Adobe Acrobat Professional

Adobe Acrobat Professional

Download Editors' Rating:
5
Spectacular
Average User Rating:
3.7
out of 165 votes

Quick Specs

  • Version:
    9
  • Total Downloads:
    7,293,990
  • Date Added:
    Jul. 29, 2008
  • Price:
    Free to try; $449.00 to buy (Buy it now)

Editors' Note:

Editors' Review

+

The introduction of Adobe Acrobat 9 document-creation software could do for PDFs what the Jazz Singer did for movies. For the first time, PDFs can "talk" via embedded Flash video and Shockwave animation. In turn, users of Version 9 of the nearly ubiquitous and free Acrobat Reader will be able to watch movies, play interactive games, and run applications baked into PDFs without opening a third-party media player.

Among the many new, dynamic features to justify a business purchase of Acrobat 9 include dynamic maps, enhanced 256-bit encryption, and improved forms. On top of it all, Adobe offers an online community at Acrobat.com that facilitates online collaboration so users can store documents and literally work on the same page at the same time.

There are three versions of Acrobat 9: Standard at $299 or $99 to upgrade, Pro for $449 or $159 to upgrade, and Pro Extended for $699 or $229 to upgrade. Pro Extended also comes with Adobe Presenter, which plugs into Microsoft PowerPoint 2007 for adding interactivity to presentations. This review covers the costliest application, Acrobat 9 Pro Extended. However, unless otherwise noted, the features mentioned here can be found in Standard or Pro editions.

Acrobat 9 requires at least a 1.3GHZ processor running Windows Vista or XP with Service Pack 2, with 256MB of RAM, screen resolution of 1,024x768, and 2.13GB of free hard-drive space at minimum. Adobe requires 512MB of RAM for Pro Extended and recommends video hardware acceleration.


Acrobat 9 features PDF Portfolios, which enable you to package video and animation alongside word-processing documents, spreadsheets, and image files.

Setup and interface
Installing Acrobat 9 Pro Extended took about 20 minutes on our Windows XP test computer. In our experience, uninstalling older versions of Acrobat took longer than adding the new application. The process was relatively smooth and unintrusive, although we did wind up with an Acrobat 9 icon on our desktop. During installation, Adobe offers the choice of opting into or rejecting its Product Improvement Program, which will send the company anonymous information about how you use the software. Although the company pledges anonymity, we were nevertheless glad that it presented the option not to participate upfront.

Features
This release of Acrobat makes PDFs more dynamic and packs in more new features than prior releases did. Although PDFs have been interactive for some time, such as with Version 8's support for Web-based forms, Acrobat 9 takes the print-ready document format into the so-called Web 2.0 era.

The Portable Document format is maturing from print-readiness to a venue for multimedia content. For the first time, PDFs will play movies via the free Acrobat Reader 9, set for a July release. Acrobat Pro Extended users can convert eight formats, including MOV and WMV files, to Flash content that can be embedded within PDFs alongside audio content and even 3D models. And developers can tweak layouts with Flex Builder 3 or Flash CS3.


An embedded Flash movie will appear in a PDF as a clickable box. With Acrobat Reader 9, you can click the movie to play it without installing or opening a third-party player.

Integrating with Acrobat 9 is Adobe Systems' beta release of the online community, Acrobat.com. It includes the Buzzword word processor with collaborative editing and commenting features as well as 5GB of file storage. Conversion of five documents to Portable Document Format, sadly, doesn't include those neat capabilities for embedding movies. But Acrobat.com's solid ConnectNow Web-conferencing and desktop-sharing tool enables chatting via text, video, and voice. The site also can host data from forms created in Acrobat software. Business users could opt to access documents at Acrobat online or handle collaboration via SharePoint workspaces, network folders, or WebDAV.

The new PDF Portfolios feature in Acrobat 9 lets users drag and drop content into a PDF bundle. Myriad layout and presentation options include a flip-through view similar to Apple's Cover Flow for the iPhone. Adobe also tried to make it easier for companies using Pro and Pro Extended to make pages match visually with themes and custom logos, and it improved tools for comparing documents. We created PDF Portfolios without a snag in some experiments. Unfortunately, in a couple of cases Acrobat wouldn't let us add some Flash movies, and it didn't offer a solid explanation.

