Dive Pacific 171 Oct- Nov 2019

divenewzealand31206

DIGITALIMAGING

Hans Weichselbaum www.digital-image.co.nz

every month?

In May this year Adobe quietly debuted new pricing for its photographer bundle. The monthly cost went from

$9.99 to $19.99 in some countries. Adobe officials said they were ‘testing’ new pricing tiers. The reaction from

photographers round the world was not pretty, and Adobe didn’t quite follow through with their plan, but it left

a bitter taste.

Currently you pay $A14.95/month

in Australasia, which gives you

full access to Photoshop, Lightroom

and a 20 GB Cloud storage facility.

Most importantly, you automatically

receive regular upgrades.

My personal experience over the

last few years is the benefits from

those updates is very modest,

hardly noticeable. The cost of using

Photoshop comes to almost $NZ200

per year, plus the constant threat of

a price increase at any moment.

Alternatives

Little wonder then that many

photographers, professional and

amateur, have started to look around

for alternatives, and they are discovering

there are lots of image editors

out there which can easily compete

with Photoshop.

I have been following the various

tests and rankings over the last few

months and found that Affinity

Photo regularly got the top spot.

It’s a program developed by Serif, a

European company which has been

around for 12 years.

Affinity Photo is available for Mac

and Windows platforms, as well

as iPad. It currently costs NZ$90

one-off. The latest version 1.7 came

out in June this year and was a

major upgrade, especially in terms

of improved speed. It was free for

existing customers and the company

forum states that future upgrades

are going to be free too until the

next full version is released. This

looks promising and I want to give

you the results of my three weeks of

testing it.

Starting up Affinity Photo

Downloading and installation on a

Windows machine was straightforward.

Image 1 shows you the interface

with the familiar toolbar on the

left of the image. One way of opening

an image is through the File menu:

File > Open (Ctrl+O). Thankfully,

you’ll find that most of the keyboard

shortcuts familiar from Photoshop

are working just fine.

On the right, underneath the histogram,

you have a number of tabs:

Adjustments, Layers, Effects, Styles

and Stock with more farther down.

Image 1 - The Affinity Photo Interface

62 Dive New Zealand | Dive Pacific

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