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Lightroom gets some love in Adobe’s latest round of software updates

Lightroom CC watermark
(Image credit: Adobe)

It’s probably fair to say that the updates to Lightroom are incremental rather than revolutionary, but they still add up to a useful set of changes.

The first is to the editing tools, or rather the local adjustments options. These have now been increased to include hue adjustments, so now it will be possible to change the hue in selected areas without changing the whole image. 

Adobe’s example shows how to improve a subject’s skin tones without changing similar colors in her coat, but there are likely to be main more situations where this kind of localised hue adjustment could prove useful. 

It’s worth pointing out that there is not ‘one’ Lightroom these days, but three. Lightroom Classic is the ‘old’ Lightroom, Lightroom CC is the web-first version, and Lightroom mobile is the version that runs on phones and tablets. The new local hue adjustments feature will roll out on both Lightroom Classic and Lightroom CC.

Lightroom and Photoshop are both on our list of the best photo editing software you can get right now, and if you subscribe to one of the Adobe Photography Plans, you get both.

How to download Lightroom and try it free for 7 days

Lightroom CC local hue adjustment

Now it's possible to apply hue adjustments to masked areas in Lightroom, like this model's face (highlighted in green – she is not an alien). (Image credit: Adobe)

Lightroom CC gets  Versions

In Lightroom Classic you can create Virtual Copies of images to try out different ‘looks’ and processing styles, which is where it’s a step ahead of Lightroom CC and Lightroom mobile.

The June update, however, brings a new Versions feature to Lightroom CC and Lightroom mobile. It’s still not Virtual Copies of they type that Lightroom Classic offers, but more like ‘Snapshots’, where you can save different editing states permanently within the image.

It doesn’t look as if it will work the same way as Virtual Copies, so you won’t be able to search for and display different versions as separate images, but it does feel like a step in the right direction.

Adobe says it has also rolled out a watermarking feature across all version of Lightroom, which will be a big advantage to users worried about image theft or simply keen to promote their own work.

Adobe Photoshop for iPad

It will now be possible to 'round-trip' images from Lightroom mobile to Photoshop for iPad and back again. (Image credit: Adobe)

Share and share alike

And finally, the Discover feature in Lightroom CC will now be extended to the whole user community. The section showcases images and their edits, allowing the editing stages to be followed individually and even downloaded as presets, but previously this was restricted to Adobe ‘curated’ photographers. 

The plan now, though, is to allow anyone to share their work in this way. We look forward to checking the terms and conditions, though, to see what rights photographers retain in their work and how they are protected.

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Rod Lawton

Rod is the Group Reviews editor for Digital Camera World and across Future's entire photography portfolio. Previously he has been Head of Testing for the photography division and Camera Channel editor on TechRadar. He has been writing about digital cameras since they first appeared, and before that began his career writing about film photography. 

Rod's near-encyclopedic knowledge of cameras both old and new makes him an invaluable resource, whether we need to ask a question about transparencies or the latest X-Trans sensor. He owns all manner of cameras, from Nikon DSLRs through Olympus, Sony and Fujifilm bodies, and on any given day you'll see him using kit from just about every manufacturer.