The Adobe Lightroom thread

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by Tobers, May 7, 2007.

  1. Tobers

    Tobers
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    I've just discovered Adobe Lightroom and have spent all day (so far) finding out about it. I downloaded the 30-day trial from adobe.com.

    Saracenn pointed to http://www.photoshopsupport.com/ligh...tutorials.html which has some super (if a bit fast moving) video tutorials.

    Here's what I've figured out so far:

    - very good user interface
    - covers everything from camera import through image adjustments to web uploading and printing
    - ability to just use RAW files without having to convert them to jpegs. This means I can avoid having lots of duplicate files on my PC, and just keep the RAWs.
    - persistent history of editing changes unlike Photoshop
    - easy keywording and categorisation
    - "developing" of images singly or in groups
    - superb black & white conversion facility

    So far so good. It looks like becoming my main photo management facility. Beats Zoombrowser quite convincingly and with Photoshop it rather kills Canon DPP as well.

    Anyone else care to shed their experiences so far?
     
  2. Saracenn

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    Good idea to start this thread. I think it's a fantastic product and it's taking a few people away from Aperture. It's perhaps only marginally worth it if you're always shooting JPG, the real power comes using RAW files. You can still do everything with JPGs, just the room for manoeuvre is less.

    A few to add:
    -Lightroom works non-destructively, so until the point at which you export your photo, you can play with it as you like.
    - The metadata is pretty powerful: keywording, brows by camera, lens, time, and then tag images with flags, stars and colours and sort into collections.
    - Great for fixing white balance, colour casts.
    - Also easy to straighten horizons etc.
    - Split-toning is easy for those strange process effects.
    - Can apply any settings you select to a whole batch of photos on import including keywords.
    - You can remove spots caused by sensor dust using the clone/heal tools, then apply it to all the photos from that shoot. Best of all, it's non-destructive so you can always change things if you wish.
    - This sort of batch processing (Sync mode) is great for fixing the white balance or some other corrections on a whole set of shots from a single shoot.

    As for things that could be improved:
    - I hear it's a little slow on Windows with big libraries (I've got a mac so can't vouch for this).
    - Not much control on sharpening, though this is rumoured to be fixed in a point update very soon.
    - There is some argument that the colour reproduction with Canon RAW files is a bit off. Compare the results of using DPP with the output from Lightroom and you might find the reds a bit lacking and the greens a little high. It's by no means universal, and it is possible to change the camera calibration settings anyway.
    - I'm really looking forward to the plugins that will appear once the API is released. Lens distortion fixing would be a great addition.

    I can highly recommend Martin Evening's book.
     
  3. Tobers

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    I've got 2Gb of RAM on my PC and it's pretty quick so far. I reckon any less and it could struggle a bit.

    Horizon straightening - must figure out how to do that.

    Can't you apply colour changes to particular lenses or cameras in the Develop section?
     
  4. Coolhand

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    I'm loving LR, and only go into PS for the odd bit of sharpening. If they could resolve that like it's rumoured v1.1 will, I'll be a happy bunny and wouldn't need PS at all.
     
  5. docsmith2k1

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    Am currently using aperture on an Apple Mac. Does lightroom offer anything that this doesn't? Aperture also processes RAW files, and allows you to have as many "versions" as you want, saving only the differences between a version and the master - so cutting down on HD space. Having watched the tutorials they seem pretty similar products.
     
  6. docsmith2k1

    docsmith2k1
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    By the way Tobers the latest tutorial on the link you posted explains how to use the straighten tool:smashin:
     
  7. Saracenn

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    Tobers:

    Horizon straightening is grouped with the crop tool. Enter crop mode, then click the ruler and drag along what should be a vertical or horizontal line in the photograph, and it'll duly oblige.

    As for lens distortions, I meant geometric distortions (barrel, pincushion). Lightroom already lets you fix CA and vignetting.

    docsmith:

    Yeah, it's no secret that Lightroom is meant to be a challenger to Aperture. For me, its coming from Adobe, and thus the integration with Photoshop swung it. There's a comparison here if you're interested:
    http://digitalmedia.oreilly.com/2007/03/05/lightroom-vs-aperture.html
     
  8. Kaoshan

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    LR is a very nice product with a good interface. It has a lot of useful features, especially the conversion to b&w. I have a few problems with LR on my system and it is prone to hanging. Strange as it is a 3.4GHz HTT system with 4GB memory and lots of HDD capacity. CS3 runs with no problems.

    I also use C1 Pro and am now torn between the two. I am more familiar with C1 but maybe time will tell when I get the hang of LR :)
     
  9. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Ah! That's easy then!!
     
  10. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Just use LR to create a couple of Flash internet galleries here and here. Seemed to work quite well as long as you dont have the quality set too high as the pics take ages to FTP up to the site.
     
  11. Saracenn

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    I haven't tried the web gallery features. Never figured the need given Flickr and the like, but they do look good so might give it a whirl. Nice shots, Tobers.
     
