Adobe Illustrator CS6 software is powered by the new Adobe Mercury Performance System so you can work with speed and stability on large, complex files. A modern, updated interface streamlines daily tasks. Advanced creative tools enable you to capture your vision better than ever.
Work fast and with rock-solid stability
Handle the most complex artwork with speed and stability. Adobe® Illustrator® CS6 software includes the new Adobe Mercury Performance System, with native 64-bit support for Mac OS and Windows® to power such tasks as opening, saving, and exporting large files and previewing elaborate designs.
Adobe Mercury Performance System
Work with precision, speed, and rock-solid stability on large, complex files due to native 64-bit support on Mac OS and Windows®, with RAM and overall performance optimization.
Integration with other Adobe solutions
Move projects smoothly from design to print or digital output, thanks to tight integration with industry-leading Adobe Photoshop®, InDesign®, After Effects®, Acrobat®, and more.
Industry-standard graphic file formats
Work with almost any type of graphic file — including PDF, EPS, FXG, Photoshop (PSD), TIFF, GIF, JPEG, SWF, SVG, DWG, DXF, and more.
Adobe PDF file creation tools
Create more secure, multipage, graphic-rich PDF files with Illustrator layers retained. Share files confidently with service providers knowing that Illustrator supports PDF/X standards.
Save for web
Easily view, optimize, and save graphics for the web, with choices for format color, quality, and more.
Avoid color output surprises such as unexpected spot colors, unwanted or white overprinting, overprints that don't overprint, and CMYK blacks in text and placed files.
See effects such as drop shadows, blurs, and textures maintain their appearance across media. Raster effects look the same no matter how your resolution settings change.
Apply live effects without affecting the underlying artwork, so you can edit at any time without starting over.
Edit objects using Isolation mode, which temporarily enables editing of just your selection without disturbing other parts of your artwork. You can isolate any type of object.
Photoshop layer comp support
Control the visibility of layer comps in linked, embedded, or opened Photoshop files from within Illustrator CS6.
Place duotone or separated images, preserving native colorspace, with DeviceN support. Confidently print multicomponent and Hi-Fi color, raster effects, transparency, and more.
Efficiently drive daily tasks and favorite features
Work more efficiently and intuitively with a modern user interface. Familiar tasks are now streamlined, from inline editing of layer names to precise color sampling. UI brightness is smoothly adjustable to match other Adobe applications or your personal preference.
Efficient, customizable interface
Take fewer steps to accomplish daily tasks with a streamlined interface. Enjoy inline editing of layer names, precise color sampling, and UI brightness that's smoothly adjustable to match other Adobe tools.
Organize and view up to 100 artboards of varying sizes overlapping or on a grid. Quickly add, delete, reorder, and name. Save, export, and print independently or together.
Crisp graphics and text for web and mobile
Create and align vector objects precisely on the file's pixel grid for clean, sharp raster graphics. Use text anti-aliasing options for individual text frames.
Inline editing in panels
Efficiently edit names in layers, swatches, brushes, artboards, and other panels directly in the panels themselves without using intermediate dialog boxes.
Type panel convenience
Use arrow keys to change fonts in context for selected text. Glyphs for caps, superscripts, subscripts, and more can be accessed in one place — from the Character panel.
Dockable hidden tools
Tear off and dock previously hidden tools, such as the Shape and Pen tools. Dock tools horizontally or vertically for a more efficient workspace.
Workspaces with rooms
Move fluidly from workspace to workspace with support for rooms. Achieve consistency across your work areas and maintain layout changes until you actively reset them.
Control panel efficiency
Quickly find what you need in the Control panel — consistency across options, anchor point controls, clipping masks, envelope distortions, and more.
In-panel appearance editing
Edit object characteristics directly in the Appearance panel, eliminating the need to open fill, stroke, or effects panels.
Color panel flexibility
Sample colors quickly and precisely using an expandable color spectrum in the Color panel. Copy and paste hex values into other applications to help ensure color consistency.
Transform panel option
Quickly access the popular Scale Strokes and Effects option from within the Transform panel.
Transparency panel highlight
Easily create and work with opacity masks thanks to a Make Mask/Release button that displays the masking functionality in the Transparency panel.
See how your vector artwork will look when rasterized using the Pixel Preview mode. Edit your artwork and preview the changes live — as you work.
New Document Profiles for web and devices
Set up new documents with pixel-grid alignment from web and mobile device profiles, which also include relevant dimensions, color groups, and more.
Refined graphic styles
Combine styles for unique effects and increased efficiency. Apply styles without disturbing appearances. Enjoy thumbnail previews and an expanded library of prebuilt styles.
