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Author Topic: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013  (Read 6743 times)

rjbull

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Save over 90% in the big Serif sale

Offers available until Friday 4th January.  Earlier, but still fairly recent versions of Serif software at bargain prices:

Serif Saver Bundle  £50.00

WebPlus X5 £10.00
Web site design

PagePlus X5  £10.00
Desk top publishing

PhotoPlus X4  £10.00
Photo editing

DrawPlus X4 £10.00
Digital art, drawing, design

MoviePlus X5 £10.00
Video editing

kunkel321

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 10:11:11 PM »
I can't speak to the others, but DrawPlusX4 and PhotoPlusX4 are both really good products.
They just recently came out with PhotoPlus X6.  DrawPlus is currently at X5, but I imagine they'll come out with X6 soon.
PhotoPlus is  probably not any more powerful than the GIMP, though PP is probably easier to use. 
IMHO though DP is a stand-alone product.  It's been my go-to app for vector work for years.

flamerz

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2013, 01:05:35 PM »
i always go to check the serif products website but i'm in shock when i see their apps weight are sized in hundreds of megabytes.

looks like the nero syndrome  :mad:

kunkel321

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2013, 07:09:56 PM »
Probably the size is because of all the clipart, fonts, textures, tutorials, etc.  The apps do use up a lot of RAM when running, but they load fairly quickly.

rjbull

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2013, 03:19:11 PM »
i always go to check the serif products website but i'm in shock when i see their apps weight are sized in hundreds of megabytes.
What kunkel321 said.  I'd assumed, though, that that's why they could offer such low prices, downloads remove the need for burning disks, packaging and mailing.

Unrelated puzzle; how come there are so many photo editors now, given that Photoshop dominates the professional market (and is frequently ripped off), and Elements and PaintShop Pro probably dominate the lower end?

Curt

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2013, 04:11:37 PM »
Quote
i always go to check the serif products website but i'm in shock when i see their apps weight are sized in hundreds of megabytes.
Probably the size is because of all the clipart, fonts, textures, tutorials, etc.  The apps do use up a lot of RAM when running, but they load fairly quickly.

I know PagePlus is written in C++, so... maybe it really isn't that big?

I think the biggest problem for Serif may be that the trade people see Serif as entry level products. Today's "90% off" offer could be compared to the long abandoned Adobe PageMaker 7 still being on sale for $500 (!!!).


Steven Avery

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #6 on: January 04, 2013, 09:14:02 PM »
Hi,

I'm looking this over, realizing that, eg. I might want to occasionally have a software for things like charts and graphs, visual publishing stuff, and right now I do not do that stuff at all. (Whether publishable to a web page or just for inclusion in an email, perhaps as some sort of document that can be sent).

Some of these products might be a fun way to have more utility.

It was disappointing to see a Uniblue scam product in their mix. (not a dealbreaker though, I should let them know).

Anyway, which programs do I want .. hmmm.

PhotoPlus X4  - Photo editing
Photo editing sounds a little different, not really the same genre, and there are continual specials on that, so not so much

Movie editing - not needed

===============

Three for consideration.. at $15 per, not bad to have a program with a real registration, are any of these available in other forms free similarly good ?  By working with Serif will I have like a full suite, with similar look and feel, and fairly compatible products ?

DrawPlus X4 - Digital art, drawing, design * yes, makes sense

PagePlus X5 - Desk top publishing           * - possibly, but will I really use it ?  For what ?

WebPlus X5  - Web site design               * - how does it compare to SiteSpinner, Website Realizer and other easy web products

===============

Open source Inkscape is given in one place as the DrawPlus alternative, but with a nod that DrawPlus can be easier to use and more solid in some ways.

Apparently Serif puts out some hobbled Starter Editions .. SE .. but if you are serious with any of these products, these $15 specials would be a far better ways to go.

I'll listen for your feedback, when does this thing end ?  Stop me, before I buy three products ! :)  Or should I just be conservative and get DrawPlus.  (It was a good day today, and I can go for the full-blown $45 if it seems sensible.)