  12. Brammers

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    Absolutely love it. I used to arrange all my shots into numerous sub Dirs - shot one performer one - good/average/poor and then converted then noise filtered versions of each of those.

    I can now delete all of these and just import into lightroom once.

    White balance, cropping and straightening are great - anything more advanced goes into CS2. Amazing piece of kit :)

    Slow though - XP3200 + 1.5gb
     
  13. Radiohead

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    I tried it but prefer Aperture - the one thing that bothers me about ACR is the way it deals so poorly with noise. Files out of Aperture are way cleaner at any ISO.

    Other than that it's a fine tool - I suspect I'd be using it if I was still on the PC.

    Any sort of workflow management that these tools offer with 1000+ wedding shots are worth every penny.
     
  14. M-C-P-M

    M-C-P-M
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    Hi Tobers is Adobe Lightroom supported in Vista?
     
  15. Tobers

    Tobers
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    Urm - dunno. I'm on XP. I imagine it would be as it's pretty new.
     
  16. Tobers

    Tobers
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    I was out yesterday as the skies were excellent - all sort of cool clouds. However, I really messed up virtually all my shots. I thought I'd try to rescue a couple in Lightroom and this is what I got...

    Before #1
    [​IMG]

    After #1
    [​IMG]

    Before #2
    [​IMG]

    After #2
    [​IMG]

    Hmmm....Might have gone a bit far, but you've got to play with the sliders haven't you. It was a useful learning exercise to find out what all the sliders did. The "recovery" and "fill light" ones are particularly useful.

    Tobers
     
  17. baldrick

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    I've been using Lightroom althrough it's beta and bought a license a couple of weeks ago.

    Compared to Aperture I found that Aperture needs either one very big screen or a dual screen setup to be really effective. Trying to use it on my 15" PowerBook was very awkward whilst LightRoom is fine.

    A friend of a friend is a pro in New York and he use LR over Aperture.... He thinks Aperture is good, but still not on a par with LR. Not definitive I know but fuel to the fire!! ;)
     
  18. tomson

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    I've gone from using Aperture to Lightroom recently - it's a real pleasure to use, loads of really nice features. The only problem I'm having is keyboard shortcuts - wish they were similar to photoshop. Hmm wonder of they can be changed...?
     
  19. ryart

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    I'm using LightRoom in Vista without any problems.
     
  20. Kaoshan

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    LR works fine in Vista... indeed, it is more stable/faster on my Vista system than on my XP system, so I migrated it to my Vista system. Unfortunately, I have some legacy apps that will not run on Vista otherwise I would upgrade my main system unit as well :(
     
  21. baldrick

    baldrick
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    Ages ago I someone announced a keyboard where every key was an LCD display and as you switch applications so the legend on the keyboard changed to show you the shortcuts etc...

    As I recall is was a Russian company but I think it was predicted to be expensive and I don't know if it ever materialised!?!?
     
  22. Jazz Monkey Jr

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    What settings are you changing to get these results, they are very HDR like.
     
  23. Radiohead

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    And conversely I find the lack of dual monitor support in Lightroom a show-stopper.

    And in the noise issue (which I'm not alone in commenting on) and Lightroom still trails Aperture for me. That's to be expected bearing in mind Aperture is a couple of releases ahead.
     
  24. Tobers

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    Yes, they are HDR-ish aren't they.

    Looking at the canal boat photo's edit history (which is excellent as it shows on the Navigator the change at each stage), it looks like "fill light" being shot up substantially brought out the underexposed foreground and gave it the HDR-like look. I sorted the sky first, and the fill light second.

    I'm amazed how much detail came out of what was such a poor shot.
     
  25. Saracenn

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  26. Tobers

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    Been playing about with black & white settings. Very flexible indeed, though I did use Photoshop for a bit of dodging & burning, and a final sharpen.

    The only thing I cant work out is how to handle RAWs and JPEGs of a single pic. Ideally, I just want to keep the RAW files. If I want to edit in Photoshop, Lightroom creates a .psd file, and if I then save as a JPEG to put on the web I end up with 3 versions of the pic. I guess I can just delete the .psd and the .jpeg when I've done the web upload. Just seems a bit clumsy and I'm sure there's a better way.

    [​IMG]
     
  27. Saracenn

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    Unfortunately, for you to do any edits in Photoshop or another application, you have to export, and it exports in the state that you last left the image. If you delete those files, you'll obviously lose the changes you made in Photoshop. I know that it should stack the images together, maybe you need to collaps the stacks, that way at least, it only shows up once in the library. I guess there are limits to what can be done losslessly.
     
  28. tomson

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  29. Tobers

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    Anyone know if you can create borders in Lightroom? I'm finding I am using Photoshop less & less, and just want to be able to stick a thin black/white/black around my pics using Lightroom.

    Ta
     
  30. docsmith2k1

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    Go to the PRINT area of the program, and tick the "stroke border" box in the image settings pane, then select the colour and the width, of the border.
    Admittedly this only put a border around a printed version of your photo, I haven't yet worked out if you can put a border around the image itself.
    Andy
     

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