Adobe Lightroom CC (Or Lightroom 6) Is Here
As usual, the rumors proved to be true, a new version of Adobe Lightroom is here. The perpetual (pay as you go) version is called Lightroom 6, while Adobe Creative Cloud users are getting Adobe Lightroom CC. Both are the same software.
Victoria Bampton’s always excellent Lightroom Queen blog has all of the minute details you need about every feature that Adobe has added. If you want to see it all, it is an excellent read.
Previously, I detailed the features I hoped would be included in the 6th version of this amazing software. It is important to realize that this version is an evolutionary upgrade. There is very little that is obvious.
Below are some of my immediate observations:
- The software is much faster. I am running a 2013 27″ iMac on OSX Yosemite (10.10). Despite maxing out my RAM at 32GB, some processor-intensive tasks took time. With the GPU boost, things like image previews feel much quicker. This version of Lightroom is rock solid.
- The People addition is potentially a time-saver. One of my good friends has always given me a tough time because he wants me to send all the images I have taken of him over the years, and I have never wanted to go through my entire Lightroom catalog looking. I am not diligent at keyboarding, so this is potentially great.
- The new Adobe Lightroom HDR and Panoramic features have promise. I rarely need to resort to HDR techniques because my main camera body captures so much dynamic range, but it will be interesting to use. The HDR function may be useful for other composites like fireworks and lunar eclipse images. The Panoramic feature will help a lot of people, although my process is to take a single shot that I crop to the traditional 6 x 17 format.
- The Adobe Lightroom modules still need work. The Library and Develop modules in Lightroom are almost everything you need. The Map module is still potentially interesting, and I use Nikon’s GP-1A GPS adapter, but I struggle to come up with a real use for it. The Book module is another good idea begging to be further implemented. I still don’t know anybody who has ever used the Slideshow, Print, or Web modules. I know the Web module has some Responsive Templates, but wouldn’t an artist prefer to use WordPress, SmugMug, or Squarespace instead?
- It appears that you can up the Lightroom image cache beyond 50GB, which helps with extremely large image sets (events, weddings, composites, etc.).
- We are still using the Adobe Lightroom 2012 image process. I still think there is improvement to be made in noise reduction, dynamic range, and color retouching that doesn’t result in overuse of the Vibrance and Saturation sliders.
- There has been no change to the way filters/plugins are used and applied. I don’t like that I still have to create a separate TIF file to edit RAW files in Nik Software, MacPhun, Noiseware, etc. I still wish the “layer and layer mask” functionality in Photoshop would find it’s way to Adobe Lightroom. I suppose there is always Version 7.
- There is still no automatic dust detection. Let’s face it, between our sensors and our glass, dust is a fact of life. Yes, I can individually select each dust spot, and yes, I do appreciate the contrast view that allows me to see them easier, but I would rather Lightroom just did 99% of that work for me.
- I still want better batch editing tools in the Develop module. I can save a little bit of time with the Previous button, but edit one thing and you are essentially starting over.
I need some more time Adobe Lightroom CC, but I will post a follow-up soon with additional feedback. If you aren’t already a subscribed to the Adobe Creative Cloud Photographer’s bundle, you are definitely missing out.
In the meantime, I would love to know what you think about the software and how it is improving your photography and artistic workflow.
T.M. Schultze is a San Diego-based photographer, traveller, and writer. He writes, photographs, and draws things of the outdoors that have inspired humans for thousands of years. He co-authored the Photographer’s Guide to Joshua Tree Park which can be purchased here.