Adobe Lightroom 2 RELEASED!

July 29, 2008


What’s New in 2.0 final release…?

As some have played with the public beta and others haven’t, I’ll include everything that’s changed since 1.4.1, but features that have changed or are new since the public beta will be marked with *NEW* or *CHANGED*.

Major Changes

Global Changes

Camera Updates

*NEW* Official camera support – Olympus e420, Olympus E520

*NEW* Unofficial camera support – Canon 1000D, Nikon D700

Catalog Upgrades

*NEW* The 2.0 final release will safely upgrade your 1.x or 2.0 public beta catalogs. As always, make sure you have a full backup before upgrading.

*NEW* When you try to open a catalog from an earlier version, it will automatically ask to upgrade to the current format, creating a new catalog in the process, leaving your original catalog untouched, and borrowing the existing previews file.

*NEW* Be aware that you won’t then be able to open that new catalog in an earlier version if you change your mind, so keep a copy of the 1.x version if you will need to go back to 1.4.1.

New Color Profiles!

*NEW* For the technically minded, also now available as a public beta is the DNG Profile Editor, which allows you to build complex custom profiles for use with DNG and raw files, replacing the previous calibration workarounds. The intention is not that everyone will start building their own profiles – although you can if you wish – but that profiles can be shared and sold. It also includes a very easy automatic colorchecker calibration which will replace previous calibration scripts. The DNG Profile Editor can be downloaded from:

*NEW* More importantly, that new DNG Profile Editor also ships with custom profiles designed to emulate the manufacturer’s own conversions and picture styles. This means that you can now produce almost identical Canon, Nikon or Fuji colours for most DSLR’s with Lightroom/ACR’s default settings.

*NEW* These profiles can also be downloaded from the link above and, once installed, are selected from the profile drop-down list in the calibration panel. They are fully compatible with ACR 4.5 and Lightroom 2.0.

Dual Monitors

The second screen may either be a second window on the same screen (useful for those running a single large monitor) or as a window/full screen view on a second screen.

Your options are:

Grid – for example, Grid on the second display while using Develop on the main screen. You can only have Grid mode on one display at a time.

Normal Loupe – shows the image which has been selected on the main screen.

Live Loupe – shows the image you’re currently floating over on the main screen, and updates live as you move the mouse.

Locked Loupe – fixes your chosen image on screen, for use when comparing or as a Shirley image.

Compare – usual Compare mode, but you can select and rearrange the images on the main screen whilst viewing Compare mode on the second display.

Survey – usual Survey mode, but you can select and rearrange the images on the main screen whilst viewing Survey mode on the second display.

*NEW* Slideshow – when the second display is in full screen mode, you can run a slideshow of images. Changes to the settings are made in the Slideshow module, however a small toolbar at the bottom of the second display allows you to override some settings.

*NEW* Second display preview – if the second screen is facing away from you, you can turn on the new preview window which allows you to control your second display.


64-bit support is now available for Mac and Windows (as long as the machine and operating system are 64-bit capable).

For many functions, such as building previews or doing large exports, it won’t make a big difference as those are mainly tied to disc I/O speeds. It will be faster for general processing speed though, and Vista 64-bit operating system running the 64-bit version shouldn’t particularly see Out of Memory errors.

There’s a separate download for 64-bit Windows version. The Mac version has a simple checkbox – select the App, Cmd-I to Get Info, and you’ll see the checkbox there.


*NEW* Maximum size has gone from 10,000 pixels to 65,000 pixels, enabling the import of almost all panoramic images.

Library Module

The layout of the Library module has change – all filtering and searching is now done from a large filters bar which stretches right across the top of the Grid view. This can be accessed via the \ key or View > Show Filter View.

The left hand panels now contain specific image sources – Folders or Collections. Metadata editing has moved to the right panel.

Folders Panel

*NEW* Volume Browser

*NEW* Colours for space

*NEW* Different discs

*NEW* Disc status – online/offline

*NEW* Display root folder paths

*NEW* ‘Add Parent Folder’ and ‘Promote Subfolders’ have been added to the folders right-click menus, making it much easier to adjust the way the folder hierarchy is displayed.


*CHANGED* Many of the date/time bugs that haunted previous releases have now been fixed!!!

