Inside Lightroom 2.0 LRB Portfolio

Backups, for those awkward moments when…

September 25th, 2013

As I have been busier in my work life, I have also had less time for photography and photographic management, which meant that my generally doctrinal adherence to organisation and naming got a bit lax over the last year or so. And this nearly came to bite me last week.

I’ve don’t name my imported files only the ones that are ‘keepers’. Keepers being defined as having 1* and above. The next level is Portfolio which would be 4* and 5* images.

Once Keepers have been defined, I rename them in the catalog, convert to DNG, and copy them to a different drive (in Lightroom). The naming structure of these is:


The Keepers folder is normally synched overnight to another drive using Chronosync (with file verification). Somehow this must have stopped happening without me realising, and last week the Keepers drive went kaput.

The cold sweat of worry slowly enveloped me as I realised what had happened. And then it dawned on me that I had one extra trick up my sleeve and that is that my Keepers folder had been backed up to the cloud since April.

I have been using Amazon Web Services with some software on the Mac called Arc $39.99, which manages the process of backing up and restoring. (There is a PC equivalent of Arc called, Zoolz.)

Sure enough there was a full backup of my Keepers folder on the cloud. All I needed to do was find what I needed to restore, click a restore button and wait overnight (in this case) until everything appeared.


The Economics

Using Amazon Glacier is cheaper to store than the full S3 service, the downside is that there is a 3-5 hour delay to restore, but that should be fine for most cases. If you need faster restores then Arc can also handle using S3. Here is the basic difference between Glacier and S3:

Glacier S3
Price $0.01/GB per month $.095/GB per month
Retrieval Delay 3-5hrs 0hrs
Restore Fees $.05/GB per request insignificant

My storage fees have so far averaged at $7 per month, but that has included some other data that I stored on the cloud for a time as well. More recently it has been about $5 per month. All of which means I am storing 400GB for $60-90 a year.

The equivalent Dropbox fees would be a fixed 500GB for $460 per year! I’d have instant access wherever you are, but that isn’t something I need for that price! The next tier up is the business tier which is $760 per year for 1TB.

The Remedy

So with the rather drastic warning from the loss of a drive, I have amended my backup system. Not only have I restored the nightly sync of the Keepers folder using Chronosync, but I have also selected its option to email me when it has performed the scheduled sync. So every morning I get an email with a nice coloured background to tell me details about the backup.

I will add more sychs over the next couple of days, to ensure that other drives have copies of the data too. I’m guessing that verified copies on 3 separate drives, and a cloud backup is a good starting point!

The Moral(s)

  • Always check your backups
  • Have multiple backup strategies
  • Think about Cloud Storage
  • It is not a question of if a drive will fail, but when

Lightroom 5.2 Released

September 17th, 2013

As you have probably seen (oops) Lightroom 5.2 has been released to the world (along with ACR 5.2 and DNG Converter 5.2). This version is a bit different from the one posted to Labs and has had a fair bit of work done on it.

New Features

In the Color Noise section of the Detail Panel there is a new Smoothness slider, this should help reduce colour mottling artifacts.

1. The Spot Healing Tool now has:

  • A new Feather control
  • The auto find source method handles textures better
  • Auto source prefers sources in a crop rectangle

2. Auto Exposure has been improved and is more consistent across images

3. Smart Preview size has been updated to 2560px on the long edge

4. Local Adjustment Brush

  • Right-click on a brush adjustment pin brings up a context menu to duplicate/delete
  • Ctrl+Alt+Drag (PC)/Cmd+Option+Drag (Mac) on a brush adjustment layer to duplicate the adjustment

New Tethered Support

  • Canon EOS 6D
  • Canon EOS 700D
  • Canon EOS 100D
  • Nikon D710

New Camera Support

  • Canon EOS 70D
  • Canon PowerShot S120*
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR800
  • Fujifilm FinePix HS22EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix HS35EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix S205EXR
  • Fujifilm X-A1
  • Fujifilm X-M1
  • Leica C (Typ 112)
  • Olympus OM-D E-M1 (preliminary support only)
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72
  • Pentax Q7
  • Pentax K-50
  • Pentax K-500
  • Sony DSC-RX100 II
  • Sony A3000 (ILCE-3000)
  • Sony NEX-5T

There are new lenses supported and many bugs fixed. And the Lightroom SDK is now available too!

Grab it here

 Mac | WindowsLightroom 5 SDK 

Lightroom Mobile

September 10th, 2013

As was perhaps obvious in hindsight, Smart Previews had to be for something…and that something is Lightroom Mobile.

Lightroom Mobile is an under development app for the iPad which will allow seamless editing and management of your images on your tablet and back to your desktop.

