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Harald E Brandt
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3.2 RC bug: PDF slideshows lack output sharpening

Aug 29, 2010 11:41 AM

I compared the pdf slideshows that version 2.7 has generated with those that version 3.2 RC generates, using exactly the same "untouched" images, and it is very clearly so that while version 2.7 produces images with a suitable sharpening, the images from 3.2 RC are much softer and seem to completely lack this output sharpening. This lack of output sharpening happens regardless of which 'Process version' the images are developed in.

I reported this on the bug reporter.
/Harald

 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 31, 2010 9:24 AM   in reply to Harald E Brandt

    Hi Harald, I'm pretty sure the final version of 3.2 had been in the can for a few days for release after a testing period, so I suspect your report was too late for this cycle.

     
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    Jun 23, 2011 9:42 AM   in reply to Seán McCormack

    Exporting a slide show to PDF still results in rather soft images in LR3.4.1.  Is there any option to sharpen when exporting a slide show to PDF?

     
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    Jun 23, 2011 10:51 AM   in reply to CSS Simon

    The softness occurs when adding a stroke border, or at least it was with LR 3.2. See this post concerning LR 3.2:

     

    http://forums.adobe.com/message/3432562#3432562

     

    Interestingly, I just tried this again with LR 3.4.1 and the stroke border does not appear to be causing softness.What LR slideshow template, border stroke etc. and resolution settings are you using, and how are you viewing the exported PDF files?

     
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    Jun 23, 2011 12:57 PM   in reply to trshaner

    trshaner wrote:

     

    The softness occurs when adding a stroke border, or at least it was with LR 3.2. See this post concerning LR 3.2:

     

    http://forums.adobe.com/message/3432562#3432562

     

    Interestingly, I just tried this again with LR 3.4.1 and the stroke border does not appear to be causing softness.What LR slideshow template, border stroke etc. and resolution settings are you using, and how are you viewing the exported PDF files?

    Default template, 1024x768, most things unticked in the slide show except "Stroke Border" (1px).  Viewed with Adobe reader.  I tried with no stroke border and it was less soft, but still not very sharp.

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 6:58 AM   in reply to CSS Simon

    Here's an excerpt from the link I provided:

     

    A lot of people have trouble making sure they are seeing images unscaled ("100%" is not always what you would think is "100%"). If you would like the convenience of setting the Acrobat zoom to 100% in order to see 1 image pixel mapped to 1 monitor pixel (actually a monitor RGB-triplet) you can go into Acrobat's preferences and set Page Display > Resolution to 72 pixels per inch. But as always, the truest way to be absolutely guaranteed to avoid scaling is always to export images from Acrobat as I described, and then view them in Photoshop, or alternatively to view the slideshow fullscreen on a monitor that really has precisely that pixel dimensions of the pdf.

     

    If you are viewing at 100% in Acrobat Reader with the default page display resolution of 110 pixels/inch, your images will NOT look as sharp. This is because as Harald Brandt stated, you are actually seeing the image displayed at higher than 100% magnification. Try resetting the resolution in Adobe Reader at Edit>Preferences>Page Display>Resolution>Custom Resolution to 72 pixels/inch. The slideshow images in the PDF will then display correctly at 1:1 pixels with 100% view setting.

     

    When viewing the PDF slideshow in Acrobat Reader with 'Full Screen mode' your images will still appear soft if the LR Export resolution is less than the monitor resolution. Again, this is because you are viewing the images onscreen at more than 100% magnification. Select a LR slideshow export resolution for the largest monitor size you expect it to be viewed on. When using a widescreen monitor (1920 x 1080) you should also consider using a different template like LR's 'Widescreen' template. Also try experimenting with and without 'Guides' to better fit your slideshow template content (image, text, identity plate, etc.) to the target monitor's aspect ratio.

     

    If this still doesn't produce the results you are looking for, please provide more information:

     

    Camera model, RAW/JPEG, resolution shot at. etc.

