Last Updated: October 7, 2021
- Free trial: 30 days
- Video editing feature: No
- AI tools: Yes
- Supported formats: 30+
- iPad version: No
- Text management : Yes
- 3D printing: No
- Lifetime license: Yes
Creative individuals who are new to image editing software
- Simple layout
- Powerful editing tools
- Raster and vector support
- Only available on Windows
- Not available on mobile devices
- AI tools could be better
PaintShop Pro 2021
PaintShop Pro 2021 Ultimate
What Is Corel PaintShop Pro?
Released 30 years ago, Corel PaintShop Pro is a raster and vector image editing software. It was created for Windows with the intent to serve as a picture converter. But the tool has evolved over the years and now stands shoulder to shoulder with Photoshop.
The software uses artificial intelligence for editing and has many features similar to Adobe. There are two key differences, though; Corel PaintShop Pro offers a lifetime license rather than a subscription model, and it’s only available on Windows.
Used by creative individuals and companies alike, this simple image converting software grew to become an image editing, drawing, and painting program. Its interface is easier to navigate than most competitors and is packed with equally powerful tools. Our PaintShop Pro review will look at all it has to offer.
Let’s dive into the essential features of this image editing program.
We’ll start our Corel PaintShop Pro review by explaining the AI tools.
- AI Upsampling: Lets users enlarge photos up to 40,000 pixels without lowering the quality.
- AI Artifact Removal: Corel PaintShop Pro photo editor lets you remove artifacts and distortion in images.
- AI Denoise: Fix any low light noise in your pictures.
- AI Style Transfer: A simple way to apply effects to your images.
Corel photo editing software provides you with various workspaces. The default one is Photography, which is the easiest for beginners. Other workspaces are Essentials, Complete, and Sea-to-Sky. The Essentials workspace has all main editing and retouching features and is excellent for beginners and intermediate level users. The Complete workspace contains professional editing and graphic design tools.
Sea-to-Sky is only available in Corel PaintShop Pro Ultimate and lets you enhance any drone and underwater photos. There are four tool groups available:
- Corrective: Improves and enhances clarity, vibrancy, and color.
- Scenic: Enhances landscape images.
- Low light: Instantly illuminates photos taken in low light environments.
- Creative: Add color-changing presets to your photos.
The Corel photo editing software makes it easy to add texts to images, allowing you to pass on additional information through your designs.
Sometimes you snap an almost perfect photo, but the angle is a little off. Corel PaintShop Pro 2021 lets you fix any crooked images.
Remove Red Eyes
Red eyes are a common issue when using the flash. You can now quickly fix them by using the Red Eye tool.
It’s also possible to crop your images to a preferred size in this editing program. You can even use other effects to enhance the cropped section’s appearance, including the Rule of Thirds, the Golden Ratio, and the Divine Proportion.
Add Photo Effects
Photo effects can be used to alter an image, simulate photo techniques, and help you to express your creativity. You can manipulate photos in whichever way you like with these Corel photo editing features:
- Add over 100 filters, including black and white, infrared, and sepia
- Add a vignette
- Add lens flare
- Add color splashes
- Enhance motion blur
As many original images are too large to put on the internet or to be printed, Corel photo editing gives you the freedom to select the final size. When you open the resize dialog box, you’ll see a variety of resizing options to choose from:
- By pixels
- By percentage
- By printing size
Adjust Hue and Saturation
This image editing software for Windows helps you adjust hue and saturation, giving you endless possibilities to bring out the best of your photos.
Fix Blurry Pictures
It’s frustrating to find any blurry images while editing. But this software helps you fix the blur in no time. With the Sharpness and Unsharp Mask tools, it can be done in just a few clicks.
The Corel PaintShop Pro features make it easy to combine images by removing the background. Select the layer that has the image elements that you want to isolate and use the Background Eraser. We found that it even works very well with small details.
You can protect your creative work with a watermark, which is especially important if you edit images for paying clients. By adding a watermark, you can safely show them your work and remove it once they pay the invoice.
Corel PaintShop Pro makes it easy to change the contrast and make the image more vivid.
Remove Wrinkles and Blemishes
This software gives you more than just basic photo editing tools. You can also remove scars, wrinkles, and blemishes, making it an excellent software for photographers who shoot portraits.
Time Machine is one of the Corel PaintShop Pro effects that allows you to add vintage colors to the image. When you open it, you’ll see the thumbnails as previews. Click on the one you like and adjust the intensity.
Regardless of the level of photography skills, sometimes you need to remove unwanted objects or people from your photos. The Object Remover is one of Corel PaintShop Pro features that helps you achieve this with ease.
Restore Old Photos
Restoring old photographs is possible with this image editing software for Windows. You can crop, fix any damage, or add effects to improve them and save them from aging.
Fix Underexposed and Overexposed Photos
If your camera picks up too much or too little light, you can correct the image with Corel PaintShop Pro. To fix underexposed photos, use the Fill Flash feature. To edit the overexposed ones, use Backlighting.
Correct Lens Distortion
Image distortion can create a warped sense of depth. While it may look cool, it can be annoying when it happens by accident. This software for photographers can correct three different types of distortions:
Editing with layers gives you the ability to change and create content without disturbing the rest of the image. With layers, you can add double exposure, clone images, merge two shots, and blend photos.