Acrobat 9 also will take snapshots of Web pages and convert entire pages or chunks of them to a PDF that preserves links and animation. We were able to use this in Internet Explorer, but the command described by Adobe seemed to be missing from Firefox 2 or 3.

Mapping features only in Acrobat Pro Extended 9 preserve geospatial coordinates and enable users to mark locations and measure distances. In addition, architects and other designers using CAD software can embed 3D models within PDFs. These creative options are cool for professionals, but we wish you didn't need to pay $699 to use them. At least you can view the dynamic content, once Pro Extended users drop it into a PDF, within Acrobat Reader 9.


Geospatial mapping is cool in this update, but it's only available in the pricey Acrobat 9 Pro Standard.

For creating online forms, Acrobat 9 adds intelligence to recognize content for conversion to fillable fields. Potentially delighting conference planners, a forms-tracking dashboard will show, for example, the status of responses to a mass party invitation e-mail and let a user send reminders to guests. Responses can be sorted, filtered, and exported to spreadsheets.

Acrobat 9's security enhancements enable users to add 256-bit encryption, which online banks use, for PDFs. Locking down PDFs can't get much more thorough, given the digital signatures and metadata removal also available. New comparison features, not in Acrobat Standard, highlight the edits between versions of a document. Redaction tools in the Pro editions, a key selling point of Acrobat 8, will offer searches for numeric patterns in addition to multiple words and phrases. A company could, for example, find every accidental mention of a Social Security number or top-secret product being developed and black out the potential leaks from a PDF with one blow.


Users of Acrobat 9 Pro Extended who have Microsoft Office 2007 will find a PowerPoint tab for turning presentations into PDFs.

Service and support
Adobe's Web site support pages include Flash tutorials, user forums, FAQs, and a searchable knowledge base. These resources are well-organized and thorough. However, Adobe's four support plans, from Bronze to Platinum, are costly. Installation help by phone is available only via a toll telephone number, for instance. You'll need to sign in to get customized help online.

Verdict
As with Acrobat 8.1, Adobe Acrobat 9 offers myriad features that the average consumer seeking to create a basic, print-ready PDF won't need. However, we find this update of Acrobat to be the most important in recent years for business users as well as interactive designers. The metadata removal, 256-bit encryption, and ease of redactions alone easily could justify the purchase for, say, a law firm. Those who specialize in making presentations with moving images and sounds will find plenty of options at their fingertips, especially given the integration with Adobe Creative Suite 3.3.

Adobe has laid the groundwork for rich PDF documents, although some of the coolest tools come at a premium. Could Acrobat Reader 9's support for Flash turn PDFs into a one-size-fits-all multimedia delivery venue? In the near future at least, we suspect that interactive PDFs won't necessarily sweep the Web. That's because only users of the paid software can make those singing, dancing documents, and only the Pro flavors convert multiple video formats to Flash. Although Acrobat.com has many free features, its PDF maker won't fold in video and animation. The application's cost may be a barrier for some emerging digital artists who might otherwise tinker with the dynamic tools.

 
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Publisher's Description

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User Reviews
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  • Current Version

    3.7

    out of 32 votes

    • 5 star 10
    • 4 star 12
    • 3 star 4
    • 2 star 2
    • 1 star 4
  • All Versions

    3.7

    out of 165 votes

    • 5 star 69
    • 4 star 43
    • 3 star 17
    • 2 star 13
    • 1 star 23
  • My rating

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    Write review

Results 1–10 of 30

5 stars

"Very smooth product, pleased so far"

December 12, 2010  |  By TGMCMUNN1

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

fast, smooth, quick, seems to work well with other products

Cons

I have not found any yet

Summary

Because it works well with my current system, windows 7 64 bit

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5 stars

"1000000000"

October 17, 2010  |  By nadiralwrag

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

1000000000

Cons

1000000000

Summary

450

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4 stars

"Its a nice tool"

August 11, 2010  |  By erickjeroth

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Good tool to use.

Cons

Didn't see any.

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1 stars

"I hate this program"

August 04, 2010  |  By rahmanroni

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Well intergrated. Pretty sleek look.

Cons

So slow, its really sad. Way over priced. Huge program.

