InDesign vs QuarkXPress: Adobe INDD or Quark QXP App for Page Layouts?

Adobe InDesign vs Quark’s QuarkXPress… Which page layout application may work better for graphic designers, creative professionals, and other members of graphic arts-related industries? Following is an honest review of the two applications and how they compare:

If your occupation is designing page layouts, your choice of layout app can make a huge difference. Naturally, you will want the best user experience for the creation of your design and likely will want that user-friendly app to have an acceptable price.

Can you get the most benefit from using InDesign or from using QuarkXPress? Both are popular, comprehensive page layout applications for design, print and publishing purposes. Do you need more in-depth features than most DTP app users, when creating and editing a multitude of pages, including text, images and graphics? How do you know which desktop publishing app is the best one to use in a particular workflow?

What are InDesign and QuarkXPress?

Per Adobe, “InDesign is the industry-leading layout and page design software for print and digital media.”
Per Quark, “QuarkXPress is the smart solution for every creative professional who wants to leverage the most modern and efficient design software in the market.”

InDesign vs QuarkXPress: Adobe INDD or Quark QXP App for Page Layouts

Adobe InDesign versus Quark’s QuarkXPress

Choosing InDesign or QuarkXPress

There are some points that you may want to consider, when making a comparison between DTP applications. For example, which type of project will you be working on? What results are you trying to achieve? Will you include special elements, interactivity, or extensively complicated details? How will your document be presented to your audience? Are Adobe’s or Quark’s purchasing options best suited to your needs?

Comparing InDesign and QuarkXPress Features

There are plenty of advantages to using features of either application. Adobe and Quark have shared information about the capabilities of their applications. While both apps have some similar abilities, each app offers its own unique environment. You can compare the strengths of each, as they apply to your situation.

Adobe InDesign

Adobe InDesign

InDesign Features

InDesign is an extremely robust app, with a generally visually-pleasing interface. Adobe launched its latest version of InDesign for Creative Cloud (CC), with which you can design banners, books, book covers, brochures, business cards, charts, eBooks, flyers, forms, greeting cards, infographics, labels, magazines, newspapers, packaging, pages, postcards, posters, presentations, etc., for web or print.

InDesign 2020 Features include:

• Copy Editor

• Review panel enhancement

• Share for review

• Auto-Activate Adobe Fonts

• Place video from a URL

• Stability and other enhancements

• SVG import

• Column rules

• Support for South-East Asian languages

• Variable fonts

• Reverse spell-check

• Enhanced data merge

• Adobe Asset linking

• Find similar images

• Onboarding resources

• Removal of Flash formats

• In-app troubleshooting support


QuarkXPress Logo


QuarkXPress Features

Quark has endeavored to make QuarkXPress less expensive and to improve how the app supports web page design and iOS app design. Quark mentions that QuarkXPress enables rich typography, platform-optimized page layouts, embedding of interactive elements, and unique creativity.

QuarkXPress 2020 Features include:

Design and Layout

• Layout Level Bleed

Digital Publishing

• Interactivity Enhancements

• Support for Animated GIF in Fixed and Flex Layouts

• Support for Page Name and Page Title for HTML5 Output in Flex Layouts

• Support for Alternate Text for Images in Fixed and Flex Layouts

• Flex Object Browser Enhancements in Flex Layouts

• Find/Change Enhancement in Flex Layout

Text and Typography

• Style your text with OpenType features

• Convert Footnotes to Endnotes (and Vice Versa)

• Quick Access to Bullets and Numbering

• Greek and Russian Numbering Formats

• Preference for Defining Paste Behavior from External Applications

• Runaround for Multiple Items (Boxes)

• Count Words in Selected Text

• Optional Tab Ruler

• Enhancement in Collect Fonts for Output


Comparing InDesign & QuarkXPress Costs

Adobe InDesign

InDesign purchase options include:

• Annual plan, paid monthly: $20.99 per month (USD)

• Annual plan, prepaid: $239.88 per year (USD)

• Monthly plan: $31.49 per month (USD)


QuarkXPress Logo

QuarkXPress purchase options include:

• QuarkXPress perpetual + 1 Year Advantage renewable subscription: $395 USD

• QuarkXPress perpetual + 2 Years Advantage renewable subscription: $625 USD

• QuarkXPress perpetual + 3 Years Advantage renewable subscription: $795 USD


InDesign Users & QuarkXPress Users

Adobe InDesign

Who Might Use InDesign?

