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Serif releases new Affinity Suite update (v1.9)
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-02-04, 09:49

For any fellow Adobe refugees/escapees.

Been using Designer and Photos for over a year now. Designer has gained some more functionality making it even closer to Illustrator, including several I've (and I'm sure many others) have requested (some snapping options, curve/edge treatments, scaling tweaks, "select same", text-on-a-path enhancements, etc.). A few more little things and it’s there (for my needs, anyway). I’ve been very pleased, and it's all I've used for any and all floor plans (a lot of my work these days), woodworking/DIY, furniture and toy designs/ideas, cutaways, mockups, etc. for about the past 14 or so months.

If you do solo, self-contained design/illustration/image editing on a smaller, casual scale that doesn’t justify the Adobe rental/subscription pricing, give the Affinity stuff a look.

They offer trial downloads and, best of all, their three big apps - Designer, Photos and Publisher - are all currently 50% off...$25 each!

All here, if interested.




PS - No, I don’t work for them, and this isn’t a shill or pitch. I wouldn’t do that without disclosing such a thing upfront. If I ever get banned from here, it'll be for something a lot cooler/necessary than spamming, I assure you.

I’m just happy with my decision. For those doing heavy collaboration or otherwise locked into an Adobe-based workflow, I’m not really aiming any of this in your direction. I fully understand this isn't going to work for you. I’m talking more to standalone freelancers, hobbyists/casual users, etc. like I am these days. You get a lot of capability for (currently) $25 (no monthly/yearly subscription fee, if that appeals to you).

I bought both Designer and Photos during two previous half-off sales, so i own them both for $50 total, vs. $100. I told myself last year that if they do that half-off promo again, I’ll be snagging Publisher (I haven’t used InDesign in about 12-15 years, but why not have the full three-part suite for another $25, just in case that sort of work/project comes my way?

Anyway, a nice big update for fellow current users, and all three apps currently half-off ($24.99 vs. $49.99) for those who are able/curious/needing to look at non-Adobe options for illustration/design, image-editing and/or publishing/layout work.

And they have iPad versions of Designer and Photos as well, if that matters/helps. And they're also currently half-off ($9.99 vs. $19.99). A lot of good stuff at a swell price.

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2021-02-04 at 10:31.
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-02-04, 11:30

That is really temping given I don't want to give Adobe any money. Especially with the subscription based model.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-02-04, 14:43

That's the thing. For people just doing occasional graphics/image/design work (for fun or minimal profit), it's insane to pay Adobe-level money. In the past, you could at least buy a consumer-level Photoshop (Elements) for under $100 (my mom has it and it serves the needs to most consumer-level users). But I don't even know if they offer that anymore. And even if they did, I'm pretty sure they don't offer "Elements" versions of Illustrator or InDesign.

So what are hobbyists/casual users gonna do?

At least with the Affinity stuff, with this sale/promo in place, one has the ability to outright own three solid, integrated, learn-one-and-you've-kinda-learned-them-all design/imaging/creative apps for just $75. I don't know how long that will hold in terms of free updates and all, but I assume at least through all the 1.x releases, which is all I've known for over a year. If/when they finally go to a super-major 2.0 release of everything, they'll either offer a nice path to existing people or will probably offer sales and promos like they are now. I'm not really worried about it. Even if I had to pay full $50 price every 18-24 months, fine.

All I know is that the $25 I paid for Designer 14 months ago has been more than worth it, when I look at how much I've used it and how much I've gotten from it. The numbers just work out better, for me, than if I were paying Adobe's subscription prices (and not truly requiring, at this point in my life, anything Adobe offers).

Again, it isn't for everyone and I'm fully aware of that (this thread is in no way directed toward the Adobe diehards or workflow lock-ins). But it would do the job for most people out there, I'm sure, who need to do the kinds of things Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign do, without all the expense, learning curve/overhead and "Adobe-ness" (bloat, etc.) of going with the 800 lb. monkey in the room.

I know some - was it Frank777? - who don't like the idea of same-brand suites and being locked-in, and I can understand that. But I actually do prefer that because a) I'm a bit lazy, and b) I'm a complete scatterbrain these days, and so much shares and carries over (interface, tools, shortcuts, overall approach, etc.). I'd rather have a 2-3 part collection from the same company with the same overall look/feel/approach than to have to learn Inkscape, Pixelmator and yet another page layout/publishing app, etc.

YMMV.

