Adobe caused a stir last November after changing its upgrade policy to only cover one version back instead of three. This meant that only Photoshop CS5 owners would qualify for the upgrade price on CS6 when it’s launched, leaving CS3 and CS4 owners the not-so-nice option of buying the CS5 upgrade before buying the CS6 one. Perhaps in response to the angry customer response, Adobe announced a “special offer” for CS3 and CS4 owners today:
[...] we want to make sure our customers have plenty of time to determine which offering is best for them. Therefore, we’re pleased to announce that we will offer special introductory upgrade pricing on Creative Suite 6 to customers who own CS3 or CS4. This offer will be available from the time CS6 is released until December 31, 2012.
We’ll find out just how much of a discount those users will receive once CS6 is released. It also appears that Adobe isn’t planning to restore the old upgrade policy — today’s announcement is more of a one-time fix for angry customers.
(via Adobe via John Nack)
Image credit: Adobe Creative Sweet CS5 by pcfishhk
Last week we reported that starting with Adobe CS6, only people who own the previous major release of the software (i.e. CS5 and above) will be eligible for upgrade pricing. Needless to say, Photoshop users are’t too happy about the changes, and now National Association of Photoshop Professionals president Scott Kelby is weighing in. In an open letter to Adobe, he writes,
While I understand that Adobe needs to make business decisions based on how it sees market conditions, I feel the timing of this new pricing structure is patently unfair to your customers (and our members). Here’s why: You didn’t tell us up front. You didn’t tell us until nearly the end of the product’s life cycle, and now you’re making us buy CS5.5 for just a few months on the chance that we might want to buy CS6 at a discount when it’s released. Otherwise, we have to pay the full price as if we were never Adobe customers at all.
Kelby also makes a plea for Adobe to either start the new policy with CS7 or to offer a tiered upgrade structure in which upgrade price is based on how recent your version is. That definitely makes more sense than having CS4 users pay full price to upgrade to CS6.
An Open Letter To Adobe Systems [Scott Kelby]
If you’ve been waiting to upgrade Photoshop CS3 or CS4 to CS6 when it’s released sometime next year, here’s some bad news: the upgrade price won’t apply to you. Starting with CS6, Adobe will be enforcing a new upgrade policy:
[...] we are changing our policy for perpetual license customers. In order to qualify for upgrade pricing when CS6 releases, customers will need to be on the latest version of our software (either CS5 or CS5.5 editions). If our customers are not yet on those versions, we’re offering a 20% discount through December 31, 2011 which will qualify them for upgrade pricing when we release CS6.
The existing policy is that customers with software from three versions back quality for upgrade pricing. For example, owners of CS2, CS3, and CS4 and upgrade to CS5. Buying the full version of Photoshop CS5 right now costs nearly $500, while the upgrade is only priced at ~$150.
(via Adobe via PhotoWalkthrough)
Image credit: Adobe CS5 nude by pcsiteuk
Update: The deal prices seem to be fluctuating. They might not be what our screenshot shows.
In the market for memory cards? B&H is currently offering SanDisk Compact Flash cards at crazy prices. They’re listing Extreme Pro cards at less than 50% of the price offered at other retailers. For example, a 16GB Extreme Pro card currently costs $60 (with free shipping in the US) from B&H but $130+ at most other places.
SanDisk Compact Flash Cards [B&H Photo Video]
Thanks for sending in the tip, Tyler!
According to Nikon Rumors, Nikon has introduced a new Unilateral Pricing Policy on DSLR gear sold in the US that will take effect on October 16th. Saying that the policy is “designed to allow customers to make purchasing decisions based on service provided and not have to worry about hunting for a better price”, Nikon plans to withhold sales to any store caught pricing equipment below “national prices” that the company will set for each product.
You probably know that, like computers, digital cameras depreciate pretty rapidly — especially when a replacement model is announced every 2 or 3 years. A sad truth about digital cameras is that the digital sensor inside DSLRs cause them to be more expensive than comparable film SLRs when purchased new, yet less valuable further down the road when purchased used. Ken Rockwell calls this “digital rot“, and writes,
Digital Rot means that a camera’s digital guts rot-out its value in just a few years because you can’t remove the digital guts. Sadly, Digital Rot is a disease shared by all digital cameras.
Buy a film camera and you can shoot it for a lifetime. Buy an expensive digital camera, and you only get a few years out of it before its value rots away.
A “new in box” Nikon F5 film SLR just sold for $1,350 on eBay yesterday. How much do you think a “new in box” 2.7 megapixel Nikon D1 (a camera that cost $5,000 in 2000) would sell for today?
If you’re looking for a fun photography-related way to invest some money, you might want to look into photobook collecting. The Guardian writes that prices have been soaring in recent years, and not just for expensive rare editions:
Photobooks are expensive to produce and, while demand is too small to warrant long print runs or multiple reprints, it is large enough that the books remain desirable, soon become scarce and can eventually be very valuable. This means new editions costing between £20 and £60 can double or triple in price in as little as two to five years. In 10 or 20 years – and if the work of the photographer becomes particularly fashionable – the price may increase even more.
[...] one of the great things about photobook collecting is discovering the work of emerging photographers whose early books may become sought after. A good place to look is among the current boom in self-published titles.
They also list a number of currently in-print photobooks that can help you get started.
Photobooks – affordable collectibles that are soaring in value [The Guardian]
Image credit: Paris Photobook by rthakrar
Last week we featured Shopobot, a new website that can show you the price history of camera gear and tell you whether it’s stable or not. Decide is a new service (just launched yesterday) that goes a step further — it not only tells you whether to buy or not based on price stability, but checks to see whether there’s a newer model available or likely to be announced in the near future. The service bases each decision on 40 price factors, historical trends, and relevant rumors regarding upcoming announcements. With a new camera being announced every 45 hours on average, Decide might just help you avoid the pain of buyers remorse.
Decide (via Mashable)
Update: A reader reports that the retailer AJRichard (which reportedly does bait and switch scams) is listed on Decide. Be smart when choosing where to purchase from! (Thanks Ryan!)
Shopobot is a new shopping tool that helps buyers determine the best price to buy products from various retailers by tracking their price changes across time. Retailers often change the prices of different items often to determine the best price point, which can cause frustration for people who buy a product only to find it $50 cheaper the next day. If you’re looking to buy a camera, lens, or any other piece of gear, you might benefit from doing a quick search on Shopobot to find the price history of that item.
Shopobot (via Reuters)
Apparently Sigma was aiming for a much lower price when developing the SD1 DSLR, but was forced to price it high after putting in whole bunch of “great stuff”. The company’s Chief Operating Officer Kazuto Yamaki is responding to user complaints on Twitter with some apologetic Tweets, saying the company had missed the price range that they had originally targeted. Perhaps the SD1 wasn’t designed as a halo product after all…
(via 1001 Noisy Cameras)