     

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 7:59 AM   in reply to trshaner

    trshaner wrote:

     

    Here's an excerpt from the link I provided:

     

    When viewing the PDF slideshow in Acrobat Reader with 'Full Screen mode' your images will still appear soft if the LR Export resolution is less than the monitor resolution. Again, this is because you are viewing the images onscreen at more than 100% magnification. Select a LR slideshow export resolution for the largest monitor size you expect it to be viewed on. When using a widescreen monitor (1920 x 1080) you should also consider using a different template like LR's 'Widescreen' template. Also try experimenting with and without 'Guides' to better fit your slideshow template content (image, text, identity plate, etc.) to the target monitor's aspect ratio.

     

    Thanks for the answer.

     

    Let me explain what I am doing.   For my purpose, I am required to use 1024x768 resolution; that's not a variable here.

     

    I've created a pdf in 4 ways:

    1. Creating a slideshow in LR, exporting as PDF, specifying 1024x768
    2. Creating a slideshow in Photoshop Elements and saving as PDF, specifying 1024x768
    3. Exporting a PDF from LR at resolution 1024x768 and creating a PDF with Acrobat
    4. Exporting a PDF from LR at resolution 1024x768 and creating a PDF with a utility from the UK Open University (sorry, this isn't publically available)

     

    Methods 2, 3 and 4 produce images markedly sharper than  method 1 (even though the file size is in some cases smaller).

     

    Any explanation?  Why is there no option of output sharpening in LR?

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 12:34 PM   in reply to CSS Simon

    I've created a pdf in 4 ways:

    1. Creating a slideshow in LR, exporting as PDF, specifying 1024x768
    2. Creating a slideshow in Photoshop Elements and saving as PDF, specifying 1024x768
    3. Exporting a PDF from LR at resolution 1024x768 and creating a PDF with Acrobat
    4. Exporting a PDF from LR at resolution 1024x768 and creating a PDF with a utility from the UK Open University (sorry, this isn't publically available)

     

    Methods 2, 3 and 4 produce images markedly sharper than method 1 (even though the file size is in some cases smaller).

     

    Any explanation? Why is there no option of output sharpening in LR?

     

    I'm not sure what you mean in 3. and 4. methods. Did you mean to say 'Export JPEG Slideshow from LR?'

     

    I suggest taking each of the above four PDF files and open them in Adobe Acrobat (I assume you have Acrobat, and not just Adobe Reader). Then select File>Export>Image>JPEG, import into LR, and compare them at 100%. Do the PDF exported JPEGs image files exhibit differences in sharpness? Is the JPEG image resolution 1,024 x 768 for all four methods? Is the actual picture (not the template) the same size in each JPEG file?

     

    I can assure you that LR 3.4.1 does apply sharpening to the images for all three Slideshow Export modes PDF, JPEG and Video. My LR PDF slideshows are critically sharp at all resolutions, including 480 x320, 800 x 600, 1,024 x 768, 1280 x 1,024 and 1,920 x 1080. I wouldn't want them any sharper, especially as they appear at 1,024 x 768 and lower resolutions. I am using a Canon 5D MkII 21Mp with RAW image files in LR.

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 1:14 PM   in reply to trshaner

    Sorry for my typo, I meant "Export jpeg from LR" as you guessed. And I exported with sharpening set "for screen" and "standard"

     

    It's strange, as in my case the slide show exported from LR to PDF is definitely less sharp than the other three methods.  If I set stroke border to zero, it's sharper, but still not as sharp as the other methods.  Anyway, no insuperable problem as I've other methods of creating a PDF slide show.

     

    It is odd, though: if I export to jpeg I can specify sharpening.  If I export a slideshow to pdf I can't specify sharpening.  And, on my machine, the resulting images (from the slideshow-to-pdf route) are markedly less sharp.

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 2:08 PM   in reply to CSS Simon

    What camera images are you working on in LR Slideshow module: Make, Model, Resolution, RAW or JPEG, any special editing done in LR, etc.