I have a reggie for PagePlus 11, from a DownloadCrew giveaway last May, which I think I forgot to install, but I do have the serial number, so maybe I pass there. (Found download, trying late install ) However, it is an earlier version I think,  Hmmm..

Steven
« Last Edit: January 04, 2013, 10:04:21 PM by Steven Avery »

NigelH

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2013, 09:56:07 PM »
If you get on these guys mailing list nothingbutsoftware, they often have Serif boxed software deals (as well as others) not listed on their web site.
e.g.
PagePlus X5 for $6.95  - free shipping. (often $9-95)
Photo & Movie HD Suite (PhotoPlus X4 & MoviePlus X5) for $19-95




Curt

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2013, 10:07:02 PM »
@Steven, I think you should know that Serif will mail you more offers than Ashampoo...

I have PagePlus X6, and is disappointed. Mostly because I also had version X4 and X5, and was disappointed with them as well, and because Adobe PageMaker 5 from 1995 in my memory still is better than a brand-new Serif. But you know, all these fantastic offers they keep mailing me...

Steven Avery

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2013, 10:13:49 PM »
Hi,

Thanks, Nigel. A good plan B if I wait here.  I see they have the PagePlusX5 at a $19 normally, maybe with box shipped too. Hmmm.. however the WebPlus is about $10 more and I dont see DrawPlus. I understand what you are saying, that specials come up now and then.

So, right now DrawPlus is in the biggest consideration. Anybody using it daily ? Lets look back to the top of the thread. We have one plus from Kunkel.

My ancient PagePlus install is doing funny stuff, that might be because it was some sort of special edition from Downloadcrew.

The problem with WebPlus X5 seems to be that it can sort of lock you into the Serif server, at least for some things called Smart Objects , so it may not be a true Easy-web tool, based on discussions here. http://www.bitsdujour.com...tware/webplus-x5#comments  However, they defend your independence in reply.

I don't mind the spam mail, easy to filter it if not get off the list, but if you look there above, Serif has gotten aggressive in UK in some unethical marketing stuff.  Hmmm..

Compared to Ashampoo, what I like is that it is, I think, actually their software developed over time. Noting that Curt has been disappointed with PagePlus.  

Do they have any forums ? Yes. And they look legit.

What was your biggest disappointments, Curt ?

====================

Incidentally, another way to possibly score some of these products is to check the UK magazines. Although they have trimmed down in number, they still are in some book stores and computer stores.  The mag will cost about $15 and will have a few full products on a DVD, often like this, a solid product one version earlier.  Afaik, Serif continues to be a contributor in that way.

Checking, PC Advisor
http://www.pcadvisor...agazines/cover-disc/
"Other lead programs include Serif DrawPlus Starter Edition, alongside Ashampoo Burning Studio 2013 and Abelssoft FileWing Pro 2.3"

SE editions are no help.

Steven
« Last Edit: January 05, 2013, 04:56:01 AM by Steven Avery »

Curt

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2013, 04:41:28 AM »
What was your biggest disappointments, Curt ?

-PagePlus' former lack of proper pdf handling. It's okay now in X6, but pdf handling was almost completely absent in X4, and merely a semi pseudo feature in X5. Hmm... now I realize X6 may be just fine! "Oh, it's not you, it's me", but recent is listing only 4 files (room for 16), so maybe I should stop complaining and start using my PagePlus some more. Yeah, now I see it: When I open PagePlus X6, I feel I have paid PagePlus X4+X5+X6 + PhotoPlus X3+X4 + DrawPlus X4, for it, so it's bound to score low on value for the money. Maybe it really is (my lack of resistance to) the luring pile of adverts in my mailbox, that is disappointing, not the program itself.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2013, 05:01:58 AM by Curt »

Steven Avery

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2013, 05:35:01 AM »
Hi,

Here is a good explanation of the potential deal-breaker in their WYSIWIG Web Developer product.
http://webdesign.abo...nt-for-FrontPage.htm

"When reading about the features and functions Serif advertises the ability add code for log-in and counters (etc) – they call this “Smart Objects”, code that results in data needing to be retained. I asked the same person in customer service, that assured me the product did not require any interface to Serif to develop and use, if the product had these capabilities which I was assured that it did.

