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Old Mar 6, 2012, 10:11 AM   #1
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Default Lightroom 4....what a deal

Boy howdy, I knew Lightroom 4 was coming, but dang, they really dropped the price, halving it down to $149. Honestly, if that's the price for Lightroom going forward, I would never consider Elements, even at $79-$99. Based on the ACR screens from Elements James showed in an earlier post, Adobe simply cuts too much of the ACR workflow out of the Elements system.

Of course, this means Photoshop CS6 is just around the corner, meaning CS5 and Lightroom 3 probably will not get the ACR update to support the E-M5.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Mar 6, 2012 at 10:24 AM.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 10:39 AM   #2
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Yep.. I noticed that price (and I don't know if it's just introductory pricing, or if they'll keep it that way).

But, they have no Linux version, and I prefer not to boot into Win 7 unless I really need it for anything (I use Linux around 99% of the time, even though I've got more than one machine with 64 Bit Win 7 on it, too). ;-)

So, I prefer to use Corel AfterShot Pro for image management and raw conversion, especially since it lets you use the same License Key under multiple operating systems (OS X, Linux, Windows).

Corel Aftershot Pro also gives you a few features that Adobe Lightroom doesn't have. For example, it allows you to create layers and add regions for selective editing, where you may want to increase saturation in one area but not another, or use fill light on the bottom of photo without impacting the sky, etc; using the amount of opacity desired for the edited portions. It also lets you do stuff like viewing photos without using catalogs, and viewing photos from more than one catalog at a time.

Of course, Lightroom also has some features that AfterShot Pro doesn't offer (for example, video support). There are pros and cons to both.

Here's a link to a Webinar that demonstrates a lot of it's features. The selective editing functions (creating layers with regions for editing) are demonstrated starting around 30 minutes into it (most of the first portion of the webinar is geared towards professionals doing events like weddings, where a product like AfterShot Pro can save a lot of time). It's a great product for streamlining workflow (as is Adobe Lightroom).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i633ZBya9Fc

You can see more about the features if you look at the site for Bibble Pro (Corel Aftershot Pro has the same features, as Corel purchased Bibble Labs not long ago, and relaunched their product as Aftershot Pro). But, Aftershot Pro costs less than half of what Bibble Pro sold for (Bibble Pro 5 was selling for $199). You can click on one of the features (selective editing, etc). at the top of the page to see more (as again, Aftershot Pro has all of the features that Bibble Pro had):

http://www.bibblelabs.com/products/bibble5/features/

You can get AfterShot Pro for only $89.99 right now (and you can download a trial version to see if you like it or not).

http://www.corel.com/corel/product/i...od4670071#tab1

Note that Corel Paintshop Pro X4 is on sale for only $49.99 right this minute (but it's Windows only).

http://www.corel.com/corel/product/i...d=2500058#tab5

So, you could get both Corel AfterShot Pro and Corel Paintshop Pro for less than Adobe Lightroom 4 costs alone, despite Adobe's reduced ($149) price on LR4.
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 10:58 AM   #3
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The newest version of ACR in LR4 (and CS6 once the upgrade is available) adds selective area manipulation, and I like doing both sharpening and noise filtering in the RAW converter before conversion, especially since CS5 when Adobe made the noise filtering in ACR so good. No more third-party noiseware programs for me.

Someone showed me the new Bibble/Corel product last weekend. Looks really nice on a big iMac screen .
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 11:05 AM   #4
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Lightroom does have a bit better NR compared to Aftershot Pro without adding anything to them.

But, you can purchase a registered copy of Noise Ninja and get access to better NR features with Corel AfterShot Pro (ability to separately control Luminous and Chroma Noise Levels, autocreate Noise Reduction Profiles, etc.).

Purchasing the stand alone Home version of Noise Ninja (only $34.95) and entering the license key for it in AfterShot Pro allows you to "unlock" all of the Noise Ninja features built in (no need to buy the more expensive Noise Ninja versions to get better NR when using AfterShot Pro), and it's still cross platform that way (works in Linux, OS X or Windows).

So, AfterShot Pro (on sale for $89.99 right now) with unlocked Noise Ninja features that work at the raw level ($34.95 for a Noise Ninja license key) would still cost less than LR4 alone (and it would run under Linux, whereas LR4 won't). ;-)
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Old Mar 6, 2012, 11:33 AM   #5
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The friend who was showing me his version of Aftershot had the Noise Ninja without the unlocked features. $35 is definitely cheap enough to unlock it alright.

The noise filters in ACR also allow for separate Luminence and chroma noise control as you can see in the image below. The sliders are pretty extensive. The default chroma setting is so good I've never touched that slider.

