Earlier today, Corel announced version X8 of its flagship graphics product—CorelDRAW Graphics Suite.
We are excited to simultaneously release this new version in 14 languages around the world. The whole team has been extremely busy since unveiling our last version, dedicating their passion and countless hours of care to deliver this major upgrade.
Our journey to X8 began by working closely with our users through research, site visits and online communication—and we also keep up with latest trends in the PC industry. With more than 25% of visitors to the CorelDRAW Community having upgraded to Windows 10 already (much faster than the industry average) it was clear from the get-go that X8 needed to work great on the latest operating system out of Redmond; while remaining fully compatible with Windows 7 and 8.1 for those who prefer those versions.
Hardware is also in the midst of a major transformation. With the advent of the latest generations of pen & touch devices, we’ve made sure that X8 not only works great with Wacom tablets, but now also fully supports the latest tablets using Real-Time Stylus (WinRTS) technology. With full pen & touch support, now you can start sketching directly in CorelDRAW, whether it be freehand or using the Smart Drawing tools with their built-in shape recognition technology.
The other notable hardware shift has been the rapid adoption of high-resolution displays. CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8 is arguably one of the very best when it comes to supporting High-DPI monitors—especially when you mix multiple screens with varying resolutions. From our research, we know this is a common situation where you might have a 4K monitor, but also want to continue to use your existing 1080p screen. As you may know, most Windows applications look fuzzy on one of the screens when you drag it back and forth... not so for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8, which now handles the display rendering for each monitor independently.
We strongly believe in offering CorelDRAW Graphics Suite users the choice to adapt the user interface (UI) to match your needs, and not to be forced in a pre-defined layout. We continue this trend in X8 by providing the option to not only fully customize your workspace, but also to change the colors of the title bar, the background, and the actual UI.
Yes—for those who have been asking, you can now switch from a light to a dark or even black user interface.
We also continue to offer different workspaces such as an Adobe Illustrator / Adobe Photoshop layout (in CorelDRAW and Corel PHOTO-PAINT respectively) for those familiar with their button arrangement but do not want to be forced in a subscription option and prefer to purchase perpetual licenses.
Inside the products of the Suite, we’ve made numerous enhancements. A few I wanted to highlight here are the completely new knife tool and the powerful enhancements to vector / node editing tools. With the new knife tool you can quickly and easily create overlaps and gaps in just a few clicks. New vector editing tools now enable you to manipulate nodes in ways that were very difficult before.
My mantra while working on this new version is that X8 is not about adding a new circle tool (we already have 3 different ways of drawing a circle in CorelDRAW) but, rather, to help you transform that circle into any shape you want as fast as possible.
Yes, increased productivity is a guiding principle for this new release of CorelDRAW. We know very well that the vast majority of the 15+ million users of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite around the world need to get their high-quality and impactful designs done fast – you are not paid by the hour of working with the product, you are paid by the project if you are a graphics professional, and you have a day-job if you are an occasional graphics user. Enabling you to get your job done quicker is at the core of the CorelDRAW focus of versatility and confidence in visual communication.
One of the areas I am particularly excited about is the new Corel Font Manager.
The problem—many graphics software users, me included, love fonts. We collect them from all over for future use (I recently mentioned the Google Fonts collection on GitHub). But, once I have all these fonts in a folder, there is no easy way to actually find the right one for my project… and installing all these fonts so they can be used in CorelDRAW is not an option.
With X8, we decided to build our own Font Management software from the ground up to replace the Font Navigator included in previous versions, and to provide CorelDRAW Graphics Suite users, who use fonts as part of their design process, the best possible solution.
With Corel Font Manager X8, you can:
And that’s not all!
Because it’s been developed from the ground-up to integrate with CorelDRAW and Corel PHOTO-PAINT, you can now use fonts that are indexed by Corel Font Manager in your designs without having to first install them in the Windows Font folder. As long as Font Manager knows about the font, you can use it in CorelDRAW and Corel PHOTO-PAINT!
There are so many new developments in CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8 I would love to cover in this post, it would take another few thousand words (if you want the full list, we have a detailed Reviewers Guide available on www.coreldraw.com/graphicssuite).
As I mentioned earlier, providing choice to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8 users is very important to us. Therefore, we continue to offer our flagship product both as a perpetual license (as it’s been forever) as well as a subscription – the choice is yours.
From a perpetual license perspective, we are making one change that should make many older version users happy—you can now upgrade to CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8 from any legitimate version of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite (excluding academic, OEM and NFR).
In other words, if you have purchased and are still using CorelDRAW Graphics Suite 1, 9, 12, X3 or later, you can now get X8 for the cost of an upgrade. We’ve seen comments in the forums that older versions of CorelDRAW might struggle a little on Windows 10, so here is your chance to upgrade to a version that is designed for the latest operating system from Microsoft.
Finally, with the introduction of X8, we will be making changes to our Premium Membership program. Now called the "Upgrade Program", anyone with a Premium Membership will be automatically transitioned to the new Upgrade Program. This time around, we've decided to simplify things to focus on delivering major upgrades at no extra cost. You can sign-up from within CorelDRAW for the upgrade program for a low yearly fee and, as soon as a new version is available, you will get it at no extra charge.
The free trial version of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X8 is available today from www.coreldraw.com/graphicssuite. If you have an active Upgrade Program, volume maintenance or subscription, you can download the X8 from our account on www.coreldraw.com.
Finally, a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has participated in getting this major new release available. From our R&D teams, the Product Management & Marketing crew, creative & web team and beta testers from around the world – THANK YOU!
First thing I noticed is there is not GMS folder in X8. Why is that?