The Filters Bar

The ‘Text’ filter replaces Find, and is used to searching for text within a variety of metadata fields, such as filenames, keywords, etc.

*CHANGED* The ‘Attribute’ filters (named ‘Refine’ in the beta) include flags, star ratings, colour labels, and master/virtual copies. It’s also gained an icon for ‘no label’ and ‘custom label’. These same filters can still be accessed on the Filmstrip where they were before – click the Filter label to show them.

The ‘Metadata’ filters allow you to easily combine filters on a variety of metadata fields.

You can add additional columns by going to Library > Filter by Metadata > Add Column or by floating over the end of each column title bar and waiting for the + sign to appear.

Select multiple options in a column using the Ctrl/Cmd and Shift keys.

The Metadata filters now offer a few additional options that the previous Metadata Browser didn’t. Flash State, GPS Data, City, State, Province, Copyright Status, Job have all been added. Also now included are filtering on specific Develop settings – Aspect Ratio (Portrait/Landscape/Square), Treatment (Colour or Grayscale) and Develop Preset!

*CHANGED* Serial number is now available in the Metadata filters, in addition to those that were in the beta.

*CHANGED* Keywords in the Metadata filters can now be viewed as hierarchical or flat.

The Metadata filters can be combined with Text or Refine filters for a very powerful yet simple search facility. To combine all three, hold down Shift while clicking on the filter section names (i.e. hold down Shift and click on Text, Refine and Metadata)

The combinations of filters can be saved as filter presets for easy access.


The Keyword Tags panel on the left has become the Keyword List panel on the right.

*NEW* The Keyword Tags panel now has a search bar, to easily find a specific keyword in a long list.

The Keywording Panel in the right also has a useful tweak. The Keyword Set section now has a ‘Suggested Keywords’. This intelligently suggests keywords based on your previous keyword combinations and the keywords assigned to images nearby.

*NEW* The Keywording Panel now has an extra ‘Add Keywords’ box to easily add new keywords without accidentally selecting existing keywords.


The Collections panel has been given a complete overhaul.

*CHANGED* Heirachical collections aren’t back in the same way as 1.x, but the new way works well, and existing hierarchical collections are upgraded. Collection Sets contain Collections or other Collection Sets, but not photos. Collections can only contain photos, but not Collections or Collection Sets. So you can have a hierarchy of Collection Sets, and put Collections of photos inside those.

*NEW* There’s a new Target Collection indicated by a + symbol – by default it’s the Quick Colection, but you can set any collection as the Target Collection, and the shortcuts (B and the QC circle on the thumbnail) will add to that Target Collection.

Collections remember your settings, whether for filters, slideshow, print, or web.

The Collections panel is now visible in each of the output modules (slideshow/print/web).

Specific module collections are created when you create a new collection in the Slideshow/Print/Web modules. These also retain settings for any of the modules, but are identified with an icon describing the module in which you first created the collection, which is useful for identification. Double clicking on that module-specific collection will take you directly to the right module.

Smart Collections!

You can now select a series of criteria and these Smart Collections are updated live. (This is also known on other programs as Rules, Smart Folders etc.)

Hit the + button to add additional criteria

Hold down Alt/Opt while hitting the + button to add additional more complex criteria.

*NEW* Smart Collections can now be imported and exported, to make it easy to transfer between catalogs.

*NEW* Show in Collection… has been added to the right-click menu for all photos, so you can easily see to which collections each photo belongs.

*NEW* The Collections panel can now be sorted by collection name or type.

Develop Module

Local Adjustments

Huge amounts will be written about the new local adjustments, no doubt, so I won’t go into detail here. A quick summary:

You can paint masks on to the image, which are fully editable.

You can use these masks to adjust exposure, brightness, clarity, saturation and tint.

*NEW* Sharpness and Contrast have been added to the Local Adjustment options

You can have multiple masks on the same image, all doing different adjustments.

The Auto Mask function intelligently masks off areas of different colour to protect these areas without taking hours to build a perfect mask.

*NEW* Graduated Filter has been added to the Local Adjustments – this allows adjustments with a gradient.