According to Adobe’s website, InDesign may be suitable for users in workflows associated with the following:

• print and digital media

• graphic design, typography, and imagery

• content for sharing and feedback in PDF

• production management

• publishing of books, digital magazines, eBooks, posters, interactive PDFs, and more

QuarkXPress Logo

Who Might Use QuarkXPress?

According to Quark’s website, QuarkXPress may be suitable for users who handle the following for page layout, graphics & illustration, photo editing, web publication, and/or mobile app publication:

• Book & Magazine Design

• Brochure & Catalogue Design

• Poster & Banner Design

• EBook Design

• Website Design

• Mobile Publication Design

Free Trial Versions

You can try the demo versions of InDesign and QuarkXPress, to make it easier for you to make your choice:

Adobe InDesign

InDesign Free Trial Download

QuarkXPress Logo

QuarkXPress Free Trial Download

Alternative & Compatible Apps And Options

There are other application options available, such as Affinity Publisher (with StudioLink feature), for example. There are also applications that assist InDesign users and/or QuarkXPress users.

How Markzware’s IDMarkz macOS Can Help

Markzware develops preview, preflight, and file conversion software for printers, publishers, creative professionals, and the like. Markzware’s IDMarkz is a multi-featured application that processes Adobe InDesign files, for use in numerous file formats on the macOS platform.

You can actually open InDesign files in QuarkXPress, using features in Markzware’s IDMarkz app. See how in this video:

Video: IDMarkz Open in Quark

Open in QuarkXPress (IDMarkz)

In this video, Markzware walks you through the process of converting an Adobe InDesign (.indd) file to a QuarkXPress (.qxp) file, using Markzware’s IDMarkz macOS app to open InDesign in QuarkXPress, which can be edited for graphic design, print, and publishing uses.

Applications in which IDMarkz can open InDesign files.
This stand-alone Markzware app will
open InDesign (.indd) files in QuarkXPress!

How to Open an InDesign File in QuarkXPress, via IDMarkz

To convert InDesign (as IDML) and open in QuarkXPress 2018 or higher:

• Drag & drop your files onto the IDMarkz window, in the “Drag and drop files here” section. 

• Click on the “Quark” icon in the top of the IDMarkz window. 

• Click the “OK” button in the “IDML Import” dialog, which QuarkXPress opens. QuarkXPress will convert the IDML file to QuarkXPress, and the editable file opens in QuarkXPress.

IDMarkz Benefits

• quickly processes InDesign files on a Mac
• offers ease-of-use in a versatile, multi-purpose app
• saves money on Creative Cloud subscriptions

… users can preview and open InDesign files without having InDesign. If you’re a Quark-based publication, the ability to open an InDesign file immediately in QuarkXPress is a necessity.”
– Kevin Slimp, publisher at Market Square Books and CEO of


IDMarkz Features include:

• Open InDesign files in earlier InDesign versions or in QuarkXPress, Affinity Publisher, Acrobat, Illustrator, and more.
• Open InDesign files in Acrobat and Annotate the PDF.
• Preview InDesign files & export .indd files as IDML, PDF, TIFF, PNG, JPEG, or GIF.

Video: IDMarkz for InDesign to Quark Users

Markzware‘s IDMarkz app previews InDesign files and opens them in QuarkXPress, as shown in this video. You can use IDMarkz to open InDesign in Acrobat, Illustrator, Affinity Publisher, and in previous InDesign versions. IDMarkz also converts InDesign files to PNG, TIFF, EPS, GIF, PDF, IDML, and JPEG, so you can get content from an .indd file into a format you (or another member of your workflow) can use.

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Buy IDMarkz

It is typical for creative professionals to use more than one design application. You can use automation features to export an IDML and open it in QuarkXPress or a selected application, today! Buy Markzware’s low-cost IDMarkz Mac Subscription (including updates throughout your 12-month subscription term), available on the IDMarkz page.

Buy Now

Additional Markzware products are available via the Products page. Please feel free to subscribe to the Markzware Mailing List, to get the latest Markzware product news, discounts, and more.

Have you compared Adobe’s InDesign app to Quark’s QuarkXPress app, as layout applications for graphic design? Have you tried to open your chosen app’s files in another application or file format? Please tell about it, via Markzware on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, and other websites. Thank you.

InDesign vs QuarkXPress: Adobe INDD or Quark QXP App for Page Layouts?

Title: InDesign vs QuarkXPress: Adobe INDD or Quark QXP App for Page Layouts?
Published on: September 15, 2020
Patty Talley

Strategic Marketing Analyst at Markzware

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