PaintTool SAI is a popular drawing software. Released over a decade ago in 2008 by the company SYSTEMAX, it has been used by artists worldwide. Although it is available on Windows and Linux, it does not have a native Mac download. However, there is a way to make PaintTool SAI work on Mac using a Windows Emulator. 

My name is Elianna. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration and have been using PaintTool SAI for over seven years and have used it on PC and Mac. 

In this post, I am going to explain the operating system limits of PaintTool SAI, and how you can use it on Mac with a Windows Emulator. 

Let’s get into it! 

Key Takeaways

  • PaintTool SAI does not have a native Mac download. 
  • You can use PaintTool SAI on Mac with a Windows Emulator. 
  • There are a variety of PaintTool SAI Mac alternatives.

What is a Windows Emulator 

A Windows Emulator is a program that allows you to run the Windows OS on a Mac device. There is a variety of Windows Emulator software for Mac available to download for free or for payment online. Some of the most popular Windows Emulators for Mac include the following: 

How to Use a Windows Emulator to Run PaintTool SAI on Mac 

In order to run PaintTool SAI on Mac you must first download a Windows emulator. Make sure the operating system it emulates is one that is compatible with PaintTool SAI. Here are the Windows operating systems that are compatible with PaintTool SAI.

  • Windows 2000
  • Windows XP
  • Windows Vista 
  • Windows 7
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8.1
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 11

Note: I have read that PaintTool SAI is also compatible with Windows 11, but I have not had the opportunity to try it myself. Windows 11 is not currently an operating system listed for PaintTool SAI on SYSTEMAX’s website. 

After downloading an emulator, you can download PaintTool SAI and use it as you would on Windows OS. 

What if You Don’t Want to Download a Windows Emulator? 

Currently downloading an emulator is the easiest to use PaintTool SAI on Mac. If you are not comfortable using an emulator to use PaintTool SAI, consider downloading an alternative drawing software. 

Check out my article 5 Mac Alternatives to PaintTool SAI to learn more about drawing software for Mac similar to PaintTool SAI.  

Final Thoughts 

Although PaintTool SAI does not have a native Mac download, you can use it on Mac using a Windows Emulator. If this is an option you wish to pursue, make sure to research to find which emulator best suits your price point and preferences before downloading. 

If downloading an emulator sounds like too much hassle, there are a variety of PaintTool SAI alternatives made for mac.