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PDF Expert Reviews2.5.11

24 August 2020

Read, annotate, fill, and sign PDFs.

5
Bento de Espinosa
16 December 2019
Version: 2.4.29

Most helpful

The most important feature for me is to be able to edit text on a PDF file. For that (and other simple edits) I do not want an app that is 200 or 300 MB big, like the other ones. PDF Expert is just 65 MB in size, and is very elegant. Nice!
(2)

How would you rate PDF Expert app?

Read 37 PDF Expert User Reviews

5
gregstumpedd
17 August 2020
Version: 2.5.10
I think PDF Expert is awesome. As a recently retired professional who still tinkers in my field of work, I wanted a reasonably priced pdf software package. Adobe was out the running immediately now that we have to pay a subscription that never ends (great business model for them...continue to milk the subscriber). PDF Expert does everything I need including creating and editing pdf files, and the price was amazing...a one-time fee of less than $100 -- a bargain. Oh, the other awesome software package I found for document creation (that can save as .doc and other formats) - LibreOffice. Thanks to the innovative folks who continue to value customer by providing a sound offering at reasonable prices...you all are a model.
(0)
3
xcoxco
22 June 2020
Version: 2.5.7
Looks good. Nice basic functionality. But ... Overrated as an Adobe Acrobat Pro replacement. Two glaring omissions, for example: no OCR capability and no ability to generate Excel tables from a pdf document. Yes. It's good for signing forms, and editing text.
(0)
1
Eric•Woehler
06 April 2020
Version: 2.5.4
Massive memory hog. Using 1.04GB RAM on opening the app, before I have opened a file! This is on 2 macinges (desktop and laptop). Have ditched it - stilllooking for VIABLE alternative to Acrobat - this ain't it...
(1)
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5
rpittelli
01 April 2020
Version: 2.5.3
Former IT guy here. This is a fast reader/editor with a nice, intuitive UI. Does a wonderful job of converting/combining files of common formats to PDF, easily allows creation of new PDFs (apparently some older versions that I've seen reviewed didn't allow this(?)), and has seemingly flawless editing functionality. Also has the invaluable compression function ('Reduce file size...') that is in Acrobat Pro but missing in most other pdf editors that I've tried before settling on this one. In response to some earlier reviews below, I am using 2.5.3 on Catalina and haven't had any memory surges/issues. I agree with one, albeit IMO minor, criticism below -- I wish I could 'Save as...' to different file formats (at least to image). Nonetheless, if you don't need OCR, then this is the best alternative to Acrobat Pro, hands down, and IMO an infinitely better deal at only USD$80 (ps., I would happily pay a bit extra for an OCR module if it were to become available..hint. hint.)
(0)
5
Bento de Espinosa
16 December 2019
Version: 2.4.29
The most important feature for me is to be able to edit text on a PDF file. For that (and other simple edits) I do not want an app that is 200 or 300 MB big, like the other ones. PDF Expert is just 65 MB in size, and is very elegant. Nice!
(2)
1
ben-180
29 October 2019
Version: 2.4.29
Acrobat is so much better.
(0)
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4
Packshot
19 June 2019
Version: 2.4.24
Need the ability to set sizes for stamps and images. You also need to turn not only 90 degrees for the same stamps, signatures and images
(1)
2
Eric•Woehler
08 May 2019
Version: 2.4.24
Have stopped using PDFExpert and gone back to Acrobat Reader Pro... sigh.... PDFExpert's massive memory footprint (1GB on opening the app), then when I open a 100kb file the RAM use blows out to 1.24GB. I suspect some code optimisation is required, as I suggested earlier. Might come back if there is some movt by the dev in fixing this, otherwise bought it, used it and have moved on - hope this saves someone else the same experience.
(1)
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4.5
Dshore95
06 May 2019
Version: 2.4.24
Don't need it, too expensive. Already have another app that is adequate.
(1)
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3.5
FaithMan777
04 March 2019
Version: 2.4.23
I wish it had a "save as..." feature so we could save to .jpg and .png files. I still have to use Preview for that. Also, sometimes the only thing that will open certain .pdf files is preview. But there are also times that only PDF Expert will open a .pdf file. It's very weird.....
(2)
1.5
mwlt
02 March 2019
Version: 2.4.23
Without OCR I do not see how this app justifies an 80$ price tag.
(5)
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xcoxco
26 February 2019
Version: 2.4.23
Still no OCR!
(3)
4
Eric•Woehler
05 February 2019
Version: 2.4.22
Continuing to use it in pref to Adobe native software but wondering/worried about memory bleed/bloat. Open app and within 1 minute (with no document open), the app is using 1GB of RAM - pretty hungry app for no open document. Open a 100kb file and RAM use blows out to 1.24GB. I suspect some code optimisation is required!
(3)
5
DragonMaster
25 November 2018
Version: 2.4.14
THIS APP IS OMG wonderful!!! Great support. Extremely efficient and intelligent. Will do almost all that Acrobat DC can do and does it better. This gem is frequently updated and remains as a continually evolving app. Readdle has made a commitment to develop friendly and powerful apps for "the rest of us," in true Apple Tradition. Buy it, use it! You will love PDF Expert!
(1)
Meitnik
01 July 2018
Version: 2.4.6
Am I the only one struggling with many standard Mac editing idoms missing or miunderstood in this app! I get the impression the Readdle has not studied the Mac HIG much or hardly. I am sending in reports but there are things that should have been found long ago and fixed. MacOS is a much different home than iOS and requires much more attention to workflow and HIG. Am sorry, its not worth 60, perhaps 25.00 as it is now. Adding OCR is very tricky; so am worried they will screw it up.
Btw, why would a program resize a 300 dpi 8 x 5.08 image to 11 x 6.98 when opening it. An app should never edit unless its explained why or at lease offer a way to resize it back to original size and dpi. Frustrated with PDFExpert.
As a lightweight app to lightly edit a pdf, maybe.
(5)
Eric•Woehler
27 May 2018
Version: 2.4.2
Hey MU Editors - please correct your spelling: "Read, annotate, fill, and sign PDF's. " is wrong - PDFs is plural not possessive - it should be "Read, annotate, fill, and sign PDFs." thanks!
(3)
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xcoxco
26 May 2018
Version: 2.4.2
Yes it's not from Adobe. It's made by Readdle.

