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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos RAW, Post Processing & Printing 
Thread started 07 Jan 2018 (Sunday) 14:27
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What Photo Edit Software do You Use?

 
BigAl007
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Jan 12, 2018 07:44 |  #31

SkedAddled wrote in post #18538848 (external link)
I suppose I don't understand the mention of "destructive" in this context, because I always save as a 'copy'.
And PS also saves editing changes if desired.

So, Lightroom is essentially an expanded or refined version of ACR?
I use ACR exclusively before sending an image into PS for sharpening and such.
I like the freedom it gives me to correct exposure and other fundamentals of a RAW file.

Again, Bridge user here.
Much like LR then? Sounds very similar in my usage.

Sounds very handy for professionals, but I don't have a need for such a system.
I make it very simple for myself; I download images to my PC into folders appropriately named according to
place, date, etc. I then save edits into a subfolder named 'Upload' which are of an appropriate size for forums
and emailing, etc.

Many thanks for the insights, folks!
I've often wondered about LR, simply because I see it mentioned so frequently,
but I've never tried it for myself. It appears safe to say I've got my needs covered with ACR and PS,
and that LR would likely be a redundancy for my uses unless it's got some really whiz-bang advantages
over ACR/PS for a casual amateur.


Craig I'm not a full time working Pro, but do do the occasional gig for people. If all you need in the way of image management is folders date and time, with maybe location thrown in, or the name of the client for say wedding togs, then Bridge is great. I actually used RawShooter and then Bridge for over five years before moving to Lr with the release of Lr4. To answer your questions in order:

1. The term non-destructive in this case just refers to the fact that like all other RAW image converters it will never make changes to the original image data. Lr actually goes quite a bit further than most, in that by default it won't even add changes to EXIF and other similar metadata to the original file. You can make Lr make the changes directly to the file, but it is something you have to consciously allow.

2. The image editing tools in Lr are identical to those in ACR, although the interface in the two programs is very different. The only real difference in operation, once you have found the tool you want, that I have seen is in how the local brushes work. Lr seems to have a slightly different set of options for brush size, feathering, and the like. I don't have access to Lr or ACR right now, so I can't check specifics for you.

3. You can use the Lr Library module and view the folder structure just like with Bridge. The biggest difference here is that you can only see folders that contain images that have been imported into the catalogue. To make accessing information about your images faster Lr uses a database to hold all of the information about the file, including it's location on disk. If an image is not in the database then Lr can't see it. Also if you move an image outside of Lr it again can't see it, but you do get tools to both move images around, and find "lost" images. The reason you might want to go to this trouble is answered mostly in your next question, and I'll answer it there.

4a. I'll break this into two parts for clarity. The great thing that Lr has from the image management point of view, and actually Bridge now has now got it too, but is pretty broken, is collections, and specifically smart collections. Lr allows you to build a hierarchy of collection sets, collections, and smart collections. These can end up looking just like a second folder structure. One of the things that drove me to Lr was that I shoot lots of air shows.

At a show I might photograph anything from 50 to 100 different types of aircraft, depending on the location. Many of them may be in formations, or parts of a display team. As well as grouping the images by location and date I also want to be able to find aircraft by manufacturer, any display team they might be part of, and quite a lot of other factors. It's this complication of factors that was always difficult, since with a filesystem based organisation, unless you want multiple copies of the same file, they can only be in one place. I use keywords on all my images, and Lr uses those to put them into smart collections based on those keywords, and loads of other metadata options too.

Bridge now has Smart Collections too, but they are very slow to use. I tried one, based on just one aircraft manufacturer, and pointed it at the top of the My Pictures folder tree, with about 50000 images in it. The problem is that Bridge has to open either the associated xmp file, or the image file itself, to read the metadata to see if the image belongs in the collection. My test Smart Collection in Bridge took over 24 hours to read all of the images to make the selection. When I do the same in Lr it takes less than half a second. Usually it takes longer to display the previews than to know which ones are needed. This applies to any metadata search that you might do in Bridge.

