THE “NEW” DXO NIK COLLECTION FOR PHOTOSHOP CC 2018
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A PROMISE KEPT: THE “NEW” DxO NIK COLLECTION FOR PHOTOSHOP CC 2018 REVIEW!
Let’s rejoice, the “new” DxO Nik Collection for Photoshop CC 2018 is finally here, and here’s my quick review of it!
A bit of history, before starting this DxO Nik Collection for Photoshop CC 2018 review. After Google bought and basically immediately killed the original Nik Collection by stopping further developments with no apparent reasons, I found a workaround to keep using our beloved plugins on Photoshop CC 2018 on Mac OS (see NIK COLLECTION AND PHOTOSHOP CC 2018 for details). However, my solution didn’t work perfectly for everyone, required fiddling with settings, needed a bit of trial and error, and wasn’t consistent on every machine I run it on.
Shortly after I published the article linked above, DxO announced that they bought the Nik Collection from Google, together with their plans to revive it. However, in a further plot twist, on March 7, 2018 DxO filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection, announcing at the same time that they would keep their promise to release a new version of Nik Collection, updated to ensure compatibility with Photoshop CC 2018 on all platforms.
On June 6, 2018, DxO kept their promise, releasing the “new” Nik Collection 2018 by DxO, the long-awaited update of the Collection we loved. Finally! The new release is priced $69 US but is available for purchase for a limited time at a launch price of $49.99 US (download it following this link: NIK COLLECTION 2018 BY DxO). Of course, I immediately went and purchased it, and reviewed it for you here.
Disclaimer: At the time of writing, I am not affiliated with DxO in any way. I am a professional photographer looking for the best equipment for my work, I buy all my gear with my hard-earned cash and I don’t get paid by anyone to write articles for my blog.
The list of new features examined in this DxO Nik Collection for Photoshop CC 2018 review is extremely short, but it makes me very happy nevertheless. Nik Collection 2018 by DxO basically only adds compatibility with the latest 64-bit Mac OS and Windows operating systems, adds compatibility with Adobe Photoshop CC 2018, Adobe Lightroom Classic CC and Adobe Photoshop Elements CC 2017/2018. More, it fixed the Selective Brush, which is now fully operational, and offers DxO Auto-Update as well.
That’s it – basically, no real new features. While I am looking forward to seeing what DxO has in mind for the first of the promised “yearly updates” of the Collection, frankly, having the Collection fully operational again without any quirks is all I needed, so far at least.
If you don’t have an older version installed on your machine, installing the Nik Collection 2018 by DxO is as straightforward as any other install. Make sure to have your activation code received from DxO when purchasing your plugin handy, and just follow the instructions.
If, on the other hand, you had the old Google Nik Collection installed on your machine through the workaround I explained in my post linked above, like I did, my suggestion is to uninstall it first, using the uninstaller that came with the old plugin. Then, go to “Applications -> Adobe Photoshop CC 2018 -> Plug-ins” and delete the “Google” folder where the old plugins resided. Once you did that, just proceed with the new installation as you normally would.
One of the things I was worried about was backward compatibility. In particular, I wanted to see how the new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO would deal with old Photoshop .psd files featuring Smart Object layers with Color Efex or Silver Efex filters from previous versions of the Collection applied.
Reason for my worries was that while my workaround to use the old Google Nik Collection with Photoshop 2018 worked fine applying a Nik filter on a regular Photoshop layer, it sometimes had troubles causing random crashes when applying it to layers turned into Smart Objects. Unfortunately for me, this is something I always do in order to be able to go back and modify my filters if needed.
These crashes showed up mostly on Mac laptops, both mine and those of participants in my Workshops, but sometimes happened on my more powerful iMac and Mac Pro as well.
This made me think that the crashes might (partially, at least) depend on memory and CPU / GPU power, but since I am not a software developer take this as just my impression, nothing more. These random crashes happened: 1. When trying to re-save a filter on a Smart Object layer after re-opening it to re-edit things; 2. When cropping files including a Smart Object layer with a Nik filter on; and 3. When trying to duplicate a Smart Object with a Nik filter on.
So, as soon as I installed my new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO, I went and tried all the above operations on a few old files. I am happy to confirm that DxO kept their promises, and that the new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO works just fine opening older files created with previous versions of the filters applied to Smart Objects as well.
PRESETS OLD AND NEW
The new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO comes with all the old presets you are already familiar with. No new presets have been added and no old presets have been removed, at least as far as I can tell. So, you don’t need to worry about losing all the old presets you loved.
More, if you made any Custom presets that you wanted to keep using with your new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO, you could: happily, they work just fine. If you haven’t saved them before, and you still have your old Google Nik Collection installed, just open your selected plugin in Photoshop, navigate to your favourite custom presets and click “Export” at the bottom of the list. Then, choose a destination and save them. Once you’ll have installed the new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO, open your selected plugin and import your saved presets as you used to do with the previous version.
All the Nik Collection lovers out there can now relax and rejoice, the new Nik Collection 2018 by DxO is here and it works just fine – and, for $49.99 US, is pretty decently priced too. While I am slowly but constantly modifying my workflow to be less and less dependent on plugins, I enjoy the possibility to add a touch of Colour Efex to my images, and I am extremely happy to have Silver Efex available for my Black & White conversions.
In conclusion, all the power of the Nik Collection 2018 by DxO’s filters and their amazing control points is back and is fully compatible with your Adobe CC software: all you need to do is download it, install it and enjoy it!
Thanks for reading this DxO Nik Collection for Photoshop CC 2018 review, I hope you enjoyed it! Why don’t you share it with your friends, or drop me a comment to let me know how you feel about this?
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