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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An unprecedented combination of graphics design power and usability
I have to admit that I've bad-mouthed Corel more than once in my life, especially back before my employer saw the light and dumped WordPerfect Suite for Microsoft Office, but I have nothing but praise for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X4. Not only is this an impressive, powerful suite of graphics design tools, Corel doesn't throw you under the bus as soon as you install the...
Published on 24 Mar 2010 by Daniel Jolley

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5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not enough to change from the alternative
Maybe it's true what they say and the world really is split between Coreldraw people and Photoshop people. I encountered both for the first time at their respective version 3, and it's always been Photoshop that's made more sense to me, even at the times when Coreldraw had the greater capabilities.

I mentioned Photoshop, so you'd be right in imagining that it's...
Published on 21 Oct 2008 by Steve Craftman


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An unprecedented combination of graphics design power and usability, 24 Mar 2010
By 
Daniel Jolley "darkgenius" (Shelby, North Carolina USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
I have to admit that I've bad-mouthed Corel more than once in my life, especially back before my employer saw the light and dumped WordPerfect Suite for Microsoft Office, but I have nothing but praise for CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X4. Not only is this an impressive, powerful suite of graphics design tools, Corel doesn't throw you under the bus as soon as you install the software. If you're like me and don't have a single artistic bone in your body (I can't draw a straight line with a ruler), you would expect a fancy-pants software package like this to leave you dumbfounded from the start, with no clue on how to get started. Much to their credit, Corel throws you lifelines as soon as you jump in the pool and makes a diverse set of rescue resources near at hand for you at all times. I'm not saying you'll be a graphics design guru after a couple of hours - this is a really advanced, powerful set of programs here - but you would have a hard time finding a piece of software with more impressive built-in support. The first of several excellent video tutorials is available on the Welcome screen, and you can choose to have a built-in docket of usage tips available for every function you choose. Users of previous versions of the software will have no problem recognizing the changes this upgrade brings with it, as you can choose to have every single change and addition from your previous version highlighted on the screen. That doesn't sound like much, but it is a big help. You also have What's New and Learning Tools readily available to you from the Welcome screen as well as from inside each of the featured programs. Of course, you also have a complete help file available but you won't need to resort to using that very often.

As I'm sure you can tell by the price, you don't buy this program if you just want to take the redeye out of your vacation photos or create a cute little Christmas card to send to friends. You can certainly do those things with this, but Corel Photo-Paint X4, impressive as it is, is overshadowed by the primary CorelDRAW application. (If all you want is a powerful photo editor, I would still recommend Fireworks - my favorite - or Photoshop.) I would like to have seen a few more built-in templates included, but CorelDRAW actually succeeds in making graphics design possible for even artistically inept folks like me. This is one powerful program which actual graphics professionals should take to like fish to water. Professionals may be the primary target audience for this software package, but Corel does a great job of making these powerful tools available and actually useable by anyone.

I also have to mention several additional software applications and features included in this suite deal. Corel PowerTRACE X4 is of enormous help in turning traced bitmaps into images you can convert into editable vector images. Corel CAPTURE X4, as you might guess, is a powerful screen capture utility. The Bitstream Font Navigator is a comprehensive font manager that even helps you identity scanned fonts from an outside source. You even get a Duplexing Wizard to aid you in optimizing the appearance of your document when printing two-sided copies. Vista users will also welcome the integration of this software package with the Vista operating system, as the search and preview options by themselves should be of great convenience to them.

What about file formats and the age-old question of compatibility? After all, the odds are that some if not many of your associates are working with different file formats in non-Corel software. Well, Corel has worked to make CorelDRAW Graphic Suite X4 software as compatible as possible with other users and systems. In this release, the list of additional new formats includes Word and Publisher 2007, AutoCAD DXF and AutoCAD DWG, and Adobe CS3.

I could go on writing paragraph after paragraph about this product, but I could never begin to describe all of its many impressive features. Is it the best graphics design software on the market? I don't know, as I have no experience using any comparable graphics design programs. Even if I had, I don't think anyone short of a professional graphics designer would be able to judge the comparative pros and cons. What I do know is that anyone who is serious about graphics design in any of its various facets would do well to give CorelDRAW Graphic Suite X4 a long and serious look.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Graphic Design Package, 25 Aug 2009
By 
KMW (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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I'm a long time user of Adobe products, mainly Photoshop (raster based) but also Illustrator (Vector based), and decided to check out Corels offering.

CorelDRAW X4 Graphics Suite includes many different design tools and features, including CorelDRAW X4 for vector illustration, Corel PHOTO-PAINT for image editing, Corel CAPTURE, and PowerTRACE to trace bitmaps and covert them to vector images.

As a serious amateur photographer and web designer, I mostly use raster based image editing / creation software to touch up photo's and design websites, so Photo-Paint seems like an ideal alternative to Photoshop. However, after using the software for over 6 months, I've found myself using it less and less, not because it's poor, but because I find Photoshop more in depth with more features, easier to use, and better suited to my requirements.

I've used CorelDRAW (and PowerTRACE, which is a very useful tool for converting bitmaps) occasionally for vectors, and it seems very good and simple to use compared to Illustrator, which is hard to master. For me, CorelDRAW seems better for accurate technical work, but I prefer Adobe Illustrator for free-flowing vector art.

Overall, CorelDRAW X4 Design Suite is excellent value, with great tools and features; but to be honest, I still prefer Adobe products.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enough welly to match more expensive rivals, 26 Oct 2008
By 
R. WEST-SOLEY "Rich West-Soley" (Birmingham, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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As soon as you receive the box, it's evident that Corel haven't scrimped on extras in this impressive package. With a hefty, comprehensive manual, an inspirational book of tips, and an exhaustive catalogue of all the included content, nothing is left out.

The core of the package consists of the two applications CorelDraw and Corel Photo-Paint, which seem squarely aimed at the Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop market respectively. As a heavy user of both the latter in my job, I was keen to see how Corel's offering measured up to the market leaders in both day-to-day and heavy-duty tasks. It was also important for me to find out how quickly I could migrate my skills across to Corel and start using it straight away - with little time to retrain on the job.

I wasn't disappointed. For one thing, the creative tools in CorelDraw particularly are exceptionally intuitive and robust. Take flowing text around paths, or inside objects for example. In CorelDraw, all you need to do is create your path or shape, then switch to the text tool and hover over the object. Then simply click and type, and hey presto, text on a path, completely painless!

In fact, text formatting features have to be the absolute strong point of CorelDraw overall, not only due to the innovative addition of WhatTheFont, a handy utility to analyse and identify unknown fonts. Also impressive are its table handling features, with seamless spreadsheet import and interactive handling of data.

Fills are also handled very naturally in CorelDraw, with almost Flash-style bisection of shapes by lines - great for creating and chopping up simple shapes to make more complex objects.

For its part, Photo-Paint's interface is a lot simpler than other rival packages, but its tools seem as robust as anything I'd use on a day-to-day basis. Its Objects panel might look very familiar to users of Photoshop layers, and using it for masking techniques is a doddle.

Export is available in a plethora of formats, and you can publish straight to PDF from either application.

With 10,000 clipart images (40% brand new additions to the collection), 1000 photographic images and a wealth of fonts, there is stock enough for creative hobbyists or professionals alike. Particularly useful are the included icon shapes in the clipart - very handy for knocking up quick interfaces in a jiffy.

All in all, a fantastic all-rounder, cheaper than its closest rivals but just as capable of a professional job. Remember, for the price you're getting both the photographic manipulation tool AND the vector / layout tool in a single package; and it shouldn't be struggle to switch either, thanks to intuitive tools and
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4.0 out of 5 stars Maybe not for novices..., 20 Nov 2008
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've been using Photoshop 6 for the past five years now and have always been slightly overwhelmed by the abundance of features it has. In fact, I've only ever got to grips with about 20% of it, so I was quite interested to see if CorelDRAW was easier to use. I haven't explored a fraction of its capabilities yet, as that would take forever.

I installed mine on a Vista PC and noticed that the interface is very similar to the Vista theme. It's very sleek and modern looking. The Corel PhotoPaint toolbar is very similar to PhotoShop but there are extra popout icons (indicated by a black wedge) which shows where more tools are available.

As far as editing is concerned, I found Corel PhotoPaint to be more intuitive to use (although I had to remember that 'layers' were called 'objects' in Photopaint!) I like that PhotoPaint provides "Hints". When you choose a new tool from the toolbox, instead of having to trawl through the 'help files' to understand how to use it, you get a useful hint right there on the screen. This is really helpful, especially for tools I don't use much.

In Photoshop I would regularly scour the help files for a description of the tool I wanted to use, but the search feature bought up so many results, it was too bothersome to read every one. PhotoPaint is much more simplistic in this respect.

This weekend I plan to design some flyers for a children's birthday party so I will update this review as and when I try out more features. I also plan to design some brochures... but delving into this huge package is going to take some time.

If you only edit occasional photos, you don't need this! Try the excellent Photo Elements which retains several features from Photshop, and is much simpler to use than either Photoshop or PhotoPaint.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A quality graphics package that almost delivers, 10 Nov 2008
By 
M.M - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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The battle of the graphics suites has been much closer in recent years between Corel and Adobe, with CorelDraw upping the ante with better versions each year. X4, in my opinion, is another great graphics suite that offers a good deal of depth along with an easy to use interface. However when compared to Adobe's output it's not a hands down victory by any means for Coral.

The X4 Graphics Suite includes a hefty box with a chunky manual and guides that I had absolutely no intention of reading, so on with the software. The first is CorelDraw, or the rival to Adobe Illustrator. I must admit that I was impressed with what CorelDraw could do. Being an old Adobe-hand I found CorelDraw X4 easy to get to grips with, I applaud the very easy interface as whenever large graphics packages come out ease of use, normally, becomes secondary to number of features. I won't discuss all the functions but one I was very interested in was CorelDraw's Power Trace, a feature I am very fond of in Illustrator's Live Trace. While similar in many respects and, again, easy to use I felt that Live Trace offered a smoother function, however in saying that Power Trace performed very well and fiddling about with graphics is far from a fist-into-computer affair and really quite enjoyable.

Mucking about with text ('fiddling about' and 'mucking about' really best describes what I do with graphics) is fun with 1,000 odd different fonts to chose from and a live text preview to show quickly what your text will look like. I was going to rave about the "WhatTheFont" feature but since you end up having to purchase your font from a website I can't get too excited there (the feature basically finds, from MyFont.com, the font from a specific logo or graphic).

CorelDraw also offers a web-collaboration feature that seems quite unique. An online community that offers users a chance to post up designs for review by other users. The only draw back would be the cost involved but it could be useful for those wishing feedback outside of a work environment.

Without boring you with more feature analysis I was pretty convinced by CorelDraw, perhaps not for the design professional but a good place to start for those wanting a low cost alterative to Adobe's output.

Oops I forgot to mention PhotoPaint... I'm afraid my expectations may have been too high here as I was expecting a rival to Photoshop. Unfortunately PhotoPaint is far from being as good and resembles more of a add-on than a full programme along with CorelDraw. It's easy to use and picture manipulation is okay but if I was expecting as in-depth programme, as Draw is, I would be very unhappy.

However for £300 (or less, depending where you shop) you can have a top of the range graphics suite, While it may not have all the bells and whistles that Adobe boasts it is also much less in terms of cost and for a person of non-professional leanings it offers all you need.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 31 Oct 2008
By 
Tangerine "tangerineman" (North Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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This is a stunning piece of software with massive capability. The package is a bulky one when delivered, allowing for the big manual which confirms just how many things this software can do. Having used Corel X for photo editing I was keen to get an idea of how X4 stood up to a dedicated piece of photo editing software from its own 'stable'. The answer is very well. Whilst it isn't dedicated to photo editing and doesn't quite have the in-depth tools you would get from Corel X or other Photo Editing software suites X4 does a very good job and I doubt any of us really need the plethora of options anyway, as nice as they are to have. I then designed a basic poster/flyer and found the text wrapping function simple to use as well as great fun (I don't know why - I just did!). Corel have made the software user friendly but it does require some practice. I have to say though, that my first few efforts did look quite impressive - even if I do say so myself. I suppose the point I am making is that this is something that even a novice can (with some patience and practice) use to produce stunning design results and photo editing. This is also something that can be used by a professional. I am a mere amateur but I am enthusiastic and believe that the fact that beginners and professionals can all get something from this comprehensive software package is testament to its superb design and initiative interface. If you are prepared to put some effort in you will get your rewards with this value for money piece of software. I must mention the trace function which is one of my favourites!!! X4 is a wonderful piece of software. If you choose to buy it you will not be disappointed. Well done Corel. There is so much to this that in the past few weeks I imagine I have barely scratched the surface. I am off to have another go!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent value, 12 Nov 2008
By 
Mr Gumby "DH" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Anybody reading this is likely to be aware that CorelDraw's only serious, professional-level competitor is Adobe Illustrator. How does it compare?

The first thing to say is that CorelDraw includes the bonus of Photo-Paint X4 which has a fair stab at rivalling Adobe Photoshop, and yet CorelDraw costs less than Illustrator alone. For occasional or non-professional use, Photo-Paint probably does everything you need and saves a lot of pennies. On the other hand, ease-of-use is lacking, which could make Photo-Paint less than ideal for the occasional user, and it is short of some significant Photoshop features for the more advanced user.

But even if you ignore Photo-Paint, CorelDraw offers other benefits over Illustrator. One is its ability to handle multi-page documents, making it more suitable for DTP work. There is a new tool, the Table Tool, which can edit cells, rows and columns, adding to the DTP functionality. Illustrator seems inferior in this respect, to me.

CorelDraw also includes functions like barcode generation, support for CMYK and PDF export. I was particularly impressed with its text handling, for example preview of fonts as you scroll through them.

The thing to do is get yourself a trial version of CorelDraw from corel.com. If you get on with it and it does what you need, stick with it and pocket the price difference. If you need photo editing and Photo-Paint meets your needs, so much the better.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great, 16 Mar 2014
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
great coreldraw graphics has good instructions, clear easy to use, can do cad drawings illistrations photos and much more stuff.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Adobe should start worrying, 23 Dec 2008
By 
Timbertwig (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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Okay, I'm going to be honest. I owned Adobe CS3 which did everything I wanted/needed and had no intention of going back to Corel Draw until I got a review copy of their Graphics Suite X4 from Amazon.

But whatever my reason for trying Corel, I am now glad I did. I was impressed even before I installed the software on my computer because it came with a meaty manual and a spiral-bound catalogue (in full colour) illustrating the supplied clipart and other graphics items as well as the OpenTyype fonts. This is amazing, considering that with the much more expensive Adobe CS3, you get just the installation DVD and nowt else (Adobe please take note!).

The marketing blurb boasts of a revamped interface but in truth you shouldn't expect anything revolutionary. There are new-look icons and redesigned toolbars and a tabbed Welcome Screen but users of previous versions should feel instantly at home with this latest incarnation.

There's improved file format support. You can now import MS Word 2007 and even MS Publisher files. What I was really pleased about was that the import and export of Adobe files (PSD and PDF, for example) seemed a lot smoother (the process is quicker and almost crash-proof).

There's a lot more to like about this suite. With its improved drawing power and text handling, it can now rival Illustrator. CroleDraw provides enough tools to use it as a fully-fledged DTP (and in many cases it's more flexible than InDesign). PhotoPaint is a capable image editor but not yet as sophisticated as Photoshop (perhaps in the next version!).

I've been using this suite for over a month but I'm feel I've barely scratched the surface. it's packed with power and delightful features just waiting to be discovered. Persevere with it and you could be creating print publications every bit as impressive as those that can be created with their Adobe counterparts - but much more cheaply!

Now, if only Corel could release web design and video editing applications. Then, Adobe would really have something to worry about ...
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than ever!, 18 Oct 2008
By 
Mr Ghostface (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 (CD-ROM)
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I've been using Corel since Corel Draw 4, since (eek) the early '90s. I've always found their software to be very user-friendly and very, very efficient at producing the results I want. When I first started using this software it was just for fun, really; I didn't really utilise everything it could do, even with a version as relatively basic as Corel Draw 4. I've since become a professional graphics artist and have stuck with Corel all this time, although I hadn't upgraded since version 10. As a result, I was a little bit nervous of jumping right up to X4 (yes, even as a professional). Well, I needn't have been...

If you've ever used Corel for graphics before, you'll be pleased to know that the interface, while obviously being updated for Vista, works in exactly the same way as it always has, with the optional welcome screen. If you're new to Corel, you won't have a problem navigating to the functions you need. That's the beauty of Corel, I always found their software incredibly easy to pick up - if you use Microsoft Word for your word processing tasks I can't recommend Corel WordPerfect enough. The menus are logically arranged, with options and sub-menus on each arranged in such a way that you quickly become accustomed to where things are, or if it's an action you haven't done before, where it's likely to be. That surely is something new users benefit from immensely. If you're familiar with this software from an earlier version, you won't have any problems here. Of course one or two things have been shifted around, streamlined a bit here and there, but it's all simple enough to find.

I've always used the Photo-Paint part of this software more than Draw itself, as it's very similar to Adobe Photoshop, just as functional and dare I say easier and more accessible to new users. This is the part where Adobe-philes hit "Was this review helpful - No" on me. I've never understood it. Adobe isn't better just because it's Adobe, it has a great reputation because they have, generally, produced very good software over the years. I've used Adobe Premiere for editing since it came out and still think it rivals newer brands. But with Photoshop compared to Corel Draw/Photo-Paint, it performs no more efficiently, and for general users provides absolutely nothing beyond the security of a trusted brand name, and all at a much higher price. And another thing, Corel are generous enough to include a lot of options with the software, whereas Adobe sell "add-ons" at a price to expand the functionality of Photoshop. Beware any company that will sell you "expansion packs" that could very well have been incorporated in the first place...

If you're not a graphics professional, you really will find everything you need contained in Corel Draw X4. What are you wanting to do? Touch up photos? Add effects of colour, lighting, lens flares? Make a montage? Add text? Those are just the basics, and Corel Draw makes it as easy as it can be made. There are hundreds more sophisticated options for you to play with if you want to explore. I've always found that's the best way to learn any software. But just in case you want the handbooks, then believe me you get everything you need in this box. There's a weighty 450+ page User Guide included, a 380+ page graphics guide which has a picture of every font, clipart, photo, object and other item included in the software. And best of all, there's a laminated Reference Card for the different programs showing you the keyboard shortcuts for all the major functions. Oh, and there's also a handbook with guidance from graphics experts on how to achieve various results.

I know, I sound like I'm gushing. No, I promise you I don't work for Corel! I just love this software, which may be because of the fact that I learned to use it without ever reading a user guide. As graphics creation and editing goes, for most of us, you won't ever need anything more than this. And that's a promise. Oh, and by the way, if you or anyone in your house is a student or teacher, get the education version instead. It's exactly the same software and a lot cheaper. Now, would a Corel employee tell you that?

If you're a previous user like me, it's two thumbs up from me. If you're new to Corel, or new to graphics in general, don't panic. You can start with the basic functions and build from there.
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CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4
CorelDraw Graphics Suite X4 by Corel (Windows Vista / XP)
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