If you use a “Smart Object” you have to go on-line with Serif to register it – that is register the html page you develop! Why, because they keep the data on their server!! You cannot keep you own data on your own selected host! You cannot control your own data, you cannot maintain your own data – the data you collect is at Serif! You need to go to Serif for YOUR data! They also say if your usage is too high you need to purchase additional storage from them! You CANNOT develop code or host your internet site without being attached to Serif if you use a “Smart Object”. Let me repeat; No counters, No commerce, No “anything” that results in data being stored without a “marriage” to Serif! No using all of the awesome capabilities advertised about the product without being MARRIED to Serif.

Here is their SmartObjects description, making it clear that various CMS type stuff, yet also more basics like a user list, require a Serif connection
http://www.serif.com...lp/smart_objects.htm

Thus they are deceiving here:
http://www.serif.com/webplus/
Sell products online with trusted e-commerce providers ... Add Facebook and Twitter feeds as well as other social media sharing buttons... When you’re ready, preview your fully-functioning site in any browser to make sure you are happy, then upload your site to any host, or use Serif’s easy web hosting.

=======================

The Serif marketeer danced around this on Bits Du Jour, and left the final question simply unanswered.

Theoretically, for some who ..
a) would like a low-cost WYSIWIG
b) doesn't have a low-cost WYSIWIG (e.g I have used Site-Spinner and have a license for some version).
c) doesn't mind the extra dead-end (WYSIWIGs generally have a code tweak dead-end ,this is a second dead-end) looking mostly for static websites just to supply info.

This could be a decent money-saver, $15 over the  $50-75 of these WYSIWIGs normally.

Or, conceivably, you might not mind the Serif server aspect, having checked out how it works, finances, happiness of users etc.

=======================

However, we now have 3 ethical issues.

1) this deceptive advertising about the WebPlus standalone capabilities
2) reports of using registration of free products to cajole, by delay, upgrades 
3) Uniblue scam product sold on site

Not the worst we have seen, but a problem.  Especially #1.
Maybe we need to invite Serif to comment in dialog.

=======================

For PagePlus, NothingButSoftware is $4 more, and that includes shipping a box with CD or DVD. Plus maybe they have special.  So no rush on that one.

DrawPlus is what remains.  Looks like a good deal that is hard to replicate. Thoughts ?  Alternatives ?  

Is there any special integration other than similar palletes, look and feel ? Probably not, since DrawPlus is creating standard output.  However a similar look-and-feel might be a plus in having those two programs.

Steven
« Last Edit: January 05, 2013, 06:15:11 AM by Steven Avery »

kunkel321

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2013, 12:06:09 PM »
Truth be told--there are probably good freeware alternatives to any of these.
As I said above, I'm a long time fan of Photoplus and Drawplus.  I doubt that PP is any more powerful than GIMP.  DP is comparable to Inkscape or Paint.net, I think.  DP has really nice shape-builder tools as well as good effects for makings outlines, bevels, shadows, etc.  Also it has a nice "cut-out studio."  (though GIMP also lets you do cut outs)

As folks have mentioned above, you'll get "special offers" such as the Uniblue stuff in the Serif installers.  Another annoyance is that you get a "register me" pop up that NEVER goes away unless you register.  Registering takes you to this screen:

If you ever uninstall/reinstall the software, you'll have to call again.  There's no way to just register online....  They'll use the opportunity to try and sell you more stuff.  No biggie though.  The guy is pretty polite, and you can haggle with him.

Also, they'll email paid upgrade offers.  Ignore the first half dozen or so offers, then they'll start emailing better offers. 

The extra spam that I get from them is not too bad.  No worse than Ashampoo. 

Another note:  If you're thinking of getting a webbuilding app, I learned about this somewhere (maybe here, or Gizmo's?)
http://expression.mi...t.com/en-US/cc136523
Expression Web v4 is free.  The download link says "trial" but it's a full free version.  It seems like a pretty capable app.  I don't know much about making websites, so can't give an expert opinion.  Also I've never looked at the Serif Web one, so can't compare.


