All Tutorials

May 20, 2012

Adobe Lightroom 4 – Worth Upgrading?? New Features Worth Mentioning!!

Lightroom 4

I downloaded the new version of Adobe Lightroom 4 as I love the program and was looking forward to a new and improved version. Like myself, a lot of you are probably wondering if it’s worth the $79.00 upgrade? ($76 at BHPhotovideo) Well, I think it is for a for a few reasons in particular, and in this article I will go over them so you can decide for yourself if it’s worth spending the money.

Moving 17 Folders at Once!!

Moving 17 Folders at Once!!

The first new feature I noticed was the ability to move multiple folders from one hard drive to another. This may not be a big deal for those of you with smaller databases, but when you have a monster DB with Network drives you often need to move files around. In the past versions of Lightroom this was a pain a the one folder at a time method was all Lightroom allowed. It was actually easier to just remove the files sometimes and then re-import from the new location depending on the size of the move. In any event, you can now move multiple folders at once. I’m not sure how many you can move at once, but so far I’m moved 4 folders and now I’m moving 17 folders at once as I type this. Great upgrade Adobe!

Lightroom 4 Also has much more video support capabilities and is really a welcomed addition. Just being able to play the videos easily in Lightroom is enough for me, but Adobe added a some other features like trimming and exporting, but that is better off left to other programs dedicated to video editing in my opinion. Being able to watch them quick without launching QuickTime is a big plus!!

The next feature I noticed was the huge improvement to the Develop Module.

Lightroom 4 - Develope Module

Lightroom 4 – Develope Module

Develop Module - Tone Control

Develop Module – Tone Control

Tons of New default presets are built in which can really speed up your workflow if you learn to take advantage of them and virtual copies!! Beyond that initial awesome upgrade is the New tone control area on the right hand side. It’s completely new and uses a newly developed processing engine. Basically what that means is the sliders are much better and you now hove more precise control over the tonal ranges in your photos. You can get more out of Raw files with less noise and other issues and it’s easier to do.

You now have independent controls and it’s set up for a top down workflow. Get your exposure close first, then fine-tune your highlights, shadows, whites, and then blacks. Also, holding ALT down when your selecting slider will reveal the mask for you which is incredible helpful!! Try it out as it also works in Lightroom 3 ;)

Next we have the Clarity slider which basically turns your photo into a HDR look if you go to far with it. Very similar to the tonal contrast feature in the ever so popular and personal favorite of mine, the Nik Software.

Check out this image strait of the Sony A57 using the Tamron SP 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di II LD Lens.

Jpeg off the Camera

Jpeg off the Camera

Now check this out with the Clarity slider jacked up and a little bit of shadow fill, white, and black tweaking. Huge difference and I obviously went way overboard, but it’s really nice to use on certian images to a lesser degree as it adds a nice POP to your image. It’s also worth noting how well Lightroom 4 handles the Halo issues that are usually caused by adjustments like this.

Clarity and Other Adjustments made

Clarity and Other Adjustments made

Clarity Jacked Up!!

Clarity Jacked Up!!

 

Lastly, Lightroom 4 added a Book Module and a Geo-tagging Map Module. Cool features adopted from iPhoto and Aperture I’m sure, but I really don’t use these features personally. The book interface seems cool, but I prefer using the Adorama Photo Books and their online software. It’s incredible easy to use and powerful, but more importantly the books are amazing quality and affordable. Online can be an issue at times though, so for that I use the Photojunction software. It’s free and incredible powerful!!

Closing Remarks

As you can see Adobe really did add some solid features to the new Lightroom 4. Is it worth the ~$78 dollars US?? I personally think so and I’m glad I got it. I do reviews for my photography work though these days and Lightroom is just perfect for that type of work and any work that requires mass editing and organizing. Weddings come to mind in particular which was the initial reason I got into Lightroom from photoshop and bridge in the first place.

I hope you all got something out of this, and please feel free to ask questions or comments below. I’m always happy to try and help if you have any Lightroom issues as well ;)

Jay

 


Subscribe to sonyalphalab.com

Your support is greatly appreciated as we run this site in our spare time and are not paid. We can however, make a small commission if you click a product link that your interested in. That click will then give us credit if you choose to purchase any given item. This has no effect on the cost of the product, and is a simple way to give back to SonyAlphaLab.com for the effort and info we provide.

Also, be sure to keep following us on Google+, Twitter, RSS-feed, or Sign up for Email Updates!!

Direct Shopping Links – Thanks for your Support!!

BHPhotoVideo | Amazon – US, CA, UK | Adorama | Ebay – US, CA, UK, DE, FR, ES

Thanks,
Jay

Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Plus
  • Delicious
  • LinkedIn
  • Tumblr
  • Email
  • RSS



About the Author

Jay
Hello, I'm the owner and operator of SonyAlphaLab.com. Please check out the About page for a full background on myself and the Lab ;) Google+ | Twitter | RSS-feed | Email Updates!!




4 Comments


  1. Joe

    How does Lightroom 4 compare to the Aperture?


    • Jay

      Hey Joe,

      Good question! I have not used Aperture in quite some time. Probably about 3 years or so in fact, but at that time aperture was very good and about the same as Lightroom. One issue I noticed with Aperture though back then was every time I changed it setting it re-rendered the entire file or something and it took for ever to update. It was really slow, but to it’s defense was probably just a setting I could not find. I downloaded the Demo and was just playing with the program, so I just went back to Lightroom. I loved the zoom magnifier tool though!!

      These days, I would have to compare the feature sets and speed, but I can tell you lightroom 4 is worth trying. Especially if you have Aperture, because the Database style of the programs are the same. I have a ton of Lightroom Video tutorials also over here if you need ;)

      http://jhpvideotutorials.com/tutorials/

      Jay


      • Joe

        Thanks, I’m not currently using either yet but my iPhoto library is quickly approaching 15,000 images so I’m at the point where I feel like I should be looking towards a more robust solution.

        I’m going to look at both Lightroom and Aperture soon so your article had great timing to get me started. Thanks.


      • Jay

        No Problem Joe, If you have neither then I would definitely check out both!! Good luck ;)

        Best,
        Jay



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Protected by WP Anti Spam



 
EmailEmail
PrintPrint
Pinterest