Even so, it's still not an Acrobat Pro replacement for serious PDF folk. Nor does it fully replace Apple Preview for that matter.

Promised features * still * haven't seen the light of day. Wish they would. It sure does look good, however.

I am a long-time paid user of both Acrobat Pro and PDF Expert.
(2)
3.5
Eric•Woehler
25 April 2018
Version: 2.4
Slowly improving its feature set. Still not comparable with Acrobat, but that reflects its price point. I have Adobe CS6 and still have Acrobat Pro on my machine, but find I am using PDFExpert more and more. Most recent update to 2.4 brings in ability to import jpg and save as PDF. So like I said, slowly improving over time. Have a look - use it and see if it meets your needs. Is currently being offered in various packages/app bundles so you can get it for less than RRP. Worth a trial in my opinion.
(3)
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rob-robinzon
16 February 2018
Version: 2.3.1
Great alternative to ADOBE reader!
(1)
quir
26 January 2018
Version: 2.2.18
OCR would make this a useful softare. As it is, it is nice and has some improvements over preview.app, but does not provide that much more functionality.
(5)
4.5
Zunga
05 May 2017
Version: 2.2.1
I always thought Preview was enough for my needs, but this little gem proved me how much I was wrong. Excellent app, even if it's a little pricey (but not so much, if compared to a Pro solution).
(1)
4
MnogoMnogo
23 April 2017
Version: 2.2.1
This is a mostly excellent PDF reader and annotator, superior to Preview in two main respects: (1) offering more convenient and rationally designed ways to annotate and edit PDF files, and (most signficantly for me) (2) offering tight-ish integration with PDF Expert for iPad (and iPhone), which allows, most of the time, reasonably seamless back-and-forth between the two platforms. PDF Expert for iPad is definitely one of the two best PDF readers-annotators for that platform, and there is nothing comparable to Preview offered by Apple for their iOS products.

My problem with PDF Expert for Mac at the moment is the fact that it continues to have number of longstanding uncorrected bugs that become really annoying if you are a heavy user and run into them regularly. In two-page view, Previous Page and Next Page stop working at random moments, and you need to switch into single-page view and back again to get out of the difficulty. At other random moments, it suddenly becomes impossible to highlight text to apply an annotation. At those times, switching to another page and returning to the previous page (if that works in the first place) gets you out of the problem, as does quitting and restarting the app. Notes one tries to write sometimes appear partially off-screen and can't be moved back on, except by deleting the note, starting it elsewhere and moving it.

Likewise, the "Readdle Transfer" feature should allow you to work on your Mac, then move to the iPad, then back to the Mac, or to another Mac — all the time synchronizing changes and opening the document to the current page. But it works only sometimes, and its behavior is unpredictable in many respects. Sometimes it detects an open document but just fails to sync, with an error message. Sometimes it doesn't detect the open document at all, even though it does detect PDF Expert as open on your other machine. Also, it is inconsistent in where it locates the document — so a PDF saved to iCloud on your Mac may open on your iPad as an iPad-only document, so your changes are not saved back to iCloud (and you might not learn this until it's too late). And other times it might work correctly, so you can't even plan a workaround, since you don't know what the app will do with any given file. And so on.