Practical Smart Guides
Stay oriented with intuitive, practical Smart Guides. Unobtrusive appearance and behavior keep your view uncluttered. Try aligning to objects on artboards rather than the cursor.
Support for bleeds
Quickly set up artboards for bleeds. Work with bleeds when you open a new document, or add them later in the Document Setup dialog box.
Versatile slicing tools
Create vector-based slices from objects, groups of objects, or layers that are preserved when exporting your artwork as a SWF or PSD file.
Design intuitively and with precise control
Express your vision fully and more easily with refined creative features. Designing and editing seamless patterns, once difficult, is now direct and intuitive. A new image-tracing engine delivers clean, accurate vectors with easy-to-use controls. You can even apply gradients to strokes.
Draw strokes with variable widths, quickly and smoothly adjusting at any point. Create and save width profiles and apply them to any stroke, or use variable-width presets.
Sophisticated vector drawing tools
Create distinctive designs with precise shape-building tools, fluid and painterly brushes, and advanced path controls.
Gradients and transparency
Interact with gradients directly on your object — defining the dimension of elliptical gradients, editing colors, and adjusting opacity. Even create gradients on strokes and meshes.
Easily create seamlessly tiled vector patterns. Experiment freely with different types of repeating patterns that can be edited at any time for maximum design flexibility.
Confidently convert raster images to editable vectors with a powerful tracing engine. Get clean lines, accurate fitting, and reliable results using simple, intuitive controls.
Gradients on strokes
Apply gradients to your strokes — along the length, across the width, or within the stroke itself — all with complete control over gradient placement and opacity.
Use perspective grids to draw shapes and scenes in accurate 1-, 2-, or 3-point linear perspective, creating the look of realistic depth and distance.
Design beautiful text for virtually any media with professional controls for paragraph and character styles, support for OpenType®, transparent effects, and more.
Dashed line control
Control alignment of dashes on a stroke. Define symmetrical dashes around corners and at the ends of open paths, with lengths adjusted automatically to fit.
Work intuitively with arrowheads. Control placement and scaling from within the Stroke panel, even choosing whether to lock the tip or base to the path endpoint.
Draw behind elements, disregarding stacking order. Draw or place an image inside an element, instantly creating a clipping mask.
Quickly remove areas of artwork with the Eraser tool as easily as you erase pixels in Adobe Photoshop® software. Enjoy complete control over the width, shape, and smoothness of the erasure.
Shape Builder tool
Intuitively combine, edit, and fill shapes directly on your artboard without accessing multiple tools and panels.
Speedy Gaussian Blur
Apply Gaussian Blur and effects such as Drop Shadows and Glows and see the results immediately on the artboard.
Apply sensitive pressures using a pen and tablet. Add flair to paths with calligraphic, scatter, art, and pattern brushes. Make your own subtly controlled custom brushes.
Stretch control for brushes
Scale art and pattern brushes along a path. Choose areas of the brush you wish to stretch and those you wish to keep in proportion, such as the ends of a banner.
Brushes with corner control
Apply art and pattern brushes to a path and get clean results, even at tight bends or corners. At obtuse or acute angles, choose options to properly fill those joins.
Sketch with a brush that generates a single clean vector shape, even when strokes overlap. Draw naturally, using the Blob Brush tool together with the Eraser and Smooth tools.
Paint with vectors that resemble real-world brush strokes. Achieve the expressiveness of natural media with the scalability of vector graphics.
Explore, apply, and control color variations. Interactively edit colors on any selection using the Color Guide to assist with themes and Recolor Artwork to quickly apply them.
Envelopes and live distortion
Warp, liquefy, and distort artwork any way imaginable with envelopes and live distortion tools. Easily access envelope options from the Control panel.
Use clipping masks to hide areas of an object or group, crop placed images, or cut intricate shapes. Quickly find clipping mask and masked object options in the Control panel.
Turn 2D shapes into fully editable 3D objects by extruding and revolving paths. Add lighting and wrap shapes with images to easily create objects, such as packaging mock-ups.
Morph one shape into another to create smooth shading, complex contours, and basic animations.
Make symbols with powerful 9-slice scaling and registration point control. Use layers to create extremely complex symbols that are repeatable to keep file sizes small.
Add design elements to your artwork by spraying, scaling, colorizing, and adjusting the transparency of repeated symbols while keeping file sizes small.
Communicate data clearly using powerful tools to easily produce visually compelling charts and graphs, including quick application of harmonious color groups with Live Color.
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