Q&A: Is Photoshop 6 The Same As “CS6”?

Adobe Elements 11, Lightroom 4, and Photoshop CS6

Adobe Elements 11, Lightroom 4, and Photoshop CS6

Question:  “I’m looking at photography courses online. The courses are free but some require students to own or have access to various versions of Photoshop. Does anyone know if Photoshop 6 is the same as Photoshop CS6?”

Answer:   The short answer is no.

Photoshop 6 (PS6 for short) is not the same as Photoshop CS6 (CS6 for short). Adobe began renumbering Photoshop with the CS series by giving what would have been Photoshop 8 the name “CS”. This was followed by CS2 (version 9) and so on. Photoshop CS6 would be version 13 if they had kept the old numbering system.

PS 6 came out in 2000. CS6 came out in 2012.

Here’s a list of the Photoshop versions, the year released, and the new features added to each version.

In terms of the basics, like levels, curves, hue/saturation, layers, the clone stamp tool and a number of other tools, PS6 does the same stuff as CS6, though not in as elegant or refined or in some cases as accurate a way. PS6 lacks the newer tools like the healing brush which is very useful and does some things much better than the clone stamp tool. PS6 doesn’t have the spot healing brush either.

PS6 is a Ford or Chevy, CS6 is a Porsche or Ferrari.

PS6 was great in its day, and for a person who hasn’t used Photoshop before, PS6 will feel like a wonderful tool for working on images.

However, my guess is the online course will ask you to do a lot of things that PS6 won’t do. But the courses are free, so you aren’t risking any money. It is possible that a lot of the stuff in the online courses would be do-able with PS6. The question is, will you find it frustrating if you can’t do half the stuff in the courses due to using a seriously outdated version of Photoshop?

Ignoring the online courses for a moment, Photoshop Elements 11 has all the image editing tools many photographers will ever need for less than $80.  There are also a lot of excellent books out there for learning how to use Photoshop Elements and Adobe Photoshop. See the articles linked below.


My article on the Best Image Editing Software.

My article on the Best Basic And Intermediate Books On Photoshop And Digital Photography.

My article on The Best Books: Mastering Photoshop Series.

Order Photoshop Elements 11, Adobe Lightroom 4, or Photoshop CS6 at my photography store which is powered by Amazon.com’s great prices, ordering system, and service.

Order from a selection of the best digital photography and Photoshop books at my photography store.

Order from the Mastering Photoshop Series of books for the advanced Photoshop user.