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Replacing Your Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription for Under $100

Noam Kroll

For video editors looking for an alternative to their Adobe Creative Cloud subscription, these apps offer similar functionality at a much lower price point.

Top image from Blackmagic Design

Adobe makes some truly incredible apps for post-production professionals and are undoubtably continuing to push their software forward as much as possible. But still, their subscription pricing model isn’t ideal for all creative pros, with individual subscriptions ranging from $9.99 all the way up to almost $80. It’s left some editors looking for alternative solutions.

There are some key Adobe apps that don’t have a direct alternative at the moment, but the majority of relevant Adobe applications for filmmakers absolutely do have alternatives. Let’s take a look at a few of your options for supplementing your Adobe Creative Cloud products.

DaVinci Resolve vs. Premiere Pro/SpeedGrade

Replacing Your Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription for Under $100: DaVinci ResolveImage from Blackmagic Design

DaVinci Resolve is not only an obvious replacement for SpeedGrade — considering it’s the best color grading software out there — but also a replacement for Adobe Premiere Pro. As of version 12, Resolve has truly become a full-fledged NLE system and offers a viable alternative to Premiere Pro that’s hard to ignore.

Not to mention the basic version of DaVinci Resolve is free. If you’re looking to switch NLEs, but don’t want to make the jump to FCPX, Resolve is an excellent option that offers a tremendous amount of value with a minimal learning curve.

Affinity Photo and Design vs. Photoshop/Illustrator

Replacing Your Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription for Under $100: Affinity ProductsImage from Affinity 

Serif is a relatively new software company that creates very high end, yet affordable creative applications. Two of their products in particular — Affinity Photo & Affinity Design — offer excellent alternatives to two of Adobe’s most-popular platforms.

As the name suggests, Affinity Photo is a direct Photoshop competitor. It features a very slick UI and a rich toolset, packaged in a Photoshop-like format that will feel familiar to most Adobe users. Affinity Design is an excellent choice for editors and VFX artists that regularly do design work for their editorial or motion graphics projects. Both programs are only $49.99.

Fusion vs. After Effects

Replacing Your Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription for Under $100: FusionImage from Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic is making this list twice for not only offering a Premiere Pro alternative, but an After Effects alternative too. Much like Resolve, Blackmagic Design’s Fusion is an extremely powerful piece of software that is available both in a free and paid version. It is a node-based compositing platform (similar in design to Nuke), and can easily serve as an alternate for Adobe After Effects.

The learning curve when transitioning from After Effects to Fusion would be somewhat substantial, especially considering Fusion is node-based and After Effects is layer-based. But at the same time Fusion’s node system opens up a lot of creative possibilities, which will certainly make it a worthwhile reason for many to adapt to the new system.

Got any tips for finding alternatives to the Creative Cloud? Let us know in the comments below!