*NEW* A Density slider has been added to the Adjustment Brush options and sets a maximum density for that adjustment (as opposed to Flow which builds up gradually)

*NEW* The Adjustment Brush & Graduated Filter options panels have gained an additional toggle switch which switches between buttons and sliders, depending on the interface you prefer.

*CHANGED* The effect of the settings has changed – your beta settings will almost certainly give different results

*NEW* Local Adjustment combinations of settings can now be saved as presets.

*NEW* The mask overlay has been greatly improved, showing the feathering of the mask, and in a choice of colours. Press O to show the mask and shift-O to cycle through different mask colours.

It’s not possible to do these tools justice in writing – you have to download and play! They’re incredible!

Other Settings

The Crop/Heal/Clone/Red Eye buttons have moved from the toolbar to their new home on the Tool Strip just below the histogram. The options appear directly below the icons when that tool is selected, and the panels now have an on/off switch to see a before/after view of your adjustments.

*NEW* The Clone/Heal options have gained an Opacity slider.

The Auto Settings have been adjusted and work better than previously. They are still automatic settings, so they will never be as good as a trained eye, but they no longer blow out average jpegs, which is a huge improvement.

The Clarity slider can now go into negative figures – with a lovely softening as a result.

The Lens Correction panel has gone, and the controls moved.

The Vignettes panel is a much requested addition. In addition to the lens correction vignette which has been rehomed, there is now a post-crop vignette, which allows artistic vignettes locked to the crop edge.

*NEW* The Post-Crop Vignette has 2 more sliders since the public beta – it now has Amount, Midpoint, Roundness and Feather.

Chromatic Aberration is now at home in the Detail panel

*CHANGED* The Detail panel now has a small 1:1 preview window to show the corrections live. Use the TAT tool to adjust the area of image that you’re viewing. If you hide that preview, a small popup preview appears while you adjust sliders, giving a 1:1 view. Update 2.0 – forget the popup preview, that’s gone now.

Keyboard shortcuts – the + and – keys have been tied to the Develop sliders.

Adding shift increases the increments of movement.

, and . keys cycle through the sliders giving each focus in turn, or you can single-click on the slider label to give that slider focus. The slider label will be brighter than all of the others.

; will reset the selected slider to its default setting.

A new shortcuts list is available – check the end of the page for the links.

Export Dialog

Export to Source Folder can now export files directly to the same folder as the original, or a subfolder of that original folder.

Automatically add exported files back into your Lightroom catalog, bypassing the Import dialog, and automatically stack with the original.

*NEW* Set a default action for existing files – overwrite/skip/ask.

Automatically open the exported files in another program, without requiring an alias/shortcut in the Export Actions folder.

Output sharpening

Extensive work has gone into implementing Bruce Fraser’s ideas on the ideal sharpening workflow.

Don’t worry about the fact there are no controls – it’s already been adjusted for optimal output, based on the experience of the team at Pixel Genius who created PhotoKit Sharpener.

To get the best out of the automated sharpening, you need a properly capture sharpened image, so the sharpening settings in Develop mode are still essential.

Screen sharpening is based on most people owning LCD screens now, so they may look a little soft on CRT’s.

Edit with…

Edit with Photoshop now has new options

Files may now be opened directly into Photoshop CS3 10.0.1 & ACR 4.5 without creating an interim Tiff or PSD file. Other external editors still require an interim file.

Open as Smart Object in Photoshop… opens the file as a smart object in Photoshop.

Merge to Panorama in Photoshop… opens the selected files into the Merge to Panorama dialog in Photoshop CS3.

Merge to HDR in Photoshop… opens the selected files into the Merge to HDR dialog in Photoshop CS3.

Open as Layers in Photoshop… opens the selected files into layers in a single file in Photoshop CS3.

The new Open/Merge options require Photoshop CS3 10.0.1 and ACR 4.5 to work correctly.

*NEW* ACR 4.5 was released at the same time as Lightroom 2.0 and ensures complete compatibility with ALL of the new features. Some of the new adjustments don’t have an interface in 4.5, but existing settings will be applied on conversion.

*NEW* Multiple external editors are now available, instead of just the 2 external editors available previously.

