Macworld reviews Pixelmator 3.1 Marble: New tools, expanded capabilities nudge photo editing app into pro arena

Pixelmator 3.1 Marble is the latest iteration of an image editing app that’s often viewed as the hobbyist photographer’s alternative to Adobe Photoshop. Much attention has been focused on Pixelmator as enthusiasts seek to escape the confines of Photoshop CC subscriptions,” Jackie Dove writes for Macworld. “Recently, Apple featured Pixelmator as part of its performance demos of the new Mac Pro, so it’s no accident that the company has now released a fresh update of the program roughly in tandem with Apple’s new flagship desktop Mac. ”

“Photo editing enthusiasts who seek to replace Photoshop with Pixelmator have to accept Pixelmator on its own terms,” Dove writes. “It’s an advanced consumer app that, with version 3.1, gains additional flexibility and features for both consumers and prosumers.”

“Despite that certain Pixelmator features are reminiscent of those found in Photoshop, Pixelmator is not Photoshop, and it does not pretend to be,” Dove writes. “However, it will likely please many photography enthusiasts who do not have to work in CMYK or other color spaces or modes, and who don’t need video capability or sophisticated Photoshop-style non-destructive adjustment layers.”

Much more in the full review here.

MacDailyNews Take: We’ve been using Pixelmator daily for years now and highly recommend the application.

Related articles:
Pixelmator 3.1 Marble released; fully optimized for new Mac Pro – January 23, 2014
Apple shuns Adobe Photoshop in favor of Pixelmator 3 to show off Mac Pro performance – October 23, 2013
Pixelmator unveils Pixelmator 3.0 FX – October 22, 2013


  1. I have it, and I like it, but I really would like to change palettes’ background…light gray, or even Jerusalem White would be better than all black like it is today

    1. Yeah, but CMYK is strictly for professional use when press printing. Just about no consumer level users are going to comprehend the point of CMYK, despite the fact that its used in the inkjet and color laser printers.

      For CMYK, move over to using GraphicConverter, or add it into your production stream.

    2. Well, unless you are running a print or pre-press business, you have no need of CMYK, and any competent print shop will be able to take an RGB file and convert to CMYK as part of their work flow, along with checking for layers, alpha channels, and other anomalies.
      If they don’t, start looking for a more competent print shop or agency.

  2. Pixelmator is a fine example of an app that takes full advantage of the platform. Unlike Photoshop, PM uses Core Image and Core Animation. That’s a huge part of why it’s so fast on the new Mac Pro.


    1. Seriously? I haven’t used Photoshop is years. Adobe is still dragging their feet using OS X native frameworks and services? Why is Adobe so stubbornly inept? What I’d give to have the Knoll brothers take over Adobe and strip out the bullshit.

      1. Actually it far more complicated… Apple has rolled CI and CA into an open source, multi-vendor, multi-platform, multi-processor industry standard standard called OpenCL. (similar to what they did with Quicktime .mov and MP4)

        However, before CS6 Adobe entered into an “agreement” with nvida to support their (nvidia’s) proprietary competitor to Open CL called CUDA (it is to Open CL basically what Direct X is to Open GL a single vendor attempting to strangle the market and lock both developers and customers with proprietary software/drivers) so CS6 and CC (creative cloud) only support nvidia’s CUDA. (there was some support in latter CS5 updates but it was pretty lame)

        Most feel that Adobe will be forced into supporting open GL however the chances of then ever issuing an update to CS6 are likely slim to none (as they are trying to force/lure their customers onto the pay every month CreativeCloud anyway.

        We use Pixelmator however it’s not a Photoshop Replacement (more of an Elements replacement) however almost ever professional user I talk to has little or nothing good to say about Adobe so when the “photoshop killer appears (and it is coming) I predict there may be a mass exodus away from Adobe software that will leave them simultaneously gobsmacked and rapidly circling the bowl in short order.

          1. While I’m glad they’ve finally “got the religion” talk is cheap, and as far as I am aware (at this time) Adobe’s support of OpenCL is slim to none (and only in CC)

  3. I received my copy the other day, and it works like a charm. It was very useful when editing pages for my comic series. But I hate how some people here dismiss Adobe’s products. I think their software is high-quality, professional grade, and was actually my software of choice when I began creating my webcomic. This package may be fun to use for the beginner, but my money is still going to Adobe.

    1. I don’t think anyone is dismissing Adobe’s products. What many are dismissing, though, is Adobe. I like Photoshop. Enough that I find Elements unusable. But I don’t like Adobe.

    2. Thank you Christopher Paul Whitney, I have just book marked your website. I will tell you in due course what I think on this site, so hung around MDN for a while.

    3. Well Christopher Paul Whitney, I have gone through several of your 2009 comics from the first edition.
      Whilst you are no “Joy of Tech”, you will get there with a proper story line and a redrafting of your characters so that they are original characters, as opposed to paying homage to a long defunct hedgehog.
      Let me know when you have achieved that so that I can visit your site again. As for now, my next step is to remove it from my book marks. But thank you for the experience.

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