tools, or use the toolbar. Then customize the right and left shortcut window for your liking. I don't understand how ppl can think GIMP's interface is not good. I don't do much photo editing though, just basic stuff like scaling and fixing red eyes. For graphics GIMP seems perfect.

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#17 2012-07-21 23:39:46

Jristz
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From: America/Santiago
Registered: 2011-06-11
Posts: 921

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

I used gimp for all pixel-art or pixel-to-pixel related thinks
is more simple and easy of understand comparing by photoshop

I onl yuse photoshop by teacher request or try to making complex thinks that i no have idea how make in Gimp


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#18 2012-07-22 01:38:01

cfr
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From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,662

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

I have a feeling that GIMP seems counter-intuitive if you used Photoshop first and expect it to be a sort of free-Photoshop. I used Photoshop about once before using GIMP and Photoshop seems to me extremely counter-intuitive. On the other hand, I know there are things you can do with Photoshop which aren't possible in GIMP (maybe in recent versions) such a layer effects and certain kinds of selective undo, "healing" etc.

Note: I don't use GIMP (or anything else) for photographs.


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#19 2012-07-22 10:46:07

kalle97
Member
Registered: 2012-07-18
Posts: 80

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Those features you listed are there in the latest release. tongue

Tbh I've only used PS once, and I couldn't say its interface were that much better, also, I got a photograph friend which I used PS before but switched to GIMP, after a month or two he told me he really liked it and there were only a very few things he had to do in PS. He is a professional photo editor.

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#20 2012-07-22 10:54:58

jakobcreutzfeldt
Member
Registered: 2011-05-12
Posts: 1,033

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

cfr wrote:

I have a feeling that GIMP seems counter-intuitive if you used Photoshop first and expect it to be a sort of free-Photoshop.

I think this is the key. Every time this argument pops up somewhere, a lot of the argument revolves around which one has a more intuitive interface. The fact is that they both have very complex interfaces owing to their respective huge number of features and functions. As soon as you learn your way around one, the other seems completely counterintuitive.

As for features, as others have said, I think that most of the features present in PS but not in GIMP are probably not needed by almost anyone except professionals, and even then, they'd only be needed by a small subset of said pros.

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#21 2012-07-22 10:59:55

kalle97
Member
Registered: 2012-07-18
Posts: 80

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

jakobcreutzfeldt wrote:

I think this is the key. Every time this argument pops up somewhere, a lot of the argument revolves around which one has a more intuitive interface. The fact is that they both have very complex interfaces owing to their respective huge number of features and functions. As soon as you learn your way around one, the other seems completely counterintuitive.

As for features, as others have said, I think that most of the features present in PS but not in GIMP are probably not needed by almost anyone except professionals, and even then, they'd only be needed by a small subset of said pros.

You've nailed it! smile +1

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#22 2012-07-22 11:33:56

litemotiv
Forum Fellow
Registered: 2008-08-01
Posts: 5,026

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

jakobcreutzfeldt wrote:
cfr wrote:

I have a feeling that GIMP seems counter-intuitive if you used Photoshop first and expect it to be a sort of free-Photoshop.

I think this is the key. Every time this argument pops up somewhere, a lot of the argument revolves around which one has a more intuitive interface. The fact is that they both have very complex interfaces owing to their respective huge number of features and functions. As soon as you learn your way around one, the other seems completely counterintuitive.

As for features, as others have said, I think that most of the features present in PS but not in GIMP are probably not needed by almost anyone except professionals, and even then, they'd only be needed by a small subset of said pros.

I personally have used Photoshop since version 4.0 (1996), and i can clearly remember that even the very first time i used it, i found it intuitive and straightforward to work with. I came from Corel Photopaint at the time and Photoshop really had the better UI. Adobe has always invested a lot of effort (read: money) into providing very powerful editing features in a clear and consistent user interface, and even with the incredible amount of functionality it has today i still consider that one of it's strongest points.

Gimp i first tried around 2006, and i found it a lot less straightforward and simple in UX-terms. I'm not sure why, perhaps using Gimp requires more a "programmer" way of thinking, but it didn't really work for me (perhaps the more recent versions are better though, i haven't tried).

I don't feel it's because i "used Photoshop first", because i've used other image-editing programs in the meantime, like Fireworks (before it was acquired by Adobe) and Paint Shop Pro, and didn't have any trouble using those.


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#23 2012-07-22 14:28:13

cfr
Member
From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,662

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Perhaps. But that doesn't explain why people who are used to GIMP then find PS less than intuitive. (And I'm certainly no programmer!)


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#24 2012-07-23 23:06:40

Aslan
Member
From: Znamenskoye, Chechnya
Registered: 2011-11-03
Posts: 13

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

I work at graphics for a living. When people ask me what they might use for editing images if they can't afford Photoshop I would like to recommend GIMP as an alternative but I just can't! When you say that name in an English speaking country you always get funny looks! Pulp Fiction always gets quoted!

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#25 2012-07-23 23:12:18

karol
Archivist
Registered: 2009-05-06
Posts: 25,430

Re: The GIMP vs Photoshop

Aslan wrote:

II would like to recommend GIMP as an alternative but I just can't![ When you say that name in an English speaking country you always get funny looks!

You should say 'Ga-noo Image Manipulation Program'.

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