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Affinity Photo Vs. Photoshop

by Online Tutorials Library

Affinity Photo Vs. Photoshop

Affinity Photo is a professional image editing software that provides support for Mac OS, Windows, and iPad devices.

Both Photoshop and Affinity Photo are well-known editing software used by millions of professionals over the globe. Both tools are premium tools; we have to pay to use them. However, their premium plans are different.

Photoshop is an older and more popular software for image editing. In contrast, affinity photo is the latest trend among photographers. Affinity photo is known as Photoshop alternative.

Affinity Photo Vs. Photoshop

Here, we will discuss both the tools and will see which one is more useful in terms of functionality, pricing, and other criteria. Further, we will discuss Affinity Photo is really advanced enough to replace Photoshop?

What is Affinity Photo?

Affinity Photo is a professional image editing software considered as a Photoshop alternative. It provides several tools for color enhancement, brushwork, refined selection, Raw image format support, etc. it is less expensive than Photoshop; that’s why it is considered an alternative to Photoshop to save your pockets.

Affinity Photo provides excellent performance with live previews and real-time editing. It comes with a built-in set of filters. Also, it supports several undo and redo operations up to 8000 steps. Several other features, such as advanced layers, HDR support, basic editing tools, etc., make it a perfect editing software.

Let’s discuss its features:

Features of Affinity Photo:

Following are some features of affinity photo:

Platform Support: Affinity photo supports mac OS and Windows operating systems. It also provides support for iPad devices.

Modular Interface: Its interface is made up of five sections which are called photo persona, liquefy persona, develop persona, export persona, and tone mapping persona. The photo persona contains basic image editing tools, while the liquefy persona contains wrap effects for correcting distorted photos.

The other sections, like the export persona used for exporting the image in different image formats such as RAW, JPEG, TIFF, PNG, etc., tone mapping persona contains the tools for tone mapping.

Work History: The Affinity Photo provides a super work history feature. It saves the work history even after closing the document, which means we can revert it back by reopening the document. It provides up to 8000 steps for undo and redo operations.

Live Previews: Affinity Photo provides a live preview feature while editing. We can see a preview of the operation before applying this. It also shows how the color will be applied to the image with the different blend modes.

It also provides a convenient way for painting the layer mask. Also, it provides a live brush preview, which helps us to see the changes of the brush strokes before applying.

Resizing Photos: Affinity photo allows us to resize photos without destroying the image pixels. While in Photoshop, we have to convert the layer into a smart object, which is a default feature in Affinity. So while increasing and decreasing the image, there will be no drop in image quality.

Less Pricing as Compared to Photoshop: Affinity Photo has a lower cost than Photoshop. We can have all the above-discussed features in Affinity Photo at a lower cost than Photoshop.

What is Photoshop?

Photoshop is an advanced and professional image editing software. It is useful for image editing and other graphical tasks. We can create, edit, and customize the graphical artworks and images using Photoshop. Photoshop is provided and managed by Adobe Inc. Photoshop supports Windows and Mac OS operating systems. It also provides support for iPad devices. But, it is not available for Unix-based operating systems.

Photoshop can be used to create and convert the images in different image formats such as jpeg, png, gif, etc. the default document format in Photoshop is PSD (Photoshop Document) which saves the work with layers. When we open a PSD file, all the document components will be opened with layers for each component and styling effect.

Initially, it was a basic editing software, but over time it became an advanced graphic tool. Nowadays, it is one of the best tools to deal with image graphics and is widely used in different fields such as multimedia, architecture, animation, publishing, Photography, etc.

We can create and edit the single multimedia photo to high dynamic range photos using Photoshop.

Features of Photoshop

The following are some key features and advantages of using Photoshop:

IPad app

Photoshop comes to provide support for Windows, Mac OS, and also iPad apps. It comes as Photoshop for iPad for the apple tablet support. Using this application, we can perform some basic editing using our tablet.

Perfect Editing

Photoshop is raster-based editing software that performs pixel-level editing. We have complete control of each pixel.

Operation variety

Photoshop supports numerous tools for editing photos. As compared to Lightroom, it is much more powerful.

Compositing or Replacing

We can composite or replace a part of the image with a similar region using the Heal tool or clone stamp tool, which are the powerful tool of Photoshop. These tools allow us to match the perfection by fixing the damaged sections without any compromising.

Plug-in Support

Photoshop supports several external plug-ins to add some extra functionality to it. We can also create our actions to use the long actions repeatedly.


Layers allow us to edit each component separately without affecting the other parts of the image. They are like a sheet of paper that can be edited independently and arranged in any order.

Selection Tools

Photoshop comes with built-in magic selection tools such as magic wand and quick selection tools, which allows us automatically select similar color regions. We can manipulate this selection in any possible way by replacing and removing them.

