Paint.NET vs Photoshop

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by solo_w., Jan 30, 2006.

  1. What's the general consensus on Paint.NET vs Photoshop for your basic
    image manipulation and tweaking. Obviously PS has the plugins which
    lend a great advantage, but besides that, for scanning and minor
    adjustments am I losing a great deal by using Paint.NET?
  2. What is Who makes it? Nothing on google.
  4. Gosh, I thought everyone here would know about Paint.NET, it's free and can perform a bunch of image handling functions. I've used it for over a year now, but without being able to afford PS I'm wondering what I'm missing...
  5. I've never heard of paint.Net but I think it's a pretty safe bet that something that's free isn't in the same league with a $700 professional software tool.

    Can it operate on 16-bit images? What layering operations does it have? Can it import ICC profiles? Does it make color separations? What color spaces can it convert to/from?
  6. I think it's a pretty safe bet that something that's free isn't in the same league with a $700 professional software tool.
    Photoshop is one instance where comparable free alternatives are not YET available. Some people like GIMP but its not in the same league. But in most other areas your assertion is false. Having just switched to openoffice from MS-office not because it's free but it's better, I can vouch for that. And have you ever installed Linux after paying several hundred dollars for Windows!
  7. This is the first I have heard of it.

    No Adjustment Layers, no Layer Masks, no color management (ICC profiled workflow), no support for 16-bit color (only 8-bit color [32-bit images]), and etcetera.

    Sadly, the FAQ document says it lacks all the features of PS that use huge amounts of CPU and memory that save me time and allow me to refine my final product more precisely.

    Add in the years I have spent working with PS and it just does not cut it. If I did not have the PS experience, then it might have value.


  8. zee


    I'm a big advocate for opensource software and I've been aware of Paint.NET since its inception. I'm shocked that google doesn't show any links for it; it's one of the bigger success stories in the opensource movement and has come a long way in a short time. Those who are interested can read about it and download it here:

    Much as I'd like to say otherwise, Photoshop does not have any serious competition in the image editing field ... yet. That could change someday, but I don't see it happening in the very near future.

    Like Sean, I have invested too much time and money in learning Photoshop so if I'm going to seriously consider any alternatives, they have to at least come close to doing what Photoshop can do for me. If a program is not even in the ballpark, frustration will lead me to uninstall it.
  9. I've been useing Paint Shop Pro for many years! ( on version 10 now)
    Much cheaper by a long shot, and as far as I can tell, not all that diffrent from CS2. I use Digital Photo Professional (version 2.0) for RAW conversion, and than make any final small changes in PSP.
    Can anyone tell me what makes Photoshop all that much more worth $700.00 compared to around a $100.00 for PSP?
    Thanks ahead of time for the help understanding this...
  10. Guys, if you only knew how to search on google...
    If you type, then google thinks you are looking for a .net WEBSITE. Type your key word like this --> "" <-- That way google can recognize it as a single keyword instead of looking for (which does not exist).
    I think some of the guys are siding with expensive software because they are more familiar with it. I see so many advantages to this software that MATCH (if not exceed) many programs such as PS, fireworks, the old paint, and any other picture program I cannot think of right now. I have been using it for a mere week and have noticed many huge differences between other programs. is far easier to understand quickly and gets done many easier editing jobs that take several minutes to complete on other programs.
    Don't get bummed because you may have spent $$$ on software that you found out you could of had for free. I'm excited by; yet, I think this is Microsoft's repeated scheme of running people out of business again. Remember when Internet explorer and paint started coming with computers for free. It's what did Netscape and other smaller companies in. is an excellent free program that should not be belittled simply because it is free. Don't underestimate free programs. Paying out money does not mean you are getting a better deal if you know what you are looking for.
  11. M S,

    What is missing from it are not the painting tools, but the tools that use huge amounts of CPU resources and RAM that make me more efficient and responsive to clients. This is not the filters, but layer masks, adjustment layers, efficient memory utilization for huge fules, the ability to use macros (Actions), and to script the program. These extra tools make non-destructive editing possible to a degree that is hard to match. PS also has extensive support for my graphics tablet. PS also has support for 16-bit color work, CMYK, LAB, and extensive color management (which makes for repeatable work). This translates into more dollars per hour for my time. From a business perspective, the low price of PS is not a major hurdle as it more than pays for its own self.

    There is no bummed about money spent as the advanced tools in PS more than pay for the program in far less than a year. But you still have to invest the years to cross the learning curve to higher efficiency.

    But if you enjoy it, then please enjoy it.

    all the best,

  12. Stick with, with 700+ plugins compatible with 3.5.5 (700 that I've managed to get my hands on) and version 4.0 on the way. And one more thing, you CAN'T ignore the $700 price gap, you just can't.
    The only thing lacking from PDN is vector image editing. But it's so easy to create stunning images with PDN, it's the bargain of all time.

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