Today Adobe officially released Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5, the latest and greatest version of its imaging software targeted specifically for photographers. Despite Adobe’s hard push for Creative Cloud, which we criticized heavily, Lightroom 5 will be available for purchase as individual license (which means that you can buy either the retail box version or an upgrade), or as part of a Creative Cloud subscription.
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 comes with some neat features such as smart previews, new and flexible spot removal tool / healing brush, radial filter tool, updated lens corrections and speed improvements over Lightroom 4. We covered most of these in our Lightroom 5 beta overview, so you can take a quick glance at that article to understand and visualize these changes. If any new changes have been rolled out to the final version, we will cover them in a separate article. Also, I am planning to do an article on migrating from Lightroom 4 to Lightroom 5 and talk about issues/challenges.
Camera and Lens Support
As usual, Adobe is adding support for new cameras and lenses with this release. Here is a full list of cameras and lenses added:
- Hasselblad H5D-60
- Olympus PEN E-P5
- Olympus PEN E-PL6
- Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G6
- Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LF1
- Phase One IQ260*
- Ricoh GR
- Canon PowerShot G1 X
- Canon PowerShot G15
- Hasselblad HCD 4.8/24
- Nikon Coolpix A
- Nikon Coolpix P330
- Nikon AF-S Nikkor 80-400 mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR
- HD Pentax-D FA645 Macro 90mm f/2.8ED AW SR
- HD Pentax-DA 560mm f/5.6ED AW
- Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC HSM
- Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4 DC Macro OS HSM
- Sigma 19mm f/2.8 DN
- Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN
- Zeiss Apo Sonnar T* 2/135 ZE
- Zeiss Apo Sonnar T* 2/135 ZF.2
- Zeiss Touit 1.8/32
- Zeiss Touit 2.8/12
Note that the new Nikon 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G VR and the new Zeiss Touit lenses have been added. Tethered support has also been added for the Nikon D600.
Lightroom 5 Upgrade Options
Just like with the whole Creative Cloud subscription business, Adobe is leaving little room for those that want to stay with their older versions of Lightroom. None of the new camera and lens profiles will be added to existing versions of Lightroom, which means that this is pretty a much a forced upgrade for new gear. So if you buy a new camera or a lens that has recently been announced or will be announced in the future, you will have to upgrade to Lightroom 5 to be able to open up RAW files or correct lens issues via the Lens Corrections module. Adobe will not deliver those updates to Lightroom 4. If you do not care about new cameras and lenses, then you can obviously continue to use your existing Lightroom version.
Official Press Release
Here is the official press release:
SAN JOSE, Calif. — June 10, 2013 — Adobe today announced the availability of Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 5 for Mac OS® and Windows®. The product is available as an individual license or as part of Adobe Creative Cloud™. Designed for both photography enthusiasts and professionals alike, Lightroom 5 adds critical photo editing capabilities and creates groundbreaking workflows. Lightroom 5 was initially released as a free, public beta in April 2013.
“Lightroom was originally conceived through the requests of Adobe customers, and this feedback continues to drive each new iteration,” said Winston Hendrickson, vice president of products, Creative Media Solutions, Adobe. “As the digital photography landscape advances and evolves, Lightroom is the best solution for photographers and passionate hobbyists who want to get the most out of their digital images.”
New Features in Lightroom 5
Lightroom 5 adds powerful new editing tools to help photographers create better images faster. The Advanced Healing Brush enables customers to fix irregularly shaped imperfections such as dust spots, splotches, and other distractions with the precision and flexibility of a fine brush. The Upright tool analyzes each image to automatically straighten objects such as buildings and level horizons. Radial Gradients offer customers the control to make photo subjects stand out by applying off-center and multiple vignettes in a single image.
Lightroom 5 also brings extended sharing and publishing capabilities. New video slideshows enable customers to combine still images, video clips and music in a creative HD slideshow that can be viewed on almost any device. Updates to the Book module bring the ability to create, personalize and print elegant photo books from a variety of tailored, easy-to-use templates, as well as create customer-specific templates.
Smart Previews, new in Lightroom 5, enable photographers to make edits to their images offline, without bringing their entire library of original files with them. Edits and metadata changes to Smart Preview files are automatically applied to the original images when they are reconnected.
Pricing and Availability
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 is available now for immediate download for Adobe Creative Cloud members. Standalone software is available at Adobe.com and participating retailers for US$149 or US$79 for upgrades. For more detailed information about product features, upgrade policies, pricing and language versions, please visit www.adobe.com/go/lightroom.
Customers can also connect with the Lightroom team directly on Facebook, via Twitter or on the Adobe Lightroom blog. For Lightroom how-to videos, visit http://www.youtube.com/lightroom.
Along with Lightroom 5, Adobe also released Camera RAW 8.1 and DNG Converter 8.1, which will work with Adobe Photoshop CS6 (more on this later).
About Creative Cloud
Adobe Creative Cloud is a membership-based service that provides users with access to download and install Adobe creative desktop applications; game developer tools and integration with the Adobe Touch Apps. With Creative Cloud membership, users also have access to: a vibrant global creative community; publishing services to deliver apps and websites; cloud storage and the ability to sync to virtually any device; and new products and exclusive updates as they’re developed.
Below are the links to download both the Windows and the Mac versions of the software:
As with any new software release, I would not recommend to upgrade to the new Lightroom 5 version right away. I am currently testing LR5 and will report any serious issues, but it is always a good idea to wait for the first patch before committing to an upgrade, especially if your work heavily depends on Lightroom. Lightroom 5.1 will come out in a couple of months. Meanwhile, Lightroom 4.4 seems to be pretty solid overall. Also, if you are using any Lightroom plugins (Nik Software, etc), make sure that they are compatible with LR5 before you upgrade.