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Corel Painter X: A first impression

Painter is one of the few apps I've used continuously for over a decade. I first purchased Painter 3.1 in 1995 along with my first Wacom tablet. Back then it was made by "Fractal Design Corporation" and the software and manuals came in a paint can with that paint smell. So version X arrived at my office yesterday and I spent this morning installing it and excercising its feature set.

Immediate thoughts

  • Definintely faster on the same hardware. Please, keep in mind I am running on a Vista, dual-core machine with 4GB of RAM.
  • RealBristle technology. I have no idea how this works but, subjectively speaking, where this technology is used in the brush strokes just *look better*.
  • Stable. I spent several hours drawing and the app never crashed. After about 2 hours It did go into a state where it would not paint but otherwise worked fine. I restarted the app and I could paint again. No data loss or image corruption. Keep in mind, that this state may have resulted from trying a feature I don't normally use instead of a problem with the app.
  • Works and installs seamlessly with Vista.
  • Still doesn't have ability to save to PNG. Minor annoyance - I just like PNG a lot.

My informal Stress test

A tried as many brushes and features as made sense for several hours as I tried to simulate a long session of application use (i.e. lots of brush strokes, simple layer usage) . Below is the result.




Get it.

  • Uprade = $200
  • Full = $365


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