As I say above, this Affinity stuff has a nice "learn one and you've kinda learned them all" aspect to it. The same way Adobe's stuff, at its best, offers. Shared language, interface elements, approaches, "rules", etc. That's worth something to some people (me). This old dog ain't learning much new in the way of tricks, so...

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2021-02-04 at 15:01.
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chucker
 
Join Date: May 2004
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2021-02-04, 15:20

There's Photoshop Elements 2021 for $69 (nice), or bundled with Premiere Elements 2021 for $99. But, no, nothing like that for Illustrator or InDesign, I don't think.

To be fair, I don't think there was ever much of a hobbyist market segment for page layout. (Should Adobe have tried to create such a market? Maybe. But at this point… who does, like, literal printed pages?)
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-02-04, 15:37

These days, not much. But 15 or so years ago (and the late-90's and early 2000's), probably.

And most art/drawing apps for the general public are paint/pixel-oriented, just because that's how that stuff is viewed. I know there are some vector-based things (even on iOS), but that's not what most people think of, or learn.

If an Illustrator Elements existed all this time, it might've been a moderate success if people got their heads around the pen tool thing. My first time using it, way back in 1993 or so, I was so confused, thinking "why can't I just draw...it's called the pen tool", not fully realizing/appreciating, at the time, the Bézier curves and how to fully control/manipulate that stuff (which is the heart of Illustrator...or at least a huge, important aspect to learn).

The world is so different now, too. It's app/online/screen-based, vs. printed. That's going to determine what applications have value, or need affordable "Elements" versions, for sure.

Most people could do what they need to do, page layout wise, with Word or Pages, probably. No hobbyist is going to spend Adobe subscription money for InDesign, true.
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chucker
 
Join Date: May 2004
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2021-02-04, 15:52

Yeah, I remember as a kid being quite intrigued by what the heck a Bézier curve is. We had Deneba Canvas on a Mac. (And, somewhere, CorelDRAW too, I think. Maybe my brother's PC?)

This generation of kids would probably discover this sort of thing on an app like… Bez? Inkpad? I thought Iconfactory's Linea does vector art, but now I'm not so sure.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-02-04, 17:54

I remember the joy - and the realization of a thousand things - that went off in my head that very first time I did the pen tool thing correctly and seemed to realize "oh...ah, okay...I get it!". And I was off and running. But it took a book (The Illustrator 5.0 Bible by Ted Alspach(!), which I still have somewhere) and reading (see?) how to use that.

No Internet, no YouTube, etc. You went to Waldenbooks or somewhere like that (uphill, in the snow, both directions, etc.), desperately sought out a book about Illustrator (or QuarkXPress* ), hoped it was the same version you were using, and paid $23.99+ for the privilege.

It's much easier/nicer now.



Off-topic (click to toggle):
*I talked (okay, lied) my way into my very first paying graphics/DTP gig back in March 1994. I'd used PageMaker in school, moved to California, applied to work at an office/business supply place, doing flyers and other documents using QuarkXPress. Lied my ass off that I'd used it and was "proficient" with it - never even touched it - got hired (hey, they should've tested me...their fault!), was told to come in/start Monday, immediately left there and went to Fry's Electronics in Orange County and bought the biggest QuarkXPress book I could find and spent the entire weekend "learning" it, just from reading (I didn't have QuarkXPress on my brand-new Quadra 610 Mac). Between that book, and about a week or so of "trial by fire", on-the-job learning, I never ran into any problems and my ruse/bullcrap was never discovered. In fact, I wound up showing/teaching my co-worker things about the program that she didn't even know or use.

Once I realized the person "training" me knew even less than I did, I relaxed and knew I was safe.

And that's when I realized how far being full-of-shit, and confidently so, can carry you. I talked myself into a job I was in no way qualified for, at first, making twice as much as anything I'd ever earned back in Tennessee and surrounded by three absolute vixens eight hours a day! I loved the 90's.

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2021-02-04 at 18:11.
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Graculus
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Sheffield, UK
 
2021-02-09, 13:33

Just my two penneth - I posted on a different thread (about M1 emulating windows so I could run pre-rental creative suite) saying I couldn't just ditch and switch to Affinity software, even though I already had two of the three.

This was mainly due to working with legacy projects, and collaborating with my clients' in house people, sharing development files etc.

Well, I was mistaken. I have switched with a shiny new Air, and so far everything I have tried to open - adobe docs into affinity - have by-and-large worked just fine. Some have needed minor tweakage, but nothing scary.

More importantly, documents I have then exported into adobe formats have opened fine and accurately in the creative suites apps.

