How Much Are Adobe Stock Images? – Your Questions Answered!

When Adobe Stock came out in 2015 it disrupted the industry and quickly became of the best stock photo services with its innovative approach that made millions of high-quality, royalty-free images available right within Adobe Creative Cloud apps. 

This effectively meant you could select and use professional stock photos while on Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, or any other Creative Cloud application of your choice. 

Such a great improvement in a creative workflow sounds like a breeze, but, what’s the cost? 

For all those wondering how much Adobe Stock images cost, and other related questions, here you will find all the answers, including an Adobe Stock pricing breakdown, and a cool Adobe Stock free trial!

Get 10 Adobe Stock standard assets with your free trial. Cancel risk-free within the first month.

And if you want the full scope of the service, make sure to read our Adobe Stock review!

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What is Adobe Stock? Stock Photos into Creative Cloud Apps

Adobe Stock is a stock photography service, that offers over 200 million stock images, stock videos, and stock music files under a royalty-free license. These digital media assets are high-quality, professional, and ready to download and use in your designs. 

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What makes Adobe Stock stand out from the crowd is that, while it still has its own website, and it’s accessible for all users, it is also deeply integrated into the Adobe Creative Cloud platform, and you can launch its stock asset library to search, select, test/edit and finally license content to use in your projects, directly in your Adobe editing app’s interface, not only image-oriented like Photoshop or Illustrator if you work with EPS files, but also Premiere Pro or Lightroom. This, plus the affordable Adobe Stock prices you are about to learn about, makes it an ideal service for Creative Cloud users.

If you feel curious and like options, you may also check this list of Adobe Stock alternatives.

Can I Get Adobe Stock Free Images? 2 Easy Ways

Yes. For starters, Adobe Stock includes a free assets section where you can find free photos, free vectors, free videos, and more.

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They are all under Adobe Stock’s license and thus a lot safer to use than other free stock photo sites out there. But (there’s always one), this is a very limited selection that, while decent, is often insufficient and/or doesn’t have quite what you are looking for. 

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Don’t despair, there’s another way to get free images from Adobe Stock, and it’s a lot better: the Adobe Stock free trial. With this deal, you get the first month of an annual subscription to Adobe Stock (which we explain detailed below), including 10 image downloads, completely free of charge. This means you get to download any images of your choice, from Adobe Stock’s catalog with over 200 Million of them, during 30 days, without paying a penny. And they’re all royalty-free images, perfectly safe and legal to use in your work. 

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For more details on this offer, read our guide to get free images from Adobe Stock here, and if you’re ready to grab your free photos, just click on this banner below:

Get 10 Adobe Stock standard assets with your free trial. Cancel risk-free within the first month.

What Is The Price Of Adobe Stock Images? 2 Buying Options

Adobe Stock doesn’t charge you for signing up on their service, and you are also free to peruse their collections, even to test-edit their stock photos (with watermarks) in your projects, without paying. As you just learned, you may also get free downloads from them, but they're limited one way or the other. If you want to actually use its high-res, non-watermarked images in your designs, then at some point you're gonna need to pay for them. 

pricing > How Much Are Adobe Stock Images? - Your Questions Answered!

There are two main ways to buy photos in Adobe Stock: on-demand with credit packs, or with a subscription. There are pros and cons for each option in Adobe Stock pricing, so we’ll break it all down for you to make an informed decision.

Before getting down to Adobe Stock pricing, an important note:

Adobe Stock is a stand-alone service, while it’s integrated into Creative Cloud, it is NOT included in any Creative Cloud subscription, you need to hire it additionally. In the same fashion, you can subscribe to Adobe Stock without having a Creative Cloud membership, and use its assets in any image editor compatible, be it from Adobe Inc. or not. 

If you are interested in Creative Cloud, do check our Adobe Creative Cloud pricing breakdown, as well as our list of the best Creative Cloud discounts!

Adobe Stock Credits: Images On-Demand for $8 Each

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Credits are a “made up” currency: the agency prices their assets in credits, and sells you credit packs that you pay upfront and can then use to buy these assets. 

Standard images (which are those under a standard license, more on this in a minute) are 1 credit each, for example. Premium images, which can only be bought on-demand, start at 12 credits and come with an Enhanced license (also known as extended license, explained below). There are other digital media types, such as stock footage, that can also only be purchased with credits. 

Credit packs are a volume deal: the larger the pack, the less each credit (and thus, each asset) will cost you. It depends on how much you are willing to spend in advance, keeping in mind credits are valid for a whole year from the purchase date. Another relevant consideration is that credit packs are a one-time payment, and there are no recurrent fees involved. 

As you see, the minimum you can spend is $49.95, which buys you as much as 5 standard images, costing you $9.99. If you go for the largest credit pack, you could download as many as 150 images, and each image would cost you $8. Not bad. 

Credit Pack

Pack Price

Price Per Credit

5 Credits

$49.95

$9.99 

16 Credits

$149.99 

$9.37 

40 Credits

$359.99 

$8.99

80 Credits

$669.99

$8.37

150 Credits

$1,200.00

$8

Adobe Stock Subscriptions: High-Res Photos for less than .35 Cents!

