Wednesday, February 11th, 2015 Posted by Jim Thacker

Serif launches Affinity Photo as free beta

Serif has released a public beta of Affinity Photo, its upcoming sub-$50 professional-grade 2D image editor.

Designed for photographers and raster graphics artists, Affinity Photo is “unashamedly pro”, promising an industry-standard workflow, high performance, and some interesting Photoshop-like advanced tools.

Solid basic workflow, some nice Photoshop-like advanced tools
First, the basics: Affinity Photo supports “end-to-end CMYK, LAB colour, 16-bits per channel editing, ICC colour profiling, and fantastic … PSD and 64-bit plug-in support right from the start”.

In the video above, you can also see advanced tools that were relatively recent introductions in Photoshop, including ‘inpainting’, Serif’s version of Content Aware Fill; tilt-shift blur; relighting; and a looks gallery.

How well does it perform on real jobs?
It’s too early to tell how Affinity Photo performs in practice, but reviews for Affinity Designer, its Illustrator-like sister application, have been generally positive.

Creative Bloq, which saw an early demo of Affinity Photo, was cautiously impressed, describing it as a “genuinely new photo-editing app” and “actually rather exciting”.

Pros and cons
Affinity Photo’s killer USP? The price: in a posting on Vimeo, Serif confirmed that Affinity Photo would be a “$49.99 one-time payment when it launches, no subscription”.

Its Achilles heel, at least for VFX and games work? It’s Mac-only. Serif has said that it will release a Windows version “one day probably”, but that it will finish the entire Affinity suite of tools first.

But if you use a Mac, it’s definitely one to check out. We can’t find a full feature list on the product website, but the beta is a free download, although you will need to register first.

Read Serif’s blog post announcing Affinity Photo

Sign up for the Affinity Photo beta