4b. The other great thing that Lr allows is output on demand. With Lr you don't need to routinely store finished JPEG's locally. Instead you simply output a specifically tailored image for the need direct from Lr. Once you have used it you just delete it, and export again the next time you need to. This works for both single images and batches of any size. Generally if I think I might need the same sort of output from Lr more than once, it get saved as a new export template, so that the whole thing can be done from a single click. The real advantage of this is that you only have one image to worry about. If you make a change at a later date you don't have to worry about making sure that you also update the local JPEG. Lr does allow you to have multiple versions of the same image, but the interface treats those as separate images, just like a real copy. I know if you need to produce a batch of images from Bridge you can send them to Ps's Image Processor, but in Lr it is often a one click solution.

Lr also has what they call Publishing Services, that allow you to create a collection, or Smart Collection that can be directly connected to most of the options for posting images online, Flickr and Facebook are the two I use. The images are uploaded directly, according to your prefered settings. Lr will then keep a check on those images and if you make changes will offer to update them on the service, or if you delete them, or remove them from the service then they can be removed from the online service too. The updates offered can be dismissed if you don't want to change them online. The upload and update process always has to be done manually, so no chance of making changes without knowing about it. This is done directly in the Lr Library module.

You still have the Map, Print, Slideshow, Web Gallery, and Book modules too. I certainly find that the Lr Print module is the best way to print images that I have found anywhere.

I do still use Bridge, it's really good when working with other Adobe programs, or for downloaded images that I don't need in my image management system. For me the Lr wizzbangs as you put it are Smart Collections that work. Virtual Copies, which I didn't touch on much, but are great, since you can have both a colour version of an image and a black and white. Or for different print sizes you can keep around different aspect ratio crops, you can keep these out of sight too, until you need them. Actually Adobe could add Virtual Copies to Bridge quite easily too if they wanted, and it would make mixing Lr and Bridge better too. Publish Services are also on my Lr wizzbang list, in Lr each of the collections for Flickr translates as auto uploaded to a Flickr album of the same name. Printing I have already mentioned too.

I use Lr for everything to do with my own images. Usually when I start my computer the first program I open is Lr. It is quite unusual to not find that I have Bridge running too, so I have nothing against the program.

Alan


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SkedAddled
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Jan 12, 2018 10:33 |  #32

Thank you for taking the time to offer so much detail, Alan.
I can now appreciate the extent of organization and cataloging LR is capable of.


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mwsilver
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Post edited 5 months ago by mwsilver. (8 edits in all)
     
Jan 12, 2018 10:49 |  #33

Scott M wrote in post #18539254 (external link)
I recently switched from Lightroom 6 to DxO Photo Lab as my main RAW convertor and photo editing solution. I do the vast majority of my editing there, and have Photoshop Elements 18 (upgraded from version 10 last fall when I bought a new PC) for the rare occasion where I require a pixel editor. I use PS Elements mostly for scanning photos.

I too recently switched from Lightroom 6 to DXO Photolab Elite version. I much prefer the end results with Photolab over Lightroom. It's also easier to use, although not as fast as LR.

Unlike Lightroom, Photolab does not require you to import files into it's database and as a result many of the problems that some people have with the Lightroom catalog are eliminated. I think that the LR interface is a little bit more refined, the LR Develop module is a bit more feature-rich, and Lightroom also has other useful modules like the sophisticated Print module. However, at the end of the day, Photolab does a better job in my opinion and it's now my raw editor of choice. Unfortunately though, Photolab, which is sold as a standalone version only, is pricey compared to the Lightroom subscription which also includes Photoshop. The Clearview feature in the Elite version alone justifies the higher cost of that version. It's similar to Lightroom's haze removal feature, but goes much farther in my experience.

