The new Lightroom 4 beta

I have been testing the new beta version of Lightroom 4. We do not use Lightroom but the camera raw develop module is the same as it will be in Adobe CS6 which we will be upgrading too as soon as it is released.

To test the camera raw module, I used raw files taken on the compact Fuji X100 that I have been testing and the changes between the previous and new camera raw are superb.

Here is an image taken against the light on the Fuji and alongside it the new sliders of LR4 used to adjust it.

© aberdeenphoto.com

The new sliders controlling highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks give great control. All the sliders we are used to including clarity, vibrance etc. are enhanced. The adjustment sliders now have a zero centre point allowing adjustment both ways rather than starting at the left as in the previous version. The adjustments are all greatly improved and are "content aware".

 

As well as the "night and day" differences seen here, these tools will allow us very fine control of images – e.g. getting maximum detail in a wedding dress and retaining detail in the Groom's black jacket. To repeat what I said about the new cameras – it is an exciting time to be a photographer.

If you want to learn more about LR4, Terry White of Adobe has a good video showing the main features in his blog – click here.