Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0

Speedy and cheap graphics editing

Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0
  • Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0
  • Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0
  • Expert Rating

    4.50 / 5

Pros

  • Fast, cheap, extrude tool

Cons

  • No pixel-editing tools

Bottom Line

Fast and inexpensive, Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0 is an excellent choice for print and web designers on a budget — or a deadline.

Would you buy this?

Often overshadowed by better-known applications, Xara Xtreme Pro is a graphics program with something to prove. This latest release — faster and more powerful than its predecessor — deserves more of the spotlight.

Xara Xtreme 4.0 — which comes in Standard and Pro versions — mixes vector illustration, bitmap editing, animation and Web design tools. Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0 now sports an integrated Photo Tool that lets you make basic edits in the main document window rather than a separate editor window.

And while Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0 isn't a straight replacement for a program such as Photoshop — it lacks pixel-editing tools for starters — it has big advantages. The changes you make are non-destructive so you can go back and edit them later. In a way it's like Photoshop's Adjustment layers, but easier to use. Resulting file sizes are smaller too.

But what's striking about Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0, whether working with vectors or bitmaps, is its speed. It's hard to accurately measure the developer's claim that it's up to 10 times faster than other graphics software. But it's certainly more responsive than Illustrator, which can get bogged down on detailed illustrations. Performance was helped on our test machine by the fact that the Pro version of Xara Xtreme 4.0 supports multicore processors.

Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0's speed is put to use in a new extrude tool that can press out text or objects by dragging on their side, with the preview adjusting in real-time — it's ideal for basic 3D work if not full modelling.

Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0 is also a functional page layout editor. While again not a match for dedicated applications — we found it difficult to manage multiple-column layouts and there's no way to manage styles — it does at least support pro-level features such as text kerning and you can now flow around shapes easily by setting the object to repel text below it. While Xtreme Pro has long been able to create multipage documents, this capability now extends to the standard version too.

Xara Xtreme Pro 4.0's new Web-editing tools can turn such multi-page documents into an HTML website. It makes a good job too. CSS styles are used to replicate the positioning of page elements and while the underlying code created isn't the cleanest, reproduction is accurate. For small sites that you need to produce quickly, this could be a godsend.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?