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Adobe Photoshop CS6 beta deploys. Download it now

It features the darker UI that will be a hallmark of Adobe CS6, the clever Content-Aware Patch tool we've mentioned, while a new Mercury Graphics Engine gives a speed boost to tools such as Liquify and Crop.

Want a play yourself? You'll find the Adobe Photoshop CS6 beta lurking in Adobe Labs, here.

Don't forget to check out our Photoshop CS6 review

Why Photoshop CS6 is a big deal

"Photoshop CS6 is a release where we took some lessons from the past and began more aggressively laying down the foundations for the future," says Adobe.

This isn't just another incremental update. Adobe has taken a "more proactive stance on architecture, widespread use of the GPU and a renewed emphasis on UI and design" to produce a product that should be slicker, faster and easier to use.

"We also took some time to revitalize existing feature areas, increase our focus on quality, productivity, and stability, and of course, continue innovating and incorporating your feedback."

In fact, the Adobe Photoshop CS6 beta incorporates 65 features requested by Creative Suite users, including:

  • Contact Sheet II has been restored as an Automate option
  • Ability to record brush strokes in actions with "Allow Tool Recording" option
  • New mode for eyedropper to select layers current and below

You'll find the full list here.

"Photoshop CS6 is not the culmination, but the beginning of a journey to further improve, modernize and transform Photoshop for the future."

Find out more about Adobe CS6.