Now when the Mac app was launched (I was a very early adopter), the folks at Readdle were extremely responsive to bug reports and questions — even if the bugs were not always fixed. But more recently, they do not respond at all. The Twitter page devoted to PDF Expert, which used to be one place to get assistance when email failed, has not been updated in the past four months (not since December 19, 2016 — it's now April 23, 2017). The product itself does not appear to be dead — there was an update in March — but clearly the company's mind is elsewhere, probably on their email app Spark, and the imperfect but still promising product that is PDF Expert is being allowed to languish. That is unfortunate, and I hope Readdle gets back to work on PDF Expert, and turns some of its helpdesk attention back to PDF Expert users. This remains a product with great potential, and I still use it, but the daily annoyances will eventually get to me and other users — and I am keeping my eye out for something better.
(7)
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2
StrictlyBagel
10 March 2017
Version: 2.2
Doesn't do OCR. I stick with PDFpen for the time being. But I like the GUI of PDF Expert. Also, editing text (as has been noted before in other reviews) is not as good as with PDFpen and requires a background that's cooperating.
(6)
5
David1
04 March 2017
Version: 2.1.2
I tried PDF Expert a few months ago, bought it within the hour. It's fast, smooth, does everything I need without a hitch. Costs less than the slow, awkward and buggy PDFpen, too. For those on a tight budget, I can recommend the free Skim for viewing, and for manipulating PDF files, PDF Genius ($14 on MAS). Not a single-application solution, not as slick looking, but it gets the job done.
(5)
3.5
wintermute
27 January 2017
Version: 2.1.2
This is NOT the same as Preview. Preview cannot EDIT text in a PDF. PDF Expert is a nice alternative to Adobe Acrobat (DC, Pro). The only major thing missing is the ability to make PDFs with fillable form fields. Hopefully this will be added soon. This is a welcome alternative to Adobe's subscription-only software for those of us who realize that subscription based software only increases costs for consumers in the end.
(3)
5
Forn
11 January 2017
Version: 2.1.2
Great software and it is NOT from Adobe!!
(6)
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3.5
ecdltf
27 November 2016
Version: 2.0.1
This is a very good PDF viewer and annotator, on a level with Skim, if not better. Very nice and lightweight GUI. However, the editing capabilities are pretty limited: It is possible to edit text if the text block is very straightforward. But with the slightest complication – for example hanging indents of bulleted lists – chances are good that the text gets messed up when trying to edit. Even PDF Pen does this better. Many objects, often such simple things like horizontal lines, are not editable. So, the app has still a long way to go, in the editing department. I’m hoping for updates that will improve that.
(3)
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5
Grug
15 October 2016
Version: 2.0.1
Great software (a bit expensive) to edit & annotate PDF.
(1)
2
Eveningclouds
15 June 2016
Version: 1.4.2
I got this through my update to Parallels virtual machine, and am glad I did! In the sense that I would never pay this amount of money for this app. It is basically a re-imagining of features already available in Preview, with maybe a couple things that make those features a bit more organized and accessible. But no way is it worth $59.99.
(4)
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5
Starless72
21 March 2016
Version: 1.4
FAST! But it's €59,99. I actually did not need another PDF reader. I'm using Skim since years for reading and notes, and I use Adobe Reader when I need to fill forms. But I got the PDF Expert license in the Parallels bundle (never heard about this app before), and gave it a test run. First impression is: overall it seems a nice app, smooth, with the right feature set. But the big difference I really noticed is: it is FAST! I have a PDF - and sometimes encountered others - which for some reason is VERY sluggish to load and display, maybe due to complex or badly drawn diagrams. Skim, Preview and Adobe Reader all freeze for tens of seconds, even minutes, when they have to render some pages in this PDF. PDF Expert, instead, takes just a few seconds to render the pages, and never freezes in the process. Also the annotation tools seem nice and functional, and I like the thumbnails view. I might even give it a go as default PDF viewer, after years of Skim... By the way, please note that it costs 59,99 Euros, why does the listing here show only $19,99?
(1)
4
Sherman-Wilcox
11 March 2016
Version: 1.4
This is a fine app. It's fast. It's able to do phrase searches. The tabbed interface is very helpful. The power of this app is somewhat hidden if you only download the trial and look through quickly. This is an excellent developer who constantly updates their apps with fixes and new features. I'd like to see OCR added (Readdle's Scanner Pro app for iOS has it, so I'm hoping it'll come to PDF Expert as well).
(1)
bobembry
11 December 2015
Version: 1.1.3
No try. No buy I downloaded and tested the initial release. I didn't any reason to buy. Since the initial release there have been several updates. When I attempt to test them, I get a trial expired warning and are urged to BUY NOW. No try. No buy
(5)
2
MePx
29 November 2015
Version: 1.0.0.130
I've contacted support. I'm experiencing PDF Expert corrupt my PDFs after I modify them with highlighting or the pen tool. Suddenly the PDF in the window disappears and an icon pops up with text that says the file is corrupted. Never happened in Acrobat. I restored the PDFs from Time Machine and they work fine--receive highlights just fine in Acrobat with no corruption. I'm not sure what the issue is, but I'd be careful until it's addressed.

