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Thursday, April 3, 2014

First looks at Silhouette Studio version 3

UPDATE: Since posting this article, I have played with Silhouette Studio version3 a little more. Click HERE to read why I do not recommend the software at all.


Silhouette America released Silhouette Studio version 3 on Wednesday afternoon (Click HERE to read about it). Unlike the previous updates, this is a big one- there are many changes to the software. I am still trying to figure out the new tools and features but I thought that I will share a few of the radical changes through the screenshots below. Screenshots 1-7 were taken from the basic Silhouette Studio, while 8 and up were taken from the Designer Edition.

(Note: The size of the pictures is limited by the blogger writing panel. For a larger view, just click on the images)

1: This is how the screen of Silhouette Studio v3 (not DE) looks like:

2: The Preferences option is now found under the Edit tab instead of File. Clicking on the star (flower?) icon on the bottom right will also bring up the Preferences window.

3.In each of the tool window, there is no need to click to the next page for Advanced Options. They are now listed under the Basic Options.

4. There is an option for Vertical text in the Text Style window but it seems that Silhouette America and I have a different understanding of what "Vertical text" means. In the screenshot below, "hello" was rotated 90 degrees. If it was indeed a "Vertical Text", shouldn't the word look like this instead? :


 5:  If you have used any LD graphics with your Silhouette Studio program, you may notice that they usually import in a HUGE size. In version 3, when I dragged this stand mixer image onto the virtual mat, it was sized down automatically. I like that a lot because I usually have to do it manually.

6:  The Cut Setting options have changed! Instead of setting the cut lines through toggling "No Cut" and "Cut", we now have to set the cutting lines according to the line color. If there is no Line color, the cutting line shows up as black although it is still defined as "No Color". I know it doesn't make much sense but I hope to figure this out when I spend more time playing with this version.

7. Oh lookie! "Print Paper" is now "Copy Paper"! *yawn* Seriously, why bother?

8. Here is a screenshot of Silhouette Studio Designer Edition. There are a few extra icons on the top and side menu bars!

9. There is a new Shadow feature that I don't see myself using for my cutting projects. I may use it to add a shadow for a print-and-cut. We'll see.

10. Now here's a feature that I like and may use often. "Nesting" maximizes a predefined cutting area by cramming the images inside it. This would be great for cutting different shapes on the same sheet of (colored) cardstock. I will likely use this feature when I duplicate cards for the kids.

11. Layers! Woohoo!!! Finally, a feature that many of us have wanted and wished hard for! It is only available with the Designer Edition and also a little cumbersome to use but I'm not complaining. Yet. :-)

12: It's silly that the different layers of the image are all automatically named "Polygon" and clustered as one layer. Luckily, they can be re-named and re-defined.

13: In the Designer Edition, you have the option to cut by Line Color or By Layer. Cool!

I am still exploring version 3 and there are many features that I have not mentioned in this post (e.g.  arc-drawing, polygon-drawing, freehand draw, scan (TWAIN support), spell check, pdf import, etc., etc.) but I hope that this post will satisfy your curiosity for now.

Click HERE to read more about the release and HERE to download version 3.

p.s. The Silhouette Studio version 3 download is free. If you have and are using the Designer Edition (DE), installing version 3 will automatically update DE to include all the new tools and features.


UPDATE: Since posting this article, I have played with Silhouette Studio version3 a little more. Click HERE to read why I do not recommend the software at all.



  1. Thanks for a peek at the update. I'm downloading it now but it's taking forever! I'm excited about the layers and cutting by line color. Also the silhouette site mentions you can pause in between cuts, I'm guessing that's so you can switch media or swap out a sketch pen for a blade, which is awesome! Seems like there are a lot of improvements and I can't wait to try it, now if it would only download!

  2. Thanks Jin! Waiting for the all clear and that people are enjoying the new version.

  3. Great early review. Thank you.


  4. Thank you for your candid review. I also have not downloaded this version yet. I finally got my PNC to cut perfectly in 2.8.4 and do not want to screw that up. I will wait until all the bugs have been worked out before taking the leap.

  5. Thanks for your un-biased review of the updated software. I appreciate it. I will probably wait until everyone else is satisfied with it till I dl the new version. I really would love to get it now, but there has been some issues that people such as yourself have pointed out, I feel I really need to heed the reviews. I love my software and want to continue to love it. hugs, Patty

  6. I wished I would have waited for all the reviews before I downloaded. I do not like the cut by color feature..just saying...

  7. What confuses me is I often use "line color" as a printing thing - to outline shapes and the like. I miss the "no cut" option before because it was obvious to me and I'm still trying to figure out how to use no cut. The manual was no help on this. Sigh.

    Thank you for your review! You caught some stuff I hadn't yet realized had changed :)

  8. I'm pretty sure the "flower" in the corner is a gear or cog. It's a typical icon used for settings.