May 29, 2007

New Mac Company Introduces the World's First GPU-powered Image Editor

Founded by brothers Saulius and Aidas Dailide in 2007, the Pixelmator Team today introduced Pixelmator, the world’s first GPU-powered image editing tool that provides everything needed to create, edit, and enhance still images.

“Finally, an innovative, fast, and easy-to-use image editor for Mac OS X that brings the power of todays expensive image production tools to every Mac user at a very affordable price,” said Saulius Dailide, Pixelmator Team. “We think all Mac people—home users as well as professionals—will find Pixelmator very usefull and fun”.

Built from the ground up on a combination of open source and Mac OS X technologies, Pixelmator features powerful selection, painting, retouching, navigation, and color correction tools, and layers-based image editing, GPU-powered image processing, color management, automation, and transparent HUD user interface for work with images.

Mac iSight users will enjoy Pixelmator’s New Layer from iSight feature that allows taking a snapshot with Mac’s built-in video camera and adding the snapshot as a layer in composition. The Photo Browser palette in Pixelmator offers quick access to iPhoto Library, albums, Smart Albums, and pictures in user’s Pictures folder. Best of all, the user can just drag-and-drop any of those images as layers in Pixelmator composition.

Another very important feature of Pixelmator is Automator support. Very powerful Pixelmator actions in Automator allow the user to quickly enhance, resize, or transform images, add any special effects, and even export images to more than 100 different file formats.

Pixelmator is based on Core Image and OpenGL technologies that use Mac’s video card for image processing. Core Image and OpenGL utilize the graphics card for image processing operations, freeing the CPU for other tasks. And if a high-performance card with increased video memory (VRAM) is present, one will find real-time responsiveness across a wide variety of Pixelmator operations, including editing tools, color correction tools, filters, and more. Pixelmator is lightening-fast on the latest PowerPC and all Intel-based Macs.

Other notable features: Pixelmator supports more than 100 different file formats, including Photoshop images with layers, and it comes with more than 16 color correction tools and 50 Core Image-powered filters, transform tools, fill and stroke, QuickMask mode, full-screen editing mode, Dashboard support, .Mac support, ColorSync support, Spotlight support, and much more.

Pricing & Availability
Pixelmator 1.0 will be available in late July for $59 (US). Full system requirements and more information on Pixelmator can be found at


  • Chad

    Very interesting, I look forward to trying Pixelmator out. For a number of years, I’ve been looking for a decent image editor, but something that also has decent painting abilities as well. Think of a combination between AppleWorks’ Draw & Painting, and throw in a dash of Photoshop Elements. That is the application I’ve been looking for. I’ve tried out a number of applications, but nothing ever felt 100% right. This application might be what I’ve been looking for.

    Photoshop is powerful, but I don’t necessarily need a bazooka to go duck hunting, either.

  • JJBee

    Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh! ;^)
    Seems great.
    The screenshots, the price, the features, the use of Apple technologies (Automator… ), amazing :^)
    A question:
    Do you use some kinds of plug-ins for CI filters, so third party devs may add their own effects (via for ex. the /Library/Graphics/image Units folder)?

  • boblog


    Well , looks really good to me! We need to try out a beta test maybe !!!! At the moment he looks gorgeous !

    Good works guys !

  • Saulius (Pixelmator Team)

    Dear JJBee,

    yes, we are to support Core Image filters. However, I can’t promise if that’s going to happen in 1.0. Altought we already have some support for CI units.

    Also, if you are interested into developing Core Image filter for Pixelmator – contact us for more information.

  • Saulius (Pixelmator Team)

    By Core Image filters I mean third party filters. Pixelmator is based on Core Image, so all current filters are CI.

  • Marc Streeter

    Finally, image editing for people who don’t have a few hundred laying around and, hey, it looks better than photoshop! Can’t wait to start using Pixelmator!

  • Larry

    Is Pixelmator for 8 bit color files or will it handle 16 bit or 32 bit as well? I’m especially interested in your handling of the FITS file format for astrophotography. The interface looks clean & handsome!

    Can’t wait to try it.

  • Saulius (Pixelmator Team)


    It is very hard to tell if we’ll support 16/32 bit. Actually Pixelmator is already able to open and edit them, but I don’t think that we will test or advertise that in Pixelmator 1.0. In fact, sometimes we are surprised by Pixelmator’s capabilities by ourselves – it is based on very powerful open source technologies and in 1.0 we are taking advantage of just 10% (if not less) of those. So, if you see that 16 or 32 bit images are working in Pixelmator – don’t blame me 🙂

  • Grant McCall

    Hey guys, this looks freakin sweet!

