July 29, 2008
Author: Ian Lyons
When Adobe released the public beta of Photoshop Lightroom 2.0 back in early April 2008 it was with the express intention of providing the user community with an opportunity to try out many of the new features. Obviously, there was an expectation that the users would provide feedback on the new features and other aspects of the Lightroom workflow. So, here we are some 4 months later and the final release version is available, the question on everyone lips is – has the public beta delivered on it’s objectivesSo what’s new and improved?
In comparison the public beta, and as forewarned, the release version of Lightroom 2.0 doesn’t contain many new features. Nonetheless, there are a good number of enhancements to those first seen in the public beta. Most of the new features were probably already in development but weren’t ready for the public beta. As for the enhancements, well, some were planned, but in some cases Adobe obviously took on board user feedback. This latter point may come as surprise to some readers, but it shouldn’t, especially when some of the Lightroom and Camera Raw engineers were active participants in the beta forum.
During the public beta period Adobe were particularly keen to receive feedback on: the Local brush adjustments, the Library filter tools, and the refinements to output sharpening. So, it should come as no surprise to find that the new and improved features since the public beta are:
• Improved local adjustment brushes (including a sharpening brush)
• Gradient tool with custom toning
• Enhanced Folder and Collection view
• Enhanced keyword filtering
• Lightroom Web, Export and Metadata SDK
• Significant Camera Profile enhancements including a dedicated profile editing application
Since much of the material in my earlier public beta preview is still current it would be worthwhile reading it along with this feature review. You can access it by pressing the link button below. The preview will open in a separate window, so it shouldn’t interfere with reading this page.
The following table lists the new and enhanced features found in Lightroom 2.0:
Simplified organisational tools in Library
Volume Management View
Enhanced Keyword List
Enhanced Search and Filter Panel
Dual Monitor Support
64-bit native on Mac and Windows.
Metadata SDK for custom metadata
Post Crop Vignette
Local Adjustment Brush and Gradient Filter for: Exposure, Brightness, Contrast, Saturation, Clarity, Sharpening and custom toning
Support for new camera profiling technology via DNG Profile Editor
Additional detail view window for Noise Reduction and Sharpening
Slideshow Export to JPEG
Enhanced colour selection dialog box for backgrounds and borders
Output sharpening for print and output to screen
Print Package with automatic cell layout
16-bit printing on Mac
Web SDK for third party gallery support
Lightroom Exchange for community plug-in interaction
So, of the features most requested both before and during the public beta, which didn’t make the cut?
Support for CMYK (see Ian’s separate story on how to cheat importing CMYK)
Support for content such as videos produced by digital cameras