Wednesday, March 7, 2012

REVIEW: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 – Part I

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4

Why do I need Lightroom?

Adobe Lightroom 4 Library Module

I’ve said since version 1.0 that Adobe Photoshop (B&H and Adorama) is a must own product for all photographers – period. At a minimum its Library module provides the best digital asset management solution money can buy, so you can organize and locate photos quickly from your ever growing photo collections in a way that makes more sense than what is easily possible through the file system. In addition, it offers a variety of mechanisms (i.e., flags, ratings, color labels, etc…) to quickly triage your photos to help you locate the best of the best so you can focus your limited time only on your best shots.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 Develop Module

Once you have your best shots, the Develop module allows you to quickly and easily edit your photos (including your RAW files) to get a result that many times is enough to call it a day. However, you are also given the ability to send your photos to your favorite photo editor (e.g., Photoshop) or third party plug-in (i.e., Color Efex, onOne Perfect Photo Suite, Photomatix for HDR, etc…) to complete your final editing tasks.

If you stopped there Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 offers enough great features to make it worth every penny of its $149 retail price ($79 new). However, it offers all that and sooo much more including the:

  • Map Module – Manage your photos with GPS data
  • Book Module – Build a photo book for use with Blurb.com
  • Slideshow Module – For creating rich multimedia experiences that can be played locally, on a DVD, and more
  • Print Module – For creating complex print layouts easily as well as printing with printers from cheap ink jets to high end pro printers
  • Web Module – For creating simple to sophisticated web galleries that can be uploaded to your web site

You can learn more about these and the basic features of Lightroom 4 at http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop-lightroom/features.html.

What’s New for Lightroom 4

Now I included the last section for those new to Photography, but the reality is that if you’ve been into Digital SLR photography for longer than a few days the odds are you know all about Lightroom (up Lightroom 3). Now that a new release is out you are probably wondering – what’s new?

  • Raw file support for new cameras like the Canon GX 1, as well as eventual support for soon to be released cameras (in a future Lightroom update) for the 5D Mark III, D800/E, 1D X, and more. If you plan to get one of these cameras then this upgrade is mandatory if you want to manage your raw files.
  • Location-based photo organization
  • Importing libraries from other software (Aperture?)
  • Extended video support
  • Photo book creation
  • Video publishing
  • Soft-proofing
  • Direct email support
  • and more…

See more of my review

Here’s some additional parts of my review:

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Disclosure

If you make a purchase using links in this article I may get a commission. Adobe has provided me with a serial number for my copy of Lightroom 4 for the purpose of doing my review.

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