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Adobe Photoshop Lightroom vs Adobe Photoshop CS3
Until now, I have only shot 'jpg.' But as I am getting more familiar with my Nikon D80, I am considering switching to 'raw.' As far as I understand, when shooting 'raw,' one needs a tool to adjust/perfect one's images..

I have heard other people talking about Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop CS3. I don't know much about either programs. I understand that Photoshop is rather complex and has a steep learning curve..

Which software would you recommend for a total beginner?..

Comments (11)

Lightroom is around $300 USD and Photoshop CS3 is around $600 USD. Beginners don't need to be spending that kind of money until they know for sure that they need that kind of software..

Photoshop Elements V5 or V6 is what you need. It will handle raw just fine, along with just about everything else an absolute beginner will need. And, I've seen copies of v5 selling on the internet for less than $50..

If this hobby sticks, you'll have plenty of opportunity to spend lots of money for no good reason other than you just can't stop yourself! My advice, is go cheap until you know cheap just won't cut it anymore.STOP Global Stasis! Change is good!.

Now that you've judged the quality of my typing, take a look at my photos..http://www.photo.net/photos/GlenBarrington..

Comment #1

Very good advice. But....

Glen Barrington wrote:.

Lightroom is around $300 USD and Photoshop CS3 is around $600 USD.Beginners don't need to be spending that kind of money until theyknow for sure that they need that kind of software..

Photoshop Elements V5 or V6 is what you need. It will handle rawjust fine, along with just about everything else an absolute beginnerwill need. And, I've seen copies of v5 selling on the internet forless than $50..

Yes, right now is a good time to buy PSE5. Ver. 6 doesn't seem to offer much that I want..

If this hobby sticks, you'll have plenty of opportunity to spend lotsof money for no good reason other than you just can't stop yourself!My advice, is go cheap until you know cheap just won't cut it anymore..

My advice is to download the 1 month free trial of LR. Then go watch the LR tutorials at:.

Http://www.whibalhost.com/_Tutorials/Photoshop_LR/01/index.html.

Otherwise you won't know where to start with LR. Although the price is steep, it's exactly what a beginner needs! It doesn't have the advanced editing features of PSE5, (such as selections, layers, etc), but from my experience, those are difficult to grasp for beginners. LR also doesn't have tools for fancy corrections, which can be handled by 3rd-party add-ins in PSE5. You need both...they work well together..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #2

I agree with the advice given by the other posters - get PhotoShop Elements..

However, some clarification about the difference between Lightroom and CS3/Elements. These are not competing programs, they are complementary. Lightroom covers downloading from a camera or memory card, reviewing and sorting files to decide which ones to use/keep/dump, indexing files for future retrieval, searching for files, RAW conversion and basic image manipulation (cropping, straightening, red eye removal and dust spot removal), creating slideshows (basic), creating web pages (basic) and printing..

The only place where Lightroom really overlaps with CS3 is in RAW conversion. If you want to do anything but really basic image manipulation in Lightroom, you would go into CS3 or Elements..

Elements has more in common with Lightroom than CS3 because it includes an organiser that has similar sorting and indexing facilities. There are also other programs like Picasa (free) which cover some of the same areas as Lightroom..

Get Elements now and decide later if you need anything more.Chris R..

Comment #3

Tank you for so eloquently pointing our the differences between Lightroom and CS3. I have always been confused between these two programs..

I had forgotten about Elements. But I will give it a try...

Comment #4

AnOutdoorsFan wrote:.

Tank you for so eloquently pointing our the differences betweenLightroom and CS3. I have always been confused between these twoprograms..

Chris is right...they complement each other. LR is basically a Photo Database Program. Elements and CS are basically Photo Editors. There is some overlap...more so with PSE than with CS..

But I disagree a tad...LR can do more than Chris indicated. I use it for adjusting exposure (Levels)...adjusting shadows and highlights (Shadows and Highlights)...Adjusting WB, Brightness, Contrast, Clarity, and Vibrance, doing basic NR and sharpening...removing CA...cropping and rotating...tagging....

I had forgotten about Elements. But I will give it a try..

Yes, PSE is what all beginners should start with. There are other good choices, but when you consider that 90% of the market is PS of one flavor or the other, getting help will be MUCH easier with PSE. As long as Adobe doesn't get greedy and arrogant, we will continue to give them business. .

But as soon as you get PSE, try the Organizer briefly. Then go try LR. It's like night and day, IMO. Don't waste any time with Organizer!.

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #5

What's the difference between free Picasa and Photoshop Elements?.

Jay.

Http://picasaweb.google.com/jaykalasnik..

Comment #6

Jakey217350 wrote:.

What's the difference between free Picasa and Photoshop Elements?.

I don't have Picasa, but I believe that it is an imagement management program for storing, retrieving and displaying images..

Elements has an organiser that overlaps with Picasa, but Elements is primarily an image manipulation program.Chris R..

Comment #7

Chuxter wrote:.

AnOutdoorsFan wrote:.

Tank you for so eloquently pointing our the differences betweenLightroom and CS3. I have always been confused between these twoprograms..

Chris is right...they complement each other. LR is basically a PhotoDatabase Program. Elements and CS are basically Photo Editors. Thereis some overlap...more so with PSE than with CS..

But I disagree a tad...LR can do more than Chris indicated. I use itfor adjusting exposure (Levels)...adjusting shadows and highlights(Shadows and Highlights)...Adjusting WB, Brightness, Contrast,Clarity, and Vibrance, doing basic NR and sharpening...removingCA...cropping and rotating...tagging....

Agreed! Lightroom is definitely more than basic. I find it to be a valuable and powerful tool. The more I use Lightroom, the less I use CS3..

I had forgotten about Elements. But I will give it a try..

Yes, PSE is what all beginners should start with. There are othergood choices, but when you consider that 90% of the market is PS ofone flavor or the other, getting help will be MUCH easier with PSE.As long as Adobe doesn't get greedy and arrogant, we will continue togive them business. .

But as soon as you get PSE, try the Organizer briefly. Then go tryLR. It's like night and day, IMO. Don't waste any time with Organizer!.

Agreed again. I've tried many flavors of different photo organizers and they've all gotten tossed now that I'm using Lightroom..

Lightroom is a one stop shop. Unless you need to work with layers, you probably won't be needing Photoshop much...

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/.

'I reject your reality and substitute my own' -Adam Savage..

Comment #8

When I first started processing RAW I went with CS3. Although other versions of Photoshop do most things, CS3 has functions that the others do not, especially in the RAW processor. (I would assume Lightroom uses the same ACR too, but not sure.) There are a number of good tutorials and videos available to help beginners..

The way I looked at it, with the $1000's spent on a camera body, lenses, filters, etc, why cut corners on the processing software, but this comes down to disposable income. It's like deciding between a $300 or $1000 or $2000 lens or camera body; they will all take photos..

I just wanted to offer a different perspective to those above. ..

Comment #9

Well, it all boils down to you've got to find the tools and methods that work for you..

All the free advice in the world means nothing if it's just wrong for you.STOP Global Stasis! Change is good!.

Now that you've judged the quality of my typing, take a look at my photos..http://www.photo.net/photos/GlenBarrington..

Comment #10

Just remember, regardless of the software, the output is impacted by device color management and screen calibration...

Comment #11

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