Curt

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2013, 03:30:13 PM »
Quote from: Serif
Due to popular demand we've extended our massive end of year sale until Monday 7th January, so there are still a few days left to save up to 90% at Serif.com!

Stock is selling out fast though, so you'll need to be quick! Visit Serif.com now and grab yourself a bargain!    
     
WebPlus X5 Was: 99.99 € Now: 12.99 € SAVE: 87.00 €
PagePlus X5 Was: 99.99 € Now: 12.99 € SAVE: 87.00 €
DrawPlus X4 Was: 99.99 € Now: 12.99 € SAVE: 87.00 €
PhotoPlus X4 Was: 89.99 € Now: 12.99 € SAVE: 77.00 €
MoviePlus X5 Was: 74.99 € Now: 12.99 € SAVE: 62.00 €

Serif Bundle Was: 464.95 € Now: 59.99 € SAVE: 404.96 €

rjbull

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2013, 12:07:23 PM »
What's this Uniblue scam?

Curt

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2013, 03:29:00 PM »
What's this Uniblue scam?

-probably an exaggeration in the heath of the moment? Serif is also a trading company selling many "not too new" programs like Uniblue Driver Scanner from year 2010.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2013, 04:02:14 PM »
My experience of Serif is they have some good apps but once you are on their mailing list you get mail by post, phone calls and a torrent of email crap - almost entirely unrelated to products you use. They are a total PITA to get rid of.

rjbull

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2013, 04:18:34 PM »
I haven't had much from Serif by post, but certainly loads of e-mails and occasional bursts of phone calls, presumably whenever they're having a campaign.  One I really didn't like was when they wanted to sell me a big disk of all their current programs, pay for the lot up front, return those you don't want later.  They lost interest when I said "Oh.  Inertia selling."

oblivion

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Re: Earlier versions of Serif software at bargain prices until 4 Jan. 2013
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2013, 07:16:59 AM »
For what little it's worth, I've used most of Serif's "big hitters" over the years. I also vary between slightly and deeply unhappy with some of their sales techniques (they phone me to keep me "up to date" every so often and I generally end up getting quite annoyed if I get one of the sales monkeys who's been taught to use the customer's first name in every sentence alongside asking questions to which the psychologically obvious answer is "yes" which of course creates a drive to go on saying it) but their products are mostly at least okay and sometimes excellent.

PagePlus has been a pretty fair PDF generator for quite a while, but its ability to edit PDFs from other sources has been limited, at least up to X5. (I have X6 but have so far only used it for one major piece of work.)

DrawPlus is, as several have said, a pretty decent vector graphics editor. Xara is faster and possibly more capable but it doesn't think the way I do and I generally get on better with DP. (My favourite Serif deal was when they offered me DP and a graphics tablet at what was -- for the time -- an extremely good price. I've been addicted to graphics tablets ever since and only use a mouse when I absolutely have to.) Most of the avatars I've ever used have been homebrewed using DP. The current one's no exception :)

PhotoPlus isn't the best photo editor around (although it's pretty capable). I tend to split my time between SageLight for tweaking the overall image, PhotoPlus for adding things like text or for lifting things off backgrounds, and Xara for object removal. As I do far less of the latter two things, you might correctly guess that I don't use PhotoPlus all that much anymore.

I have used WebPlus. I don't much like it, but I've been asked to make a couple of static websites for people in the past and because that's not really my main area of expertise (something of an understatement, if I'm honest!) I've been happy to use anything that lets me do design and doesn't make me worry about anything too complicated. Given that, it's fine -- but I looked into the Serif-hosted bits of functionality a year or so back and found the whole idea gave me the heebs. :)

Serif's techies have usually been better to deal with than their sales guys. Their technical support -- on the odd occasions where I've needed it -- generally has been quite good. There are odd exceptions -- there's a file dialogue bug that they've been aware of for some years that I think remains unfixed, for instance -- but if you can either put up with or get shot of the aggravating salespeople, most of the products are at least acceptable and at best significantly better value for money than their competitors.
-- bests, Tim

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