Slideshow Module

*NEW* You can now add Intro & End Screens

*NEW* Export to JPEG is now an alternative to Export to PDF, enabling you to export the nicely bordered slides you’ve created and use other software such as your CD burning software to create DVD slideshows.

*NEW* A ‘Repeat’ checkbox has been added, to create a looping slideshow.

Print Module

The much requested ‘Print to Jpeg’ is finally available!

It includes options for resolution, file dimensions, jpeg quality, and also custom ICC profiles (not just sRGB, AdobeRGB, ProPhotoRGB). This means that contact sheets can be created, borders can be added, multiple images per page can be arranged, and these can all be sent to offsite labs for printing.

Print sees the introduction of Picture Packages.

Multiple versions of the same image can be laid out on a single page in a variety of sizes, unlike the fixed grid contact sheets available in 1.x.

These are currently repetitions of the same image, not multiple different images, but will be very useful for creating ‘schools photography’ prints, passport photographs and the suchlike.

Print Sharpening

A hint – using glossy sharpening on matte paper should look ok, but using matte sharpening on glossy paper will likely look awful!

As per Output Sharpening in the Export diaog, advanced algorithms automatically work out your output sharpening for you.

Also now available is 16 bit output to local printers, for those using high end inkjet printers and suchlike.

Web Module

Other Minor Adjustments


Import Initial Previews has added an additional option – ‘Embedded & Sidecar’ – this reads larger embedded previews. Lightroom will still need to render its own previews, but it’s good for starting to sort your images whilst waiting for previews to build.

*CHANGED* If you’ve imported as Raw+Jpeg with the ‘treat as separate photos’ preference unchecked, and then wish to import the jpegs separately, you can now check that box and import the jpegs without having to first move them to a different folder.


*NEW* Presets section now has a ‘Show in Explorer/Finder’ button

*NEW* Additional options for External Editor presets

*NEW* External Editor PPI setting can now be set in Preferences

*NEW* ACR Cache Size and Location can now be controlled from the Preferences dialog, without having to switch to ACR.

*NEW* Catalog Settings now has a checkbox to decide whether to allow date/time changes to write back to proprietary raw files


Added to menu File > Plugin Manager

See Jeffrey Friedl’s blog for an update on this

Added to menu File > Plugin Extras

*NEW* Added to menu File > Library Filters > Filter by Copy Status

Added to menu View > Show Filter View

Added to menu View > Retouch in Develop

Added to menu Window > Zoom All

Added to menu Window > Secondary Display

Added to menu Show, Full Screen, Grid, Loupe, Live Loupe, Locked Loupe, Compare, Survey, Show Filter View, Zoom In, Zoom Out, Zoom In, Zoom Out, Increase Thumbnail Size, Decrease Thumbnail Size

Library Module

The Library panel has been renamed Catalog panel

*CHANGED* The Missing Files collection is gone, but can be accessed using the Synchronize Folder command.

Right clicking on any folder in the Folders panel has gained a new command – Update Folder Location – which allows you to change the folder links without having to first remove the existing folder and wait for Lightroom to realise it’s gone missing.

Right clicking on a keyword has gained a new command – Assign this Keyword to Selected Photo

Added to menu Library > Filter by Metadata command gives you the option to add or remove columns to the Metadata filters

Added to menu Photo > Lock to Second Window

Added to menu Metadata > Edit Metadata Presets…

Develop Module

Export & Edit with…

Slideshow Module

Play > Which Photos has been renamed Play > Content, and added Use Flagged Photos

Print Module

*NEW* Added to menu Content > All/Selected/Flagged

Web Module

Web > Which Photos has been renamed Web > Content, and added Use Flagged Photos

Usual recommendations apply – back up before upgrading

There are a number of new shortcuts, and changes to existing shortcuts, so here’s the latest list. If you find any I haven’t added, please let me know!

Keyboard Shortcuts – Windows 2.0 (pdf format, last updated 20/7/08)

Keyboard Shortcuts – Mac 2.0 (pdf format, last updated 20/7/08)

Also visit:

Lightroom Journal – Official Adobe Blog

Inside Lightroom

Rob Sylvan on Peachpit Blog


ProPhotoWorkflow Blog

Utiliser Lightroom (French)


Showing the Folder Hierarchy… take 2

May 23, 2008

Since there have been some behaviour changes since I last wrote about setting up Lightroom’s folder panel to show your tidy tree structure, let’s do a quick re-run to replace the previous instructions…

Does your folder list look like this?

