New Lightroom Beta Available

Inside Lightroom

I've been testing the new Adobe Lightroom Public Beta 3 on a new Intel MacBook Pro and am impressed with the application's performance. There are also many UI refinements from Beta 2, including a new module: Web.

That's where I started experimenting. The Web templates are quite attractive, although you don't have much flexibility with them yet. There are 3 presets -- HTML gallery, Exif metadata, and Flash gallery. You have two options for exporting: Save to your hard drive or upload to your web server. You can enter your FTP settings directly in Lightroom saving you a couple steps.

The code Lightroom generates is XHTML compliant and looks fairly clean. It uses CSS and JavaScript to perform much of its appearance and navigation magic. I really liked how my generated site performed in both Safari and Firefox.

The Develop module also received some attention. You now have additional tools above the filmstrip -- most notably a Before/After view, which is really handy while image editing. There are RGB value readouts too.

A member from The Digital Story community, Jeremey Barrett, has published first impressions of Beta 3 on his weblog. You might want to take a look.

One final note: still no official word on the Windows version yet. For now, the beta is only Mac. But you can sign up to be notified as soon as the Windows beta is ready.


I'm sure it's driving the Windows users nuts, but it makes sense that their focusing on Mac at the moment since they've got competition there (Apple's Aperture). Is there anything that's at all similar on the Windows side?

Of course we Mac-heads have been in the reverse situation lots of times - so it's nice to be getting the attention for once. :-)

I think the Windows version of Lightroom is going to be worth waiting for. There are other apps out there that touch on this type of workflow, such as Lightzone, but Lightroom's integration with Photoshop and it's friendly built-in Camera Raw converter is going to make it tough to beat. My guess is that Windows users will have something to play with by mid-summer.