Free alternatives to Adobe CC programs

I see that Adobe is starting to increase its CC pricing. Here is an article oy DIY Photography outlining alternatives that are free …


I am very satisfied with Affinity Programs Photo, Designer and Publisher. Especially Affinity Photo is my love at first glance. I stopped using Adobe programs.

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I have to agree with you as I use Affinity products also, but … they are not free. Just posted this as a indication of what was available as open source.

Not quite. Affinity Photo is mentioned there as an alternative to Photoshop.

The UK site is still showing the price I’ve been paying for a while - we had a price hike some time ago when the bottom fell out of the pound i.e. our exit from Europe vote – and Adobe did have a “special offer” early last year in the UK which meant terminate and re-join.
I’m more than happy with Adobe currently because I manage a 45 000 image catalogue together with the processing. The software is ALWAYS UP-TO-DATE and the phone helpline service is second-to-none. You don’t get that with a freebie package. As for Affinity and say PaintShopPro, they are excellent products, and I use the latter extensively together with LightRoom and PhotoShop because they integrate with PSP and Topaz.


I’ve recently cancelled my Adobe subscription, alternatives I’ve been looking at include Skylum and Serif software which so far have been able to achieve everything I was doing in LR/PS, albeit with a steepish learning curve, but I’m there now and happy to continue using them. Being rid of the Adobe subscription millstone is a great relief.


I just don’t understand the complaints about Adobe’s pricing - I think it works out to less than 40 cents a day.

For anyone serious (whether pro or amateur) to pay less than the equivalent of a cup of coffee a day to have Photoshop and Lightroom seems like an INCREDIBLE value to me. And as Terry pointed out, they’re always updating it. And there are certainly more tutorials available for PS and LR than any other photo products.

2 Likes as a replacement for lightroom? Not even close…

But I look and the price is still the same.
$9.99 for
Lightroom CC
Lightroom Classic CC
Photoshop CC
20GB of cloud storage

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For me it’s about choice. With subscription there is no choice, you have to keep paying, often for updates that you do not need or will never use. With single payment you can choose when you update and at a point when the updates offered will be useful to you. I feel that I have more control that way.


That was a slip up.

That’s why I never signed up for the subscription version of LR. My desktop version 5.7 is just fine. Sure, I don’t get any updates. But there are plenty of plugins and standalone programs, both free and for pay, to choose from in place of Adobe updates. Though I’m not using the latest gear - a Nikon D7000 is what hangs around my neck - so it’s easy for me to continue this way.

Best regards


That is what I have done. I use Photoshop CS6 that I owned. The only thing I really would like that the new versions have is to be able to go to Camera Raw from within Photoshop and not be sure to open first in it if I think a photo needs good light adjustments.

I agree. I quit using all adobe products. Very happy with Affinity. Has everything I need. However, I do miss Dreamweaver. I have a MAC. Any suggestions for a non adobe substitute?

Do you use Adobe’s free DNG Converter software? If you run your proprietary raw images through that (verify you get the version of DNG converter that supports your camera…) then you can easily open those DNGs in Ps either in the usual way you’d open a raw image or, if you’re using Ps CC, via the Camera Raw filter. It would all function the same as if you were opening your proprietary raw images; with the exception that you won’t get the extra (annoying to me anyway) sidecar file. Your raw recipe will be saved in the DNG you created.