Corel has announced the release of Painter IX in October, and claims improved speed and productivity, enhanced creative tools and improved Photoshop compatibility in the latest version.

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Trial versions are already available for download from the Corel Web site, and pre-orders are being taken. The full package will cost £249 plus VAT. Upgrades from previous versions are available for £99 plus VAT and an educational edition is available for £59 plus VAT.
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Corel is making much of the performance improvements in the latest version. The company claims that some brushes now perform up to 10 times faster, and most brushes work twice as fast.
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Enhancements are claimed for the digital watercolor painting, which Corel claims now emulates the traditional watercolor painting experience more realistically. A new quick clone function provides a simple means of transforming a photo into a painting.
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