Editing Bulk Images
Working on editing in bulk can save a lot of time. You can apply the same edits to thousands of images at once.
Brushes are essential tools for photo editing, giving you even more possibilities to create fantastic images. Corel PaintShop Pro photo software supports brushes from PaintShop Pro, Adobe Photoshop, and Jasc.
When you shoot in RAW, you’re preserving much more detail. Corel PaintShop Pro RAW support gives you more control over the editing process than the JPEG format. Upon editing the RAW image format, you export it as RAW, JPEG, GIF, or PNG.
Using design templates can significantly speed up your editing process and provide maximum flexibility. The hundreds of available templates are especially convenient if you work with social media or marketing, as you can select the correct dimensions for headers, covers, and banners for any platform.
That concludes the best features this software has to offer. Let’s now look at the usability in the remainder of this PaintShop Pro review.
Corel PaintShop Pro Ease of Use
When we tried Corel PaintShop Pro, everything in the software ran smoothly. Upon opening it, we could register to start our 30-day free trial or use the lifetime license.
Upon opening Corel PaintShop Pro for Windows 10, the welcoming page shows you the latest news, tips, and extras. From there, you can select your workspace and explore the features. The homepage is clean and easy to navigate, but the workspace appears somewhat complicated at first glance.
We loved the guided tour that takes you through the key features and minimizes confusion. This guide will show up when you launch the app until you mark the “Don’t Show Again” box.
If you’re a beginner, you’ll love using the Essential workspace. It’s great that the software offers a more minimalistic overview, as the more advanced workspaces may overwhelm newcomers.
Corel PaintShop Pro System Requirements
These are the system requirements for Corel PaintShop Pro:
- Windows 10
- Intel Celeron G series or AMD Phenom II and up
- 4 GB RAM
- 3 GB available disk space
- 1366 x 768 resolution
- Direct X video adapter
- Internet Explorer 10 and up
- Internet connection for installation and online features
Corel PaintShop Pro Pricing
Before committing to a paid plan, you can use the 30-day free trial. No credit card is required when signing up. If you decide to purchase the software, know that it is a lifetime license. Prices are:
- PaintShop Pro 2021 ($79.99): Complete program, plus Artistics Effects Script Bundle
- PaintShop Pro 2021 Ultimate ($99.99): Complete program with bonus collection and Artistics Effects Script Bundle
Both licenses come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Corel PaintShop Pro vs. Photoshop
On the surface, there aren’t that many differences between Corel PaintShop Pro and Photoshop. The features look similar, and both programs look powerful enough for professionals and amateurs alike. But diving a little deeper, we did find some features that set them apart.
When it comes to PaintShop vs. Photoshop, Photoshop can only be used through a monthly subscription, while PaintShop Pro offers a lifetime license. Even though Photoshop comes with access to the Creative Cloud, its monthly payment plans make it more expensive than Corel.
While Photoshop is mainly used for raster graphics and has limited vector editing tools, Corel PaintShop Pro lets you edit both formats. Photoshop only supports its own brushes, but Corel supports brushes from PaintShop Pro, Adobe Photoshop, and Jasc.
Photoshop doesn’t offer AI editing tools, and you’ll often need additional software for editing certain aspects of your images. Corel PaintShop Pro has all the tools you need in one place.
While Corel PaintShop Pro needs fewer system requirements than Photoshop, it’s limited to Windows. Photoshop is created for macOS, Windows, and iOS devices. Photoshop is cloud-based and automatically saves your work on Creative Cloud, while Corel is downloadable and forces you to keep your work on your device.
Since it’s cheaper, we recommend using Corel if you’re new to photo editing to learn the basics. But since Photoshop does come with a broader set of features, it’s better for more professional work.
We’ll finish our Corel PaintShop Pro review by saying that this software comes with almost all the tools you need, regardless of your image editing skills. If you’re new to editing software, you can use the Essential workspace that provides you with just enough features without feeling overwhelmed.
If you already have some experience, you can use the Complete workspace. It has more tools and features at your disposal. Corel strongly reminds us of Photoshop’s younger brother.
We love that you pay for a lifetime license. This is handy for individuals who are starting to explore similar programs but don’t want to commit to costly monthly subscriptions.
Unfortunately, there are some downsides. The lack of PaintShop Pro for Mac, Android, or iOS mobile devices is one of them. On top of that, you have to save your work on your device as there is no cloud storage available. While testing the software for our PaintShop Pro review, we also noticed that there are no video editing features available, which is a shame.
More helpful reviews:
Corel PaintShop Pro is an excellent tool for image editing. Beginners often use it as it’s easy to use and has a lifetime software license.
Corel PaintShop Pro for Windows 10 works perfectly on this system.
PaintShop Pro is an excellent choice for novice users and those who wish to improve their photo editing skills. The Corel PaintShop Pro Ultimate v2021 offers additional features that will satisfy even the most advanced users.
Corel PaintShop Pro is perfect for beginners, but Photoshop has more advanced tools and is often preferred by professionals.
There is no PaintShop Pro free version, but you can try the software with its 30-day free trial. You can download and test it without entering your credit card information.
Corel PaintShop Pro 2021 costs $79.99, and PaintShop Pro 2021 Ultimate comes with a $99.99 price tag. These are lifetime licenses. As mentioned in our Corel PaintShop Pro review above, you can test the software for 30-days without any costs before purchasing it.