So I'd fully recommend not just assuming adobe actually have you by the short and curlies with their rental model, there is good software out there, give it a try. You can currently buy all three Affinity packages for less than the price to rent a single Adobe app for four months.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-02-09, 14:53

Exactly. That's all I've been saying.

Adobe, while still the 800-lb. one, ain't the only monkey in town anymore.

For those whose specific situations lend themselves to looking for/trying other things - things that may even be more Mac and/or M1-friendly - it's a great time to be alive. I used Pixelmator for years, which was the first app that made me think "okay, I do indeed have some viable alternatives to the big red 'A'...".
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Ryan
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Promise Land of Trustafarians
 
2021-02-09, 15:02

Interesting. I've been getting more serious about my photography which has meant learning a lot more about Photoshop, but I sure wouldn't mind not paying Adobe $120/year for the privilege.

What are people using as a Lightroom alternative? Is there one that integrates with Affinity Photo?
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-02-09, 16:02

I've been wondering the same since Aperture died a slow death. I'd happily move to a different app if there is a good option.
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Ryan
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Promise Land of Trustafarians
 
2021-02-25, 22:15

Anyone have experience with both Pixelmator and Affinity Photo? Thinking seriously about jumping off the Adobe train.
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PB PM
Sneaky Punk
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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2021-02-26, 10:33

Pixelmator is a good program, but if you use photoshops high end features, it ain’t going to cut it. I’ve only tried Affinity Photo a little. Wasn’t really impressed with the UI, but I guess it’s no worse than Lightroom, just different.
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Ryan
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Promise Land of Trustafarians
 
2021-02-26, 11:08

Depends on what you mean by "high end" I suppose. 99% of my photo editing is fairly basic—Camera RAW adjustments and so on. Occasionally I'll dip into Photoshop and use content-aware fill, the magic wand tool to remove unwanted stuff, or layer masks for focus/exposure stacking.
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PB PM
Sneaky Punk
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
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2021-02-26, 13:57

Doesn’t sound like you use the higher end features. To me that’s all the AI filters, image stacking, and such. Not sure if Pixelmator has as good of content aware fill, don’t really use that myself and have the non-pro version. I only use it for making maps for plans/designs.
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Ryan
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Promise Land of Trustafarians
 
2021-02-27, 00:25

Might have to give it a shot then. If only there was a viable Lightroom alternative for cataloguing photos...
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-02-27, 17:37

I really REALLY miss Aperture.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-08-05, 10:35

Didn't warrant a new thread, so I'm tacking it on here (apologies for any bump violations).

Big v1.10 update out today for the three Affinity apps...Designer, Photo and Publiisher

I've already sang - sung? singed? sangeded? - the praises of this software, which I now use pretty much ever day (Designer, at least, which is their Illustrator competitor), for work and or personal use/fun/artistic jollies. These updates seem to do quite a bit, although it's early in the day and I'm not able to say much first-hand. I do know that no Affinity update has made things [I[worse[/i] than before, so I expect more of the same.

You can go to the App Store to see the release notes for v1.10 and see all the things updated/addressed...quite a list.

It gets better every time. If you don't have to use Adobe, and you've got the freedom/ability to try something different (self-contained, handing off completed artwork to others vs. daily collaboration with an Adobe-based joint, etc.) and some room for a slight learning curve, give it a shot. As I say above, on several occasions they've done half-off promotions and I got both Designer and Photo for $25 each, off their usual $50 (which was a steal to begin with, for all they do). I see where they've gone up to $60 now, but that's still completely reasonable/affordable for most in a hobbyist/non-professional setting (and then some). And keep your eyes open - both the Apple App Store and Serif's website - for those occasional half-off promotions, where you'd be able to to snap them up at, I presume, $30 a pop.

I know everyone's situation/goals/needs are different, but for someone who's used Adobe Illustrator since about 1994 (v. 5.0), I can say that I'm doing everything in Affinity Designer that I ever did with Illustrator. Am I saying it's a direct 1:1 match, every single feature? No. But the features/functions I use are certainly there, and I've yet to encounter any true "oh, shit...I really need Illustrator right now" moments, FWIW.

Last edited by psmith2.0 : 2021-08-05 at 10:53.
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-08-05, 13:27

I'm regretting not jumping on the deal when it presented itself.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-08-05, 13:36

Keep your eyes open. I'm aware, in just the 18-20 months (or has it been longer, more like 24-30? Time flies ) I've been using this stuff, of three of those half-price promotions. They seem to do them 1-2 times a year for a few weeks. If I happen to come across it again, I'll post here and let everyone know.

