Adobe has been at the forefront of the software industry for years, producing industry-standard software like Photoshop, Premiere Pro, Illustrator, and dozens more. Costs can add up over the course of a year, with monthly plans starting at around $10 for individual programs or around $55 for their Creative Cloud Suite.
This article will show you 10 of Adobe’s most popular programs and the best free alternatives to them that will help you get the job done without breaking the bank and are available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Okay, so let’s begin!
The raster graphics editor Photoshop is perhaps the most well-known of Adobe’s products. However, for most people, its feature set can be overkill. The absolute best free alternative to Photoshop is GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program). This professional-quality, cross-platform image editor is packed full of features, including the ability to work with layers, a wide range of filters and effects, numerous drawing tools, and much more. It supports most popular file formats, including Photoshop PSD files. You can find tutorials on GIMP’s website to help you get more familiar with the program.
Photoshop Alternative (Online):
Another Photoshop alternative to consider is Photopea. This online image editor works in any web browser and closely resembles Photoshop in its layout. It’s also 100% free.
Adobe Illustrator is used by designers to create diagrams, illustrations, logos, charts, and other types of art. The best free alternative to Illustrator for working with vector graphics is Inkscape. It includes a vast set of tools for object creation and manipulation and is 100% compliant with the SVG file format, making it an excellent option for file generation and editing. You can find useful tutorials on their website to get started with Inkscape.
DaVinci Resolve and Shotcut
Premiere Pro Alternatives:
Adobe Premiere Pro is a popular video editing program widely used by content creators. Two alternatives to consider are:
- DaVinci Resolve: This high-quality video editor has a steep learning curve but offers advanced features like multicam editing, trimming, and robust audio editing. The free version of DaVinci Resolve should suffice for most users, but there is a paid Studio version with additional features.
- Shotcut: An open-source video editor with a user-friendly interface, suitable for beginners. It supports resolutions up to 4K, various audio and video effects, and most popular media formats. Plus, it’s completely free.
RawTherapee and Darktable
Adobe Lightroom is a non-destructive photo editing and management tool. Two free alternatives are:
- RawTherapee: An open-source tool that supports raw image files and other formats. It allows non-destructive editing, keeping the original image separate while saving edits as a new file.
- Darktable: Another open-source alternative that supports raw files and non-destructive editing.
After Effects Alternative:
While no free alternative can match the full feature set of Adobe After Effects, many professionals use Blender to create 3D visual effects and animated graphics. Blender is an impressive open-source program that includes tools for motion graphics, compositing, and video editing.
Adobe Audition is used for recording and mixing audio. The best free alternative to Audition is Audacity, an open-source audio workstation. It supports various audio formats, offers themes for customization, and provides a wide range of features, including plugins.
Foxit PDF Reader and PDF24
Unfortunately, there are no free alternatives to Adobe Acrobat with all its features. However, you can use Foxit PDF Reader to view, fill in forms, annotate, and sign PDF documents. For additional tools, visit tools.pdf24.org, a website with a collection of free tools that work in any web browser on any operating system.
Adobe InDesign is used for desktop publishing and page layout design. The best free alternative is Scribus, which offers features like color profiles, font management, and support for vector drawing tools.
Adobe Spark Alternative:
Adobe Spark has gained popularity, but a better alternative is Canva, available with both free and paid plans. Canva is a web-based solution for editing photos, videos, and creating designs. It includes thousands of pre-designed templates and simple online photo and video editors.
Adobe Animate Alternative:
Adobe Animate is used for creating 2D animated content. The best free alternative is Synfig Studio, an open-source program that provides a set of tools for producing high-quality 2D animations, including layer support, various filters, and vector tweening.
Remember that many of these free alternatives rely on user donations for support, so consider contributing if you find them useful. These programs can be downloaded and used for free, providing excellent alternatives to Adobe’s software.
Thank you for reading! If you have any other free software or web app recommendations that can serve as alternatives to Adobe products, please share them in the comments.