Adobe Fresco Vs Clip Studio Paint: Which Is Better?

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Entering the digital art world is difficult and so is finding the best application for what you are looking to create. As an advanced artist, finding budget-friendly options that still have enough advanced features to refine your art is a difficult task. 

Both Adobe Fresco and Clip Studio Paint have great features for beginners and advanced artists alike. Each has its specialties with features and tools geared towards them, but both can help you take your art to the next level. 

Deciding which one is right for you will be difficult. It primarily depends on what you are looking for in your next art application. Each has a wide variety of uses, but that doesn’t mean they are both right for you. Keep reading to find out more about these two applications and which one might be the better pick for you. 

Check out this list of the Best Drawing Software For Mac.

Key Takeaways

  • Adobe Fresco is designed for beginners and artists on the go interested in drawing and painting. 
  • Adobe Fresco is a well-rounded and budget-friendly application. 
  • Clip Studio Paint is designed more for comic creation and animation.

Adobe Fresco Vs Clip Studio Paint Comparison Table

Adobe FrescoClip Studio Paint
PriceAdobe Fresco has two different tiers. The first tier is completely free. It gives you limited access to all of the application features. The second tier is $9.99 per month, unlocking all the available features. There are three subscription options for Clip Studio Paint. The first tier is a one-time payment of $49.99 for Clip Studio Paint PRO. The second tier is a one-time payment of $219 for Clip Studio Paint EX. The last option is the Clip Studio Paint Annual Plan starting at $24.99 which lets you pay for what you want from the application. 
CompanyAdobe Inc. Celsys
Main UsesAdobe Fresco is an art application used for many different styles but is primarily focused on watercolor and oil painting. Clip Studio Paint is focused on the creation of comics as well as illustration and 2D animations. 
Experience LevelBeginner to advancedBeginner to advanced
Best ForAny artist who is looking for a high-quality application at a low price point to practice their skills. Artists looking to work with animation or art focused on line work like comics. 
System RequirementsAdobe Fresco is compatible with iPhone devices iPhone SE to iPhone 15 with iOS version 16 or later. Newer iPad models of iOS version 16 or later are also compatible. Windows devices must have Intel, Nvidia, or AMD processors with Windows 10 or later.Clip Studio Paint is available on Windows devices with a 64-bit operating system and Windows 10 or higher.  MacOS needs to be 12 or newer. Most must have at least three GB of storage space free.
Key FeaturesDesigned for touch screen devices, beginner-friendly interface, free application with a premium tier available. Customizable interface, works entirely in the cloud, 3D models
PlatformsAdobe Fresco is available on newer iPhones, iPads, and Windows touchscreen devices. Clip Studio Paint is available for download as an app on Windows, MacOS, iPad, iPhone, Android, and Chromebook. 
Acceptable Import File TypesJPG, PSD, PNG, PDF, PSDCCLIP STUDIO FORMAT, BMP, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, Adobe Photoshop Document, and Adobe Big Document format
Comparison table of  Adobe Fresco vs Clip Studio Paint across various categories

Adobe Fresco

Adobe Fresco was designed to give beginners an entry point into the world of digital art. It has a low price point and is available on easily accessible products like the average iPhone.

While being designed for beginners, there are many features available that more advanced artists can take advantage of too, especially with the upgrade. 

Key Features

  • A free version is available that offers limited access to all of the application’s features
  • Live, raster, and vector brush options are available
  • Compatible with other Adobe applications
  • Customizable features and settings to make your experience more fitted to your needs
  • Accessible interface that is easy to understand for beginners


Adobe Fresco is a diverse application great for all levels of artists. Beginners can get used to the simplistic interface while advanced artists can dive in deeper to the other features available. Tutorials are easy to find for those new to Adobe products or just to Adobe Fresco. 

This software puts a lot of focus on watercolor and oil painting styles but is also excellent for any type of drawing, painting, or illustration. Its diverse brush sets that include live, raster, and vector options make any type of art accessible. 