I don't do much of that kind of work anymore (page layout, newsletters, flyers, brochures, etc.), but I am keeping my eyes out for another half-off promo so I can go ahead and snag Publisher for ~$30. At that point I'll have viable counterparts to the three core Adobe apps I've ever needed/used (Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign) and should be able to handle anything - for pay or for fun/favor - thrown my way.

And, from all I've heard/read, these things absolutely fly on the M1 Macs.
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-10-22, 09:44

I just signed up for the trial so maybe I get an email the next time this stuff goes on sale.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-10-24, 20:42

Quote:
Originally Posted by psmith2.0 View Post
And, from all I've heard/read, these things absolutely fly on the M1 Macs.
Speaking of which, I just saw this little story/profile from the App Store, talking about this very thing.

Can't wait to use this stuff on an M-whatever Mac soon. As smooth and snappy as it is on this 2013(!) 13" MacBook Pro (2.6GHz Core i5 and 8GB RAM), I can't wait to see how it must feel on one of these M1 Macs, and with twice the RAM. I'm getting really good and accustomed to the "Affinity way" - interface, shortcuts, tools, etc. - after two-plus decades of Adobe.

I boogie around these two apps (Designer and Photo) as quick and efficiently as I ever did Illustrator and Photoshop, now that I've "unlearned"/re-trained myself, migrated all my files, updated some old favorite projects, etc.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-10-25, 09:36

Ha, great timing. I woke up this morning to see updates for both Designer and Photo (v1.10.3 for both):

The details (which may matter to some here, in light of last Monday's event and with what's coming today):

- Fully optimized for macOS Monterey
- Additional optimizations for new M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro with ProMotion display
- Various stability and performance improvements

These guys are always on it with this sort of stuff, more than some other outfits ever seem to be. No decades-old legacy code, I suppose, so that probably allows them to update/tweak their modern products a bit quicker and easier than Adobe and others? Anytime Apple puts out new hardware or OS updates (Mac and iOS), this company has something out within days, meant to work better with/take advantage of the new Apple releases. And none of them have ever given me a problem or "broken" anything, FWIW.



PS - I know it may sound like I'm on their payroll or something, but I promise I'm not. I would always disclose such a thing.
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-10-25, 12:04

I'm REALLY looking forward to the sale again. I need Photos but am cheap.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-10-25, 12:13

Maybe the approaching holidays will be a good chance. I do believe I got Designer in November a couple of years back. When they put one on sale, they did all three.

I’ll go ahead and snag Publisher when they go on sale.
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Frank777
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Toronto
 
2021-10-26, 22:37

I hope Publisher concentrates on features and pro usability in upcoming releases. So I can finally switch over.

Adobe just released InDesign 17. The big feature is renaming Master Pages to Parent Pages, because racism.
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psmith2.0
Mr. Farmiga
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2021-10-26, 23:51

Yeah, okay...but now what about orphans?
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turtle
Lord of the Rant.
Formerly turtle2472
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Upstate South Carolina
 
2021-10-27, 08:46

heh

I need Serif to release an Aperture/Lightroom app. The process of weeding and sorting from a photo shoot is just such a chore without something like that. I wonder if I can still install Aperture on my MBP. I won't pay for Lightroom and I don't trust cracked software at all.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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Ebby
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2021-10-27, 13:24

I loved Aperture. I haven't found anything worthy of replacing it since. Set up Picasa for the family after Aperture got the ugly boot and even Picasa withered to crap. Its so frustrating to have a dozen half-baked photo apps all with glaring usability oversights. And no, I keep everything local so your companies cloud is not a perk.

The coolest replacement I found was mylio, but it is subscription based. That's not practical for photo archival use so hard pass. An Aperture alternative from Affinity sounds amazing. Folks seem to understand their passion well and they priced software affordably enough I took a leap of faith; I was hooked.

Aperture is still my old archive and it opens and stuff, times have moved on since it was abandoned. I'm using a NAS now and a crappy script to sort EXIF info by YYYY-MM-DD folders. It works for now, but there are errors and I'm always on the lookout for something more reliable.

^^ One more quality post from the desk of Ebby. ^^
SSBA | SmockBogger | SporkNET
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Frank777
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Join Date: May 2004
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2021-10-27, 18:25

Alternate take: This would be in much better hands by the Pixelmator Pro guys, than Affinity.

No disrespect, but I like the Pixelmator Pro interface much more than Affinity. Those guys really get pro photo editing.
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