Reason for high-tech software....mmmm...look at your design...and the pixels it has.
And most cheap/free software have less features.
In Photoshop/Indesign/Illustrator things can be done in a nicer way and easier most of the times. Specially the last 2 programs are great for text/fonts, with no pixels ect.
There are some nice pieces of free software..but most of them have limitations. And these days every piece of software can be found on the internet......
And maybe you could slow down a bit with your covers...your almost posting on a daily bases...i think when you spend a bit more time on your covers..they look even better than the ones you recently posted.
Keep up the nice work, Tom!