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CorelDRAW 2018 - Thoughts?

Discussion in 'Corel' started by Bobby H, Apr 11, 2018.

  1. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    So, Corel released the "2018" upgrade to CorelDRAW. I'm not sure what to think about it at this point.

    We passed on the "2017" upgrade, feeling the paltry number of new improvements and features weren't worth a $199 upgrade price just 12 months after the release of CorelDRAW X8. Here we are 2 years past the release of X8 and I'm still not sure if enough things have been improved to warrant a $199 upgrade.

    The main thing being advertised is the symmetry drawing mode, which can do everything from mirrored artwork to kaleidoscope effects. It looks kind of like the Mirror Me plug-in from Astute Graphics for Adobe Illustrator, which costs £45.00 (or $63.77 at current exchange rate). It will be interesting to see how both compare in terms of quality, performance, features, etc.

    The new block shadow tool might yield more vinyl cutter friendly graphics for that kind of effect than the Extrude tool ever delivered (I can recall having a lot of time wasted when welding and cleaning up extruded objects). The Pointillizer tool could be useful when creating sketches of LED signs.

    The new feature I might use the most is the Align & Distribute nodes feature. I could probably make quite a bit of use of that in technical drawing tasks.
     
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  2. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    I've also heard from users that it's "lighting fast". I haven't had much of a chance to toy with it but I do love the block shadow tool.
     
  3. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    I'm tinkering around with the trial version. The Pointillism filter works pretty well. I would definitely use it for more accurate looking LED message center simulations on client sketches.

    The Block Shadow tool works pretty well (and fast). One nit I have to pick with it is some of the curve segments on the resulting object have the usual loads and loads of nodes, often pairs of them set closely together. It's not as bad as some earlier versions of CorelDRAW (where the curve would be a bunch of line segments). It doesn't take long to clean up the extraneous nodes though. Settings can be numerically defined.

    The Distribute nodes function is actually in the regular Align & Distribute palette. I expected the feature to show up in the separate little align nodes box. Actually you can do all node and object alignment from the same palette now. That will save some clicks since that palette is a docker that can stay open all the time.

    CorelDRAW 2018 can open my CorelDRAW X8 files faster than X8 did. However I don't have my font library linked to CDR 2018 at this point. The font manager is a source for some lag.
     
  4. decalman

    decalman Active Member

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    I'm still using Corel x5. Does what I need. I'd upgrade if need be.
     
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  5. ams

    ams Very Active Member

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    X5 is a bugged version. Also X7 set the bar high for Corel. So I recommend getting X8 or 2018.
     
  6. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I'm kinda curious why you say that X5 is the bugged version. My one and only somewhat consistent use of DRAW was X5 (I got X6 and X8 with the latest version of my digitizing software but never installed them) and I didn't find it buggy, so I'm wonder if it might be features that I didn't use or something else.

    I honestly thought that it was X6 that was the buggy version, based on what I was reading on here.
     
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  7. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    X5 works for me too.
    Much easier to ID buggy versions of Flexi.
    V1 to V12 about covers it.
    Most stable version was when it was called CasMate.
     
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  8. equippaint

    equippaint Very Active Member

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    X7 is not without its bugginess....just sayin'. Id venture to say they carried through to 2018 too
     
  9. unclebun

    unclebun Active Member

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    If you didn't get X8, another thing you'd be getting in "2018" that you don't have is perspective and barrel/pincushion correction tools added to the "straighten image" tool in PhotoPaint (accessible directly in Draw for bitmaps). That is a very easy, quick, and useful tool.
     
  10. tommythesignguy

    tommythesignguy Active Member

    I went with the 2017 version which fixed some of the bugs in X8. I had X5 but had issues with windows 10. It is much, much faster.
     
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  11. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    Given there are so many makes and configurations of Windows-based PCs it would not be surprising at all to see a certain version of CorelDRAW act perfectly stable on one machine and then have problems running on another machine.

    I remember CorelDRAW 9 being a pretty decent version. CorelDRAW 10 was the first version we skipped (I still have the old discs from versions 3 thru 9, plus a now-vintage CorelDRAW 3 box). We also skipped v11, even though it had both PC & Mac installers in the same box. I didn't like v12 so much; the main push for getting it was to keep up with some newer customer provided CDR files. Version X3 was pretty solid; it still runs on a couple old shop PCs dedicated to vinyl cutting or routing table work. Version X5 also worked pretty well, but I seem to remember getting pushed into the X6 upgrade when Windows 8.1 was released.

    If I remember right, X6 was the first verion of CorelDRAW to require activation, thus limiting the number of PCs on which it could be installed. I think it was also the first version to fully support extended character sets in OpenType fonts.

