Adobe releases Lightroom 2.0 Beta

Apple StoreAdobe has released Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Beta 2.0 which attempts to answer the digital photographer’s call for a workflow application that allows photographers to quickly work with raw format images. With Lightroom you can manage all of your photographs; showcase them in print, dynamic slideshows, and interactive Web galleries that are a simple to produce. Lightroom’s cross platform support allows photographers to effortlessly work on projects from any Macintosh or Windows PC on-location or in the office.

Lightroom 2.0 beta builds on the first Lightroom beta program and provides photographers with early access to the next release so that you can kick the tires and ensure that this release meets your needs.

Enhancements that can be found in the Lightroom 2.0 beta include the following:

• Localized corrections — Enhance specific areas of an image for unsurpassed nondestructive flexibility and control reminiscent of the traditional darkroom dodge and burn experience.
• Improved organizational tools — Find the images you need quickly and easily.
• Multiple monitor support — Add an additional monitor to efficiently manage photographic workflow and presentation.
• Flexible print package functionality — Create custom layouts containing multiple sizes of a photograph on a single page.
• 64-bit support — Lightroom 2.0 now takes advantage of the latest hardware architectures with improved memory handling and performance.

Lightroom 2.0 beta expires at the end of August 2008. More info and download link here.


  1. This is a great step for Lightroom. I know a bunch of people who use Lightroom, and this will help them quite a bit.

    I myself am an Aperture user. I wish that the 2.1 Aperture’s Dodge and Burn was non-destructive like the new Lightroom tool, but beyond that I think Aperture comes out the winner. Mostly due to the plug-in support that Apple added. I doubt Lightroom will add plug-in support because it will hurt the need for Photoshop for many users. Apple has no such worries. I can’t wait for NoiseNinja and several of my other favorites to be released for Aperture. Too bad they won’t be released for Lightroom.

  2. Where Adobe may have an advantage is if they start offering it in the CS bundle (say the premium package or master collection). The bundled adobe software could do to Aperture what it did to Quark (with InDesign).

    Indesign took a major chunk of the market share (perhaps almost the majority by now) from Quark simply by being bundled with the other creative software that creatives and companies are buying already. Not to mention the superior integration with the other Adobe software.

    An argument could be that Quark was priced to high for what you get, plus it is buggy as hell.

    Another argument could be Final Cut v.s. Premiere. Final Cut clearly still holds dominance.

    It’s an interesting chess game to watch!

    I for one would rather buy it all in an Adobe bundle (even though I love Aperture). Primarily because the cost of software is very high (and I have to buy multiple seat licenses for my business) – and I am already completely familiar with he adobe user interface. That means not only do I save $ for my business, but I also have complete integration and it already feels familiar when I run the program.

  3. sweet smell of competition…

    i love apple, but aperture plain sucks in terms of resource management… it can easily take a beefy mac pro to a crawl… lightroom, on the other hand, seems to have an easier time doing similar tasks…

    that said, it’s all good that they are dueling it out… (plus there are a number of smaller products in the market competing for the same customers)… i love it…

  4. @Tom V

    I agree Adobe will likely bundle Lightroom with CS3/4 eventually, and that it may lead to more “sales” and even use of Lightroom, however, I don’t think this will hurt Aperture that much. It is a clearly different choice that many find, and will continue to find appealing.

    Beyond that, I find Photoshop to be insanely expensive, complicated and bloated, and refuse to make that kind of investment in time and money – especially when there are so many other good alternatives. I don’t think I am alone in this. And with the plug in architecture of Aperture, I expect my need for a program like Photoshop will become increasingly rare.

  5. @ My 2 Cents

    That may make sense for you personally, but Adobe owns the market in professional creative software. Nothing comes close to Photoshop or the rest of CS3 (especially when bundled). Hence virtually every single pro organization uses it around the globe.

    To your point… The full version of Photoshop (or the Creative Suite for that matter) is not geared toward consumers or hobbyists (perhaps like yourself). It is geared towards Professionals – Many of which went to college and specialized in one of the creative fields. The software, theories, and techniques are all taught in these college programs. – The same way an engineer learns CAD. (Its the same principal)

    Photoshop Elements is the software geared toward consumers and is much less expensive. (In that case I would agree that there are less expensive alternatives that may be better.)

    Even with plug-ins Apple could never eliminate the need for Photoshop – unless they offered a far better integrated bundle alternative to the entire Adobe Creative Suite. Then they would have to get the world to adopt it (which would be an expensive and lengthy process).

    As focused as Apple is on hardware, I would think it would be unlikely for them to go after this market (but then again it is Apple).

  6. “I agree Adobe will likely bundle Lightroom with CS3/4 eventually”

    God I hope not. But it won’t change until Adobe changes the way they book Lightroom revenue.

    @ My 2 Cents
    “Beyond that, I find Photoshop to be insanely expensive, complicated and bloated,”

    You would probably say the same thing if you were asked to drive a ” rel=”nofollow”>Cat RM-500 to work. But those who need a good industrial-quality mixer no doubt find them invaluable.
    There is little that is ‘insane’ about Photoshop. They got rid of Kai’s stuff a long time ago.

  7. Please Stop: Why not tell people how to access the Keyboard Viewer instead of suggesting that “so few” know how to type a ¢ symbol? That way, those non-few can find not only the ¢ symbol, but loads of others, too. I think all would have valued your own comment more.

    And, in case you’re not being facetious, “my 2 cents” is a metaphor for giving one’s thoughts that may or may not be important.

  8. For the folks that are excited about Aperture’s plug-ins support… notice under LIghtroom’s “File” drop-down menu… “Plugin-manager” and “Plugin Extras”. If Adobe’s marketing folks plays it right, maybe Lightroom’s plug-in support will be compatible with photoshop’s plug-ins… “Look ma… don’t have to wait for the 3rd party to create plug-ins cause my photoshop plug-in work fine. Enjoy the wait Aperture users.”

    Oh… and what I’m really excited is smart-object support in photoshop. Soon, I will be able to go back and forth between the two worlds without a thought.

    And eventually, I hope in CS5 timeline, they just rip out all the useful photography focus features in CS5 and put it in lightroom. One tool for photographer… “Lightroom 3.0” aka Photoshop CS5 for Photographers

  9. Before anyone gets all excited to download and try it out, here is the first fact for beta 1: It won’t open your existing catelogue(s) from 1.x. Not yet anyways. This means that all your photo adjustments on images can’t transfer over yet. The ONLY reason this beta is out is because Aperture 2.1 is out. Grrrrrr.

  10. I’m a dedicated Aperture user but the big advantage that Lightroom 2.0 β has is that all adjustments are done in metadata. Try using the dodge and burn tool in Aperture and see the ridiculously large files it generates.

  11. What the hell is Adobe doing?
    Latest news: No Photoshop CS4 64bits for Mac… only windose!
    -“We haven’t received the CARBON 64bits to do that” they say!!!
    Wait, wait… they said “CARBON”? Holy s…t! NOW the basics are done under COCOA! Where are you, poor Adobe, in? Do you think you monopoly gives you the right to stay behind in last centery??
    C’mon LAMIES get your work done, or you’ll be blow off Mac’s world forever!! =:(-

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