No Hierarchy

And would you actually prefer to see the folder hierarchy up to a higher level, like this?

Full Hierarchy

Apart from the fact it looks nice and tidy, it makes it very easy to relink missing folders when you change hard drives, accidentally rename a parent folder outside of Lightroom, so forth. You only ever have to relink the highest level folder, and subfolders will update themselves.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to reimport your whole library. There’s a much easier way of showing Lightroom the parent folders.

1.  Put a ‘temporary’ image into your new top level folder – in this case the ‘STUDIO’ folder.

2.  Go to File > Import Photos from Disk and import that ‘temporary’ image.

3.  Your folders panel should now be showing all of your folders in their correct hierarchy, reflecting the folder structure on disc.

4.  You can now delete that ‘temporary’ image, and your new folder hierarchy should be left intact.

Selecting images

November 20, 2007

Just a quick tip tonight.  Kai accidentally deleted a series of images, instead of the one she intended.  She later commented: “That is the one thing that frustrates me about Lightroom. When you click on a picture that is highlighted in the group – the whole group stays highlighted.”

The solution – if you select the image by clicking on the IMAGE, they all stay selected. If you select the image by clicking on the GREY bit surrounding it, it deselects the others.

What’s new in Lightroom 1.3?

November 16, 2007

Lightroom 1.3 and ACR 4.3 have now been released! As usual, there’s a range of bug fixes and improvements behind the scenes, but here’s some of the important ones:

New cameras: Canon 1Ds Mark III, Canon Powershot G9, Nikon D3, Nikon D300, Olympus E-3, Olympus SP-560 UZ and Panasonic DMC-L10.

The Canon sRAW and Fuji compressed RAF formats are also now supported.

Leopard compatibility – the Print Module is now working again in 10.5.0 but can cause crashes in the new 10.5.1 release. Workaround for the moment – close the Preview panel, and don’t touch the ‘2-Up Greeting Card’ or ‘Triptych’ presets, as these consistently trigger a crash on Intel Macs. Avoiding the presets appears to prevent the crashes – normal controls appear to be ok.

Import from Device should now be working correctly again.

Noise reduction has improved further, fixing artifacts in edge transitions.

The previous performance hit when ‘Automatically write metadata to XMP’ is turned on has been greatly improved, so it feels much faster.

Web Module has been given some attention and the Airtight Galleries (AutoViewer, Postcard Viewer and SimpleViewer) are now automatically included.

Minor UI adjustments include the Temperature and Blacks sliders which now move by more logical increments when you float over the slider and use the arrow keys to make adjustments. Temperature now moves in increments of 50, and Blacks moves in 1’s instead of 5’s.

The Export SDK (software development kit) has been released, which will enable third parties to build fully integrated ‘plug-ins’. These will initially be limited to Export only, allowing automatic FTP transfer, links with image sharing websites, direct communication with other programs, and so forth. There’s more information at Developers can post plug-ins or links to their plug-ins at

The Import dialog now has a dropdown menu for your preview rendering… you can now choose ‘Minimal’ (thumbnails), ‘Standard’ (normal previews), or ‘1:1’ (full size for zooming in).
Import Previews

Rendering previews on import has also changed slightly – it now imports and THEN renders the previews, so you can carry on with your next import while it’s working. Previously you had to wait for the import to complete.

By far the biggest change is Export. It has a brand new dialog!

New Export Dialog

Export presets have been extended and can be grouped into folders just like presets in the main modules.

There’s a new section at the top, which will allow third parties to add their own export options, such as export to FTP.

And the most obvious change is the resizing options. ‘Constrain Maximum Size’ is gone, and has been replaced by a dropdown box of choices. You do still have the option of using Pixels, Inches or Centimetres in your measurements, and it now automatically converts your measurements when you flick between units.

This section has also gained a ‘Don’t Enlarge’ checkbox – this will prevent small images from being upsized, whilst still downsizing images which are too large to fit your chosen dimensions.

