The Photoshop Elements 11 Toolbox has undergone an overhaul from earlier versions.
You'll notice right away that the icons are bigger and they're on a much lighter background.
Here's what the top of the Toolbox looks like from 2 different versions.
PSE 11 on the left and PSE 10 on the right.
I think most users appreciate those icon changes because they really are a lot easier to see.
Here are some of the other things that are different. Maybe not all of the changes are for the better:
Let's take a closer look at these 7 changes one-at-a-time.
The tools have been organized into 5 different categories.
This in itself is not so new to Photoshop Elements 11 Tools. The tools have always been loosely grouped according to what they are used for.
What's new is that the groups have been labeled.
In previous versions of Elements, you could click on any tool that had other nested tools sharing the same space. Then in a second or two you would see a pop-up list of all the tools that shared that same space.
In PSE 11, you don't even know if a tool has other nested tools until you hover your cursor over its group as explained in the last section.
But you need to click on the visible tool from the toolbox and then look down in the Tool Options at the bottom of the window to see any other nested tools.
In previous versions of Elements, you could click on the nested tool that you wanted to select by clicking on it from the pop-up list.
In PSE 11, you need to click on the nested tool that you want to use from down in the Tool Options.
In previous versions of Elements you could click on the name of the tool and get information related to using that tool through a link.
In PSE 11 there is no link provided in the name.
However, as you could also do in previous versions of Elements, you can go up to the Help menu and choose Photoshop Elements Help... and it will bring you to Adobe Help.
But once you get to Adobe Help you need to do a search for the info you want.
As noted earlier, all of the tool icons have changed as far as size and/or color. But some tools have a completely new icon.
Especially these 4:
The keyboard shortcut for the Magic Wand tool used to be "W".
The Magic Wand tool is now nested with the Quick Selection and Selection Brush tools. And it has taken on their keyboard shortcut which is "A".
"W" is now the keyboard shortcut for the Recompose tool. The Recompose tool used to be nested with the Crop tool and shared its shortcut which is "C".
As you can see, there are some pretty significant changes to Photoshop Elements 11 toolbox from earlier versions of Elements.
At first it might seem like the Toolbox went through a downgrade. But as always, eventually we'll get used to it and forget all about how it used to be.
I'd love to hear your thoughts. Share them in the Comments Box below.