New version adopts streamlined user interface, increases Macromedia Flash MX integration

SYDNEY, Australia – 11 February 2003 – Macromedia, Inc. (Nasdaq: MACR) announces the immediate availability of Macromedia FreeHand MX, the multi-publishing solution for conceptualising and designing visually rich graphics for print, the Internet, and Macromedia Flash projects. FreeHand MX includes the streamlined Macromedia MX interface, new productivity tools and panels, improved Mac OS X performance, and increased integration with Macromedia Flash MX. Macromedia FreeHand MX is available for immediate download from the Macromedia Online Store at

"Macromedia FreeHand MX enables graphic designers to streamline their workflow and easily move from concept to design to production in a single file, multi-page environment, empowering them to meet today's needs of doing more with less," said Norm Meyrowitz, president of products, Macromedia. "Macromedia FreeHand MX contains a powerful set of illustration and design tools to help users realise their creative vision, whether the end result is print, the web, or a Macromedia Flash MX project."

Macromedia FreeHand MX continues the product's rich heritage of solving design problems for graphic designers and illustrators by providing a streamlined workflow that enables users to create their artwork once and then easily repurpose it to work across multiple media. FreeHand MX provides everything necessary for storyboarding, creative design, multi-page document production and editing.

"For over six years, FreeHand has been a standard tool in my design work for print, web and multimedia," says Bryan Carey, manager Multimedia Training Services. "In using the new Freehand MX, I have found the integration with other Macromedia MX products such as Fireworks MX and Flash MX provides many productivity benefits."

"The ease in which I can now move graphic files between the Macromedia MX products is truly impressive, and I particularly like the way Freehand MX creates a complete interface design with both animation and ActionScript that can be efficiently imported into Flash MX." Carey continues. "I expect that this time-saving feature alone will be enough justification for most Flash designers to immediately use Freehand MX, as it certainly has become an essential part of my design process."

The inclusion of the Macromedia MX user interface increases efficiency and productivity, by enabling users to work smoothly across Macromedia Studio MX applications. The new Object panel automatically shows all properties that can be inspected and changed for a selected object. Multiple Attributes enables users to apply and order an unlimited number of strokes, fills, and effects to a single vector or text object, which can be used across multiple copies of an object. Users can also apply live vector and raster effects like bevel, blur, and transparency to objects, as well as quickly reshape graphic primitives while still maintaining their editability. Drag and drop ActionScript navigation commands with the Action tool simplify the creation of hot-linked graphics. Macromedia FreeHand MX is also optimised for Mac OS X to take advantage of the latest features and enhancements to Apple's operating system. For information on the new features in FreeHand MX, visit

"Macromedia FreeHand MX is even snappier than Macromedia FreeHand 10 and it’s speed continues to leave Illustrator in the dust," said Paul Le Fevre, director, Vivid Communications. "I'm also really excited about the new extrude tool, as it goes much further than I expected with the ability to display wireframe, shaded and mesh versions of my objects in varying resolutions. This feature will be a real time saver when I want to quickly mock up packaging designs or 3D ideas.

"Macromedia FreeHand MX's ability to stack multiple attributes and effects just like Macromedia Fireworks in the new object pallet is just fantastic, as is FreeHand’s new MX style interface," continued Mr Le Fevre.

In addition to the user interface enhancements, Macromedia FreeHand MX is tightly integrated with other Macromedia MX products. Users can import, place, and preview Macromedia Flash (SWF) files within a FreeHand document, and can edit the file in Macromedia Flash MX using the Object panel. FreeHand also imports Macromedia Fireworks MX PNG files and keeps the objects and text editable. Both Macromedia Flash MX and Fireworks MX can also directly open FreeHand MX files.

"The latest addition to the Macromedia MX family was worth the wait and with so many new features it's hard to know where to start," says Tony Redhead, principal, Red Square. "If you're like the designers at Red Square, and work almost exclusively with Macromedia Fireworks MX you will certainly appreciate the ability to import editable PNG files into FreeHand MX. For the wow factor try the extrusion tool, paste in a path and finish it off with a bit of 3D rotation," concluded Tony Redhead.


Macromedia FreeHand MX is available for immediate download today from the Macromedia Online Store ( Macromedia FreeHand MX is priced at AUD$949 (ERP inc.GST), with upgrades from FreeHand 9.X at AUD$369 (ERP inc.GST) and upgrades from FreeHand 10.X at AUD$249 (ERP inc.GST). Localised versions in French, German, Japanese, Traditional and Simplified Chinese, Korean, Swedish, Spanish, and Italian will be available at a later date. Education, government, and volume licensing is available.


Experience matters. Macromedia, Inc. is motivated by the belief that great experiences build great businesses. Our software empowers millions of business users, developers, and designers to create and deliver effective, compelling and memorable experiences - on the Internet, on fixed media, on wireless, and on digital devices.