Hello All,

Not sure how many of you have looked at SPD recently or have designers who design pages but they had made some changes which made the designers unhappy.  However the story has improved there is a feature in SPS2013 called Design Manager which allows you to convert HTML files into Page Layouts and Master Page.  The engineer that I discussed this with also mentioned something called Design Packages which maybe a possible answer as well.

Essentially you can use editor of choice to edit the HTML page using snippets, and then on a publishing site use the Designer Manager feature to convert that HTML page into page layout and Master page.

Articles

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj163942(v=office.15)

http://bniaulin.wordpress.com/2012/07/18/sharepoint-2013-design-manager-convert-html-to-master-page/

http://sharepointbrian.com/2012/07/intro-to-sharepoint-2013-design-manager/