It was originally designed to be best for new artists and artists on the go. It is available for a limited number of common touchscreen devices with the use of a stylus. With the low price point and minimal professional tools required, anyone can hone their craft using Adobe Fresco. 

Pros and Cons

A free version is available and the premium version is cheapMore simplistic than other applications with less customization
Wide variety of brush including vector, raster, and liveHave to pay to unlock all of its features including key ones such as making and importing brushes
Beginner-friendly interfaceAvailable only for iPhones, iPads, and Windows touchscreen devices

Popular Companies That Use Adobe Fresco

Adobe Fresco is a cheap alternative to both other art applications and other Adobe products while still being high quality. Because of that, it is primarily used by smaller businesses, but is still loved by bigger companies such as the following: 

  • Salt Lake Community College
  • Andy Was Right
  • QUEST Alliance
  • Atkins
  • Ruggable
  • Explurger

Clip Studio Paint

Clip Studio Paint is a well-rounded application great for any artist. Beginners may have to take it slow to fully grasp all of the features, but advanced artists can dive right in and take advantage of every tool.

It is great for any type of artist once you get a hang of it thanks to its diverse features, but it is primarily focused on comic creation and animation.

Key Features

  • Focused on comic creation and animation
  • Storage is all in the cloud
  • Highly customizable interface
  • Easy access to community-created assets and features
  • Impressive workflow management that makes complicated projects easy


Clip Studio Paint is mostly used for the creation and illustration of comics as that is what the application was originally created for. Since then, the application has grown immensely and is now used for any type of drawing, painting, and illustration you can imagine.

Aside from those impressive features, Clip Studio Paint has also expanded into the world of animation, working well with specifically 2D animation. Its different layering features, vector capabilities, and overall workflow make Clip Studio Paint easy to use for animation but also any other artistic project. 

Pros and Cons

A one-time purchase option is availableCan be overwhelming and difficult to get used to because of the overwhelming amount of features
Impressive animation capabilities that are ahead of many other applicationsPrices are high, especially for the monthly and the EX version of the application
Advanced features allow for flexibility and customizationFont and text options are lacking
Advanced vector toolkit and 3D animation capabilities

Popular Companies That Use Clip Studio Paint

Companies, both big and small, take advantage of all Clip Studio Paint has to offer. A few of these companies include: 

  • Navercorp
  • Gameloft
  • Art School Co.
  • Mirabilis Design Inc
  • California State University
  • Creative Motion

Which Is Better?

Both Adobe Fresco and Clip Studio Paint are well-rounded applications with a large variety of features that can be taken advantage of. Both beginners and advanced artists can find something to use in these applications and enjoy refining their skills. 

Adobe Fresco is primarily good for beginner artists on a budget. It is easy to navigate, free or cheap, and available to use on everyday devices like an iPhone. While advanced artists can certainly use this application to create their art thanks to the plethora of diverse tools and features, that is not the primary audience for Adobe Fresco. 

Clip Studio Paint was originally made for comics before developing into an excellent animation application as well. While Clip Studio Paint is great for many other types of illustration work, those are its main points of interest, focusing a lot of their development in those areas.

Both applications are excellent choices and which is better depends on what you need. If you are a beginner looking to develop your skills in a relaxed environment, look towards Adobe Fresco. If you are interested in comic creation or animation, Clip Studio Paint will likely work better for you. 

What Is The Difference Between Clip Studio Paint Pro and Clip Studio Paint EX?

Clip Studio Paint Pro is the lowest tier of Clip Studio Paint and comes with fewer features. It is more limited and better for smaller projects. Clip Studio Paint EX is the highest tier of Clip Studio Paint and allows for full access to all features of the application. It is a great investment for those interested in long-term use and bigger projects. 

What Is The Difference Between Free and Paid Adobe Fresco?

The free version of Adobe Fresco has limited access to all of Adobe Fresco’s features. It still includes a good amount of storage and hundreds of brushes. However, with the paid upgrade you unlock more storage, more brushes, and access to premium features such as new fonts and shapes. 

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