Adobe Acrobat X Pro review

Price when reviewed

Adobe’s new top-of-the-range Acrobat X Pro builds on Acrobat X Standard, which itself builds on Reader X. As such, it inherits all the advances of the whole range, such as the enhanced interface, Reading mode, SendNow integration and SharePoint support.

Again like Standard, Acrobat X Pro’s existing power is now mostly accessed through the new Tools task pane. This makes it easier to find functions, but it also highlights just how much power Pro offers, with options covering everything from XML-based forms creation through to colour-separated commercial print.

Packing in as much PDF-based power as possible is Acrobat Pro’s mission, but the sheer range and depth is intimidating. Worse, each advanced workflow is complex, meaning it can be a real challenge to get everything right every time – if you don’t, it can be a real disaster. With Acrobat X Pro, Adobe tries to help users get on top of their workflows with the introduction of actions.

Adobe Acrobat X Pro

Seven preset actions cover such common tasks as archiving paper documents and preparing for web distribution. Click on the Publish Sensitive Document wizard, for example, and it walks you through marking up the document for redaction (a Pro-only feature), removing hidden information and general file optimisation. It’s also simple to edit existing actions – say to add a step for password-based encryption – and to create your own from scratch.

Acrobat X Pro isn’t just intended to let you do more with your PDFs; its main function is to enable others to get more out of the PDFs you produce. Key to this, and perhaps the program’s greatest strength, is its ability to unlock power in the free Reader X to enable anyone to fill in forms and digitally sign documents. The biggest advance is in unlocking all commenting capabilities in Reader X’s Comments pane, so anyone can participate in a shared review.

As well as making the Reader program richer, Acrobat X Pro users can add content such as maps and 3D to their PDFs. It’s worth noting here that, while Acrobat X Pro still lets you import 3D models in U3D format, the former Acrobat 9 Pro Extended has been discontinued. Its advanced 3D capabilities are to be handled as a third-party add-on.


Software subcategoryOffice software

Operating system support

Operating system Windows Vista supported?yes
Operating system Windows XP supported?yes

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