That said, I certainly do like its integration with iCloud Drive across Mac and iDevices. I read PDFs a lot on my iPhone and iPad, and PDF Expert for Mac gives me a great solution for adding reading for my commutes.

I also prefer its interface compared to Acrobat and PDFpen Pro, though it does have a few visual quirks to resolve.

Finally, while Acrobat has never corrupted a file, its editing tools, including highlighting, are painfully slow and buggy--to the point of the app freezing when trying to highlight text. It can easily become very frustrating and tedious.

PDF Expert for Mac could become a worthy alternative to these apps if Readdle can address the current file corruption bug and visual quirks to make it a smoother, more reliable experience.
(1)
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3
MnogoMnogo
22 November 2015
Version: 1.0.0.130
The idea of a Mac PDF reader/annotator that is a version of one of the excellent iPad apps and syncs with it is a great one. For that reason I bought this app from the Apple Store, being a heavy user of the iOS version. But it's very crude at the moment, with very strange and annoying usability decisions that are increasingly annoying the more you use it.

1. Quirky title bar at the top of the window that does not conform to normal OS X design. You can't reveal the path or drag an icon to another app such as mail.

2. If you hit save, as I do compulsively on the Mac, when the app thinks there's nothing to save, it gives you an alert. No big deal the first few times, but it gets very annoying very fast. If it doesn't think it needs to save the file, why not just keep quiet about it?!

3. Every time you decide to annotate something, be it with a highlight, note, text insertion, highlighting, or whatever, the entire document shifts to the left so you can see a panel on the right that is usually unnecessary and often useless or even blank. Think about it: your eyes fixate on a place you want to highlight or text you want to strikeout, you hit the key combination to do this, and suddenly you have to find your place all over again. Once or twice it's not a big deal, but after a day of this, I'm fed up and even a bit dizzy.

4. Handoff to and from the iOS app exists, but is rather flaky. There's no guarantee that your most recent edits have made their way from iPad to Mac or back. I don't think this is likely to be Apple's fault, since in Notes, at least, it's nearly instantaneous. Instead, the apps seems to be saving your changes to iCloud on their own schedule. Woe is you if start editing on a device that hasn't fully synced, but there's no alert or other warning to tell you not to edit until syncing has occurred.

5. Basic functionality for picking your View is split between a pulldown menu above the idiosyncratic title bar and the menu bar in ways that make little sense. Choose between single-page and two-page display: that's on the View menu. Choose between page-by-page or continuous scroll, or zoom? That's on the pulldown menu in above the title bar. Annotation functions are duplicated on a toolbar and on the annotations menu (as in Preview and Acrobat), but the view stuff is split. And there are no keyboard shortcuts for the stuff in the pulldown menu (and the OS X Keyboard Preference pane, though it adds shortcut memos to the pulldown menu items, doesn't actually allow these items to be accessed).

These issues aside, it's not hugely worse than Preview. But I expected something better thought out from the makers of the iOS app, and it's not a low-cost purchase either. (Preview is free with OS X, of course.,) Hopefully it will get better as these things are fixed. The concept is certainly something I've been waiting for.
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Lumac52
21 November 2015
Version: 1.0.0.130
There does not seem to be any detailed help available. I found it annoying that PDF Expert automatically starts using my iCloud Drive and there doesn't seem to be any obvious way to disable this nor could I find any documentation at all on iCloud integration.
(1)
2
JuggleStupidity
15 November 2015
Version: 1.0
Unimpressed. This does nothing more than what preview.app (the default pdf viewer on osx) already does.

PDF Expert 1.0 can not:
- create PDFs of images files, or merge several images files to one large pdf document
- edit existing pdfs (text or images)

Maybe this app matures and expands capabilities. That would be great, since Adobe's Acrobat can really use some competition in the PDF editing space.
(3)
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5
Paulo Neto
13 November 2015
Version: 1.0
Everyone needs to know this app!! I've used the Readdle Apps on my iPad and iPhone, and now with PDF Expert for Mac was amazing! It is, without a doubt, the best application to handle PDF files! Be able to sign and fill out forms directly in the PDF file, the PDF Expert makes the best! You must know it! Congratulations to the whole team Readdle, and thank you for helping save my time and money.
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