    Aside from some of the lag issues involving the Corel Font Manager, version X8 was a notable improvement in terms of being more friendly to import/export of Adobe Illustrator files. Compatibility issues still remain to this day however. Illustrator had supported levels of transparency in fills and gradients for a long time; Corel X8 finally added that feature.

    Gonna have to do more test drive work with this new 2018 version of CorelDRAW before deciding if it's worth buying. One thing on the agenda is testing if it's any better at importing PDFs and AI files.
     
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  12. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    X5 did have serial activation, it just didn't require online and thus limiting. I don't know if the earlier ones needed a serial number or not, X5 was my first time with DRAW.

    X6 was the first one limiting seats. I had wished Corel had done some type of activation/deactivation when dealing with hardware changes, like Adobe had. That was one thing that soured me on continuing on with DRAW (it wasn't the only, but it was a biggin' for me). The biggest bummer of that was that X6 was the first for 64bit.

    My mom is/was a fan of Painter and they have gone to just 1 seat, but does allow for activation/deactivation. Don't know why DRAW doesn't (or it may not with 2017 and 2018, I dunno).
     
  13. Bobby H

    Bobby H Very Active Member

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    I think you're right about X5 having serial number activation. Version X3 didn't require it.

    I have run into activation issues from time to time with various programs. I've had to email Corel and Astute Graphics a couple different times about activation issues. In Astute Graphics' case its Illustrator plug-ins have a limited number of activations. However, their customer service is usually Johnny on the spot about resetting it if they see you're a registered customer.

    Adobe Creative Cloud has minor annoyances. Usually it works fine as long as the computer is connected to the Internet and allows the software to phone home periodically. BTW, Typekit doesn't work unless it has constant Internet access to sync fonts. Every once in awhile you have to sign into your account through the CC panel. I usually have to sign in far more often when using Adobe's web site.

    It's obvious Corel is trying to push its customer base into a revolving subscription program like Adobe Creative Cloud. You'll pay $99 for each yearly upgrade to CorelDRAW through their subscription model version paying double the price for a traditional upgrade.
     
  14. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    I don't think I've hit that limit yet. Although, I've deactivate them as well, but I don't know if their server is setup for that, even though there is a deactivation on their plugins.

    I'm a big fan of those plugins.


    To be fair, we are talking about 30 yr old programs (especially with Ai and DRAW). For all intents and purposes, they are very mature. Combine that with trying to release a major new version every year, the writing is on the wall.

    The irony though on prices though (depending on what one needs, not wants, but needs), even upgrading every iteration at a certain point may cost less then the subscription model. I know it would have with me and Adobe (7 yrs of upgrading every new version when it came out and I would be saving money versus subscription, ironically, Adobe's cost savings calculations only went 3 yrs out last I saw between the 2 models).
     
  15. decalman

    decalman Active Member

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    I'll keep it in mind. X8 thanks
     
  16. Big Rice Field

    Big Rice Field Electrical/Architectural Sign Designer

    I am upgrading to 2018 because I am forced to . My main client uses 2018 and they do not like backsaving to 2017 for me.
    Another reason for upgrading is that the newer version is able to import and export to the latest Adobe Illustrator and AutoCAD files.
     
  17. WildWestDesigns

    WildWestDesigns Major Contributor

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    This is exactly what I was just typing back in another thread a little while ago.

    Reason why I firmly believe files should not be sent in the native proprietary file format.

    There really should be a saved copy of the file in a non proprietary format as it is, because what happens if one has to go back and the latest version of the software doesn't read that really old version of that file? Which is/was a complaint of one user on here with Corel specifically. And I know of one other software vendor that does that as well (ironically their software does have a copy of DRAW with it as well, so I have to wonder if there was a lot of cross over in a lot of ways between the two in how they did things).
     
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  18. Big Rice Field

    Big Rice Field Electrical/Architectural Sign Designer

    If you export your Corel CDR files to PDF with fonts embedded you can reimport it back into Corel for editing.
     
  19. Big Rice Field

    Big Rice Field Electrical/Architectural Sign Designer

    I permanently went to Corel Draw 2018 yesterday. The new feature I like best is Alt-Q switching Snap To on and off. It is also much faster than older versions.
    In addition I will be able to import the latest Adoe Illustrator and AutoCAD files.

    As for bugs in previous versions, I would set Corel back to factory defaults to see if the problems persist. If they do then it is a Windows problem.
     
  20. Big Rice Field

    Big Rice Field Electrical/Architectural Sign Designer

    This was a capability that was put into PhotoShop about ten years ago.
     
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