Lightroom 3.2 RC and 3.2 Update
A couple of weeks ago Adobe released Lightroom 3.2 RC, which stands for "Release Candidate." There never was a Lightroom 3.1
as Adobe decided to skip right to 3.2 in order to have the number after the period match the Camera Raw version, which is now at version 6.2.
So, going forward these two will be in sync. The ‘release candidate' label indicated that the update is well tested but would
benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all of our customers. Version 3.2 RC contains a
list of bug fixes, adds camera support for a host of new cameras, new lens profiles, and adds direct publish capability to Facebook and SmugMug.
You can visit the Lightroom 3.2 upgrade page for a complete list of updates
I will add a warning here. After updating Lightroom 3.0 to version 3.2 RC I actually noticed a slowdown in performance when it comes to full
resolution previews. When Lightroom 3.0 was released the speed of previews was greatly improved over Lightroom 2.x, which was a major selling
point in my opinion, but with Lightroom 3.2 RC it felt as if performance took a step backwards in performance. Luckily, last night
(August 31, 2010), Adobe released the final version of Lightroom 3.2 and the performance issue seems to have been resolved.
There are still some things in Lightroom 3.2 that need work. First is the speed at which Lightroom accesses and displays folders in the import dialog
box. As you drill down through your hard drive looking for a particular folder to import, it can literally take Lightroom upwards of 30 seconds to
display the listing of subfolders (Notice circle below "Cameratown" in photo on right). Sometimes it only displays just a few of the sub folders leaving you wondering what happened to the rest of them.
By the time you click to close and re-open the main folder the software has caught up and usually then displays all of the names of the sub folders.
This isn't the only Adobe product that has a tough time with the Windows file system. Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 and CS5 are also very slow with
In the History panel you still cannot delete just one entry from within a group of changes. Why do we have to undo all of the changes ABOVE a
particular edit just to remove the crop for example. Yes, you can go back to the right hand panels to reverse whichever change you are looking
to undo, but it would be even easier to have that ability right there in the History panel.
The Slideshow Module has been improved but you can still only choose one song for a slideshow (not that anyone really wants to sit through more than one
song); you can add an opening and closing screen to your slideshows, but the 'identity plate' editor that allows the creation of these screens only
allows one line of text and will only display the first 18 characters you type. Fortunately, the 'identity plate' editor does allow you to use
a graphic as your identity plate, which takes a bit more work but will allow for a more professional look.
One of the new tricks in Lightroom 3.0 is its ability to import DSLR video files alongside still images. This helps you manage your video clips
alongside your images, but that's as far as Lightroom goes with video. If you double click a video thumbnail, the program will launch
whichever video player is associated with that particular video format instead of playing it inside Lightroom itself. This also means that
there are no video centric features inside Lightroom - no way to upload video to online services, no way to edit or trim video, grab still frames
from video, or even incorporate video clips within slideshows or web galleries. Since Adobe also makes Adobe After Effects and
Premiere Pro there is no doubt they have the staff to make it happen, it's just a matter of when. Most likely it will be sooner rather than later.
Without hesitation, Lightroom 3.0 (and now 3.2) is a must-have update if you are considering moving up from Lightroom 2.x.
The noise reduction, improved sharpness, improved performance, Publish Services feature, Lens Correction, Perspective Correction tools,
and new Watermarking utilities alone make it worth the $99 upgrade. Actually, the features just mentioned should make it a must-have
for anyone considering adding Lightroom to their workflow. In a world where time is money, you'll find that you can save
tons of time editing your images in Lightroom compared to most any prior method.
Lightroom is a remarkable program for anyone trying to manage thousands of digital photographs. The ability to correct white balance
across a range of images or to clone out sensor-dust in a group of images all at once are just two of the hundreds of the benefits I didn't
even mention in this review - mainly because these topics have been covered either in my review of Lightroom 2.0 or in video tutorials around the web.
Also, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3.x is not a replacement for Adobe Photoshop and never will be. As Lightroom gains more functionality so will Adobe
Photoshop. However Lightroom 3.x will make the trip to Photoshop a less common scenario for more and more of your images. Lightroom
and Photoshop also play together very well (as do most all Adobe products) with Lightroom able to send images over to Photoshop for further enhancement with the changes showing up
in Lightroom when you're done.
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Adobe provided us with a reviewers copy of the software for review purposes. My opinions in this review are solely based on my
experiences with the software and were not influenced in any way by the fact that Adobe provided a copy of the software for review.
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Lightroom 3.2 Review Pages:
Introduction (1) •
Library (2) •
Develop (3) • Slideshow, Print & Web (4) •