     

    What kind of monitor are you viewing the PDFs on?

     

    Adobe uses fixed "screen" sharpening for Slideshow module, since it's output is destined for screen viewing only. There was a similar issue with LR 3.0, which was fixed in 3.3 or 3.4, but you say you are using 3.4.1 correct? Clearly something is different with your PDF slideshow output results than mine. Please provide the above requested informtion, which may (or may not) be part of the puzzle.

     

    Does anyone else have ideas, or can share their experience using LR 3.4.1 PDF Slideshow?

     
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    Jun 24, 2011 2:15 PM   in reply to trshaner

    Thanks for your reply.  In answer:

     

    Nikon D300, raw images.  Editing varies - some are tifs that have been to Photoshop and back. Some have had just limited LR editing.

     

    Monitor: I've two, and elderly Samsung 193P and a newer HP LP2475w (wide gamut), both profiled/calibrated with an Eye One Display 2 (currently using Argyll software).  Lightroom version is 3.4.1.

     
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    Jun 25, 2011 7:06 PM   in reply to CSS Simon

    Did you try the suggestion in my previous reply? What were your results?

     

    I suggest taking each of the above four PDF files and open them in Adobe Acrobat (I assume you have Acrobat, and not just Adobe Reader). Then select File>Export>Image>JPEG, import into LR, and compare them at 100%. Do the PDF exported JPEGs image files exhibit differences in sharpness? Is the JPEG image resolution 1,024 x 768 for all four methods? Is the actual picture (not the template) the same size in each JPEG file?

     

    I've just created 1024 x768 PDF slideshows using images from three different cameras (300D 6Mp, 600D 18Mp and 5D MKII 21Mp) and they all image very sharply! Perhaps you can explain this statement a little further:

     

    Let me explain what I am doing. For my purpose, I am required to use 1024x768 resolution; that's not a variable here.

     

    PDF files are not limited to being viewed at one (1) resolution, such as 1024 x 768. So your statement "that's not a variable" makes no sense whatsoever, except perhaps to help constrain the PDF file size. I suggest you try using a higher PDF Export resolution and lower Quality setting, if necessary to keep the file size smaller. If there is some other reason you MUST use 1024 x 768, please explain in more detail. I believe this is your problem!

     
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    Jun 26, 2011 2:48 PM   in reply to trshaner

    trshaner wrote:

     

    Did you try the suggestion in my previous reply? What were your results?

     

    I suggest taking each of the above four PDF files and open them in Adobe Acrobat (I assume you have Acrobat, and not just Adobe Reader). Then select File>Export>Image>JPEG, import into LR, and compare them at 100%. Do the PDF exported JPEGs image files exhibit differences in sharpness? Is the JPEG image resolution 1,024 x 768 for all four methods? Is the actual picture (not the template) the same size in each JPEG file?

     

    I've just created 1024 x768 PDF slideshows using images from three different cameras (300D 6Mp, 600D 18Mp and 5D MKII 21Mp) and they all image very sharply! Perhaps you can explain this statement a little further:

     

    Let me explain what I am doing. For my purpose, I am required to use 1024x768 resolution; that's not a variable here.

     

    PDF files are not limited to being viewed at one (1) resolution, such as 1024 x 768. So your statement "that's not a variable" makes no sense whatsoever, except perhaps to help constrain the PDF file size. I suggest you try using a higher PDF Export resolution and lower Quality setting, if necessary to keep the file size smaller. If there is some other reason you MUST use 1024 x 768, please explain in more detail. I believe this is your problem!

    Thanks for your reply.

     

    I did what you suggest.

    The images where all 1024x768 (or less - some weren't exactly that shape, but were constrained to not more than 1024 horizontal and 768 vertical).

    I'm not sure what you mean by

    Is the actual picture (not the template) the same size in each JPEG file?

