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Adobe Releases Lightroom 2 with Local Correction and Many Other New Features

lr2_boxshot.jpgAdobe Systems today officially announced the release of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2. From the online demo I recently viewed, it is an impressive upgrade. There are many new features that are not currently in the Lightroom 2 beta.

One big improvement is in the Print module. Based on the size of your print output and the resolution of your image, sharpening is determined based on algorithms developed with expertise from the folks at PixelGenius (pixelgenius.com), the makers of PhotoKit SHARPENER, a piece of software that I highly recommend. Another welcome addition to the Print Module is the ability to create custom picture packages, similar to those currently available in Photoshop CS2 and CS3. Any one photo at a time can be set up to print in a multitude of different sizes on a sheet, and those templates can then be saved.

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New Print Module for Lightroom 2, showing the new Picture Package Layout option. Image courtesy Adobe Systems. (click on image to view larger version)

Two more very welcome new tools are the new Graduated Filter tool, as well as the improved Lens Vignetting tool. Now, after cropping, the vignette acts as it does in Photoshop. Prior to that, it would act as if the image was not cropped, resulting in an uneven vignette.

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The new Graduated Filter tool in Lightroom 2. Image courtesy Adobe Systems. (click on image to view larger version)

One of the other “big news items” is the ability to do local correction, which is really quite revolutionary in a product that uses nondestructive editing.

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Image showing the masking capability of Lightroom 2, with an example of before and after edits. Images courtesy Adobe Systems. (click on images to view larger versions)

The Adobe press release has a lot of good detail about Lightroom 2. You can read it in its entirety below. I look forward to adding articles soon about my hands-on experiences with the product.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 is available now (in Windows and Mac OSX versions) through the Adobe Store at www.adobe.com/store in English, French and German with the Japanese language version planned to be released at a future date. The estimated street price is USD$299 for new users with an upgrade price of USD$99 for registered users of qualifying Lightroom customers.

Digg!

Adobe’s Official Press Release:

SAN JOSE, Calif. – July 29, 2008 – Adobe Systems Incorporated
(Nasdaq:ADBE) today announced the immediate availability of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 software, the photographer’s essential toolbox for managing, adjusting and presenting large volumes of digital photographs. With new enhancements such as dual-monitor support, radical advances in non-destructive localized image correction, and streamlined search capabilities, Lightroom 2 is a compelling upgrade that simplifies photography from shoot to finish. As Adobe’s first application to support 64-bit for Mac OS X 10.5 Macintosh computers with Intel processors and Microsoft Windows Vista 64-bit operating systems, Lightroom 2 also provides improved memory performance for dealing with large scale images.

“A worldwide community of photographers provided valuable insight and feedback, as part of the Lightroom 2 public beta program, ultimately helping us deliver a better product,” said Tom Hogarty, senior product manager for Lightroom and Camera Raw at Adobe. “We’ve considered their requests which helped us develop useful features that make it easier than ever for our customers to quickly refine, enhance and present brilliant photographs.”

Photoshop Lightroom 2: Smarter, Faster and More Accurate

The enhanced Library module in Lightroom 2 helps streamline and accelerate photographers’ workflows. With the ability to visually organize images across multiple hard drives, Lightroom 2 and its powerful Library Filter Bar makes it easy for users to quickly find the images they need. The Suggested Keywords feature helps photographers keyword their images by making intelligent suggestions based on their own previous efforts. New dual-monitor support allows users to expand their workspace, giving them flexibility to edit and organize images in a way that maximizes an additional display.

In the Develop module, the new Local Adjustment Brush lets photographers fine-tune specific areas of an image to precisely adjust color, exposure and tonal range without affecting other areas of the image. The new Graduated Filter expands the toolbox in Lightroom, allowing for edits to larger areas by applying gradually diminishing or increasing adjustment effects such as exposure, clarity, and saturation, alone, or in any combination. Lightroom 2 also helps photographers print more efficiently by quickly arranging photos of multiple sizes on one or many pages with flexible and customizable templates to maximize paper and ink.

Intelligent algorithms automatically determine optimal sharpening for screen or print, producing crisper images faster. Developers can further extend the Lightroom workflow with Web, Export and Metadata Software Development Kits available at the Adobe Developer Connection, https://www.adobe.com/devnet/.

Ground-Breaking Innovation in Raw Technology

New raw technology gives photographers access to flexible camera profiles. Camera profiles are the visual starting point for the raw processing workflow, but image preferences vary for every photographer. To minimize surprises, Adobe is supplying default camera profiles that closely emulate the visual looks that photographers are used to seeing from their favorite camera, while also providing the ability to create highly customized profiles to suit different tastes. Camera profiles are available for immediate download on Adobe Labs (https://labs.adobe.com) for use with Lightroom 2 and Camera Raw 4.5, along with the DNG Profile Editor for the community to test and create their own profiles.

The Adobe Camera Raw 4.5 plug-in and DNG Converter 4.5 are also now available on Adobe.com and support over 190 camera models including the Olympus E 420 and E 520 models.

“One of the big reasons why Lightroom has become such a phenomenon among serious photographers is that Adobe built it with the input of a very vocal user community,” said Scott Kelby, president of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP). “Adobe really listens to the issues and challenges today’s photographers face and they’ve built a complete solution that not only meets the needs of photographers; it really feels like it was made just for us. The enhancements to Lightroom 2, combined with the power of Photoshop, give photographers the ultimate freedom to produce professional images quickly.”

Pricing and Availability

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 is available now through the Adobe Store at www.adobe.com/store in English, French and German with the Japanese language version planned to be released at a future date. The estimated street price is USD$299 for new users with an upgrade price of USD$99 for registered users of qualifying Lightroom customers. Recommended system requirements are Macintosh OSX 10.4, 10.5 1 GHz PowerPC G4 or G5 or Intel(r) based processor, or Microsoft Windows(r) XP SP2 or Windows Vista Home Premium, Business, Ultimate, or Enterprise, Intel Pentium 4(r) processor, 1 GB RAM and a 1024×768 resolution screen. Additional information on product features, upgrade policies, pricing, and language versions is available on www.adobe.com/products/photoshoplightroom/.

About Adobe Systems Incorporated

Adobe revolutionizes how the world engages with ideas and information – anytime, anywhere and through any medium. For more information, visit www.adobe.com.

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(c) 2008 Adobe Systems Incorporated. All rights reserved. Adobe, the Adobe logo, and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or other countries. Mac, Mac OS and Macintosh are trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc., registered in the United States and other countries. Microsoft, Windows, and Windows Vista are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. Pentium is a trademark or registered trademark of Intel Corporation, or its subsidiaries in the U.S. and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Related Links:

• Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 30 Day Free Tryout
• Lightroom 2 Learning Center on photoshopuser.com
• Lightroom 2 Photowalk with Scott Kelby
• Audio interview of Tom Hogarty, Lightroom Product Manager by Scott Bourne of TWiPPhoto.com
• Lightroom-News.com
• PhotoshopNews.com
• PhotoshopCAFE.com’s Lightroom 2 Video Training
• Great article by Scott Kelby with requests for Lightroom 2 from Jan. 2008. Quite a few of the requests found their way into LR 2. Thanks Scott (and your readers)!
• Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Adventure: Tasmania. This post about the new Clarity slider by Mikkel Aaland is very interesting.

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