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  1. #1

    fleurya's Avatar
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    Photoshop - Academic vs. retail, difference?
    I've been shopping around for Photoshop. I can get an academic version of CS3 extended for $300. I was hoping retailers would be practically giving away CS2 for less, but it doesn't look that way.

    On some sites, like Ebay, I see sellers promoting their product by mentioning it's not an academic version. What are the differences, if any, between a typical retail version and the academic version?

    Thanks.

  2. #2


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    I haven't checked in a while but I believe Academic versions are not eligible for upgrades
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  3. #3

    PunkRockTuba's Avatar
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    Thats correct, you can't upgrade the academic versions and I think the license is different. As far as actual usage and tools and things, its the exact same.

  4. #4

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    Academic software is full-featured, registerable, upgradeable software that is offered at a discount to individuals who are students or faculty. The software often does not come with manuals, but if you can afford to purchase a good instructional book in addition to the software than you got a good deal.
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by trpnmonkey41 View Post
    I haven't checked in a while but I believe Academic versions are not eligible for upgrades
    I know that is true with Final Cut Studio, but I don't know about PhotoShop.
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  6. #6


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    I dont think you can use Academic versions for any sort of commercial use... maybe Im wrong. But I know thats the way that my Director MX was.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by johntalin View Post
    Academic software is full-featured, registerable, upgradeable software that is offered at a discount to individuals who are students or faculty. The software often does not come with manuals, but if you can afford to purchase a good instructional book in addition to the software than you got a good deal.
    John is correct...however the other thing about the educational version is the licenses are non-transferable so if someone trys to sell you the educational version used you will not be able to register it.

    The Adobe site has the user agreement for CS2 available online, did not see one for the new CS3 but would assume it to be similar.

    Read paragraph 4.4 for transfer of license when selling the product, it specifically prohibits the sale of the educational license.
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  8. #8

    fleurya's Avatar
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    THanks for all the info. As long as all the features are there, the upgrade isn't as big of a deal. I've read that some software does allow for upgrades, so I'll have to dig through the agreement to find out for Photoshop.

  9. #9


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    Quote Originally Posted by iRock View Post
    I dont think you can use Academic versions for any sort of commercial use... maybe Im wrong. But I know thats the way that my Director MX was.
    That is true. If Adobe finds you using the programs for a business and you have a education license they can sue you for all your worth.
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  10. #10

    Odin_aa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rman View Post
    I know that is true with Final Cut Studio, but I don't know about PhotoShop.
    I owned the academic version of Photoshop for my PC and upgraded with no problem to a regular version (This was CS to CS2 upgrade with academic CS to regular CS2).

    If you have any questions and want to be sure prior to making a purchase the best source of information is Adobe themselves. Their customer service line has always been extremely friendly and willing to answer any of my questions.
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  11. #11

    laimonas.s's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eric06 View Post
    That is true. If Adobe finds you using the programs for a business and you have a education license they can sue you for all your worth.
    im sure the chance of getting caught is pretty small
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  12. #12

    fleurya's Avatar
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    Honestly, even if Adobe suspected material you use for business was produced using academic software, they really have no way to prove it. Since I have no intention of making any kind of business out of it, I have no worries about it.

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