The GOOD, the Bad, and the ugly
Allen Schellenberg | TrustRadius Reviewer
June 20, 2018

The GOOD, the Bad, and the ugly

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with PDFelement

I used PDFelement for a number of reasons, as follows:
  1. - to annotate documents providing mark-ups for revision or comment to the author,
  2. - to annotate documents for my future reference, or to be used as personal notes when presenting to my Board,
  3. - to add Headers to a number of documents, then compile them into a single docket for distribution
  4. - to annotate with highlighting, or outline shapes in order to draw attention to key areas of a document
  5. - to print directly to a PDF file for distribution
  • Having the ability to actually edit text within the PDF document is fantastic. Just yesterday I was placing a "Textbox" on top of some text I needed to edit, then remembered I could actually edit the text of the PDF itself, while retaining the font properties, making the edit easy and seamless.
  • Occasionally, I have the need to emphasize certain images on a PDF file prior to me forwarding it to others. PDFelement allows me the opportunity to re-size graphics images to highlight their importance within the message I am sending when using existing PDF files. This saves me time and allows for a clear message to be given.
  • When merging multiple PDF files into one file, particularly when a larger number of PDF files are being merged, the "Merge Window" is only large enough to display 4 file names, due to the space used to show the name of each included file. Often times it is necessary to re-organize the files prior to the merge, however, this process is very cumbersome and slow as you attempt to re-order the files while only viewing 4 filenames at any one time. If the user had the ability to make the "Merge Window" bigger, or the space used to display each file name was smaller, this would greatly improve functionality.
  • I use the STAMP command to add jpeg signatures to the signature line within PDF documents. However, as the background of the STAMP is solid white, it often covers the signature "line" and usually other text that is close by. To overcome this, it's necessary to make the signature unusually small. Placing the signature STAMP "behind" the other graphics and text would resolve the problem. However, I've been told by PDFElement they currently have no "layering" functionality, yet, when I edit PDF files with multiple graphic images, I can see lines on top of photos, or other images that appear "on top of" other graphics. Obviously, this is due to "layering" , whether it was designed that way or not.
  • One of the greatest features of a PDF editor is filling out forms using the "TYPEWRITER" command, needed when there are no "form fields" used. However, PDFelement has made this command so cumbersome to use, it's almost useless. In my previous PDF editor, it was two clicks:- 1. select the command then 2. Type. Not so with PDFelement, which requires 5-6 steps . 1. select command 2. click location on page 3. Double-click to enter typewriter text box 4. delete the words "New Text" which appear in the field automatically 5. then start typing what you want to type, but only for 21 characters until there is an automatic line feed. 6. if filling multiple fields on the same line, you must re-size the box before you continue typing.
  • Any time you can convey information in a more clear and direct manner, while saving time, improves the results of your efforts.
Price was the only factor that drove me to look at other PDF editing software options. I was very pleased to find PDFelement, as it usually met or exceeded the capability of Adobe Acrobat. Obviously, as a long-time user to Acrobat, there is the tendency to become frustrated with a new command structure or process, but I found for the most basic commands this was not so difficult. As indicated already, there are certainly some areas that still need improving with PDFelement, ut this has not stopped me from recommending this option as a clear winner for an affordable, and command-rich PDF editor.
I create meeting dockets of up to 200 pages, spaced over 15-20 files consisting of single-page and multiple-paged documents. As each document with a file has its own page numbering system, and these documents come from multiple sources, original page numbers are placed in different locations on the page, using different formats, or sometimes not used at all. Without a consistent page numbering system, it is difficult for the chairperson to direct attention to particular pages during the discussion. However, adding a docket page number to the pages of each individual file (prior to merging them), that directly corresponds to that files listing on the meeting agenda, allows all board members to use a common page numbering system when referring to documents during the discussion.