Affinity Photo, Designer, and Publisher are now up to 10 times faster on Windows

Affinity Publisher Windows 10
Affinity Publisher Windows 10 (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Affinity Photo, Designer, and Publisher just received a major update to version 1.9.
  • The update includes GPU acceleration, which can bring a tenfold speed increase on supported systems.
  • All of the Affinity apps are currently half price.

Affinity Photo, Designer, and Publisher all have major updates available that bring several new features and major performance improvements. The update brings all of the Affinity apps to version 1.9. The biggest change is that the Windows versions of the Affinity apps now support GPU acceleration. As a result, supported systems will see up to 10 times faster performance on pixel-based tasks.

GPU acceleration has been available on the macOS and iPad versions of the Affinity apps for some time but is now making its way to Windows 10. To take advantage of it, you have a PC with a Direct3D feature level 12.0 capable card.

The release notes (opens in new tab) are lengthy and go into more detail on every single feature, but here are some of the most important highlights:

Performance improvements (all Affinity apps)Expect big performance gains when working with large complex vector documents in all apps as well as much faster IDML import in Publisher.PDF passthrough (desktop only) (all desktop Affinity apps)It's now possible to flag your imported PDFs for PDF passthrough. This ensures that the file will be a perfect representation of the original PDF when exporting, regardless of whether you have the embedded fonts installed or not.Windows GPU acceleration (all Windows Affinity apps)We've made use of hardware acceleration on both the macOS and iPad versions of Affinity for some time (including being some of the first apps to optimise for the new Apple M1 chips). Now, Windows users can experience these large performance boosts too with up to 10x faster performance on pixel-based tasks like filter effects, adjustments and painting. Requires Windows 10 (April 2020 update or later) with a Direct3D feature level 12.0 capable card.Content sync of store purchases (all Affinity apps)You now have the ability to link your apps with your Affinity account and download all of your content from the store directly to your apps. All purchased content will show up in your linked apps once you complete the download, ready for you to use even when you're offline.

As a reminder, all of the Affinity apps are on sale for 50 percent off right now. Also, if you prefer to try them out for free, they all have a free trial going on as well.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at (opens in new tab).

  • Good stuff. It would be nice if they could also extend that goodness to a Windows on ARM version.
  • They're waiting for WPF to be ported to ARM. That's ongoing but as with typical Microsoft, it could be a long time waiting.
  • I love Affinity. I bought Photo full price and then got Designer and Publisher on one of these 50% sales. It's so much more powerful than the price would indicate. I don't miss Adobe...or the subscription scheme.
  • I have these apps, but not the Store versions. Are there any differences or advantages either way?🤔