PROS / Power PDF lets you dictate edits and notes.
CONS / It doesn't convert PDFs to ePub formats.
VERDICT / Nuance's Power PDF is feature-rich and high quality, with nearly every tool you need to create, manipulate and secure PDFs. Its dictation option makes it an especially good option for the sight impaired.
Nuance's Power PDF software is an excellent choice if you need to convert PDFs, manipulate them, add to them, edit or secure them. It can create forms plus gather the data for analysis. It converts PDFs to Word and other Office formats, image files and more. In addition, Nuance has a PDF converter for Mac users. Finally, if you need or prefer to dictate notes, this software interfaces with Dragon Notes. It cannot convert PDFs to ePub format, but nonetheless, its rich feature set and easy interface earns it our Top Ten Reviews Silver Award.
Overall, we were pleased with the organization of Power PDF's interface. You can customize the topmost bar for your most-used commands. The command ribbons follow the latest Microsoft edition, which makes it familiar and easy to navigate.
This software requires you to download it to a desktop. Unfortunately, it does not have an associated mobile app or online portal, so you can only access it on the computer it's downloaded to. While the software does not feature a setup wizard, its intuitive interface makes it easy to start. It also has helpful explanations of what each tool is if you hover over each tool on the toolbar.
Power PDF allows you to dictate notes using Dragon Notes, which makes it an excellent choice if you are visually impaired or prefer dictating your notes instead of typing them. The toolbar has a command button for this tool, making it even easier to use this feature.
One drawback of this PDF file converter is that you can only open one PDF at a time. If you open multiple PDFs at once, it opens the program for each instance. Other programs organize open documents into tabs or windows instead. This made it a little inconvenient when working with multiple PDFs and could potentially slow your computer from having multiple versions of the full program running.
Also, combining files isn't as easy as with other programs. Power PDF only lets you combine other PDFs, so if you have files in other formats, say Word, you need to open and convert to PDF, then save and reopen them before you can combine them with other PDFs.
Power PDF provides some great tools for editing and marking up your documents. You can use the Typewriter tool to add text anywhere in your document. Copying over text is tricky and involves more steps than with other programs. Once the text is copied and pasted into the document, however, you can select Edit Object and make minor changes. It continues using the same font if it recognizes it. It does not recognize all fonts, even those that come with Microsoft Word. Once corrections are made, the Compare Documents tool compares the new document to previous versions or to an original Word document.
You can add Bates numbering to PDFs, an important feature when working with legal documents. However, rather than adding it to the file you're working on, it directs you to select files anew. This is convenient if you want to add Bates numbering to several documents simultaneously.
This PDF conversion software has all the security features we looked for, such as text redaction and password security. In addition to handling digital signatures, you can draw your signature in the program. Once you've created your signature, you can apply it wherever in the PDF you wish.
Power PDF can convert PDFs to Word or other Microsoft Office document types as well as to image and text files. It converts the files, and if you have forms that are filled out, it can extract the data and save it to a data file, which you can transfer and analyze in Excel or another program.
One other helpful integration feature is you can optimize files for mobile devices or for the web. In addition, it saves to PDF/A, the industry standard for archiving files as PDFs. It does not save to ePub, however. This is becoming increasingly popular if you wish to make eBooks for reading on Kindle or other devices, but it's not a necessary format for most businesses.
Help & Support
You'll find a user guide within the program, which is convenient. On the Nuance webpage, you can find a knowledgebase of articles with FAQs, user manuals, quick reference guides and how-to videos. Nuance does not offer live chat on its website, but it does have a dedicated-assistance option for an additional fee.
Power PDF is a robust PDF solution with many excellent features, an easy-to-use interface and an excellent help section. While the dictation abilities through Dragon Notes make it a great PDF converter for individuals who are visually impaired, it's an excellent choice for any person or business needing a comprehensive PDF creation and conversion software application. There's also a version for Macs as well.