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CloudFlare vs imgix: What are the differences?


CloudFlare and imgix are two popular web services that offer different solutions for website optimization and content delivery. While both services aim to improve website performance and user experience, they have several key differences that set them apart.

  1. Architecture: CloudFlare operates as a content delivery network (CDN) and reverse proxy, whereas imgix focuses solely on image optimization and delivery. CloudFlare offers a wide range of services including DNS management, DDoS protection, and caching, while imgix specializes in image manipulation and delivery.

  2. Focus: CloudFlare is primarily focused on improving website performance, security, and availability. It provides various optimization techniques such as caching, gzip compression, and minification. On the other hand, imgix's main focus is on image delivery and manipulation. It offers features like resizing, cropping, and filtering to optimize images for different devices and screen sizes.

  3. Integration: CloudFlare can be integrated at the DNS level, requiring changes to the website's DNS settings. It acts as a middleman between the website and its visitors, optimizing and caching content on the fly. On the other hand, imgix requires changing the image URLs in the website's HTML or CSS code to utilize its services. It acts as a cloud-based image processing engine, fetching and optimizing images in real-time.

  4. Content Delivery: CloudFlare caches and delivers static content (including images, CSS, and JavaScript files) from its global network of servers. It leverages its CDN infrastructure to minimize latency and improve website performance. In contrast, imgix also uses a global network of servers but focuses specifically on image delivery. It optimizes images based on parameters specified in the image URLs and delivers them efficiently to end-users.

  5. Advanced Image Manipulation: While CloudFlare offers basic image optimization techniques, imgix provides a comprehensive set of image manipulation options. With imgix, developers can dynamically alter images by specifying parameters in the image URLs. These parameters include resizing, cropping, filtering, and watermarking, which allow for more precise control over the appearance of images.

  6. Pricing Model: CloudFlare offers different pricing plans based on the level of service required, including a free plan for basic optimization and security. It charges based on the volume of data transferred through its network. On the other hand, imgix has a usage-based pricing model, which means users are billed based on the number of images processed and delivered. The pricing structure considers factors such as image transformations, caching, and global delivery.

In Summary, while CloudFlare focuses on website performance, security, and availability through its CDN and reverse proxy architecture, imgix specializes in image optimization and delivery. CloudFlare offers a broader range of services and integrates at the DNS level, while imgix offers advanced image manipulation features and requires changes to image URLs for optimization. CloudFlare caches and delivers static content globally, while imgix specifically optimizes and delivers images. CloudFlare has a range of pricing plans based on data usage, while imgix employs a usage-based pricing model for image processing and delivery.

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Pros of CloudFlare
Pros of imgix
  • 424
    Easy setup, great cdn
  • 277
    Free ssl
  • 199
    Easy setup
  • 190
  • 180
  • 98
    Great cdn
  • 77
  • 71
  • 44
    Great UI
  • 28
    Great js cdn
  • 12
  • 12
    HTTP/2 Support
  • 12
    DNS Analytics
  • 12
  • 9
    Rocket Loader
  • 9
  • 9
  • 8
    IPv6 "One Click"
  • 8
    Fantastic CDN service
  • 7
  • 7
    Nice DNS
  • 7
  • 7
    Free GeoIP
  • 7
    Amazing performance
  • 7
  • 7
    Cheapest SSL
  • 6
  • 6
    Free and reliable, Faster then anyone else
  • 5
  • 5
    Asynchronous resource loading
  • 4
    Global Load Balancing
  • 4
  • 4
    Easy Use
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
    Support for SSHFP records
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 28
    Image processing on demand
  • 24
    Easy setup
  • 18
    Smart Cropping
  • 18
    Reduce Development Costs
  • 15
  • 12
    Insanely Fast
  • 11
    Filters, resizing, blur and more as url parameters
  • 10
    Easy to understand pricing
  • 9
    Professional Features and Options
  • 6
    Lightyears better than ImageMagick
  • 6
    Excellent Face Detection
  • 5
    S3 as source
  • 4
    Scales to your company's needs
  • 4
    Great for Dynamic Compositing
  • 1
    Video encoding
  • 1
    Fast Image Delivery
  • 1
    Free tier
  • 1
    Amazing support
  • 1
    Great libraries and integrations
  • 1
    Automatic scrset generation

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Cons of CloudFlare
Cons of imgix
  • 2
    No support for SSHFP records
  • 2
    Expensive when you exceed their fair usage limits
    Be the first to leave a con

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    What is CloudFlare?

    Cloudflare speeds up and protects millions of websites, APIs, SaaS services, and other properties connected to the Internet.

    What is imgix?

    imgix is the leading platform for end-to-end visual media processing. With robust APIs, SDKs, and integrations, imgix empowers developers to optimize, transform, manage, and deliver images and videos at scale through simple URL parameters.

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    What companies use CloudFlare?
    What companies use imgix?
    See which teams inside your own company are using CloudFlare or imgix.
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    What tools integrate with CloudFlare?
    What tools integrate with imgix?

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    Blog Posts

    Jun 19 2015 at 6:37AM

    What are some alternatives to CloudFlare and imgix?
    If you've ever shopped online, downloaded music, watched a web video or connected to work remotely, you've probably used Akamai's cloud platform. Akamai helps businesses connect the hyperconnected, empowering them to transform and reinvent their business online. We remove the complexities of technology, so you can focus on driving your business faster forward.
    The MaxCDN Content Delivery Network efficiently delivers your site’s static file through hundreds of servers instead of slogging through a single host. This "smart route" technology distributes your content to your visitors via the city closest to them.
    Through an application-aware, global content delivery network (CDN), Incapsula provides any website and web application with best-of-breed security, DDoS protection, load balancing and failover solutions.
    Netlify is smart enough to process your site and make sure all assets gets optimized and served with perfect caching-headers from a cookie-less domain. We make sure your HTML is served straight from our CDN edge nodes without any round-trip to our backend servers and are the only ones to give you instant cache invalidation when you push a new deploy. Netlify is also the only static hosting service with integrated continuous deployment.
    Fastly's real-time content delivery network gives you total control over your content, unprecedented access to performance analytics, and the ability to instantly update content in 150 milliseconds.
    See all alternatives