Alternatives to Acrobat Pro?

Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Original poster
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
Are there any solid alternatives to Acrobat Pro. I'm not into subscriptions.

I'm looking for something that:

scanner to PDF functionality
merges multiple documents to PDF
create PDF forms
fills out PDF forms
edit and annotate PDFs in an intuitive word processor-like method including cut and paste
can create secure PDFs
produces PDFs that are compatible with Acrobat Reader for Mac and PC
 

DesignerOnMac

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2007
827
64
Are there any solid alternatives to Acrobat Pro. I'm not into subscriptions.

I'm looking for something that:

scanner to PDF functionality
merges multiple documents to PDF
create PDF forms
fills out PDF forms
edit and annotate PDFs in an intuitive word processor-like method including cut and paste
can create secure PDFs
produces PDFs that are compatible with Acrobat Reader for Mac and PC
I use PDF Expert. but I never need to scan forms. this app will do everyone you need. website:https://pdfexpert.com
 

campyguy

macrumors 68040
Mar 21, 2014
3,413
951
PDFpen Pro 8. I have both it and Acrobat DC on my Mac, IMO they're both on-par for features and are not peers to each other. If I had to give up my CC subscription, I pretty much wouldn't miss DC.

This MW post breaks it down pretty well:
http://www.macworld.com/article/306...e-pdf-handling-at-a-small-business-price.html

Also, look around the web for deals - Smile Software often includes PDFpen Pro in bundle deals, that's where I "upgrade". I used version 4 for years until version 8 was in a bundle a 5-6 months ago.
 
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Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Original poster
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
PDFpen Pro 8. I have both it and Acrobat DC on my Mac, IMO they're both on-par for features and are not peers to each other. If I had to give up my CC subscription, I pretty much wouldn't miss DC.

This MW post breaks it down pretty well:
http://www.macworld.com/article/306...e-pdf-handling-at-a-small-business-price.html

Also, look around the web for deals - Smile Software often includes PDFpen Pro in bundle deals, that's where I "upgrade". I used version 4 for years until version 8 was in a bundle a 5-6 months ago.
Thanks. I'll give that a look.
 

Michaelgtrusa

macrumors 604
Oct 13, 2008
7,900
1,820
PDFpen Pro 8. I have both it and Acrobat DC on my Mac, IMO they're both on-par for features and are not peers to each other. If I had to give up my CC subscription, I pretty much wouldn't miss DC.

This MW post breaks it down pretty well:
http://www.macworld.com/article/306...e-pdf-handling-at-a-small-business-price.html

Also, look around the web for deals - Smile Software often includes PDFpen Pro in bundle deals, that's where I "upgrade". I used version 4 for years until version 8 was in a bundle a 5-6 months ago.
What OS were you using version 4 on?
 

campyguy

macrumors 68040
Mar 21, 2014
3,413
951
What OS were you using version 4 on?
Snow Leopard. Installed on an older Mini Server in my office, put "out to pasture" when it was replaced by a refurb 2012 i7 Mini Server bought on Apple's refurb portal.

FWIW, I have read on the interwebs that v4 worked/works on 10.10. IMO 10.11 and .12 "broke" some older software, including older versions of PDF Pen. SL was pretty much my favorite OS version and that Server ran some legacy SW that hadn't been updated in a while. And, I've found that Smile is very responsive, they've always responded quickly and I've never told them that I have several licenses to curry favors. Cheers.
 
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akwarner

macrumors member
Feb 26, 2006
85
12
I have both PDF Expert and PDFpen Pro licenses installed on my main computer. I do not have Acrobat installed anymore in any flavor. They are both way less expensive and I have not found the need to do anything PDF related that I have not been able to do with one or the other. As campyguy mentioned, I look for purchase opportunities in various bundles. By doing so I have the latest versions of each of them.

I was using PDFpen Pro for a few years and then about a year ago I got PDF Expert in a bundle. I used both for slightly different things but as this point I use PDF expert pretty much exclusively. It does all that I need and is cheaper than PDFpen Pro.

Grab trials of each and put them through their paces for the uses that you have and go from there.

A.
 
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Dr.SL

macrumors member
Jan 10, 2017
53
29
Are there any solid alternatives to Acrobat Pro. I'm not into subscriptions.

I'm looking for something that:

scanner to PDF functionality
merges multiple documents to PDF
create PDF forms
fills out PDF forms
edit and annotate PDFs in an intuitive word processor-like method including cut and paste
can create secure PDFs
produces PDFs that are compatible with Acrobat Reader for Mac and PC
If you are in macOS, the Preview can do all, maybe except PDF forms.
 

campyguy

macrumors 68040
Mar 21, 2014
3,413
951
Chiming in again, I opt to not use the native Preview app except for Mac-system-related files and operations. Preview fails to handle pretty much all forms emailed to me and its annotations don't always show up in other PDF viewing/editing apps - there are far better tools on the market IMHO.
 
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