First released in July, Affinity Photo has already gained a formidable reputation offering high end professional tools, incredible speed, and rock solid stability. The fact it’s also offered at a low price, with no subscription to pay for, has made it very popular with photographers– regularly topping the Mac App Store charts, and receiving 1000s of 5-star ratings on the store worldwide.
Despite there being no subscription fee, Serif has always promised to release regular free updates to the app for at least the first couple of years, and although some minor improvements have already been pushed this is the first time a significant number of new features have been added.
One area of all-new technology the app is boasting is super accurate image alignment. This has opened up two new major new features of panorama stitching and image stacks.
“The accuracy of panorama stitching in the app really is as good as it gets–and with Affinity Photo’s advanced memory management you can build up images of 100s of mega-pixels and still have incredible performance when you go to edit,” said Ashley Hewson, Serif’s Managing Director. “Then we’ve got image stacks—from simply removing an unwanted moving object from multiple shots to advanced techniques like layering multi-exposure composites, they add a whole new dimension to what is possible in the app.” Another big addition has been the inclusion of six extensions for Apple Photos, opening up some of Affinity’s technology directly from within the Apple app. The extensions included are:
- Develop – with full RAW editing capability
- Liquify – for warping and re-sculpting areas of images
- Haze Removal – intelligently removing fog, mist and smog
- Miniature – for depth of field and tilt shift adjustments
- Monochrome – offering fine control over black and white conversion
- Retouch – including a full suite of retouching tools and smart pixel selection
“Opening up the ability for developers to produce extensions for Photos was a big part of the El Capitan update, and it’s been fun writing for it,” said Ashley. “While Affinity Photo is a very robust professional product and will always stay that way, extensions allow us to expose some of that power in a more use-case focused way for quick and easy editing.”
Other Apple technology has been harnessed, too–in particular fully supporting the extended- gamut DCI-P3 displays found in the latest iMacs, giving a depth of colour to images beyond what was possible before. Other new features and improvements include canvas rotation, PDF/X and spot colour support, customisable keyboard shortcuts, additions to filters, adjustment layers and blend modes, and significant improvements to PSD compatibility.
The developers have had an incredibly busy end to the year, as not only have they been preparing the update to Affinity Photo, they have also launched an update to their Apple Designer Award-winning app Affinity Designer today. Designer now includes artboards, along with lots of new professional print features. Launching both updates at the same time ensures both apps remain fully compatible with each other.
Both updates are available now, free to owners of each app via the Mac App Store. For new customers they are available at the special offer price of just $39.99 each until December 15th, after which they revert to the normal price of $49.99. Learn more at affinity.serif.com, or from the Mac App Store via affinity.serif.com/buy-photo and affinity.serif.com/buy-designer.