    All I know is that the images in slideshows exported to pdf from Lightroom are markedly less sharp than a PDF of images exported from Lightroom as jpeg (same resolution) and then created as a PDF using Acrobat.

     

    I've found part of the reason, but it doesn't totally explain it.  There is a "feature" of LR slideshow PDF export where sometimes it alters the proportions erroneously on export a slideshow.  For example, I specified 1024x768 in the slideshow PDF export.  So I would expect it to scale the image size to fit within those dimensions.  As an example of where it worked correctly, one portrait image got rescaled to 588x768, in order to fit within the maximum 1024x768.  Fine, it kept the proportions of the image.

     

    But one image was landscape but in the proportions 1024x683.  Instead of creating an image in those dimensions, it stretched the vertical dimension to 768!  It actually created the image as 1024x768, disregarding the proportions of the original image.  However, even if I told it to use 1024x683, the image in the pdf was still less sharp than by exporting as jpeg and creating a pdf in Acrobat.

     

    I'm giving up.  I believe that LR slideshow export to pdf is probably buggy, but I have an alternative of creating pdfs in a more controlled way and I haven't got time to investigate further.

     

    I've put relevant PDFs at:

    http://www.simongarrett.co.uk/Clock_parts_slideshow_from_LR_exact_size _1024x683.pdf

    http://www.simongarrett.co.uk/Clock_parts_slideshow_from_LR_1024x768.p df

    http://www.simongarrett.co.uk/Clock_parts_export_from_LR_to_jpeg_then_ Acrobat_1024x768.pdf

     

    The titles are long-winded but self explanatory, I hope.  The last one, exported from LR (1024x768) then created as a PDF in Acrobat it much sharper than the others, created by exporting a Lightroom slideshow as pdf.  Why?  And why does LR alter the proportions on some (but not all) images?

     
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    Jun 27, 2011 7:07 AM   in reply to CSS Simon

    I'm not sure what you mean by

    Is the actual picture (not the template) the same size in each JPEG file?


    Is the picture image inside the black template the same? In the three files you posted the images (and templates) are all different sizes, so not a valid comparison!

     

    Try using the Widescreen template without stroke border or guides. I created two 1024x768 PDFs form LR using widescreen template with those settings:

     

    Test_Widescreen_1024x768.pdf

     

    ExportJPEG1024x768.pdf

     

    The first is a 1024 x768 PDF export from LR Slideshow module using full size 5D MKII 21Mp RAW image files. The second was created using Exported 1024 x768 JPEG files with ‘Screen’ ‘Standard’ sharpening using Adobe Acrobat Pro 9, ‘Create PDF’ .

     

    I have Acrobat Pro 9 and Adobe Reader X set for 72 pixels/inch, as mentioned previously. I am viewing the ‘Test Widescreen 1024x768.pdf at 100% and the ExportJPEG1024x768 at 333% for 1:1 pixel mapping. The ExportJPEG1024x768.pdf is just perceptibly sharper than the direct LR Slideshow PDF Export, but not necessarily better.

     

    Concerning some of your other questions, I suggest you experiment using different template types. If you are adding text in the template (off the image!), use ‘Guides.’ Some of the slideshow setup tools such as guides are NOT intuitively obvious and may produce unexpected template aspect ratios. When using mixed landscape and portrait images LR will “resize” the portrait images to fit the template height, without changing the aspect ratio. I have created a few custom templates for specific purposes, such as for widescreen 1920 x1080 display resolution and a standard 1280 x1024 display resolution, both with caption text and Identity plate.

     

    Since I don’t have a 12Mp camera, there is no way I can duplicate your RAW image resolution workflow. It may very well be that LR is doing something wacky with 12Mp to 1,024 x 768 PDF slideshows (concerning sharpening), but not when using larger 21Mp or 18Mp images and smaller 6Mp RAW images. I have confirmed these three RAW image sizes work very well with 1024 x768 Slideshow output, as well as lower and higher resolutions.

     

    Is there anyone else who can share their experience with 12Mp RAW image files in LR’s slideshow module?