    Quick question, would I be able to paint in different blending modes like photoshop? As in grab a brush, set the blending mode to overlay and paint at 30% opacity? If the painting features are that advanced, then I’m completely sold, but meh, even if not for $59 I’m completelyl sold anyway!



  • britt

    IIRC… the native data format of CI is floating-point RGB. What do you store your layer pixel data in at runtime – CIImage objects, NSImage objects, or something else?

  • Barry

    Will Pixelmator support CMYK images? I see CMYK and CMYKA listed, but are those image formats or the actual colour mode?

  • TonyB

    Looks very cool guys. Screen shots have lots of wow. Interface is … unknown; it will take hands on to use it and comment wisely. Will it do paths as well as pixel work? And do you have the “quickmask” that Photoshop uses? Any chance of doing DXF format (CAD; document exchange format)? Keep up the good work …

  • Nelce

    This looks fantastic! Sign me up!

  • Malikolo

    Think simple et easy to use : it will be a photoshop for all

  • David Chartier

    I know it might be a little early, but after perusing Pixelmator’s features and specs I have a request to make: along with iLife and iPhoto, is there a chance you could support Aperture’s library as well?

  • aidas


    We use a third party framework called iMedia Browser and from what I’ve read Aperture support is a little buggy. We would love to fix it ourselves but right now we are really busy on other features. Since stability is one of our top priorities we must be very careful with adding features like this one.

  • Tonio Loewald

    One image-editing program Adobe Photoshop has never replaced is Studio/32. If you ever run out of ideas for features to rip off, find a copy of this (Classic only) app. Just an example:

    You can draw a rectangle *precisely* by pointing roughly where you want to start, press 8 for 800% view (centered on the mouse) click EXACTLY where you want to start drawing the rectangle, press shift-2 for 1/2 (50%) size view, drag (mouse still down) to roughly where you want to stop, press 8 for 800% view (centered on the mouse) and move to exactly where you want to end and release the mouse.

    For fine work, Studio/32 (and its 8-bit sibling, Studio/8) remain the finest programs ever written.

  • Chiemi

    I’ve long wished for an intuitive Photoshop-like application for the Mac! This wil be wonderful. I do technical artwork for book authors, and currently rely on a mix of OmniGraffle and GraphicConverter to get my job done. I simply cannot get my head around PS, its design is so foreign to my mindset. I hope Pixelmator will eventually grow to include Adobe Illustrator functionality, too, as AI suffers from the same malaise that PS does, and is just as unusable. Thx.

  • oomu

    the ultimate irony is Photoshop was one of the most “macintosh” application ever. it was created for the mac at first. not windows. (it’s still visible in many ways)

    but it is now so old, so blocked in old interface ideas and huge menus and many many , TOO many expectations now Adobe cannot improve it dramatically. (besides the features, of course)

    I really hope your Pixelmator will succeed. I waited for that for years.

  • Podkost

    Yes, yes, yeeeess!!! Finally someone who might kick the 800 pound Gorilla in the balls. I so absolutely welcome our new Core Graphics overlords!

    I am already sold.

  • boblog

    Dear All,

    Its a funny mail, I think that this app is underpriced, I mean its too cheap ! I wanna be clear, if the performances are really good, this fabulous app needs to have the right price for it!
    If its a success, think about it !
    You have a company and you need results ! To make this app more and more powerful in the future.

    Friendly (also, take a look at the price of Lineform from 79.95 vector graphic app), I think a good price is between 80 to 90 USD.

    Or we will pay the update ?
    Incredible price …. is it true ?

  • digitaldave

    Looks great so far! Can’t wait to try it out if there’s going to be a demo version.

    One thing I’d love to see at some point would be the ability to handle RAW files. Getting all the native versions working would probably be very difficult, but perhaps you could use Adobe’s DNG format instead?

    Eagerly awaiting v1.0 🙂

  • Magnus

    This looks good!
    Will there ever be any vector-tools in Pixelmator? The best way to make icons and scaleble grahics is by using vectors. The vectors in Photoshop works great except there’s no vector line-tool.

