Five Free Worthy Replacements for Paid Image Editors

Erik

Posts: 318   +23
Staff member

free worthy replacements paid image editors

Adobe Photoshop has long been the gold standard for image editing among professionals and photo enthusiasts. But for the average user who just wants to touch up the occasional photo, it can be hard to justify the cost and it probably does more way than you really need or care to do. 

There are plenty of free alternatives out there but finding one with the perfect combination of features and ease of use can be an exercise in trail and error. We’ve rounded out what we believe are the best free image editors for Windows, throwing in a cloud-based option as well for good measure.

Read the complete article.

 
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VitalyT

Posts: 5,497   +5,101
A graphics editor is only as good as its list of third-party plug-ins, and thus public recognition.

To my knowledge, only GIMP and Paint.NET can boast a comprehensive library of plugins continuously being developed for them. The rest of them - not so much.

I have both of them, but mostly use Paint.NET, because it is the quickest and nicest to use.
 
G

Guest

What about Krita? It's a vector-based graphics program that is just as powerful as Gimp. I don't use it as much, but it's a shame to always see Krita left out.

KS "Kaz" Augustin
 

cliffordcooley

Posts: 12,696   +6,055
I have both of them, but mostly use Paint.NET, because it is the quickest and nicest to use.
I feel Paint.NET is easier to use than GIMP. However without knowing for sure GIMP seems to be more capable.
So I can safely assume nobody takes an interest in Corel Draw anymore.
Before I started using Paint.NET, an old version of Corel Draw was what I used. I believe it was version 7.
 
G

Guest

What's with this hipster crap of "Windows apps" ???

what's wrong with "Windows programs" or "Windows software"
 

tipstir

Posts: 2,854   +200
Borland Object Oriented RES Editor and Jasco Paint Pro was the best ones in the 90's. Jasco Paint Pro was merged into Coral Draw which is bloated to me. I use Paint.Net and Gimp (only when I have too use Gimp on restoration projects) otherwise Paint.Net does the job right. Adobe Photoshop is very good but just get's so complex they forget to make it simple. There much better hardware SG back in 2000 era mostly for 3D CAD design still in use by Government AERO SPACE Companies.

Anyway Paint.Net, but it's limited to restore old black & white photo's that are damaged in age. Gimp can make those old photo's come back to life. General stuff goes to Paint.Net.
 

Nero7

Posts: 498   +236
I use paint.net with a huge amount of modded in effects. its really powerful I like it. Together with Fast Stone Image Viewer which also has a good amount of options some not present in paint.net come really in handy.

But the best image editing software has to be: Fine Artist McZee
 

p51d007

Posts: 2,688   +2,025
I guess I'm too old to try something new. Been using photoshop since 5.5, but I may have to switch with photoshops idea of "cloud" based photoshop. I'll be d*mned if I'm going to pay a monthly fee, and have my software on the cloud. It's mine, I pay for it, I want it on MY computer. Sometimes, I don't have internet access, which means I can't use it, so what good is it?
 

at0mic_Mike

Posts: 30   +4
I have several paid for paint programs, ie., draw, photoshop, painter. 99% of the time I use paint.net. it's a lot easier to use and the forums are a great place to get ideas and add-ons
 

ChromeShine

Posts: 37   +1
Yes, those listed are pretty darn good. I use one called PhotoScape, which is now my favorite for photo editing and doing animated .gifs. One called PhotoFiltre is very good for paint - making logos and such.
 
G

Guest

Several people also recommended PhotoLine. Although the website's design is not that great, from what I read and opinions of those that I know who used them (they have also used PhotoShop), it's actually really powerful too similarly to PhotoShop. However, it's not free but 59 Euro. There is also a bit of an issue with the documentation iirc since the main doc is mostly in German.

If it's about free, I also would go for Paint.net. Gimp is just... annoying to use.
 

EClyde

Posts: 2,390   +941
Never liked GIMP. I couldn't figure it out easy
Paint.net wasn't for me either

I use Corel Photoimpact 3. Have been using Photoimpact for a long time. Because whoever set up the interface made it so I could understand an use it to do what I wanted
 

ChromeShine

Posts: 37   +1
Several people also recommended PhotoLine. Although the website's design is not that great, from what I read and opinions of those that I know who used them (they have also used PhotoShop), it's actually really powerful too similarly to PhotoShop. However, it's not free but 59 Euro. There is also a bit of an issue with the documentation iirc since the main doc is mostly in German.

If it's about free, I also would go for Paint.net. Gimp is just... annoying to use.

Try PhotoScape - free - works great. Windows and Mac versions.
 

Camikazi

Posts: 982   +339
Borland Object Oriented RES Editor and Jasco Paint Pro was the best ones in the 90's. Jasco Paint Pro was merged into Coral Draw which is bloated to me. I use Paint.Net and Gimp (only when I have too use Gimp on restoration projects) otherwise Paint.Net does the job right. Adobe Photoshop is very good but just get's so complex they forget to make it simple. There much better hardware SG back in 2000 era mostly for 3D CAD design still in use by Government AERO SPACE Companies.

Anyway Paint.Net, but it's limited to restore old black & white photo's that are damaged in age. Gimp can make those old photo's come back to life. General stuff goes to Paint.Net.

Jasc PaintShop Pro is still it's own product and wasn't merged with Corel Draw.
 

Camikazi

Posts: 982   +339
It was originally published by Jasc Software. In October 2004, Corel purchased Jasc Software and the distribution rights to Paint Shop Pro. PSP functionality can be extended by Photoshop-compatible plugins. Since I can't post links you can search on this subject if you want..
Yeah, I know Corel bought them but PaintShop Pro is still it's own product and has not been rolled into Corel Draw. I know it is still it's own product since I have been using it since before Corel bought them and am currently using X7.
 

mike1959

Posts: 1,020   +56
For editing photos and for resizing and optimizing for websites, I have not found anything easier or more effective than Faststone image viewer. I've used it from the first version to date.
It has the most effective 'rotate' function I've seen, good for when photo's are taken just not quite level to horizon. Many editors cannot turn a jpg 1 degree, Faststone's will rotate 0.1 steps. My choice editor.