The Best PDF Editor for Windows 10 (Research Done for You)
Business • July 26 2018
PDF or Portable Document Format was developed and launched by Adobe back in 1993. The PDF format was meant to remove the format and file type issues between different computer systems. A file that was created on a Mac would not have worked on a Windows or a UNIX PC so Adobe saw a void here that they wanted to fill.
PDF is a universal file format that you can convert your documents into and it has the flexibility of being opened on any system with a PDF reader. PDF is basically a read-only file format but you can fill in a few things if you are filling up a form that allows it. To edit a PDF, you would need the source file that the PDF was created from. But not with PDF Editors.
With a PDF editor, you can directly open the PDF files and make the required changes into it without needing the source file at all. It is as easy as opening a Microsoft Word file and editing it.
PDF editors are important for people who deal with a lot of PDF files and have to edit them out. With so many options in the PDF editor category of the software market, how do you know which one to choose?
Well, we are going to help you take a decision in this article today.
The world of PDF editing software
As mentioned, PDF editing software are available in abundance. Even Adobe, the developer of PDF has the Acrobat DC which you can subscribe to on a yearly subscription and start editing your PDF files. But Adobe Acrobat DC is costly and there are other better solutions available out there already.
Even companies like Wondershare have their own PDF edition software solution like the PDFelement 6 , or Smile Software have their own Mac PDF editor – PDFpen, they are actually one of the best PDF editors out there and they come with some great features.
But the world of PDF editing software is vast. You will find software-based solutions and web-based solutions both. But most of these web-based solutions are very limited and you need to think about the website you will be using to edit your PDF files.
You cannot and should not trust websites with your PDF files. If your PDF files that need editing are related to your work or a company, it is always better and safe to go for a solution that is software based.
The things to consider before choosing a PDF editing software
Now that we have established that PDF editing software is the safest way to go in case of PDF editing needs, we must know what we should consider before choosing a PDF editing software.
Keep in mind that the PDF editing software that you should choose has the following mentioned functionalities.
Create, convert & export PDF files
This is an obvious feature that your PDF editor should have. You should be able to create new PDF files from already existing documents that you might have. These documents can be scanned images or a types document from a word processor.
These documents can even be a spreadsheet and your PDF editor should be able to convert these files into PDF easily. A functional and good PDF editor can easily create and convert Microsoft Office files, images, and even HTML content so that it retains how the original document is formatted.
Exporting a PDF file into another format like a Microsoft Word format or even a Microsoft Excel format should also be possible so that you can change things in that file at a larger level easily.
Editing & annotation
Of course, the main requirement of a PDF editor has to be that it can actually edit PDF files in a good way. A lot of PDF editors can edit text in the PDF files but when it comes to editing and modifying images and more, these editors don’t do a great job.
A good PDF editor should be able to work with everything that a PDF file has including the text, images, hyperlinks and more. It is important that they work as easily as a Microsoft Word file works.
The PDF editor should also let you provide reviews on a document. If there’s a PDF that was edited by someone else before coming to you, you should be able to add comments and review the document if it needs further editing.
It should allow you to highlight parts of the document or apply a stamp on the document before you can go ahead with the edited PDF.
There are times when we have to scan printed documents and the PDF editor should also allow you to edit these scanned PDF files. This can be done using OCR or Optical Character Reader which converts scanned textual documents into documents that can be edited digitally.
A good PDF editor with good OCR functionality should work with text, images and other types of content in a PDF file.
When it comes to using a PDF in a workplace, it is important that these PDF files are protected. A PDF editor should come with security features that should include password protection, ability to redact document contents and the ability to sign the documents electronically.
These are some of the features and functionalities that one should look for before choosing a PDF editor for themselves.
Best PDF editor for Windows 10 – PDFelement 6
We will be reviewing the PDFelement 6 which is a PDF editing application for Windows and Mac users. In this detailed review, we will look at all the important factors and features that this PDF editing software has to provide and we will see how this works for someone who needs to handle a lot of PDF files on a day to day basis.
We are going to use the Windows version of PDFelement 6 but it is also available for Mac and the features works in the exact same manner on both of these platforms.
Easy to use user interface
As soon as you open PDFelement 6, you will be greeted with a welcome screen which will ask you to choose from the following options.
From here you can choose to open a file and state editing or you can do other things like converting a PDF, combining them or creating a new PDF. For demo purposes, we will open a new PDF file.