Summary

You can find similar or better products for fraction of the price.

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2 stars

"PO'd at lack of compatibility"

July 25, 2010  |  By sandrarita

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

The features offered

Cons

See my complaint below

Summary

I am PO'd that Adobe did not provide for a crossover from XP to Windows 7. I either have to pay another $160 to upgrade to Acrobat 9, or upgrade my Windows 7 OS. Either way, it sucks considering they should have made provision for a change in platform from 32-bit to 64-bit OS. As much as I liked the Acrobat program, I refuse to support a company that will not make allowances.

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1 stars

"BEWARE DO NOT PURCHASE - DO NOT UPDATE TO VERSION 9"

July 22, 2010  |  By brian neary

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Supposed to convert docs to PDF

Cons

Does not convert Word 2007 docs to PDF.

Summary

After three, two hour sessions with Acrobat tech support in which I allowed them to take control of my desk top, they were unable to make Standard 9 or Pro convert my 2007 word docs to PDF. Lest you think something was left out, they tried the following: reinstalling the software and its updates; reinstalling the printer; adding the Adobe PDF ad-in under the Word options section; attempting to convert by "saving as" a PDF; attempting to convert by "printing as" a PDF; directing me to http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/403/kb403561.html - which supposedly is the "fix" for the problem they won't admit exists. The only way they were momentarily successful was to cause an Acrobat tab to appear on the Word ribbon; however, although it WORKED ONCE, the next time I opened the same word doc, the Acrobat tab had disappeared and could not be retrieved.

The forums are rife with complaints from knowledgeable Word users. This is a problem for which there is no fix at this time.

If someone has found a solution, please respond. I am an author who has been successfully using Standard for the last two years. When I updated to 9, Acrobat stopped working.

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1 stars

"Need to power down computer from frozen screen 5% time"

June 27, 2010  |  By kidsrights

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Great for combining pdfs and doing batch OCR.

Cons

Need to power down 5% of time when generating graphic rich pdfs.
Doesn't keep track of the previous folder where a generated pdf was saved.
Doesn't mate with scanner software to do OCR automatically after scanning.

Summary

I paid a lot for Adobe Acrobat Professional and it freezes my computer DEAD, when trying to print some image rich webpages to pdf - I have to power down from a frozen screen - this is BAD for the whole computer. This happens about 5% of the time - horrible. Cutepdfwriter which is FREE, never freezes my computer, but it doesn't show me the saved file. Cutepdfwriter takes me back to the last folder to which I saved a generated pdf - fantastic. Adobe PRO? makes me drill through several file folder levels. I always use cutepdfwriter if I don't need to check my saved file.

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5 stars

"Good PDF application but a little expensive"

May 20, 2010  |  By netebooks

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Easy user interface

Cons

Costs way too much for Pro. $449

Summary

I would not buy this for home use but if my company Hollywood Software buys it that's great. net-ebooks.com provides pdf ebook creator V3 software at low prices.

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4 stars

"its beautiful"

March 05, 2010  |  By lanano

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

its wonderful

Cons

nothing at all i love every thing about it

Summary

i dont know

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4 stars

"powerful software with variety of smart features"

January 16, 2010  |  By coypellin

 |  Version: Adobe Acrobat Professional 9

Pros

Easy to use, variety of features even for advanced user, performs well!

Cons

expensive. It takes a ton of space.

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Results 1–10 of 30

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Full Specifications

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What's new in version 9
With version 9, you now can synchronize document views to enable collaboration on a PDF file; protect PDF documents with 256-bit encryption; combine documents, drawings, e-mail, and spreadsheets in a single compressed PDF Portfolio, or even insert video in PDF files.
General
Publisher Adobe Systems
Publisher web site http://www.adobe.com/
Release Date July 29, 2008
Date Added July 29, 2008
Version 9
Category
Category Business Software
Subcategory Document Management Software
Operating Systems
Operating Systems Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows
Additional Requirements None
Download Information
File Size 20.02KB
File Name clk;261265381;88646633;r;pc=[TPAS_ID]
Popularity
Total Downloads 7,293,990
Downloads Last Week 1,506
Pricing
License Model Free to try
Limitations Not available
Price $449

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