On the other hand, stock photo subscription plans are recurrent, flat fees that give you a fixed number of image downloads per month. They are also a volume deal, as the higher the download limit is, the lower each image will cost. With a subscription, you can download photos, vectors, illustrations, and music tracks. 

Adobe Stock plans come in 3 different download limits available, and within them, you can opt between an annual plan or a month-to-month plan. It sounds more complicated than it is, so we’ll explain in more detail, in these quick tables we whipped out for you:

Adobe Stock Annual Plans

SUBSCRIPTIONS > How Much Are Adobe Stock Images? - Your Questions Answered!

As you can see, annual subscriptions give you a great per-image rate, from $2.99 and as low as $0.26 per download!

Another highlight is that the 10-downloads and the 40-download plans enable you to roll over a certain number of unused downloads from one month to the next, so you don’t miss out. If you renew your subscription, unused downloads may roll over onto the next year, as well!

Assets Per Month

Price Per Month

Price Per Asset

10 Standard Assets 

$29.99 

$2,99 

40 Standard Assets 

$79.99 

$1,99 

750 Standard Assets 

$199.99 

$0.26

With this option, you are accepting a 12-month commitment with the agency. While you can cancel anytime you want, cancellation fees will apply. That’s why using the Adobe Stock trial is such a great idea: you not only get free images, you also get to test the service before deciding to commit to recurrent fees. 

Adobe Stock Month to Month Subscriptions

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Moving on to Adobes Month-to-Month Plans, a little higher in price but with much more flexibility. With these, you can get stock photos for between $0.33 and $4.99, which is not bad at all. 

The rollover of unused downloads is still available in the two lower-volume tiers, but it depends on you renewing your subscription continuously: if your plan expires, so do the unused downloads. 

Assets Per Month

Price Per Month

Price Per Asset

10 Standard Assets 

$49.99 

$4,99 

40 Standard Assets 

$99.99 

$2,49 

750 Standard Assets 

$249.99 

$0.33

What is cool is that you have more control over your money and your assets: you can just not renew your plan whenever you decide, and no cancelation fees will apply in that case. Once your last paid month is up, that’s it. 

What Can I Do with Adobe Stock Images? Licenses Explained

Besides cold math, what really helps to see how much adobe stock images cost, is to know what you get for their price. In other words, what does the Adobe Stock license allow you to do with their assets? 

Royalty-free license, by definition, allows using images for commercial purposes. This means all kinds of marketing and advertising uses are covered, as well as most personal uses (like artistic expressions or passion projects). It’s worth noting also that this is a one-time pay: you pay for the license once and get to use the image forever, in as many projects as you wish. See all you can do with Royalty Free images.

Standard License, as the name implies, is the default license included in all stock images. As we mentioned above, it lets you use the image(s) for commercial-oriented purposes, anywhere in the world and for as long as you want, in both digital and print mediums such as websites, social media, flyers, etc. The main restrictions are a print run limit of 500,000 copies, and the prohibition to use the images in products for resale. See this example of a Standard License explained.

This means you can get a professional photo to use in your marketing visuals across all modern platforms, in perpetuity, for as little as $0.26. Way to put things in perspective!

Enhanced License, which is also commonly known as an extended license, takes all the rights from standard and adds a few relevant ones. Namely, it removes the print run limit (giving you unlimited copies) and enables you to use the assets in products for resale (like coffee mugs, t-shirts, etc.). The Enhanced license logically has a higher price. And can only be acquired on-demand. Enhanced images’ price starts at $79.99, but considering how much money you can potentially earn from them, it’s not that steep a cost. See all you can do with an Extended license.

Important to know: In Adobe Stock, photos, vectors, and illustrations are available with both Standard and Enhanced licenses, at your discretion.
But other asset types aren’t: standard templates, 3D models, premium images, stock videos in HD and 4K resolution, and Editorial licenses –for editorial use only– all come with Enhanced license, at different price points. 

Design Easier and Cheaper with Adobe Stock!

So as you can see, Adobe's pricing is pretty reasonable, following along with other price points available in the market, but with the added value of their integration into Creative Cloud along with their year to year or month to month subscription options, and more all lead up to a pretty compelling product that is definitely worth your time checking out.

Go ahead and jump directly over to Adobe Stock and grab your subscription now! And don't miss the chance to test their service for free with the Adobe Stock Free Trial with 10 Free Photos!

Get 10 Adobe Stock standard assets with your free trial. Cancel risk-free within the first month.
Avatar of Amos Struck

Amos Struck

I am a publisher and entrepreneur in the stock imagery field. I focus on providing knowledge and solutions for buyers, contributors and agencies, aiming at contributing to the growth and development of the industry. I am the founder and editor of Stock Photo Press, one of the largest networks of online magazines in the industry. I am the founder of Microstock Expo, the only conference dedicated to the microstock segment. I created several software solutions in stock photography like WordPress plugins. Plus I am a recurrent speaker at Photokina Official Stage, and an industry consultant at StockPhotoInsight. I am passionate about technology, marketing and visual imagery.