If you are familiar with Microsoft Word, you will feel right at home with PDFelement 6 Pro’s user interface. Opening a PDF will reveal the main interface for the app which looks awfully similar to Microsoft Office apps. This isn’t a bad thing though.
From this interface, you can choose to edit the PDF file or convert it to Microsoft Office documents like Word, Excel, PPT, and others.
Edit your PDF files
Most of the PDF editors out there are a hassle to use. Editing documents using a conventional PDF editor can be a frustrating experience with the software working in a sluggish manner, not providing you with the right tools, or fonts or maybe it does things in a very complicated manner.
PDFelement 6 Pro is a totally different thing. Using the software to edit PDF files was a breeze. We already mentioned that the interface looks a lot like Microsoft Word and you will feel right at home with PDFelement 6 Pro’s user interface.
To start editing the files, just click on the Edit button and the PDF will become editable in an instant.
As you can see, the text has been divided into different boxes which makes it very easy to edit the paragraphs. The properties section lets you change the relevant things and tweak the format of the edited stuff as per your needs.
Adding new text will not require manual font selection as the program automatically picks up the font that the text is being added into and sets the font, size, and style accordingly.
The editing capabilities of PDFelement 6 aren’t limited to just the text. You can easily edit other parts of the PDF like resizing and editing pictures, adding or editing headers and footers of the document and a lot more.
Clicking on the Comment tab will let you add comments, markups, stamps, shaped and a lot more. The editing functionality of PDFelement 6 is definitely great and it has been the most seamless PDF editing experience that I have ever tried.
Reorder and delete pages
Do you want to delete some pages or reorder them? PDFelement 6 Pro lets you do that and you can access the options by clicking on the Page tab in the app window.
You can drag and drop the pages in the order you want. There are options to rotate and delete pages as well. I like how easy PDFelement 6 Pro has managed to make everything. You don’t feel like editing a PDF file, it all feels like editing a Word document.
Redact sensitive information
If you are handling PDF files in a business environment, there will be a lot of information that you will need to hide. This is where document redaction comes it and this feature is only available in the Pro version of PDFelement 6.
You can click on the Protect tab in order to redact info from your PDF. After you click on Protect, just click on the redact option.
After selecting the redact option, just select the items in the PDF that you want to redact and click on Apply Redactions. Keep in mind that after the redaction is complete, the hidden text won’t roll back to normal and the redactions are final.
This is a very simple and easy to use method that one can use in order to redact information from sensitive PDF documents.
OCR & scan documents PDF editing
OCR is again a feature that is only available in the Pro version of PDFelement 6 and to my surprise, it worked quite well. Other PDF editors that I have tried either did not come with OCR functionality or they didn’t really work that well.
This is not the case with PDFelement 6 Pro. As soon as you open a scanned PDF in PDFelement 6 Pro, the app automatically recognizes that the newly opened document was scanned and you are provided with an option to perform OCR.
As soon as you click on Perform OCR, you will be asked if you want to turn the scanned document into editable text or searchable text. For demo purposes, I went ahead and chose editable text and the results are attached below.
As you can see, the PDF has been converted into editable text that you can alter and edit as per your needs. The OCR document is surprisingly quite accurate which is very impressive. If you want a PDF editor to handle OCR for you, you should definitely go with this software.
Create & fill PDF forms
Do you want to create fillable forms out of those documents that you already have? PDFelement 6 Pro automatically recognizes the fillable fields and helps you create easily fillable PDF forms that don’t have to be printed and can be printed on a computer, phone or any other device that can read PDF.
As you can see in the image above, all the fillable fields have been identified and this happens automatically within a few seconds. You can now add options, customize the fields and format everything as per your needs.
Think about scanning paper-based forms, using the OCR functions and creating digital forms that can be filled easily online.
Convert PDFs to Word, Excel, PPT and other formats
Converting an edited PDF or a normal non-edited PDF to an editable Word, Excel, PPT or any other format is very easy and PDFelement 6 Pro does the job really well. You will be able to export the PDF files in formats that are supported both on Microsoft as well as Apple.
You will be able to convert the PDF files into other lesser known formats like RTF, ePub, and even HTML which makes it a great software if you want to get a fully editable format of your choice.
