Adobe replacement

It depends. Having using Adobe (and Macromedia) software for close to 30 years I’ve had the advantage of learning along the way. They have a generally consistent interface across all apps, and a very integrated workflow that makes moving work between apps a generally frictionless task. That said, there’s a lot of tacit knowledge still required to effectively use the apps. If you’re not using them every day it’s very easy to forget how to do things, and constantly have to look them up. Thankfully there’s a massive number of articles and tutorials available online.

Affinity on the other hand is generally easier to get started with, but they’ve made some strange UX/UI decisions that make many things much harder than they need be. For instance, having images and bitmaps be different types of objects, which trips up many users trying to manipulate images and seeing no results applied. Also, many folks often have unpredictable results when working with different colour spaces.

They also have an odd layer model which often comes up as a source of frustration for many as there’s no such thing as ‘global’ layers which can make organizing and managing objects across artboards (and pages) much more complicated.

For me, the big differences between Adobe and Affinity are of consistency, compatibility, and professional capability (Adobe) vs low price, perceived performance gains, and being ‘good enough’ (Affinity).

My needs today are relatively modest so Affinity (and Procreate) generally work for me at the moment. That said, there’s many times I still find myself thinking ‘this would be so much faster, easier, less painful’ in an Adobe app.

One thing I will say is that I typically enjoy working in Affinity and Procreate, whereas the Adobe apps are simply highly-effective productivity tools for me today.


Good summary, well stated.

We must be wary of our answers, as mentioned in this post we have all already used a lot of softwares and its developments. For a novice Affinity is no easier to discover than Adobe, on the other hand the video tutorials save a lot of time: two or three hours are enough to immerse yourself and then trial-error-corrections in a loop. In use I think that affinity is simpler to use but Adobe is starting to catch up and very quickly I find it.


Yes it is right to say that Affinity is much more intuitive then Adobe. Illustrator is terrible and Adobe was behind killing off the much better FreeHand. Photoshop seemed irreplaceable in the 90s, 2000s but that was a long time ago and its essential features are long in the past.

Lightrooom was never great and Capture One Pro runs circles around it when it comes to how intuitively it works. InDesign’s claim to fame was being less of a hassle then Quark. It made major leaps in the 2000s it saw a sales slump in the 2010s when eBooks were not the massive selling point they thought it would be and had to move to forced upgrades.

I’d rather have someone make eBook software based on more robust website tech then the basic html software in layout tools which were originally made in the 80s and 90s. That seems like an opportunity for someone.

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Agreed, everything you said is correct. I have been working with Affinity Designer for many years and Photo 2 is also a great software.

The only problem is generative tools, for a photographer (professional) this tool is part of the work for the time saved.

The paradox is the lack of privacy for photographers’ clients, for sensitive photos, forensic medicine, legal, Industrial secrets and fashion collections etc, all fields where you cannot allow others (Adobe’s AI police) to read your files.

There are alternative solutions to fix this , for example Stable Diffusion locally.


Confidentiality when we go through the web seems totally illusory to me unfortunately but desired, remember the arrival of the first cookies and all of us on Linux who were very proud to be able to completely configure the acceptance of certain ones and the rejection of others as we wish, or rejection of all…
and look where we are 28 years later. For this fear that Adobe will use all our files (photos, drawings, videos, etc.), for the moment it seems very exaggerated to me: just don’t go through their cloud and stay on our disks. For the cloud (unless it is ours on our own encrypted and protected server) I can only recall the remark of an Internet user in a forum (sorry I did not note his name): the cloud is just someone else’s hard drive. When we accept the conditions of use of email services and social networks, should we remember that we voluntarily give access to the content that we publish for uses other than those for which we use them? I believe that our desire for “free” gives us the coin that we are happy not to give… Okay for Adobe it’s coin+coin (in french it sounds like a duck noise that’s the joke :face_with_hand_over_mouth:) Confidentiality is not easy on a mass media whose essence is to distribute content. :face_with_monocle: