Customer Review

83 of 85 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding value, 24 Sep 2012
This review is from: CorelDRAW Home & Student Suite X6, Up to 3 Users (PC) (DVD-ROM)
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CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6 is one of the best graphics packages there are, certainly for PC (Adobe undeniably rules the Mac roost). It includes a vector-graphics-cum-design application, CorelDRAW, and a bitmap editor, Corel PhotoPaint, together with some additional utilities, including a very useful font manager. CorelDRAW Home & Student Suite X6 is a virtually identical suite, but at a much lower price and licensed for three computers rather than one. Sounds like a bargain? I think it is.

Of course, there are a few differences. Firstly, Home & Student Suite is strictly for non-commercial use. Secondly, Home & Student X6 is a 32-bit suite, not 64-bit like Graphics Suite X6. This will theoretically slow things down a bit, but in practice it makes little difference. Both versions of the suite have multiprocessor support, so anything that's CPU-intensive gets shared out across the available resource to make everything faster.

The other differences are unlikely to matter to a home user.

You don't get the ability to batch process files, or the ability to program macros. Some of the proofing tools that would matter to a professional designer but not to a home user are missing. There doesn't appear to be support for third-party plugin filters, and some of the more expensive third-party addons are missing, notably the Linotype Helvetica OpenType typeface (although oddly the getting started guide mentions it as being included). And you don't get the hefty full-colour hardback that comes with Graphics Suite X6. Instead you get a flimsy "getting started" booklet.

The good news is that all the good stuff is left in. You get all the programs (Font Navigator, Capture, Connect, PhotoPaint, Draw, Duplexing Wizard and access to the video tutorials - but not Website Creator X6: see below), and they have the new X6 features just like Graphics Suite X6 itself, including the hugely powerful Smart Carver tool in PhotoPaint and the simple-yet-powerful Shape tools in CorelDRAW, which include smear and twirl, attract and repel features that give you loads of ways of customising stock shapes.

I can't really get over how generous Corel are being with this package. This isn't a significantly cut-down version of CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6 - it's almost the same. And you get to install it on three computers. Why buy a budget graphics program when you can have a top-of-the-range graphics suite for more or less the same price?


- There is a more recent, almost identical version of this software: CorelDRAW Home and Student Suite 2014 - 3 User Licence (PC). If you have a fast internet connection for downloading product updates, I would recommend going for whichever is cheaper; if you have a slow internet connection, go for the more recent one.

- This suite is Windows 8 and 8.1 compatible.

- Although this package is for Home and Student use, there's no need to get a signed letter from your educational establishment, as you need to with the student version of Adobe products.

- If you register with Corel, you get free downloadable content, the nature of which remains mysterious until you're half way through installing it. Rather disappointingly, you eventually find out that it's a collection of document templates, not the Website Creator you get as bonus content with the main CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X6.

- Bear in mind that all new graphics software requires getting used to. There are some very good learning aids - including context-sensitive help and introductory videos - included in this package, but it's a powerful package, and it does take a while to get used to its way of working (or even to find the features you're looking for).
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 8 Oct 2012 15:53:03 BDT
JefUK says:
Thanks for the comprehensive and helful review.
I currently use the Educational version of X4 which does have have the Macro editor, although I don't use the editor I do use several 3rd Party Macros. Can the X6 Home & Student version run Macros?

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Oct 2012 17:12:31 BDT
Peter says:
It doesn't appear so, as there are no buttons to run macros. I tried installing a 3rd party macro package, and the installation failed (it said it was unable to find CorelDRAW X6).

I've also found this blog entry on Corel's website, which seems to confirm that there's no macro support in this version:

In reply to an earlier post on 8 Oct 2012 17:14:16 BDT
JefUK says:
Thanks for the reply. Guess I shall just stick with X4

In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2013 16:14:19 GMT
SignLine says:
Differences can be seen here and you can install Corel onto 3 pc's for your on use using the single licence version. Jef if you have X4 you can upgrade to full X6 for under 200

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Nov 2013 12:23:29 GMT
JefUK says:
Thanks for the info.
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