Laura Shoe has a writeup from Photoshop World about the new app which was demonstrated by Tom Hogarty last week

Lightroom 5 Released

June 10th, 2013

Lightroom 5 has been released to the world after being previewed on Adobe Labs for a few weeks. There have been a few updates since the Labs version, these are listed below. For my more in-depth preview see my post about Lightroom 5 ß.

New Camera Support

The following cameras are now supported:

  • Hasselblad H5D-60
  • Olympus PEN E-P5
  • Olympus E-PL6
  • Phase One IQ260 (preliminary support)
  • Ricoh GR
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G6
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LF1

Adobe Camera Raw has been updated to v8.1, this is compatible with, but not enhanced for CS6. This means that you will still get camera and lens support in CS6, but not new features such as Upright, Radial Blend or  the new Spot Correction tool. More information about ACR 8.1 is available here, and can be grabbed through the usual Adobe Updater process.

The other fixes and features worth mentioning include a fix for Upright, which didn’t work on obvious crooked horizons. The Radial Filter’s feathering has doubled, which was in response to specific feedback from the Labs forums. There is a new Behance plugin, and the Revel plugin is being looked after by the Revel team.

Further details are available at Lightroom Journal, and is available for $149 (for those new to Lightroom) and $79 (for Upgrade and Student/Teacher editions). Lightroom 5 is a perpetual license, as well as being part of the Creative Cloud subscription and can be found on the Lightroom page of

Known Issue!

There is a know issue with the Lightroom 5 Publish feature. Check out Jeffrey Friedl’s post as it is possible to delete master images unless you take care.


Welcome to Lightroom 5.0ß

April 15th, 2013

Lightroom 5.0 has just been released as a public beta on Adobe Labs. This has been on a shorter development cycle, which fits with the way Adobe is now releasing its Creative Cloud software. Videos of the new features are available on the Lightroom YouTube Channel.

So you will be eager to find out what this new version contains. Here is an overview with a ‘why do I need this?’ focus.

  • Smart Previews
  • PNG Support
  • Advanced Healing and Brush Spot tool
  • Full Screen Mode
  • User Configurable Grid Overlays
  • Windows HiDPI Support
  • New Smart Collection Criteria
  • Radial Filter
  • Upright
  • Others

Smart Previews

We have at least 4 kinds of preview image that can be used in Lightroom. Embedded JPEGs within DNG, Standard Previews, 1:1 Previews, Fast Load Data, and now we have a 5th; Smart Previews.

The main idea behind Smart Previews is that you can now take your image collection away with you on a trip, without taking your many thousands of images. These Previews can be used as a proxy for your Raw/DNG/JPEG/PNG files. In essence they are Lossy DNGs which have a maximum long edge dimension of 2048px. When you make Develop edits to your files when you are in this offline mode, then they will be reflected to the main Catalog when you link back to your computer.

How to generate them?

1. When you import files in the File Handling panel, you can check a box to ‘Build Smart Previews’.

Smart Previews

2. In the Library module, select the Library > Previews > Build Smart Previews menu
3. When you select File > Export as Catalog… you will see a checkbox in the dialog box offering the choice to build Smart Previews



For those of you who don’t travel and never leave your main computer, this feature may not have that many benefits, if you are a frequent traveller, and would love the idea of taking all your images on the road with you, this is probably a killer feature.

You can also view the status of your previews either for an image, or for a set of images in the Histogram panel.


PNG Support

Well it has taken a while to expand the set of file formats that Adobe supports, and here is one that is much requested; PNG. Hugely useful for those who like to manage more than just files created by camera, such as sets screenshots, in a familiar and comforting interface.

Personally, I won’t be using it, just because Lightroom is for photography, rather than a general application for managing all sorts of media. But for those of you who wanted it, you got it!

Advanced Healing and Brush Spot tool

Now I think most Lightroom 4 users will think this one a biggie; the new healing brush is an addition to the familiar Spot Healing brush, and for those of you familiar with Photoshop, it will be pretty obvious what it does. But remember, this is still only editing metadata and not pixels.

It is invoked by the familiar Q shortcut. Clicking on the image will allow you to spot heal as before; clicking and dragging with the brush will create a healing shape.

Here is an example workflow:

Here is a file with a sensor blob. It could be corrected with the standard spot healing tool, but here we will show the new Healing brush.


Lightroom 5 allows you to visualise ‘spots’ on an image. When you are in the Healing Brush ‘mode’ (press Q to get there quickly), press A, and you will see the the Spot Visualisation view.



Here you can see the spot, as well as the outlines of the cloud.

Either work in this mode or press the A key again and click and drag with the spotting brush.



Using the H key to show and hide the spot and source will show the familiar pins view.

4A must have addition to Lightroom!

