Adobe InDesign CS, the company's page-layout application designed to take on market leader Quark, has received "hundreds" of new features, according to Adobe. Enhancements to InDesign include a Story Editor, Workspace management, integration with Acrobat and Photoshop and more.

The Separations Preview palette enables print professionals - as well as designers and production artists - to preview and evaluate spot and process color separations onscreen, helping to eliminate mistakes before they show up on film or in press. The Separations Preview palette displays spot and process plates using either the default ink characteristics or the custom ones specified with the Ink Manager. Overprinting information, ink aliasing and other output settings are also included in separations preview.

The Story Editor introduces word processing-like functionality to InDesign, making it faster to edit and copyfit text in layout. The Story Editor provides an interactive view of the text in your InDesign CS layout, so any changes you enter in Story Editor appear in the layout as you type, making copyfitting text more efficient.

The Story Editor is also customizable, allowing the user to change font, font size, font colour, line spacing and background colour. The Story Editor comes with several built-in themes to mimic the look of ink on paper, amber monochrome, classic system or terminal.

In streamlining the workspace, Adobe added features to InDesign that can now be found across the CS product line including collapsible palettes. Collapsible palettes allow you to hide your palettes along the side of your window, freeing up workspace in the application. InDesign also has customizable, named workspaces, which can save palette positions and a Control palette that you can use to Format text and edit objects.

The theme of Adobe's Creative Suite is integration and InDesign gets its fair share, offering tighter integration with Photoshop and Acrobat. InDesign CS outputs Adobe PDF files directly in Adobe Acrobat 6.0 (PDF 1.5), Acrobat 5.0 (PDF 1.4) or Acrobat 4.0 (PDF 1.3) format, as well as offering built-in support for ISO-standard PDF/X-1A and PDF/X-3 files.

You can also export InDesign CS layers as Adobe PDF 1.5 layers, and then hide, show and work with these layers in Adobe Acrobat 6.0 Professional.

Adobe has expanded the support it offers for importing native Photoshop files into an InDesign document. InDesign CS now places and outputs duotone, tritone and quadtone Photoshop (PSD) files, as well as PSD and TIFF files that contain spot channels. It also prints raster-only Photoshop DCS 1.0 and DCS 2.0 files correctly when they interact with transparent elements and when using in-RIP separations, and it retains the high-resolution image data when it exports these DCS files to Adobe PDF.

A standalone version of InDesign CS costs £609 (£716 including VAT); upgrade £139 (£163 inc. VAT).

Read the December 2003 issue of Macworld (on-sale October 23) for full reviews of the Adobe Creative Suite applications.

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