Lightroom gets massive update as Adobe adds new AI features

Adobe Lightroom Screenshots
(Image credit: Adobe)

It's another month, which means another round of updates for Adobe’s Creative Cloud software suite, and for April 2023, it's a big one. Adobe is bringing a huge range of features to make editing on Lightroom easier, faster, and more precise than ever. 

The list of updates includes some very exciting new features powered by Adobe’s increasing attention to AI editing with its AI Sensei algorithms, with updates for AI-powered denoise, adaptive presets, and masking. There is of course the usual collection of added camera and lens profiles for the latest imaging products and the extermination of a few bugs. The biggest changes this month can be seen below.

1: AI-powered Denoise

The new Denoise feature uses AI technology to remove digital noise from images without compromising on quality or detail. This feature is particularly useful when dealing with high ISO files in low-light conditions. Lightroom will create a copy of the file as a DNG that it will then apply the AI Denoise algorithms to, before stacking it in your Lightroom library with the original. The feature is currently available for RAW files, with additional file types to be added soon. A small caveat is that Denoise cannot be used alongside Super Resolution, so those hoping for massive noise-free images will be disappointed.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, Lightroom Classic, Adobe Camera Raw).

(Image credit: Adobe)

2: Curves in masking

Curves in masking allow for very precise edits by adjusting contrast, tone, and color on specific parts of an image. The feature looks like it works in exactly the same way as the curves panel, although now can finally offer a more precise edit, which is going to save a lot of time flitting back and forth between Lightroom and Photoshop.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, Lightroom Classic, Adobe Camera Raw).

(Image credit: Adobe)

3: Additional AI Mask categories for Select People

Additional AI Masking categories are now available with Select People, which takes the stress out of manually selecting areas for editing. This feature automatically generates a mask for individuals or groups in any portrait, with brand new options to make precise edits (including using curves; see above) to clothing and facial hair, as well as all the previous options like face, eyes, and lips. This now means you can select clothes and tweak their color in e-commerce photography or select a beard in your photo to lighten or darken it or adjust the texture for better portraiture.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, Lightroom Classic, Adobe Camera Raw).

(Image credit: Adobe)

4: Additional Adaptive Presets for portraits

Adaptive Presets automatically enhance a specific part of a photo, with the newest additions working in conjunction with the latest AI Masking options outlined above. These presets allow you to create an AI mask and an adaptive edit all in one easy step. The new Adaptive Presets are Polished Portrait, Darken Beard, and Enhance Clothing.

Polished Portrait enables you to quickly smooth the skin on portraits, enhance the lighting, and refine facial features to achieve the desired look. Darken Beard can be used to darken the facial hair of the subject in a photo without affecting other areas of the image. Enhance Clothing will increase contrast, saturation, and texture of clothing, highlighting its details and making it stand out more. The Adaptive Presets library already contains a lot of useful presents such as Enhance, Glamour, Whiten Teeth, and Texturise Hair.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, Lightroom Classic, ACR, iOS, Android, Lightroom on Web)

5: Black & white video

Lightroom isn’t the place to look for heavy video editing features. However, Adobe has now added a new Black and White and Auto video editing feature that enables you to achieve a quick and sophisticated color or black-and-white look on video with just a click. The same black-and-white preset can be applied to multiple video clips at once, which gives all your clips creates a cohesive look. There are also additional video trimming features to trim the length of a video in the video timeline, as well as right-clicking on a video to extract and export a frame as an image.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, iOS, Lightroom on Web, coming to Android soon)

(Image credit: Adobe)

6: Content Credentials

The Content Credential feature, now available as a Tech Preview, helps add proper attribution and creative transparency. When enabled, Content Credentials gather an overview of edits, activity, and attribution information associated with work created in Lightroom, providing increased trust and transparency for digital content.

(Available for Lightroom for Mac/Win, Lightroom Classic, ACR, iOS, Android, Lightroom on Web)

7: Additional updates

Masking features and Adaptive Presets are now available on the web, adding more editing options for those editing on their browser. This will be welcome to anyone who likes to edit on the move, or on underpowered machines.

You can now add a border when exporting an image on the iOS app, using the add border and share options allows you to format images for the most popular social media aspect ratios.

Adobe has also added a series of new travel presets that have been designed to make your travel photography pop, as with all presets you can adjust the strength of each preset or use it as a starting point for your own edits.

Read more about editing your images with our guides to the best photo editing software, the best photo organization software, and the best photo-editing laptops.

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Gareth Bevan
Reviews Editor

Gareth is a photographer based in London, working as a freelance photographer and videographer for the past several years, having the privilege to shoot for some household names. With work focusing on fashion, portrait and lifestyle content creation, he has developed a range of skills covering everything from editorial shoots to social media videos. Outside of work, he has a personal passion for travel and nature photography, with a devotion to sustainability and environmental causes.