10 Comments
  1. Assets? Credits? This article–just like multiple others that I have read in recent days–fails to answer the most important question: How do “assets” factor into the purchase of images. Or, to put it another way, how many assets does it take to purchase a standard image license? Without an answer to this question, it is impossible to determine the cost of using Adobe Stock. Does one asset equal one standard image? Or does the purchase price vary from image to image? Is there a range of costs (e.g., one asset to three assets)? Competitors (such as Istock) make it easy to determine actual costs. Adobe’s lack of transparency on this matter has been frustrating and serves to dampen any desire to try out their product.

    • I agree with Steven, everything is very confusing. It is simple, I want to buy stock whatever, there should be a price and license. Here it also does not explain, the license properly. If I buy a stardard asset as they call it, is it a standard license? Can I use that asset for ever with paying for it again either by renewal of subscription or needing to buy more credit? All this is so unclear in any of these stock image websites, just beating around the bush and making simple things complicated. If anyone has an answer for this, please answer as soon as possible. Thanking you everyone in advance.

      Cheers

      • Hi Ashwin, I think this explains the license very properly: https://stock.adobe.com/license-terms – what needs to be understood is, that Royalty-Free means that you DO NOT NEED to pay again for the image usage after you paid once. With most stock agencies you only pay once (or pay for subscription and download once) and then use the image forever. That is the most non-understood issue I see with many stock photo users. Very few stock agencies have some limitations i.e. you can not download all images from your subscription and never use them and “stock” them on your harddrive. Then after your subscription is expired you are not allowed to use non-used images in a new design. But that is very rare. I hope that helps!

    • Hi Steven. Firstly, in Adobe Stock “assets” refers to media files. A “Standard asset” does equal a Standard image indeed.
      The price of Standard images with subscriptions (the only type of assets you can download with these plans) ranges between $0.26 and $9.99 each. Our article focuses on these as they are the best prices, and we display them on tables to make them easier to identify 🙂
      If you use credits for Standard images, 1 image = 1 credit. That would be $8 – $9.99 per image depending on what size of credit pack you use.
      All this info is properly displayed on Adobe Stock throughout the buying process, as well as on their pricing page. In the case of Standard images, you must do a little calculation if you wish to know the price per unit because they no longer sell them individually, but the info is there.
      Lastly, the price of the assets does vary but depending on their status and value: Premium images, Premium 3D designs, Stock Video, Extended License and Editorial License have different price points than Standard images (they cost more). These can only be bought on demand, be it one by one or with credits.
      I hope to have helped clarify this for you!

  2. Hi Amos,

    Thank you for your in-depth information. Quick question – we’re currently building a couple of websites. I don’t want an annual or monthly subscription. Could we opt in for the month-to-month subscription, the largest one, download as many assets as we are entitled to and then cancel after one month?

    • Hi John, Adobe (and most stock agencies for the matter) have policies against stockpiling, meaning they put a deadline to when you can use images you downloaded from their site after your subscription ends. Each agency has its own limit, but it is usually not very long around 30-60 days. After that, the license for images you haven’t yet used is considered invalid. If your intention is to download images to use them later on, this deadline gets in your way.
      So, I would advise contacting Adobe Stock directly to find out what their deadline for unused images is, and based on that information see if a one-month subscription is worth your while.
      Hope this helps!

  3. What is confusing is terms like “subscription”. If I “subscribe” to something, I expect to be paying each month for the use of the product. What am I buying with a subscription of 10 assets per month? The right to use 10 specific assets for as long as I continue to subscribe? Or, is it this simple: give use $50 a month and for each month you can buy an additional 10 assets. If that is the case, and I want 7 assets, then I’d buy a single month’s “subscription” for 10, never use the additional 4, and never pay another month. Is that it? Why can’t someone then just say “Adobe charges you $50 for up to 10 images” and be done?

    • I know this can be a bit confusing. You must separate two things here: Usage License aka Royalty-Free License of the images and the Subscription to the Images. The Royalty-Free License does allow the usage usually forever for most stock agencies. The subscription, therefore, is exactly how you described it: Pay X$ to get X amount of downloads per month at some specific terms (at some Agencies unused downloads might expire, some other Agencies roll them over for X amount of months as long as you subscribed). I hope that helps.

  4. I’ve just been told in the adobe live chat that once your monthly subscription expires you lose the right to use the images, so you can not use the images forever. You seem to be selling smoke here Amos.

    • Hi Joss, thank you for the clarification. That’s the reason why I have written in all my comments, that they are always exceptions i.e. “Very few stock agencies have some limitations i.e. you can not download all images from your subscription and never use them and “stock” them on your harddrive. Then after your subscription is expired you are not allowed to use non-used images in a new design.” Usually that applies only to images you have downloaded but never used in any design. If you use an image in a design it should last you forever (in that design). I always recommend to double check with the stock agencies because they might have limitations on certain of their subscriptions or plans. Regards Amos

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