There are many graphical programs out there for MacOSX (macOS Sierra) etc. Photoshop from Adobe is one of the biggest and most popular app to use. However, Adobe choosed to change their price policy, so now it costs money for each month unless you buy a second hand Photoshop CS3 or CS4 package from Ebay etc. And do you actually need to pay a monthly fee for a program you use sometimes? What about people who uses it maybe 4-5 times a year? Should you need to pay for a subscription then? No! Creativity and graphical editing should comes from mind and should stay that way. So, with Adobes new price policy the graphical market for Mac have been challenged by Pixelmator. Read on…

One time fee and Use Pixelmator Forever
This program ain’t as free as GIMP which is totally free to use. However, if you are used to Photoshop then Pixelmator for just around 36 EURO is an excellent piece of software because it got many similarities yet it looks way more organized. In this review we test Version 3.6 Cordillera (61103) on MacOSX El Capitan we focus on all of the features it got, because they are very useful. Also we can base our review on our own verdicts, since Distrita team have been using this software now since 2009!

Once you pay for the program, then that is the license you have. There is absolutely no subscription fee and whats great when buying it from Appstore (which sometimes have nice price cuts etc), you can use Pixelmator on several MacOSX installations. It is compatible with MacOSX 10.10 or higher.

The GUI design of Pixelmator feels very nice. The nice black theme and text makes everything easy to use and understand.

Paint what you want and do a Fullscreen
You have several painting tools like in Photoshop. However, Pixelmator tries to mimic Photoshop too much and that makes me use TVPaint for AmigaOS for painting jobs thats need to be done fast. I just wish that Pixelmator had options for the mouse buttons etc. The pressure and the brush size functions are a bit better than in Photoshop, but this should be a lot flawlessly done. TVPaint and Deluxe Paint for AmigaOS are just brilliant in this. Paint with left and erase with right button. Paint with the brush of your choice with left and right click on circles etc to adjust the size directly on the paint area. In Pixelmator as in Photoshop you need to do this in a seperate window. This slows down simplified creations a lot in my view.

We haven’t managed to get Adobe Photoshop CC in review, so we can’t say if its possible to move it to its own fullscreen. But this feature in Pixelmator, makes that this program stands out in a very good way. When you are in fullscreen mode, you have total control. Also then, Pixelmator behaves a bit more like TVPaint. You can also remove and add Pixelmator windows when you are in this fullscreen mode, but I wish that there was one key to remove all of the windows at once like in TVPaint and Deluxe Paint fr AmigaOS.

Powerful Effects, Layers and Brushes
Everything works so flawlessly in Pixelmator. The effects are easy to use and settings are easy to understand. The many choices you’ve got, makes this a much more powerful program than Photoshop we think. The way windows and GUI layout is presenting everything makes the huge difference etc. Also Layers and Brushes window are easy to understand. Though as mentioned above, some more unique features would be very handy to have. Maybe Pixelmator Team Ltd. reads this sometime in the future and bring this to Pixelmator? Would be awesome!

Importing and exporting your images is great also. The program supports Photoshop format aswell as its own. You can save and import also in lots of fileformats. As of now the program supports JPEG, PNG, TIFF, PSD (Photoshop) and even PDF. Yes, you can make PDF documents in Pixelmator. An awesome extra feature for such cheap and affordable program.


And if this wasn’t enough. Pixelmator also supports vector shapes. Yes, you can make vector graphics in it. Photoshop only have a tiny support as Adobe wants you to use Illustrator. But if you don’t need the power of Illustrator, but needs more vector graphics power than in Photoshop then Pixelmator does an excellent job regarding this also.

Apart from few issues with painting capabilities, Pixelmator does a very good job for the price that you need to pay for the product. This product is really worth the money spent. So, if there is one app that you should get on Appstore, then it is Pixelmator. Have fun with it. It’s really nice and easy to understand paint package.

  • Features
  • Usage
  • Lifespan
  • Pricing

Pixelmator Final Verdict

If you love Photoshop, but got upset about the subscription pricing system from Adobe that they added? Then you can save billions by choosing Pixelmator. This is a one time fee paintprogram package that gives you way more features that the price is set at. Here you get a full blown graphics programs, that is one of the best graphic programs that I’ve used on MacOSX. Pixelmator is really worth it and if you really loved Photoshop, you Will love this program even more. However if you are used to Amiga paint programs, there is a short learning curve. The fullscreen feature of Pixelmator makes it more tidy in usage and when it is in this mode, Pixelmator is not that far away from TVPaint. For me, I love both of these programs and I use them both daily. Great and affordable program that is able to pull that creativity you have out on your computer or on-line. Great product!

Distrita Own Experience