  • boblog

    Beta beta beta test

  • digitaldave

    Please ignore my comment above about DNG – I just read the tech specs page, and it’s already listed as a supported file type – excellent :).

  • Jared

    This looks outstanding. Definitely looking forward to trying it out!

  • jody

    Man-o-man! I am excited about this! I have way outgrown iPhoto(but I like the interaction and management). I just don’t have the time for the Photoshop learning curve. And I don’t think I have “need” for Aperture(also a long learning curve).
    PLZ keep it simple with a good guide for noob’s.
    I also agree that this could/should sell for more if it works as advertised.

  • Sdl

    We’re really impatient to test pixelmator! Can we have a preversion to make a preview for our readers ?

  • Colin

    I have been a long time Photoshop user and have never even considered using anything else. This is the first program that I may consider replacing my all to expensive image editing program. But I also think this price is too low. I want to see this company thrive and feel $89-99 would be more than fair. I am excited to see this application grow and give Adobe a run for their money.


  • John Tangney

    @Colin: excellent plan! Then I can get my non-profit operation to drop Photoshop and get Pixelmator at a non-profit discount! 😉

    But seriously, this looks fabulous, and if the app shows as much care as the web site, this’ll be a good one.


  • Félix Cloutier

    Indeed, Pixelmator looks like something big. I would be pleased to be one of your first customers.
    I don’t remember being more enthusiasmed by a software than now.

    (and if you need people to localize it, French’s my first language.)

  • NitRam Den Gale

    The only thing I can see missing, for the time being I hope, i RAW (NEF, yes I use Nikon!) support… Will you support it in coming versions? Will it happen before you hit 2.0?

  • HåkanO

    Hi! I´m impressed!
    This is what we all have waited for! (almost all I think…) The use of Apple´s core-tech is of course the future. And, I think someone else already mentioned, PS is in many ways is in the corner with a lot of wet paint on the floor. I use Aperture AND PS a lot and I really want to see what you guys have in the basket to compete with that combination. I can see that you´re in the game for true and that Adobe will have to watch out… And the price!!! (Can you really make it that low?) My true respect and my good wishes!

  • Adrian Davis

    Was going to buy Photoshop Elements … not now.
    Even without RAW support I’m going to buy it. If this is V1 then it will only get better.
    Stunning achievement … well done.

  • Chris


    i really would like to see a feature that makes it possible to work with raw files and to change the development settings oft the raw later. adobe currently does that with smartobjects in cs3 but its extremly slow. it resembles somewhat the nested compostitions approach of aftereffects.

    then please implement an option to use a table layout GUI. there is a reason why adobe switched from floating to flexible table layout in cs2.

    if those two features make it in the program i would by it right away.

  • kommen

    I’m really looking forward to use pixelmator!

    As a programmer, I don’t use any image processing app like Photoshop right now. But I guess
    I will use pixelmator.

    Cool interface. Cool mash-up of various libraries. Open Source power.


  • Cale

    Wow, am a graphic designer ive been using photoshop since PS 3.0 i got ADobe Creative Suite 3 , and well, it seems that they are more windows thinkers right now, because, there’s, no apple core tech support, and the interface looks like windows 2000, ugly and outdated , and the reqs, for the same things we did, and do all the time , seems to be stupid, the lack and slow of this last Adobe CS3 , it doesnt Work With OS X, it works over OS X like a BullDozer, i used almost every image editor, corel draw, PaintShop pro, , and boy, i can tell you that, this really looks like the future in your hands,

    Can wait to try it out!

    Nice work!!

  • Umair

    Just Love It!!!

    I think Pixelmator is making me leave Adobe Photoshop CS3. It’s just an awesome app.

    Great Work and A Epic Application.

  • fstop95

    Good luck! I’ll anxiously await the chance to beta test your app as I can’t stand feeding the Adobe coffers any longer. I just can’t take how bogged down CS2 makes my Macbook Pro Core Duo with 2 gigs of ram. Bring it on boys, bring it on!

  • Gernot

    Wow. You have a serious killer app here.

  • Geno

    This look great! As a Mac user for a couple of years now, PS looks a bit cumbersome and PS Elements has been a bit too “lite” for my needs. This is exactly what I am looking for! Release date?

  • modemlooper

    this is awesome! I use photoshop but hate having to open the beast to do a small edit on a photo. If this syncs well with iphoto it will be great.

  • Elliot

    wow this is going to be the best photoshop killer
    hope you are working on the startup speed

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