     
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    Jun 27, 2011 3:25 PM   in reply to trshaner

    Thanks for the reply.  I think I was using the default LR template, with pretty much everything optional turned off (guides, identity plate etc.)  Very strange that adding a stroke border should reduce the sharpness?  That's perverse.  However, for my purposes, exporting from LR to jpeg, then creating pdfs in Acrobat seems to be more predictable (and sharper, the way I do it).

     
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    Jul 8, 2011 10:42 AM   in reply to Harald E Brandt

    Hi Harald,

     

    I'm beginning to suspect that LR's Slideshow Module is doing something different with RAW image files in the 10-12Mp size range. I have created 1,920x1080, 1280x1024, and 1,024x768, and 480x340 Slideshow PDFs using Canon 5D MKII (21Mp), Canon 600D (18Mp), and 300D (6Mp) RAW image files. Stroke Border has not affect on image sharpness with my 21Mp, 18Mp, and 6Mp RAW image files!

     

    Here are two PDF exported JPEGs using LR 3.4.1 and 5D MKII RAW image files, with and without a 1px stroke border, at 480 x 340, 90% quality. I examined them at 400% and see no difference other than single pixel shifts due to the slightly smaller image size in the 1px stroke border PDF. The JPEG images were obtained from the LR PDF slideshow using Acrobat 9 Pro menu Advanced>Document Processing>Export All Images.

     

    You will need to "double-click" on each image, or "double-click and download them to see the actual sharpness:

     

            1px Stroke Border

    Canon_600D_480x340_1pxStrokeBorder_Page_2_Image_0001.jpg

     

            No Stroke Border

    Canon_600D_480x340_NoStrokeBorder_Page_2_Image_0001.jpg

    I'll try shooting some images with my 5D MKII in 10Mp SRAW1 mode (3861 x 2574) this weekend and see how these files look with LR 3.4.1 Slideshow PDF, using the same settings.

     

    Message was edited by: trshaner

     
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    Jul 8, 2011 1:44 PM   in reply to Harald E Brandt

    Looking at your files, I see something that doesn't look quite right: the balcony parapet (fence) in the upper right looks to have jagged lines on both images at a level that appears larger than normal. Correct downsampling should not show such visible artifacts. There was a similar, but even more pronounced, bug in the pdf export in an earlier version of LR due to their use of wrong resampling algorithm (nearest neighbor I think, it was fixed in version 2.2).

     

    I did a Develop Module export to JPEG 480x340 Screen Standard Sharpening 90% quality and the jaggies are less pronounced in than the Slideshow Export to PDF or JPEG! I am still not seeing the sharpness differences exhibited in the two images you just posted, but do see the jaggies in mine. I'm on a Windows 7 64bit system. Go figure!

     

     

       Develop Module Export JPEG 480x340, Screen Standard Sharpening, 90% Quality (No Stroke Border)

    LR Export JPEG 480x340 Screen Standard Sharpen.jpg

     

     

       Slideshow Export to PDF or JPEG 480x340, 90% Quality (No Stroke Border)

    Canon_600D_480x340_NoStrokeBorder_Page_2_Image_0001.jpg

     
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    Jul 10, 2011 11:06 AM   in reply to trshaner

    I shot some SRAW1 10Mp images with my Canon 5D MKII and created Slideshow JPEG Export images using these 10Mp RAW files on my home based Windows 7 SP1 system with LR 3.4.1. The 1px Stroke Border JPEG image exhibits softness compared to the No Stroke Border JPEG! Here's where it gets interesting – Next I went back to the original 21Mp RAW image I posted here and recreated the same Slideshow image files. Now the 1px Stroke Border JPEG with the original 21Mp RAW file also exhibits softness! The only difference is that the original posted images showing no sharpness difference were created on my work system with Windows Vista SP2. Both systems are using LR 3.4.1!