I suspect by mid-year the NIK collection, now owned by DXO, will be available as a plug in package into Photolab, probably at an additional cost. I still have Lightroom 6 on my computer, but 95% of my edits these days are done in Photolab

Like you, when I occasionally need a pixel editor I use Photoshop Elements, in my case its version 15.


Mark
Canon 7D2, 60D, T3i, T2i, Sigma 18-35 f/1.8, 30 f/1.4. Canon EF 70-200 L f/4 IS, EF 35 f/2 IS, EFs 10-18 STM, EFs 15-85, EFs 18-200, EF 50 f/1.8 STM, Tamron 18-270 PZD, B+W MRC CPL, Canon 320EX, Vanguard Alta Pro 254CT & SBH 250 head. RODE Stereo Videomic Pro, DXO PhotoLab, Elements 15

  
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Jan 12, 2018 11:10 |  #34

mwsilver wrote in post #18539352 (external link)
I too recently switched from Lightroom 6 to DXO Photolab Elite version. I much prefer the end results with Photolab over Lightroom. It's also easier to use, although not as fast as LR.

Unlike Lightroom, Photolab does not require you to import files into it's database and as a result many of the problems that some people have with the Lightroom catalog are eliminated. I think that the LR interface is a little bit more refined, the LR Develop module is a bit more feature-rich, and Lightroom also has other useful modules like the sophisticated Print module. However, at the end of the day, Photolab does a better job in my opinion and it's now my raw editor of choice. Unfortunately though, Photolab, which is sold as a standalone version only, is pricey compared to the Lightroom subscription which also includes Photoshop..

I suspect by mid-year the NIK collection, now owned by DXO, will be available as a plug in package into Photolab, probably at an additional cost. I still have Lightroom 6 on my computer, but 95% of my edits these days is done in Photolab

Like you, when I occasionally need a pixel editor I use Photoshop Elements, in my case its version 15.

I tried PhotoLab last week. I always figured Capture would replace Adobe if I ever drop the plan. PL will be a contender as well.


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mwsilver
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Jan 12, 2018 11:19 |  #35

digital paradise wrote in post #18539367 (external link)
I tried PhotoLab last week. I always figured Capture would replace Adobe if I ever drop the plan. PL will be a contender as well.

Photolab is really terrific, but I think the package still needs more refinement and increased functionality to complete well against Lightroom. Still, the results I get with Photolab as compared to Lightroom, and the ease of getting them, made the switch a no-brainer for me.


Mark
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BigAl007
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Jan 12, 2018 11:34 |  #36

mwsilver wrote in post #18539352 (external link)
I too recently switched from Lightroom 6 to DXO Photolab Elite version. I much prefer the end results with Photolab over Lightroom. It's also easier to use, although not as fast as LR.

Unlike Lightroom, Photolab does not require you to import files into it's database and as a result many of the problems that some people have with the Lightroom catalog are eliminated. I think that the LR interface is a little bit more refined, the LR Develop module is a bit more feature-rich, and Lightroom also has other useful modules like the sophisticated Print module. However, at the end of the day, Photolab does a better job in my opinion and it's now my raw editor of choice. Unfortunately though, Photolab, which is sold as a standalone version only, is pricey compared to the Lightroom subscription which also includes Photoshop. The Clearview feature in the Elite version alone justifies the higher cost of that version. It's similar to Lightroom's haze removal feature, but goes much farther in my experience.

I suspect by mid-year the NIK collection, now owned by DXO, will be available as a plug in package into Photolab, probably at an additional cost. I still have Lightroom 6 on my computer, but 95% of my edits these days are done in Photolab

Like you, when I occasionally need a pixel editor I use Photoshop Elements, in my case its version 15.


I have DXO Optics Pro 11, does the new version have improved asset management systems? Looking at the version I have it looks as if it has very similar organisational features to Bridge, rather than Lr. About the only thing you can't do with Bridge that you can do with my version of DXO and Lr is virtual copies. All of the sorting features seem to be limited to working with images that are in the current folder, or for those you have added to a Project.

