Good replacement for Illustrator and Photoshop?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by hajime, Jan 21, 2012.

  1. hajime macrumors 603

    Jul 23, 2007
    Hello, I am now looking for free/low-cost yet professional replacement for Illustrator and Photoshop that can do the job well. Here are the requirements:

    Illustrator features that I need:
    - load and save files in eps format. Should be able to read files made by previous versions of illustrator.
    - the ability to import a photo and add vector illustrations, pointing arrows, words on it.
    - the ability to add user-defined layers (not essential but good to have).
    - availability of different types of pointing arrows.

    Photoshop features that I need:
    - isolate and extract an object from a photo
    - load and save in eps format. The import files could be ones made by previous versions of illustrator
    - the ability to copy and paste vector illustrations from eps files to a photo
    - add pointing arrows and text
    - the ability to add user-defined layers (not essential but good to have).

    I tried gimp and inkscape but didn't quite like the user interfaces.

    I use the resulting files as figures for LATEX documents.

    Any good recommendation appreciated. Thanks.
  2. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    Tried pixelmator for the photoshop replacement? It's entirely possible that you won't be able to replace both with one application. I have yet to see perfect vector tools in any raster based software.
  3. hajime, Jan 21, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2012

    hajime thread starter macrumors 603

    Jul 23, 2007
    Thanks. Pixelmator looks good but my trial version of illustrator CS5 has expired. I cannot test compatibility. Anybody tried to exchange eps files between pixelmator and illustrator? Can we also copy and paste between the two applications? Are they fully compatible? Perhaps I should get pixelmator and illustrator CS5.5 Not sure if such combination could do all the things I listed.
  4. hajime thread starter macrumors 603

    Jul 23, 2007
    Just heard back from the company that makes Pixelmator:

    "Pixelmator has the tools for cutting out objects from images.
    Pixelmator doesn't support EPS file format.
    You won't be able to copy and paste EPS vector files as vectors.
    The arrows can be created, though templates are not available.
    If you have in mind layer styles, those are not available."

    Looks like I need to continue the replacement search.
  5. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040


    Oct 12, 2005
    I'm sorry to say the *best* in terms of replacements will be Pixelmator or Inkscape, personally I'd be sticking with Adobe...
  6. talmy macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Look at Eazydraw. It claims to import EPS although I've never tried it, and it will export EPS. Primarily a vector based application although it will import/export bitmapped images. You can download a Demo at
  7. hajime thread starter macrumors 603

    Jul 23, 2007
    Thanks for the suggestion.

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