Full Screen Mode

A genuine full screen mode is available with the press of the F key. You can still invoke the old way by pressing Shift+F, which cycles through the various Full Screen modes.

User Configurable Grid Overlays

These are invoked in Loupe mode (E) in the Library. Select View > Loupe Overlay menu. You can choose a Grid, Guides or even an Image Overlay. Hold down the Cmd/Ctrl key to edit the placement of the Guide, and the size of the grid.


Scrolling over the numbers in the HUD, seen in the screenshot will allow you to edit the sizes.

Windows HiDPI Support

For Windows 8 users Lightroom works nicely with the 150% and 200% resolution devices.

New Smart Collection Criteria

  • File size
  • Image size
  • Image Bit Depth
  •  Number of color channels
  •  Color Mode
  • Color Profile

Radial Filter

This is a feature that will be liked by many. As well as the existing Graduated Filter, Lightroom 5 introduces a Radial Filter. Great for sharpening eyes, and not dissimilar to the U-Point concept in the Google Nik plug-ins, only all done as a metadata edit!

Selecting the Radial Filter (Shift+M) you can drag as an ellipse or hold Shift to constrain as a circle. After releasing on the mouse you can adjust the size and shape as well as rotate the shape (if it is an ellipse). As you apply your edits you will notice that the image changes outside of the shape. To make edits to the inside of the shape, tap the ‘ key. I would have thought that the intuitive thing was that the edits happen to the inside of the shape, but what do I know! :)

Here is a very quick example. Image 1 is the original. Image 2 has a Radial filter applied, this is an exaggerated Exposure increase. Note it is outside the elliptical shape. Image 3 reverses the effect and the exaggerated Exposure increase is applied to the inside of the ellipse.






Upright is for straightening pictures automatically; fixing horizons and straightening buildings (correcting keystoning). In the Develop module, go to the Lens Correction panel. Enable Lens Corrections and check one of the 4 modes. Adjustments can be made by in the Manual tab, and Reanalyze is available if you have disabled and reenabled Lens Corrections.

Screen Shot 2013-04-15 at 21.41.07



Of course this article just scratches the surface of the many changes, major and minor in the new release. Some additional features include:

LAB Colour Readouts: Right Click on the Histogram and select “Show LAB Color Values”

Books: There is Improved Text Creation, Page Numbering and User Pages ie: Custom Pages.

Videos in Slideshow: add video clips to a Slideshow

Validation of DNG files: Library > Validate DNG Files

So shuffle over to Adobe Labs and download the latest release and contribute to the User Forums.


Lightroom Journal

The Lightroom Queen

Sean McCormack

Laura Shoe

Ian Lyons


Lightroom 4.4 and Camera Raw 7.4 have been released

April 3rd, 2013

The latest versions of Lightroom and Camera Raw have been released after a short period on Adobe Labs. Updates are available on the Adobe website.

New Camera Support

  • Canon EOS 1D C
  • Canon ESO 100D (Digital Rebel SL1 / EOS Kiss Digital X7)
  • Canon EOS 700D (Digital Rebel T5i / EOS Kiss Digital X7i)
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR700
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR710
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR750
  • Fujifilm FinePix F900EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix HS50EXR
  • Fujifilm FinePix SL1000
  • Fujifilm X100s
  • Fujifilm X20
  • Hasselblad H5D-40
  • Hasselblad H5D-50
  • Hasselblad Lunar
  • LEICA M (Typ 240)
  • Nikon 1 J3
  • Nikon 1 S1
  • Nikon D7100
  • Olympus XZ-10
  • Pentax MX-1
  • Samsung NX300
  • Sony Alpha NEX-3N
  • Sony Alpha SLT-A58

Preliminary Camera Support

  • Nikon Coolpix A
  • Nikon Coolpix P330

Updated Camera Support

The following cameras have had updates to their demosaicing algorithms, with some further corrections to sharpening for the cameras market with *. Cameras marked with † have had a correction to the demosaicing algorithms for Raw images captured using the EXR HR mode:

  • Fujifilm X-Pro1 (*)
  • Fujifilm X-E1 (*)
  • Fujifilm X100S
  • Fujifilm X20
  • Fujifilm X10 †
  • Fujifilm XF1 †
  • Fujifilm X-S1 †
  • Fujifilm S200EXR †
  • Fujifilm HS20EXR †
  • Fujifilm HS30EXR †
  • Fujifilm F550EXR †
  • Fujifilm F600EXR †
  • Fujifilm F770EXR †
  • Fujifilm F800EXR †

The following cameras have had an update to fix the default white balance:

  • NikonD2X
  • NikonD2Xs
  • NikonD2Hs
  • NikonD200
  • NikonD40
  • NikonD50
  • NikonD80

