Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 Released

 Adobe has just released the shipping version of Lightroom 5. If you’re a frequent visitor to this site then you will likely already have read my Beta Preview in which I summarised many of the new features. Whilst no additional features have been included in this GM version I’ve updated the earlier preview to review status. You can read it here.

A summary of the key features included in Lightroom 5 are as follows:

Smart Previews

  • Lightweight images that can be used in place of the original files throughout the application, including the Develop Module.
  • Reside in the same folder as the catalog and are contained in an lrdata file folder structure (Smart Previews.lrdata) that is located alongside the catalog. This is similar to the existing Preview file structure.
  • Smart Previews will be used in the absence of an original file (e.g. file is offline).  Changes are saved to the Lightroom catalog and will be visible on both the Smart Preview and original image. When original file is reconnected the application will automatically apply any metadata or develop adjustments to the original.
  • Smart Previews are Lossy DNG files and are 2540 pixels on the long side.
  • Smart Preview information is communicated to user in a new status bar between the Histogram and toolbar.

Smart Preview Status

Upright

  • Upright is a technology that straightens pictures automatically. Common use cases include fixing horizons (to avoid “tilted” pictures) and straightening buildings (to avoid the “keystone” effect).
  • Upright’s main advantage over previous methods (e.g. straighten and crop tools, Horizontal and Vertical sliders) is ease of use because it automatically finds the desired correction by analysing the image content. 

Upright controls in Lens Corrections panel

Advanced Healing Brush

  • Two types of spots available:
    • Circlular spots – the pre existing functionality within Lightroom
    • Brush spots – can be used for arbitrary shapes (e.g. removal of power-lines).

Radial Filter

  • Radial Filter appears in the Histogram Toolbar between the Graduated Filter and the Adjustment Brush.  The Radial Filter allows users to apply existing local adjustment attributes to a mask with a feathered falloff.  Users can now create off-center vignettes, among other effects.

PNG Support

  • Lightroom can now import PNGs
  • Edit-in Photoshop workflow is supported. The PNG will be converted either to a TIFF or PSD, based on the preferences that you have set.

Full Screen Mode

  • A true full screen mode, available via a single keyboard shortcut (“F”).
  • Legacy “F” keyboard shortcut behavior is available using Shift+F.

Behance Publish Service

  • A new Publish Service to publish your images directly to Behance (http://www.behance.net/).  In order to use the service, you must first create a Behance account.

Book – Improved Text Creation

  • Transparent Buttons for “Page Text” and if a photo exists on the page, “Photo Text”.  These are linked to the existing Page Text and Photo Text controls and are designed to help make the text experience in Lightroom easier to use.
  • All the text tools available in Lr4 can still be used, this is a simpler way for customers to interact with the text technology.

Videos in Slideshow

  • Add video clips to your Slideshows
  • Improved synchronization of slides with soundtrack duration.

More information on Lightroom 5 features can be found at Adobe.com. Pricing remains unchanged from Lightroom 4 (i.e. full version $149.99/£106.48 or upgrade $79/£60.57). Lightroom 5 will also be available as part of Creative Cloud.

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