What I was doing here was using the masking tool which, as you move the slider to the right, keeps all the black areas in the image from having any sharpening applied. The more to the right you go with the masking slider, the more sharpening is limited only to outlines and areas with detail. ACR is my all-in-one image processor. I do EVERYTHING in there. I rarely even touch a file in Photoshop anymore, unless it's to re-size the odd-image to post to another web site.




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Old Mar 6, 2012, 12:34 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Chappell View Post
The friend who was showing me his version of Aftershot had the Noise Ninja without the unlocked features. $35 is definitely cheap enough to unlock it alright.
Yep... even though AfterShot Pro has Noise Ninja built in, the standard features included (basically a slider to vary the amount of NR) lag behind the NR in LR4. So, if you want better NR in AfterShot Pro, you'll need to buy Noise Ninja and plug in the license key for it to unlock more features in AfterShot Pro.

But, for the [low] price, I'm not going to complain (especially since I use Linux the vast majority of the time and AfterShot Pro has a Linux version). It's also *very* fast (makes most similar open source tools look "slow as molasses" in comparison).

Corel AfterShot Pro is the only product I've spent my own money on to use in Linux, since free tools are fine for most of what I do (Firefox for web browsing, LibreOffice for docs and spreadsheets, VLC for media playback, KdenLive for Video editing, DropBox to sync files between computers, K3B for CD/DVD burning, Audacity for Audio Editing, Amarok for Audio file management/playback, luckyBackup for file backup and sync purposes, KMyMoney for financial management, Mozilla Thunderbird for E-Mail, Adobe Acrobat Reader for .pdf files, etc.)

IOW, even though there are tens of thousands of free software packages available that you can install with a mouse click or two in popular Linux Distributions, Corel AfterShot Pro is good enough that it warranted spending money for.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 8:00 AM   #7
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Sigh, someday I'll understand most of this. My only goal is to be able to use PSE 10 effectively.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 9:31 AM   #8
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......I have just always been satisfied with the throttle-backed level of Noise Ninja during the Bibble Pro era and I have been a supporter of the Bibble code since 2006.

I never used but a couple plugins and really just got by with the software, BUT since upgrading with ASP I am taking more advantage of the features, particularly layers editing and selective editing.

I am upgrading Noise Ninja and looking at the plugins as the authors port code from Bibble to ASP. Finally after 6-yrs I am getting on with getting more out of the system.

The link Jim C. showed for the webinar is really a good presentation, not only for ASP but for image editing processes in general. Some of what is covered regarding ASP features is enlightening to novice usage of any sophisticated image editing software.

I, like Jim C., encourage finding a rainy afternoon and visiting the ASP webinar https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i633ZBya9Fc

Though I've never used Lightroom I have looked at it and decided what I use is ok for me BUT with the price-change LR certainly merits looking into for anyone thinking of changing or upgrading from a lesser program.

It is fixin' to rain here the rest of the week which is a bummer if it rains next Saturday because we have the first 'colorful' event in Arlington scheduled.... the annual kite festival.

It may end up being a good weekend to continue learning image editing processes if the rain ruins the festival schedule.

Greg, I know you were planning to come to the festival too... I will keep you posted on the weather out here, as in way west of Dallas.
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 9:55 AM   #9
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I'd make sure to try LR4 before buying it:

I'm seeing some forum posts elsewhere complaining that the performance of LR4 is very bad compared to LR3, even on very high spec systems.

I read a post like that just this morning from someone asking if others are seeing the same sluggishness in the LR4 Development module, and this person was using a Dell XPS 8300 with a Core i7 2600 and 12GB of memory with a dedicated Nvidia based GPU with 2GB of memory on it, with all system drivers updated with the same problem (development module in LR4 very slow compared to LR3)

One poster replying included a link to this thread at the Adobe Forums about it (so apparently, he's not the only one seeing that issue):

http://forums.adobe.com/message/4250124
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Old Mar 7, 2012, 9:55 AM   #10
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Yes, I'm watching too. If that doesn't work out, this is the Saturday for the monthly Heard Photographer's meeting in McKinney at 1:30 and I'll make that trip instead. may do it anyway, even if we still do the festival....challenging itinerary...

I couldn't help myself and downloaded LR4 last night. The Adobe Camera RAW updated processing is impressive. Highlight and shadow controls are even better than before, and they were pretty darn good before. Here's a few initial images I ran through it without looking at much else other than the new ACR controls. So far, system performance with my computer with 12GB of RAM is fine.



With the new 12-50 M. Zuiko..



I liked this one before, and really like it even better now..

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