Integrated 3D Compatibility
Photoshop CS4 expands on a feature introduced in version CS3; the ability to import 3D models as layers and manipulate them directly in the interface. These functions have been expanded, and it is now possible to paint directly onto a 3D model, and to apply 2D layers to the surface of a 3D model.
CS4 has other 3D features, such as the ability to rotate layers and indeed the entire canvas both in two dimensions, spinning your work around just as though you were drawing in a sketch pad, and also rotating it in three dimensions as though it were mounted on a card. Zooming in and out of the image is also much smoother, rather than the rather lumpy stepped zoom of earlier versions.
All of these advanced features are possible because this latest version of Photoshop is capable of harnessing the graphical power of recent graphics cards designed for 3D gaming, and specifically the Shader Model 3.0 and OpenGL 2.0 capabilities of powerful cards such as the Nvidia 8000 series. A card such as this is required to use all of the features of Photoshop CS4. I’m currently awaiting the arrival of an Nvidia 8800GT graphics card, after which I’ll be writing a full review of CS4, including a look at these advanced features.