So the new export options…

Width & Height

This behaves the same as the previous Lightroom releases, and like Fit Image and Image Processor in Photoshop. It fits the image within a bounding box in their current orientation.

It is width/height sensitive – settings of 400 wide by 600 high will give a 400×600 vertical image, but only a 400×267 horizontal image. To create images of up to 400×600 of either orientation, you’d have to enter a square bounding box of 600×600.

Width and Height


Dimensions works slightly differently. It still fits your image within a bounding box, but it’s a little more intelligent. It takes into account the rotation of the image, and it will make the image as big as it can within your bounding box, even if it has to turn the bounding box round to do so.

It is not width/height sensitive – settings of 400 wide by 600 high will give a 400×600 image, whether it’s vertical or horizontal. If your image is a different ratio, it will still make it as big as it can within those boundries. To create images of up to 400×600, you simply enter 400×600.


Longest Edge & Shortest Edge

These do exactly as the names suggest.

A setting of 10 inches long would give images of varying crops such as 3×10, 5×10, 7×10, 8×10, 10×10.

Longest Edge

A setting of 5 inches along the shortest edge would give varying crops such as 5×5, 5×8, 5×10, 5×12.

Shortest Edge

Bear in mind that these measurements do still fall within the ACR limits to 10,000 pixels, so if your image will fall outside of this range according to the measurements you’ve set, Lightroom will simply make the image as big as it can.

A Final Reminder

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that this release is as free of bugs as possible, it is inevitable that such a large group of users will find minor bugs. There hasn’t been time to add all of the new features that have been requested, but keep the requests going via the Adobe Feature Request / Bug Report page.

As usual, please make sure you have full backups before upgrading to the new release.

Have fun!

Keyboard Shortcuts

October 21, 2007

I’ve just updated the links to the keyboard shortcuts for Lightroom 1.1 and 1.2. Links to the latest versions will always remain in the Download Links section on the menu bar, but here they are:

Keyboard Shortcuts – Windows version

Keyboard Shortcuts – Mac version

Changing the Time Stamp

October 19, 2007

Nate’s question is: “How do I change the capture time by any amount (as in NOT just by exact hours…but any # of minutes I need) on a bunch of images at once?”

First, make sure you are in Grid mode.

Select the first image in the series, and note the time that this image should be set to.

Select all of the images that need the timestamp changed, keeping the first image as the most selected (lighter gray).

Go to Metadata menu > Edit Capture Time… and this dialog will appear.

Edit Capture Time

Choose the first option ‘Adjust to a specified date and time’ as this allows you to change by years, months, days, hours, minutes or seconds.

Now, in the Corrected Time section, adjust to the correct time for your FIRST image – the time you noted down earlier.  You can select each timestamp section (hours, minutes etc) individually, and either use the arrows or type the time of your choice.

And then hit Change All.  Whilst not entirely obvious, this will update all of the other selected images by the same time difference – it won’t set them all to the same date and time.

Exactly the same process can be used for matching up the timestamp when shooting with multiple cameras.

One point to note on changing times in Lightroom… this does not affect the original file.  Any files which are exported do carry the new timestamp.   The changes are stored in the catalog, and you can return to the original time stamp at any time by using Metadata menu > Revert Capture Time to Original.

Renaming by Sequence Number

October 18, 2007

Fundy gets question of the day. “I want to renumber with the numbers starting with 001, 002, 003, etc. but it always just comes up 1, 2, 3. This messes up ordering in other programs.” So here it is step-by-step…

Select all of the images you want to rename.

Go to Library menu > Rename Photos…

Rename Dialog

Go to the File Naming dropdown menu, and choose Edit…

Rename Edit

Now you’re going to create your own preset. Using the little lozenges, you can put together any combination of filename that you like. In this case, choose Sequence #(001) instead of Sequence #(1) from the dropdown menu to get your extra zero’s padding, and hit insert. You can delete lozenges which are already there, or rearrange them to make your new naming convention.

Rename Sequence

And finally, let’s save this to use again another time. Go to the Preset dropdown menu at the top of the dialog, and choose ‘Save Current Settings as New Preset’. Give it a logical name – I’ve called mind “Sequence only – 3 digit”.

Rename Save Preset

Next time you open the Rename dialog, this new preset will be one of your presets.