PDFelement 6 Pro – Summary of Features and Pros & Cons
We actually looked at PDFelement 6 in full detail and covered everything that the program has to offer. Honestly, this might be the best PDF editor that I have come across in a while. It has amazing and super accurate OCR recognition, form field recognition and more.
The fact that the PDF editing itself is so easy and seamless makes it an amazing choice if you want a good PDF editing app for yourself. But let us take a look at the list of pros and cons.
+ Easy to use PDF editing tools which can edit texts, images, and everything
+ Great security features like document redaction and more
+ Fast and accurate OCR scanning
+ Easy options to create digitally fillable forms
+ Familiar and easy to use user interface
+ Free version available with basic PDF editing features
+ Easy conversion to formats like Word, Excel etc.
+ Available for Windows & macOS
– OCR features only available in paid Pro version
– Does not integrate with Microsoft Office directly
Since there are a lot of PDF editor options out there, it is only fair that we take a look at the available competition and see how they fair out against PDFelement 6 Pro.
Adobe Acrobat Pro
Adobe Acrobat Pro is Adobe’s very own PDF editor that comes at a premium. The software is available at a per month cost (yearly commitment) of $14.99 per month for the Pro DC version.
You get all the PDF editing goodness like being able to edit text, images and more with Acrobat Pro but this program also integrates directly with Microsoft Office to help you convert docs into PDFs directly.
You will be able to connect your cloud storage accounts like OneDrive, Dropbox and more directly to Adobe Acrobat Pro in order to edit and save PDF files directly from the cloud. Other features include sending and tracking the delivery of the PDF files electronically.
Since this is a very costly PDF editing solution, it is mainly meant to be used for daily business purposes where PDFs are handled via the cloud. You can go with Adobe Acrobat Pro if cloud editing is something that appeals your needs.
ABBYY FineReader 14
ABBYY FineReader 14 is the latest iteration of the software that was developed by keeping OCR in mind. The FineReader 14 from ABBYY is mainly focused on OCR and it works great for it. It also comes with other PDF editing options like being able to edit PDF files.
Usual features like being able to convert documents into editable formats like Word, Excel and more are missing and the software is also quite costly. It starts at $169 with the ability to just scan OCR and edit PDF files.
If you want to have other features like document comparison and automated conversion of up to 5000 pages a month, you will have to shell out $249. If you want to convert more than 10000 files a month, you will have to pay $449 which is an outrageous amount for many.
But ABBYY’s OCR technology is pretty accurate so if OCR is something you are looking for, ABBYY FineReader 14 will be able to help you.
Able2Extract Professional 12
Able2Extract Professional 12 is a PDF editor built mainly around exporting the PDF files into proper editable formats. Sometimes when you use a normal PDF editor to convert PDF files into formats like Excel, the results turn out to be – not so good.
This is where Able2Extract comes in. This software is a pro at converting PDF files to formats like Word, Excel etc. with every single detail and precision as is the PDF file already was in its source format.
The software can easily convert PDF files into formats like AutoCAD, CSV, Excel, HTML, Word and more. Formats like AutoCAD aren’t supported by every PDF editing tool out there but Able2Extra Professional 12 can easily work with these formats and deliver great results.
It is a premium software which can be bought in two options. One is the 30 days subscription that costs $34.95 for 30 days and the other one costs $149.95 which gives you a lifetime license of Able2Extract.
Did you know that Microsoft Word 2016 is also capable of editing PDF files? It is a part of the Microsoft Office suite and meant to be a word processor but the PDF editing functionality was added back when Microsoft Office 2013 was launched.
Word does the PDF editing part in an OK manner but it isn’t comparable to the likes of PDFelement 6 Pro, Adobe Acrobat or any other editor that we have mentioned here.
Often times when you try to edit a PDF in Microsoft Word, you will miss a lot of things including some proprietary fonts and more. But if you want a basic PDF editor at no extra cost (other than that of Microsoft Office), then Microsoft Word is an option that you should definitely consider.
We took a detailed look at what PDFelement 6 has to offer. While it is a paid software that will cost you $59.95 a year, it is still cheaper than Adobe Acrobat Pro.
PDFelement 6 brings the best of everything in one single package and is definitely the best PDF editing tool out there. The Pro version comes with OCR functionality and you will be surprised to see how accurate the OCR function is.
If you’re looking for a PDF editing tool that is the jack of all trades when it comes to PDF editing, then PDFelement 6 is definitely the software you should go for.