My Thoughts On Affinity Designer As An Inkscape User

Thoughts on Affinity as an Inkscape user

In a recent video I made comparing Inkscape and Illustrator, I went over some of the things I both like and dislike about each, and one of the most common responses I got was to make a comparison between Inkscape and Affinity Designer. And this has not been an isolated incident by any means. A lot of you guys have been asking me about Affinity for a while now, so I recently decided to pick up a copy of it and check it out for myself.

Check out the video I made below:

If you don’t know what Affinity Designer is, it’s a vector graphics editor similar to Inkscape and Illustrator, and it’s developed by a company known as Serif. Unlike Adobe’s subscription-based pricing model, Affinity Designer is just a one-time purchase and you’re done. You get to own the software as opposed to being forced to rent it like you are with Illustrator.

From what I can tell, Affinity seems to fit in the middle between both Inkscape and Illustrator. On one end of the spectrum, you have the expensive industry standard that’s used professionally in institutuions like universities and design agencies. Then, on the other end of the spectrum, you have a free and open source alternative that can be used by hobbyists and anyone looking to familiarize themselves with vector design.

Affinity sits right in the middle. It has the features and support that you would expect from a professional piece of software, but at the same time it comes with a price tag that makes it accessible for almost anyone. Based on their website, it looks like it normally sells for about $50 USD, but they had a sale going when I checked it out so I was able to grab a copy for $25. And just to clarify, this not a sponsored video. I’m not being paid to promote this product, and I don’t have any affiliate links to promote. I’m making this video because you guys have mentioned this and asked me about it so many times that I just had to check it out.

As someone who has been using Inkscape professionally for over a decade, I’m going to give you my first impressions of Affinity in this video. But to be fair, I really haven’t had enough time to get my hands dirty with this software and learn all of its quirks and nuances, so this is by no means a proper review. This is more or less a first impression, coming from someone who has logged countless hours into both Inkscape and Illustrator.

Let me know what you guys think in the comments below. Have you used Affinity? And if so, how do you like it? More importantly, would you be interested in seeing Affinity tutorials on this channel once I’ve become a little more proficient with it?

If you have any questions just leave a comment below, and as always, thanks for watching!

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Nick Saporito

Hi, I'm Nick— a Philadelphia-based graphic designer with over 10 years of experience. Each year millions of users learn how to use design software to express their creativity using my tutorials here and on YouTube.

15 thoughts on “My Thoughts On Affinity Designer As An Inkscape User

  1. just installed designer based on your review but unfortunately it does not import/export dxf files. Looks like people have been requesting this for about 6 years and Serif has not been able to implement this basic feature. Lost confidence into this company and I will install inkscape now.

    1. Thanks for letting me, Mark! That’ll be helpful if anyone asks me about this. Although I don’t work with DXF file personally, a lot of my students do.

      Have you tried converting the DXF file to a different format (like SVG) and then opening it with AD? That might work.

  2. Hello nick thanks for this video and posting tutorials, did you ever do an in-depth review of this software?

  3. I need to make a vector graphic, a website I went to recommended Inkscape because it’s free. But does anyone know if it’s reliable and safe? Like is it going to give my computer a virus, or make it freeze up all the time? I have a hp laptop with windows 7. Thanks ahead of time

  4. Hey Nick,

    You probably know me well enough by now from commenting and sending a couple personal emails over the past two to three years. Within those years I have completely self-taught/learned graphic design from you and your Inkscape/Gimp tutorials. I have been searching and researching for an inexpensive vector base software that allows users to work in the CMYK color space. The CMYK conversion method of scribus just isn’t what I am looking for by any means. I think Affinity might just be the answer.
    1.To answer your question… I think that it would be awesome for you to do some affinity videos. Actually a great idea would be to recreate all of your videos that you have done in Inkscape , but with Affinity. Doing so would EASILY explain the difference in tools for your current followers that have been following along over the years.
    2. Is there any way to just import my Inkscape created files into Affinity and change the colors there? ….Or do they have to be created using the CMYK color space from the very beginning? (I am sure I could also Google this, but this is something I’ve been wanting to ask you for a while)
    3. Can I borrow $50? I am joking but I really want to say thank you for all of the work that you put in. I know that it benefits you, but it really shows how hard working you are and most important you are giving back to the design community. All of your videos are very crisp, clear and user friendly. No more adobe illustrator tutorials. The internet is flooded with them andbyour target market is perfect right where it is. (I just had to add that in..hahaa)

    Thanks again man

    1. Hi Philip…

      1. I’ve been uploading Affinity tutorials. I have several posted here on the site if you want to check it out.
      2. Yes, you can import and edit SVG files with Affinity. I have a tutorial on that here: As for changing to CMYK colors, good question! I’ll be doing a tutorial on that soon.
      3. Keep an eye on their website! You may catch it on sale again. I was able to grab a copy for $25. Maybe they’ll have a holiday sale.

  5. I mostly do stuff for web design, which often includes logo work and modding and touching up various images. I have a XP-Pen Artist 13.3 Pro Display drawing tablet and Affinity Designer . Works for me . After Adobe moved to a subscription model, I looked around and tried a few different apps trying to find a replacement for Illustrator. I was so happy when I found Designer. For me, Designer is way easier to draw with and manipulate drawings than Illustrator.
    Inkscape has a bunch of features not found (yet) in Designer. But on the Mac side, the interface is so hard to use .

  6. I love your Inkscape and Illustrator tutorials Nick! They have been so helpful to me in learning graphic design. I’m just starting to get into Affinity Designer and I’m planning to use it more. I would absolutely love it if you did some Affinity tutorials!

      1. I look forward to the Affinity tutorials! The courses you offer are great and I really appreciate your teaching style, easy to understand and to the point. Keep up the great work!

        Thank you,


        1. Thank you for the feedback, Ryan! I’ll hopefully have an Affinity crash course ready sometime in 2021. At the moment I’m taking time to get to know the software. Regardless I still have a handful of Affinity tutorials here if you want to check them out.

  7. Hi Nick I think Affinity is a great choice, I like it I’m sort of tired of the Adobe products and I have been using Inkscape for 6 years and I have to say that I prefer to deign in inkscape instead of illustrator, if inkscape would support CMYK I would totally use it for all print jobs, I just use an old version of illustrator to convert my files to CMYK and that is all. I stopped using Illustrator to design 4 years ago. I still use some Photoshop but I started using GIMP more, also migrated from Maya to Blender and I have to say I love all this GNU software. Thank you for your tutorials I’m sending them to my wife so she can learn GIMP for her designs.

    But I am looking to get affinity since it does support CMYK, you should put an affiliate link in the image, unless you own it lol !

    Cheers from Canada!

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