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Affinity Photo compared to Photoshop or Lightroom

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I would like to know what the differences are (if there are any) between Affinity Photo and Photoshop. I wanted to get Photoshop, but I do not want the cloud version, so I'm looking for alternatives ...


Is there somewhere/someone that can guide me?


Linked to the question: I have Lightroom (not the cloud version) on my Windows PC and would like to continue working with it for organizational purposes ... therefore the question: could I continue using LR and go to Affinity Photo from within LR? (as it is e.g. the case with Google NIK plug-ins ...)


When this last would be possible, I'm pretty sure that I will purchase Affinity ...




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I'm no expert by a long shot. But I owned CS6 Master Suite and paid a lot of money for it and never used it because there were so few tutorials and I was completely overwhelmed by it. Then Adobe went subscription. I don't do subscriptions. I now have both Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo and I'm totally in love with them. There are dozens of video tutorials and a very supportive community. I've found everything others have created for me using Adobe is perfectly compatible with Affinity. I can both read from and save to Adobe format with no compatibility issues. I say you can't go wrong with Affinity.

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The short answer to this is yes you can do this. In Lightroom, goto preferences/external editing. Here you can add Affinity Photo as an Additional External Editor. With Affinity Photo 1.5, you can now round trip tiff files. This means from Lightroom you can edit in Affinity photo and when saved will show in Lightroom.

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Hi Joshua.


That's exactly my setup. I works perfectly for my needs.

I also have Nik collection set up as a plug-in in Affinity.


Have fun!!

- Affinity Photo 1.8.6
- Affinity Designer 1.8.6
-Affinity Publisher 1.8.6


MacBook Pro 16 GB
MacOS Big Sur v.11.1

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​I had LR and PS for many years and recently decided to try some different products because I hate paying a subscription cost.  I'm on a Mac so my LR replacement is MacPhun's Luminar and my PS replacement is Affinity Photo.  I have not tried Designer yet but soon will add that to my list of goto apps.


I used NIK for a while and like it but Luminar is much more flexible.   However, I still have not found a good photo catalog system like LR.  


As far as feature comparison is concerned, while PS has a bazillion tools and features I personally only used about a third of them and Photo has not disappointed.  Everything I have used in PS can be found in Photo, some things have different names and it takes me a little longer to hunt for the feature but I always find it eventually.





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lightroom -> edit in Photo.exe -> 16 bit TIFF -> Affinity -> Save -> lightroom works fine.


The only thing is, that Affinity photo on windows does not feel like a finished software. Yesterday I almost got crazy using quickmask and refine mask. After leaving and reentering quickmask, I could not see my masking brush strokes anymore to correct my selection. And I hope you have a really fast cpu, otherwise the refine mask is no fun either.

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I do have very little knowledge in top notch photo editing in general, but I do know a few of the very special features Photoshop has that Affinity Photo also has or something similar.


1. Photo has a "Protect Alpha" option similar to Photoshop's option to lock transparencies.


2. It has an option for the Selection Brush Tool to affect all layers at once, but this cannot be done with the Flood Selection Tool (magic wand) or Fill Tool like Photoshop.


3. It has the Mesh Warp Tool which can work similar to Photoshop's puppet warp (almost).


It also has inpainting, a heck lot of photo editing adjustment tools, a perspective tool, masking and clipping, a mixer brush tool, and who knows what else.

The website is still a work in progress. The "Comics" and "Shop" sections are not yet ready. Feel free to connect with me and let me know what you like or what can be improved. You can contact me here, on my contact page, YouTube channel, or Twitter account. Thanks and have a great day!

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  • 1 year later...

bit of an old thread; however my thoughts are PS has become too big for photography needs and Lr doesn't have it all
I have just started with affinity working from the older Lr5 --- working well as a set for me. Affinity is very much like Ps and there are parts of older Ps that I could never understand so I am having similar drama with affinity, although that is not a big problem
I also have On1; great program ideas however still I needed Pse12. Affinity solves that problem. .  Very easy to go Lr5 to Affinity and back Lr5, so On1 doesn't see a lot of activity now even though I had to buy a new computer just run On1 :( .
The hardest thing is forgetting what I know about On1 and Pse; then finding the Affinity tools that have different names doing similar things in different ways 

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