Photoshop is the most popular photo editing software around. It is the industry standard today and is used by professionals and hobbyists alike. It is fully featured and allows for an extensive amount of photo editing jobs to be done.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Industry standard
Photoshop is used by professionals everywhere in a wide variety of fields including photography, graphic design and digital art. It is the de facto standard for image manipulation. If you've seen a magazine ad featuring a model, you've probably seen the effects of Photoshop. You won't be alone when using Photoshop.
Pro Lots of tutorials
There's a huge number of both free and paid tutorials available online. Websites like Lynda.com offer premium high-quality, in-depth tutorials, but there are plenty of free alternatives to be found on YouTube, blogs and specialized sites on the Internet.
Pro Packs a staggering amount of functionality
Photoshop is the most fully featured image editing software available today allowing you to perform highly advanced image manipulation.
It has tools for RAW image adjustments, lens correction, retouching, image stitching, HDR, fixing framing. It supports most professional color modes and file formats. It includes extensive lists of filters, styles, effects, fonts as well as tools for painting, sketching and typography work. It understands both raster and vector graphics. It even includes tools for video editing, working with 3D objects and support for 3D printing.
Pro Creative Cloud Photography subscription includes Lightroom
Lightroom is another image editing software from Adobe that's specifically designed for photo editing and managing of large quantities of digital images.
Pro Integrates with Creative Cloud
You can save all projects directly to the Creative Cloud allowing you to access them from any device and with any relevant Adobe software.
Pro A cheaper, standalone version called Photoshop Elements is available
A stripped down version of Photoshop, called Photoshop Elements can be bought as a standalone application for $100.
Pro Trove of plugins that extend functionality are available
A wide variety of plugins that add new effects, improve existing functionality and simplify workflow are available.
Pro Includes powerful content-aware tools
Photoshop includes content-aware tools such as content-aware fill that can fill in a select area based on what surrounds it.
Con Batch editing of images is not straightforward
Photoshop is designed to work extensively on one image at a time and while batch editing support exists, it's not that intuitive to use.
The standalone version of Photoshop costs $19.99/month, though it can be leased as part of the Creative Cloud Photography bundle that includes Lightroom for $9.99/month.
Con Latest versions of Photoshop are subscription-only
While you can still buy CS6 from 2012 without needing a subscription by contacting Adobe support or the cut-down Photoshop Elements, any full-version version of Photoshop past CS6 requires a subscription.
Con Asset management capabilities are lacking
In Photoshop asset management is done through a separate program called Bridge. As Bridge is supposed to be a file management tool for not just Photoshop's files, but for files generated by all of Adobe's applications it covers a breadth of capabilities, but not depth.
Con Learning it can take some time
While you can relatively quickly learn how to perform a few basic image editing tasks, understanding Photoshop's ins and outs can be difficult. It's partially due to the sheer amount of functionality that Photoshop packs (and understanding that some of the advanced functionality can take a while to understand on its own), and partially due to it being aimed at professionals with little hand-holding for novice users.