Subject: Re: im missing the point re ACR 3.3 vs Pshop CS2
Hopefully some of the ACR Cheerleaders in this forum haven't driven you away.
That said, the answer to your question is that there is in fact very little editing that you can do in ACR that you can't also accomplish in Photoshop. And I've found Photoshop generally does a far better qualitative job of the task(s), as well. For example, curves in PS allows you to tweak each individual color channel and also do RGB tonal corrections in luminosity mode without undue influences on color saturation.
But ACR can often recover highlight and shadow detail better, which is difficult to do in Photoshop without incurring some occasionally undesirable clipping. White balance is also much easier to deal with in ACR. If you're willing to deal with the headaches of color calibration, ACR can also be quite useful although you can still compensate in Photoshop with more effort.
Bruce's book is good reading, I've read it. But beware of the pitfall whereby he leads you to believe that ACR is in fact a mini-Photoshop of sorts. That may be ok for sending mass quantities of preliminary proofs to clients. Otherwise, just learn what the tools do and edit as much as you can in Photoshop.
But I think an even better investment of funds (seeing as you are learning both CS2 and ACR)would be to purchase Martin Evening's book Adobe Photoshop CS2 For Photographers. You'll learn the basics of RAW and ACR along with a lot more that you can do in Photoshop. If you primarily need to rush proofs out the door then get Bruce's book, as well.
Hope this post has been helpful to you.
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