So unless things have changed significantly in the DAM features it looks to me that DXO is far closer to a direct replacement for Bridge and ACR, not for Lr.

Alan


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normware
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Jan 12, 2018 12:08 |  #37

PSE 12 for sizing changes.

Creative kit 2016 (includes FX Photo, Intensify, Tonality, Snapheal, Focus, Noiseless)
Luminar 2018
Aurora HDR 2018

I have other Photo editing software that I have acquired either through some sort of software deal/bundle, or camera software, but mainly use the above.


Canon 6D II - Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art - Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM C - Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art - Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di VC PZD | Coming soon Rokinon 85MM with chip
Canon M5 - EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM - EF-M 18-150mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM
Luminar 2018 , Aurora HDR 2018, Creative Kit 2018

  
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mwsilver
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Post edited 5 months ago by mwsilver. (8 edits in all)
     
Jan 12, 2018 12:43 |  #38

BigAl007 wrote in post #18539388 (external link)
I have DXO Optics Pro 11, does the new version have improved asset management systems? Looking at the version I have it looks as if it has very similar organisational features to Bridge, rather than Lr. About the only thing you can't do with Bridge that you can do with my version of DXO and Lr is virtual copies. All of the sorting features seem to be limited to working with images that are in the current folder, or for those you have added to a Project.

So unless things have changed significantly in the DAM features it looks to me that DXO is far closer to a direct replacement for Bridge and ACR, not for Lr.

Alan

I suspect that the asset management is the same in Photolab and Optics Pro, although I have never used Optics Pro. I never took advantage of the asset management features of Lightroom since I have my own system of asset management which I've used for many years. As a result the effort to import everything into Lightroom was a required but annoying step and waste of time for me.

Virtual copies are supported in Photolab as you mentioned and like in Lightroom, it is an extremely important development feature, and I use it quite often. Photolab also supports a wide range of local adjustments, similar to Lightroom, which I believe Optics Pro did not. It also supports similar image enhancement features found in Lightroom that are not part of ACR. I've never used Bridge, but I am a long-term user of Lightroom, and am very knowledgeable regarding it's Develop module

My experience so far is that Photolab gives me superior results over almost anything I could do in Lightroom and with far less effort. The sharpening, and noise reduction capabilities, and the ability to extract shadow detail from the darkest shadow areas seems noticably superior to Lightroom. Clearview, available in the Elite edition, by itself is worth the price of admission. Yes Photolab is somewhat less feature rich, and is mostly about it's version of Lightroom's Develop module. As an example, the HSL support in Lightroom has more features and is a more sophisticated implementation. But, as I said, in my experience and in my opinion, the results from Photolab are far superior, and that's good enough for me! I completely accept that others may disagree with my assessment.


Mark
Canon 7D2, 60D, T3i, T2i, Sigma 18-35 f/1.8, 30 f/1.4. Canon EF 70-200 L f/4 IS, EF 35 f/2 IS, EFs 10-18 STM, EFs 15-85, EFs 18-200, EF 50 f/1.8 STM, Tamron 18-270 PZD, B+W MRC CPL, Canon 320EX, Vanguard Alta Pro 254CT & SBH 250 head. RODE Stereo Videomic Pro, DXO PhotoLab, Elements 15

  
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Scott ­ M
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Jan 12, 2018 14:41 |  #39

mwsilver wrote in post #18539352 (external link)
I too recently switched from Lightroom 6 to DXO Photolab Elite version. I much prefer the end results with Photolab over Lightroom. It's also easier to use, although not as fast as LR.

