If price to features is a main concern, Corel is a clear winner. If youre looking for the most features to product, youll find Illustrator the be youre choose. If its possible, find somewhere to give each a quick run to see which you like the feel of. A good many learning guides share the feeling that Corel has the smallest learning curve of the 2 products for those who have never used one of these. Also, if youve used any of the raster based products like PhotoImpact or even PhotoShop, you may find CorelDraw easier to use. Both create cut ready EPS files. So youre question is, Do you want to create those files for $300 or roughily $700? A quick search on Amazon and other like site will let you price hunt.
I've been using both for years and prefer Corel much more. You can do things extremely fast in Corel, much moreso than Illustrator. The pen tool puts illustrator's to shame. But again, it's all personal taste, I know designers that swear by illustrator as well, you should just try the trial software and decide for yourself.
Everyone is correct, its a preference. I can show you from Illy users and Corel users that you wuld think it is a photograph. Learn the program of choice and you can do what the other program can. It just takes time and practice
To print and cut you print from a raster and create or import a vector to cut.
if you had all the vectors that are used to make up the design in the "CutStudio" program you would turn you transfer into spagetti.
Maybe its just my printer/color profiles but the rasters from Photoshop always print/look nicer than the same vector to raster at the same dpi from Corel.
Where I really see the difference is when I create a raster to digitize an embroidery design. The same dpi always looks nicer out of PhotoShop.
The program for the Roland is called "Cut Studio". If you want to print a transfer and cut it out you have to convert your design to a bitmap/raster to print it. Then add a vector to the .cst(cutstudiofile) that will cut it out.
Sounds crazy I know, but thats how it knows what to print and what to cut.
If you think about it recomended print setting for transfer paper is 360 dpi. You are printing to a solid substrate the paper. Is this higher or lower than the mesh count of the screen you are creating to screen print?
I did some shirts about a month ago for a GM dealer. He wanted all the GM logos across the bottom of the design. Ace told me they could'nt do plastisol because the letters were to small. I did inkjet transfers and the 2mm letters looked great. I "save as" bitmap at 720dpi, but when I print I use the plain paper setting which is 360 dpi. I move the speed/quality all the way to quality to start but nudge this toward speed if it looks like my transfers are starting to get smudged.
If cost is an issue, then you might want to try some 100% free software from http://freeserifsoftware.com/ They have DrawPlus4 for vector (have not used) and PhotoPlus (to me it is similar to PhotoShop3).
I was gifted CorelDraw12 and it's working out well for me. You can pick up full boxed versions for under $100.00 (pricewatch.com or other shopping sites). My plan is to upgrade to X3 because I am hearing good feedback on the "trace" feature.
There's also Xara software that is affordable (no personal reviews....but apparently great tutorials and pretty easy once you get going). And apparently offer promotional discounts from time-to-time.
Just sharing some alternatives. I do have older AI9, PS7, PhotoImpact7, etc., etc., etc.
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