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Upgrade (Lightroom 3) or change

cheddar-caveman 14 1.1k England
23 Apr 2013 8:31AM
As the owner of Lightroom 3 I can "upgrade" to Lightroom 4 for around 65. Is this worth doing or is there a better editing program out there for the same sort of price? As an amateur wildlife photographer I don't take thousands of pictures and I get the impression that the Lightroom series is specifically designed for handling/sorting/storing large numbers.
Comments would be appreciated.

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cats_123 Plus
14 4.8k 28 Northern Ireland
23 Apr 2013 8:41AM
I've been running LR4 for since it came out and think it's a great piece of kit. I don't think you would really classify it as a storage device. Yes, it sorts, and allows multiple variations from the same image without altering the original, but find it's the `simplest' yet sophisticated manipulation software available. My volumes are relatively low

As there is a LR5 beta out..it might be worth waiting for the full version before upgrading. There are some other threads on here which speak highly of the beta (I haven't tried it yet) SmileSmile
digicammad 15 22.0k 39 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 8:55AM
I switched to LR about a year ago and hardly ever venture into PS now, I think LR is absolutely superb. The workflow is fast and efficient and it has enough tools to be more than just a 'whole image' editor. The only thing I wish it did a little better is cloning/healing, that is pretty much the only thing for which I have to use PS these days.

If you use Photomatix LR4 also allows you to load images direct and then save the results back to your catalogue.

Gaucho 16 2.8k 2 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 8:58AM
Ian, re cloning/healing it is sorted in LR5 Grin
23 Apr 2013 9:05AM
Since Lightroom 4 is the first version of LR I've actually owned, I'm probably not the best qualified to answer the question.
I've auditioned LR versions 1, 2 & 3 and, for various reasons, was never impressed, but when I tried v4 I decided to actually buy a copy. In my opinion, the highlight recovery in v4 is better than any other raw developer program that I've tried. Since buying it, I'm using LR 4.4 for all my raw development.

However, from what I've read, the processing engine in LR4 is significantly different to earlier LightRoom versions and produces superior results, so if you're updating from v3 then I'm sure you will see a difference.
Of course, the obvious thing is to download the LR4 trial version and evaluate it for yourself,
There is the downside that in v4 some of the controls have been given different names, although their operation remains the same.
I primarily bought LR 4 to use as a raw developer, but because of the way images are imported for processing, I'm still learning to use it's capabilities as a DAM program.

However, Adobe have just released the beta version of LR 5, so if you're going to try a new version, it would probably best to download and try v5, which has all the features of v4 plus additions. If you like it then you can skip LR 4 and go straight for the LR 5 upgrade when it is released.

Before I switched to LightRoom, I was using Corel AfterShot Pro as my raw developer, which although having a nice UI, suffers from lack of updates to support newer cameras. There is much speculation as to the future of AfterShot Pro and Corels direction with the program.

I've recently heard people singing the praises of Photo Ninja, but when I gave it a quick trial I couldn't see any advantage over LightRoom - your mileage may vary, as they say.
rogerfry 12 543 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 9:26AM
As you're a Mac user, you could always have a a look at Aperture.....on the app.store for around 55.
seahawk 11 1.2k United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 9:46AM
I'm a Mac user but think LR is much better than Aperture. LR4 has had some problems for some users, esp. PC users, but I've had very few, none pof them major. I'm currently playing with the beta of LR5 and am quite impressed so far.

In short, yes, I think it's worth upgrading but as LR5 is imminent perhaps it would be worth waiting for that version.
digicammad 15 22.0k 39 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 11:34AM

Quote:Ian, re cloning/healing it is sorted in LR5

Interesting, must take a look.
JJGEE 13 7.2k 18 England
23 Apr 2013 6:53PM

Quote:Ian, re cloning/healing it is sorted in LR5 Grin

I am not so sure on that one.

Excellent for the sensor dust spots, that is, small circles but the new " brush " clone / heal I do not think is good enough yet.
Perhaps in the next few months Adobe will improve it for the formal release of LR 5.
Gaucho 16 2.8k 2 United Kingdom
23 Apr 2013 7:41PM
Certainly not as good as PS but it's quite usable and pretty much negates having to leave LR I reckon.
Paul Morgan 17 19.1k 6 England
23 Apr 2013 8:31PM
What operating system are you running Michael, those of us still using XP can not upgrade to V4.
cheddar-caveman 14 1.1k England
23 Apr 2013 8:34PM
I'm on a Mac running OS X6.4.8
Paul Morgan 17 19.1k 6 England
23 Apr 2013 8:45PM
You should be OK then, I had to cancel my order for V4, I failed to read the small print Smile

If you have 2 or more gb ram, you could try Raw Therapy, its free.

cheddar-caveman 14 1.1k England
23 Apr 2013 9:56PM
Thanks for that gentlemen, and especially Paul. Looks interesting and free - can't be bad!

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