     

    Based on the results posted here it appears LR 3.4.1 Slideshow modules produces different results with Mac OSX, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 – None of which are of high-quality! I can still see the jaggies in the below Windows 7 JPEG without Stroke Border. Interestingly using LR's Develop module Export to 480x320 produces similar jaggies, but PS CS5 Bicubic Sharpen does NOT! So it appears there is also a deficiency with LR's Develope module resampling algorithms, at least when using Windows 7!

     

    See examples below - Don't forget to double-click each image to see it properly rendered onscreen.

     

       Windows 7 SP1 LR Slideshow Export to JPEG 480x340, 91% Quality (No Stroke Border)

    ExportJPEGNoStroke-1.jpg

     

       Windows 7 SP1 LR Slideshow Export to JPEG 480x340, 91% Quality (1px Stroke Border)

    ExportJPEG1pxStroke-1.jpg

     

      Windows 7 SP1 LR Develop Export to JPEG 480x340, 91% Quality

    LRSlideshowExport91.jpg-1.jpg

     

       Windows 7 SP1 PhotoShop CS5 Bicubic Sharper 480x340 JPEG, 10 Quality

    PSBicubicSharper10.jpg

     
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    Jul 10, 2011 3:56 PM   in reply to Harald E Brandt

    Also interesting are your findings regarding jaggies. In addition, I do note that there seems to be significantly more sharpening in the Photoshop version!

     

    Yes, the PS CS5 Bicubic Sharpen image does have more sharpening. At this high-reduction amount I prefer the standard Bicubic rendering. Another thing I have noticed is that LR Slideshow module processes portrait images differently than landscape. Try some portrait images from your 7D using 1920x1080 resolution setting. What I am seeing is what initially looks like oversharpening compared to the landscape images, but on further inspection at 200% magnification it looks more like a case of even worse stair-step jaggies.

     

    Double-click each image to see at full resolution:

     

      LR Slideshow Export JPEG 1920x1080 91%

    Portrait-2.jpg

     

      PS CS5 Bicubic 1080 Height 10 Quality

    Portrait_PS_Bicubic_1920x1080.jpg

     
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    Jul 12, 2011 7:25 AM   in reply to Harald E Brandt

    Thanks Harald, your results with Mac OS and portrait images in LR slideshow module look much better than from my Windows Vista & 7 systems! I think your hunch about the Slideshow module using "nearest neighbor" resampling on Windows platform is correct. LR has at least three different implementation versions, concerning this LR Slideshow Module behavior:

     

                                            Stroke Border                Portrait Images

    Mac OS:                       Causes softness            OK (no resample artifacts)

    Windows Vista:             No issues                      Resample artifacts (jaggies)

    Windows 7:                   Causes softness            Resample artifacts (jaggies)

     

    It also appears that Adobe uses different versions of image preview rendering for Mac and Windows platforms. See this thread:

     

    http://forums.adobe.com/thread/742102?tstart=0

     

    The complaint is that on Mac systems sharpening and noise reduction is only visible at 1:1 image view size. I have confirmed in this post that both Windows Vista and 7 platforms do not exhibit this issue.

     

    As I stated on this post all current Mac systems use the same processor and chipset platforms as Windows systems. It shouldn't be too much of a stretch for Adobe to make LR behave the same on both platforms, at least for these issues! I have over 45 years of computing technology industry experience and currently work closely with Intel's Embedded Architecture division on the development of next generation platforms. Adobe is taking "band-aid" shortcuts to fix performance issues because Adobe management currently does not feel the expense required is a good business investment (i.e. LR is a low-cost Adobe product). It's all about Return-On-Investment – I see it every day! Our only hope is that they are fixing these issues along with adding new features in LR 4.0 that will warrant a higher price. There is no "free lunch" in the business world – It's all about bottom-line profit!

     

    Now I think I won't do more experiments, we seem to have come to the bottom with this issue (but Adobe has some more things to do...)

     

    I agree – Now it's up to Adobe's “good business sense” to make it happen!

     
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