The best PDF editors allow you to add and edit existing test, annotate, convert, and more. A good PDF editor pays for itself in convenience and the time saved by having a reliable tool.
But how do you pick the best paid PDF tool for you? We'll cover that in this helpful guide! This guide is constantly updated to be as recent and helpful as possible.
A good PDF editor can save you time and streamline how you view, use, work with, and study from PDFs and other kinds of documents.
More than ever PDFs are being used in academics. PDF is a popular format for storing and sharing lecture notes, slides, text books, novels, and more. And the pandemic has only increased the use of online forms and documents in our lives.
While we may see, receive, and use PDFs on a daily basis, editing and modifying PDFs is more challenging than it should be. This can be especially frustrating if you're trying to take notes, highlight, or perform other changes to a PDF for a class, lecture, or assignment.
Fortunately, there are paid PDF editors that are powerful, easy to use, and won't break the bank. Which one is the best for you?
A PDF editor for students is almost a must for students these days. More than ever, lectures notes, assignments, reading materials, course outlines, and more are being done in the PDF format.
This means that it's never been more important to have a tool that's able to work with PDFs efficiently, without breaking the bank (or adding to the student loans).
While online PDF tools exist, they come with drawbacks:
While those are just a few of the biggest reasons why students should have a PDF editor, what are the specific benefits of owning one?
Let's explore those next.
Before you decide on a PDF editor to buy, keep in mind a few questions to help determine if the PDF editor will meet your needs.
Some important questions to ask yourself include:
Here are some the the criteria to keep in mind when comparing PDF editors.
When evaluating the tools of PDF editors, you can break the functions into two categories:
Basic PDF editing features commonly include:
Advanced PDF editing features may include:
PDF Pro is our all-in-one PDF editor, converter, creator, and OCR tool made specifically for Windows desktop.
We created it to be a no nonsense, affordable Adobe Acrobat alternative.
What does "no nonsense" mean?
It means that we made PDF Pro to be powerful, reliable, easy to use, with a intuitive design so you can quickly find the tool you're looking for.
PDF Pro has everything you need to perform simple or advanced edits on your documents; recognize or extract text, edit existing text from pictures, images, scanned documents and more.
PDF Pro is one of the most affordable all-in-one PDF editors on the market, making it perfect for students.
Since Adobe Acrobat is one of the most well known PDF editors around (and since Adobe invented the PDF format), our list would not be complete without it.
Adobe Acrobat isn't for everyone due to its high annual cost and the learning curve associated with learning how to use the program effectively.
But, if you need access to state-of-the-art PDF functionality (like cloud services), or if you already use other Adobe tools and like their ecosystem, then Adobe Acrobat may be right for you.
There are two versions of Acrobat: Standard and Pro; with Pro being highest tier version (thus it will include all the tools).
Nitro's PDF editor was originally created for Mac, but they have since branched out with a Windows version. Like many PDF editors, theirs comes with different tiers, each with their own price and tools. Though, it can get pretty expensive if you need access to all the tools.
If you use PDF templates or PDF forms, Nitro users get access to their library of ready-made templates. This feature is more popular with those in business.
Swifdoo is a basic PDF editor that includes most of the standard, basic PDF editing tools you can expect to find in PDF editors. They also have a few advanced PDF tools (like OCR), for those users that need it.
While Swifdoo doesn't break the mold in terms of design or functionality, they've kept things simple and at an affordable price.
Wondershare's PDFelement is a PDF editor capable of both basic and advanced editing tasks.
Their design takes a page out of Nitro's book and offers a layout that is similar to Windows programs.
PDFelement is a relatively powerful PDF editor, but this power comes at the detriment of performance. The program is a bit bulky, with a rather high minimum system requirements, so older computers or operating systems may struggle to effectively use PDFelement
Yearly subscription - from $79.99 annually
Foxit PDF editor comes with the usual suspects of basic editing tools (create, edit text, sign, etc.) while also having advanced editing tools for those than need them.
There are two versions to Foxit: Basic and Pro; the Pro version comes with more advanced editing tools.
Foxit's tools get the job done, but you may find that features you're looking for are missing from the basic PDF editor and even their Pro version. For example, if you want to use Foxit's cloud services or mobile app, you'll have to subscribe to them in addition to your subscription of their PDF editor.
This can be confusing for people, and can get expensive as you add on more functionalities
Sejda PDF offers an online and offline (desktop) to their customers. Their focus is editing and signing PDFs, and making it easier to edit and sign documents online.
They have a free version of their online editor, though it comes with a limit of 3 tasks per hour.
Sejda's online editor is a simple browser page with a collection of editing tools to choose from.
It offers a relatively simple design with tools that get the job done. Unfortunately, if you want download and use Sejda PDF on your desktop, you'll need to subscribe to their annual membership (monthly memberships are only available for the online version of their editor).
Sejda's interface is clean and should be pretty friendly to beginners.
Their online version has a specific tool, on a specific page, for a specific function, so you'll need to switch pages to use different tools, which can cost you time if needing to do many different tasks.
These days it's almost mandatory for students to have a PDF editor.
PDFs have never been used more in academics; from everything from lecture notes and note taking, to collaborating with others and formatting assignments.
A good PDF editor pays for itself in time saved and stress reduced.
But how do you know what PDF editor is best for you? That's exactly why we created this guide.
Ask yourself some important questions to figure out what tasks you'll be doing the most on it, what tools are must-haves, and what you can afford. Fortunately, almost every PDF editor on this list has a free trial, so you can try out the program risk-free.
If you're very cautious, you can even sign up to a few trials and see which one you like best.
This guide is always growing and being updated to remain helpful to students, so check back often!
Can students get Adobe Acrobat for free?
No. Adobe Acrobat offers a free trial, but will require a subscription for long-term use.
Is there a 100% free PDF editor?
There are quite a few online PDF editing tools, however they tend to have limitations on usage. If you're looking for a desktop PDF editor, you'll need to purchase or subscribe to one.
Why do I need a PDF editor?
PDF editors can save students time and money.
A good PDF editor makes it easier to work with PDFs, save printing costs, reduce paperwork, improve document organization, collaboration, and more.
How can a student edit a PDF?
You'll need a PDF editor to edit a PDF. There are a number of online tools as well as reputable, affordable desktop PDF editors out there. We've created this list to help choose the best one for students.