New Lens Profile support

  • Canon EF 35mm f/2 IS USM
  • Canon EF 24-70mm f/4 L IS USM
  • SIGMA 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM C013
  • SIGMA 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012
  • Nikon 1 NIKKOR 18.5mm f/1.8
  • Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR
  • SIGMA 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012
  • TAMRON SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD A009N
  • TAMRON SP 90mm F/2.8 Di MACRO 1:1 VC USD F004N
  • SIGMA 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO HSM
  • SIGMA 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM C013
  • SIGMA 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012
  • SIGMA 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO HSM
  • Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS
  • TAMRON SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di USD A007S

The Nik Collection by Google

March 25th, 2013

Google recently bought Nik Software, primarily, it seemed, for Snapseed, the iOS photo editing app.

Today they announced that the Nik Collection by Google is available, and there is a dramatic drop in price over the old Nik Software suite. The entire set of plug-ins for Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture are now $149 (previously $499). Current users will get a free upgrade, and customers who bought the software in the last 30 days will get some sort of a refund.

The Nik Collection contains

  • HDR Efex Pro 2 – for HDR Photography
  • Color Efex Pro 4 – filters for color correction, retouching and creative effects
  • Silver Efex Pro 2 – for black and photography
  • Viveza 2 – adjust the color and tonality of your images
  • Sharpener Pro 3 – pro sharpening
  • Dfine 2 – noise reduction

15 day trials are available for all the products.

Adobe Lightroom 4.4 RC released to Adobe Labs

February 26th, 2013

It is time for another Lightroom update, this time to version 4.4. It is being released to Adobe Labs to give users the chance to road test it before it goes live. Apart from bug fixes, it contains new and revised camera support and some new lens profiles.

Of great interest to FujiFilm users is that this release contains much improved demosaic algorithms for the Fuji cameras which use the X-Trans sensor. Previously you could get to a state where the  image had a painterly or smeary look. This update radically improves the look of these files.

Camera Updates

  • Fujifilm X-Pro1
  • Fujifilm X-E1
  • Fujifilm X100S
  • Fujifilm X20

New Cameras

  • Canon EOS 1D C
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR700
  • Fujifilm X100s
  • Fujifilm X20
  • Hasselblad Lunar
  • Leica M
  • Nikon 1 V3
  • Nikon 1 S1
  • Pentax MX-1

Lens Profiles

  • Canon 24-70 f/4L IS
  • Sigma 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC MACRO HSM
  • Sigma APO MACRO 180mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM
  • Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM A012
  • Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC MACRO OS HSM

The updates can be found on Adobe Labs, along with Camera Raw 7.4 RC.


Lightroom 4.3 Released

December 14th, 2012

I forgot to mention that Lightroom 4.3 was released yesterday after spending a month in Adobe Labs. It should be available through the update mechanism, but if not head to the Adobe site to download it for Mac and Windows.

This release contains many bug fixes as detailed on the Lightroom Journal.

Camera Support

The following cameras are now supported (in the case of the Nikon D600, this is full support after having preliminary support in the last release).

  • Canon EOS 6D
  • Canon PowerShot S110
  • Canon PowerShot G15
  • Canon PowerShot SX50 HS
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR1000
  • Casio Exilim EX-FC300S
  • Leica M-E
  • Nikon 1 V2
  • Nikon D5200
  • Nikon D600
  • Olympus PEN E-PL5
  • Olympus PEN E-PM2
  • Olympus STYLUS XZ-2 iHS
  • Panasonic DMC-GH3
  • Pentax K-5 II
  • Pentax K-5 IIs
  • Pentax Q10
  • Sony DSC-RX1
  • Sony NEX-VG30
  • Sony NEX-VG900

Lens Support

There are a raft of new lenses supported too, from Canon, Tamron, Leica, Sigma, Pentax, Sony and also support for the iPhone 4S and 5.


Lightroom 4.3 RC Release

November 8th, 2012

Adobe Lightroom 4.3 has been released to Adobe Labs for you all to test. This release contains bug fixes, camera support, and support for HiDPI displays for within the Develop Module. Note this is just within the Develop Module.

Camera Support

  • Canon PowerShot S110
  • Canon PowerShot G15
  • Canon PowerShot SX50 HS
  • Casio Exilim EX-ZR1000
  • Casio Exilim EX-FC300S
  • Nikon D600 (full support, updated since 4.2)
  • Olympus PEN E-PL5
  • Olympus PEN E-PM2
  • Olympus STYLUS XZ-2 iHS
  • Panasonic DMC-GH3
  • Pentax K-5 II
  • Pentax K-5 IIs
  • Pentax Q10

The updated release can be downloaded here, and feedback should be given here.