Pen Tool

The pen tool is one of the finest tools in Photoshop. We can draw anything that we can imagine using the pen tool. The pen tool makes it more than an editing software. We can draw a path along with anchor points using the pen tool, but the creative stack of this tool is limitless.

Let’s see some key differences between Photoshop and Affinity photo:

Key Differences between Photoshop and Affinity Photo

  • Photoshop has much more features than Affinity photo. Affinity Photo is a basic image editing and management software. Whereas Photoshop is a complete package of graphics.
  • The pricing of Photoshop is more than the Affinity photo. Affinity Photo is a one-time purchase, whereas Photoshop is a premium tool that comes for a fixed period of time.
  • The user interface of the Photoshop and Affinity photos is much similar. They look quite similar in workspace and color themes.
  • The Affinity photo file type cannot be opened with other programs, whereas the Photoshop file type can be opened by the Affinity Photo, Krita, GIMP, and other Adobe programs.
  • Photoshop provides a customizable workspace, whereas Affinity photo provides a default seamless persona feature.
  • Photoshop document is supported by all the Adobe products. Adobe has a long family of the application, so professionals use Photoshop because of a wide family of the Adobe applications.
  • Professionals widely use both tools as they provide project finishing capabilities.
  • Learning curves of both tools are almost similar. Both tools are complex tools, so there are so many tutorials available on the web for learning them.

Pricing of Photoshop & Affinity Photo

Affinity Photo is one-time purchase software. We can buy it for $54.99 on Windows or Mac or $21.99 on iPad.

Adobe provides different plans and policies for Photoshop and other Adobe products.

We can own the Adobe creative cloud for $39.99/month for all apps and Photoshop for $20.99/month.

There are some other plans also available for Photoshop. See all Photoshop plans.

Pros and Cons of Affinity Photo


  • Available for Windows, Mac OS, and iOS
  • Doesn’t charge monthly subscription fees
  • Provide a free trial version
  • Fast and efficient performance
  • Supports powerful live preview
  • Supports real-time editing
  • Supports a full set of 16-bit filters
  • Powerful undo and redo up to 8,000 steps
  • Saves the work history even after closing
  • Supports live brush previews
  • Supports advanced layer controls
  • Unlimited layers
  • user-friendly


It does not have any major cons, but it is a premium tool, so we can consider that as a con.

  • It is a one-time purchase software, which may be overwhelming to pay all at once.

Pros and Cons of Photoshop

Photoshop has the following pros and cons:


  • Faster performance even with the larger files.
  • Unlimited scope of editing as it provides so many tools for editing.
  • The limitless creativity of the pen tool.
  • The powerful stamp tool that allows us to fix defects and curves, and duplication or removal of objects from images
  • Advanced crop and slice tool.
  • Supports scripting
  • Different selection tools for making a selection as per requirement.
  • Supports video editing as well.
  • Provides support for 3D illustrations and paintings
  • Provides support for 360 panorama workflow and Adobe Camera Raw enhancements
  • Available with Lightroom package (another image editing tool)
  • Creative cloud support
  • Supports add-ons and plug-ins to extend its functionality.


  • Charge subscription fees instead of a one-time purchase.

Let’s see some head to head differences between Affinity Photo and Photoshop:

Photoshop Affinity Photo
It is raster-based image editing software provided by Adobe. Affinity Photo is also a raster-based editing software provided by Serif.
It provides support for Windows, Mac OS, and iOS. It also provides support for Windows, Mac OS, and iOS.
It supports a plug-in for extending its functionality. It does not provide support for external plug-ins.
It supports a pen tool for limitless creativity in the drawing. It supports live previews with real-time editing.
It supports video editing. It does not support video editing.
It supports 3D extrusion and 3D printing. It does not support 3D.
It is used by small businesses, large businesses, and freelancers. It is also used by beginners, small businesses, large businesses, and freelancers.
It is a subscription-based software which we have to renew every month. It is a one-time purchase software which we have to pay only once.
It is available in 26 languages. It is available in 9 languages.
It is a large software that required more storage to install. It is a lightweight software as compared to Photoshop and requires less storage than Photoshop.


Both Affinity Photo and Photoshop are raster-based professional image editing software. They are much more similar in terms of functionality and user interface. We can perform from basic up to advanced level image editing using both of them.

Photoshop retains its position on top for several years. In fact, it is so much popular that the term image editing is known as Photoshop since it is a subscription-based tool, so it may become heavy for your pockets to pay regularly for a fixed period of time.

Comparatively, the Affinity Photo is one-time purchase software, so if you pay only once, you can use it for a lifetime. So you can choose any of them as per your requirement. If you want to use editing software for a short period of time, you can choose Photoshop; for a long period of time, you can choose Affinity Photo. It completely depends on your pockets and requirement.

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