Unlike Lightroom, Photolab does not require you to import files into it's database and as a result many of the problems that some people have with the Lightroom catalog are eliminated. I think that the LR interface is a little bit more refined, the LR Develop module is a bit more feature-rich, and Lightroom also has other useful modules like the sophisticated Print module. However, at the end of the day, Photolab does a better job in my opinion and it's now my raw editor of choice. Unfortunately though, Photolab, which is sold as a standalone version only, is pricey compared to the Lightroom subscription which also includes Photoshop. The Clearview feature in the Elite version alone justifies the higher cost of that version. It's similar to Lightroom's haze removal feature, but goes much farther in my experience.

I suspect by mid-year the NIK collection, now owned by DXO, will be available as a plug in package into Photolab, probably at an additional cost. I still have Lightroom 6 on my computer, but 95% of my edits these days are done in Photolab

Like you, when I occasionally need a pixel editor I use Photoshop Elements, in my case its version 15.

DxO Photo Lab Elite is the same price that Adobe used to sell the perpetual license of Lightroom, and the upgrade prices are similar to Adobe's Lightroom upgrade price when it was offered. The subscription price for LR is only attractive, and a better deal than Photo Lab, if you also use the full Photoshop package. For those of us who were Lightroom users only, the forced subscription model is a significant price increase (4 times the cost, in my case). Adobe has decided they no longer wish to do business with Lightroom-only users.

Similar to mwsilver, I really did not take advantage of the DAM feature of Lightroom, but used LR for its RAW processing and editing capabilities. I had my own organizational method before Lightroom, and kept that method when I started using Adobe's application. Once DxO added local edit features, such as grad filters, spot removal, etc, to its product in the transition from Optics Pro to Photo Lab Elite, the DxO application had everything I used in Lightroom.


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Jan 12, 2018 17:10 |  #40

mwsilver wrote in post #18539375 (external link)
Photolab is really terrific, but I think the package still needs more refinement and increased functionality to complete well against Lightroom. Still, the results I get with Photolab as compared to Lightroom, and the ease of getting them, made the switch a no-brainer for me.

Although PL were impressive it is still LR for me.


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mwsilver
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Jan 12, 2018 20:11 |  #41

Scott M wrote in post #18539537 (external link)
DxO Photo Lab Elite is the same price that Adobe used to sell the perpetual license of Lightroom, and the upgrade prices are similar to Adobe's Lightroom upgrade price when it was offered. The subscription price for LR is only attractive, and a better deal than Photo Lab, if you also use the full Photoshop package. For those of us who were Lightroom users only, the forced subscription model is a significant price increase (4 times the cost, in my case). Adobe has decided they no longer wish to do business with Lightroom-only users.

Similar to mwsilver, I really did not take advantage of the DAM feature of Lightroom, but used LR for its RAW processing and editing capabilities. I had my own organizational method before Lightroom, and kept that method when I started using Adobe's application. Once DxO added local edit features, such as grad filters, spot removal, etc, to its product in the transition from Optics Pro to Photo Lab Elite, the DxO application had everything I used in Lightroom.

I think you and I are pretty much in complete agreement on this. I think one extra advantage of the Photo Lab over Lightroom is a significantly smaller learning curve. That's mostly due to the lack of an Asset Management system and the need to import, and the lack of the other modules that Lightroom has and ProtoLab does not, specifically, the Map, Book, Slideshow, and Web modules which I never used. I do wish PhotoLab has a more feature rich printing function like Lightroom's, however, I can use the plugin that DXO provides to send my images to LR6 for that purpose.


Mark
Canon 7D2, 60D, T3i, T2i, Sigma 18-35 f/1.8, 30 f/1.4. Canon EF 70-200 L f/4 IS, EF 35 f/2 IS, EFs 10-18 STM, EFs 15-85, EFs 18-200, EF 50 f/1.8 STM, Tamron 18-270 PZD, B+W MRC CPL, Canon 320EX, Vanguard Alta Pro 254CT & SBH 250 head. RODE Stereo Videomic Pro, DXO PhotoLab, Elements 15

  
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What Photo Edit Software do You Use?
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