Pixelmator vs. Photoshop

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by The Tourer, Aug 9, 2012.

  1. The Tourer macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2012
    As a casual web and graphics designer, I need a semi-serious image editing utility. Since I no longer have access to my school's CS license, I'm at a crossroads...

    Do I buy my own copy of Photoshop CS (I don't pirate, I'm not 15 anymore and actually have paying clients) for a buttload of money...


    ...do I spend a lot less and buy the beautiful but arguably less-capable Pixelmator?

    Anyone made this choice and have something to weigh in on it? Help would be appreciated! :)
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
  3. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    It would depend on whether you make use of all of Photoshop's bells and whistles
    It can do some incredible things, but most users never come close to using it's full capabilities

    If you will use it fully, the Photoshop
    If you will only be using standard tools, etc. then Pixelmator is an excellent choice for the $$
  4. ChristianVirtual macrumors 601


    May 10, 2010
    Less capable might be right but what of the tons of fency function of PS you often need ?

    I had once bought a version of PS but for my hobby needs is was too expensive and overkill.

    Today I'm happy with what PM deliver.

    Proposal: start with PM; when you see lack of function try next PS Express; still lack get the full CS.

    PM is "cheap"; in a very positive meaning; can even work later together twitch PS.
  5. Mr. Retrofire, Aug 9, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2012

    Mr. Retrofire macrumors 603

    Mr. Retrofire

    Mar 2, 2010
  6. The Tourer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2012
    Thanks for the replies, guys! What sorts of tools do you find yourself missing in Pixelmator that you have in Photoshop that you really need for from-scratch UI component and logo design?


    Thanks for being useful!
  7. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    I haven't really missed anything from full Photoshop
    I use Photoshop Elements and Pixelmator for most everything

    I know the full Photoshop can do amazing things
    But I just don't need the additional capabilities for the things I do
    Nor do I have the time to learn all of the nuances for an occasional edit
  8. \-V-/ Suspended


    May 3, 2012
    This is like... kazoo vs. music studio.

    Pixelmator is great... but it doesn't hold a candle to Photoshop. I think Pixelmator is more for casual image editing. You have paying clients and I can guarantee you that you're going to need the capabilities of Photoshop at some point in your work.

    You can get PS for significantly cheaper with a student discount if you are eligible.

    Like someone else said... you could TRY Pixelmator out for a while (it IS only 15 bucks) and if you find it too crippling for your workflow, then by all means... bust out the big guns.
  9. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 603

    Mr. Retrofire

    Mar 2, 2010
    My pleasure. ;-)
  10. Madmic23, Aug 12, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2012

    Madmic23 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 21, 2004
    I use to have Photoshop when I was working as a graphic designer, but since I've moved on to a different career, I no longer have the software.

    Yesterday, I needed to create a goofy image for someone by taking a picture of a friend and swapping their head onto a different body. I downloaded the Pixelmator demo to give it a try and was very impressed by the app.

    The shortcuts and tools are different than photoshop, but I found it was actually really easy to do the edits that I had to do.

    With the current price, I think I'm going to buy the full version to have on hand for this type of fun stuff.

    Now if you need an editor to produce CMYK press ready graphics, Photoshop is obviously the way to go. But for simpler things, I found Pixelmator to work great.
  11. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Photoshop is more feature rich but I'd say unless you're a professional most people don't need that level of complexity or features. I think the biggest thing that PS has over Pixelmator is plugins to extend the functionality. I don't use a lot but I do have a few.

    For most of my work I'm used to Ps though I'm not a heavy user by any stretch of the word. Now that I have a retina MBP and I'm only on PS 5, I'll probably start using pixelmator more then PS just because its current and I don't want to drop $$$$ on the new version of PS
  12. toymaker1 macrumors newbie

    Jul 5, 2007
    Photoshop or other?

    If you do just non- vector artwork, rather than modifying photos, then Pixelmator is brilliant.
    For what it does, Pixelmator is stunning. Very intuitive to use.
    I am addicted to it.


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