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Gear Talk => Software & Accessories => Topic started by: eninja on June 27, 2013, 01:16:40 AM

Title: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: eninja on June 27, 2013, 01:16:40 AM
Since I am not a professional, I can not justify purchasing lightroom.

Can anyone advise similar software to lightroom in regards to photo retouching?

I've been using Sagelight, but I am afraid software development is dead.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: duydaniel on June 27, 2013, 01:39:34 AM
GIMP is free but similar to photoshop.
http://www.gimp.org/ (http://www.gimp.org/)

Nikon and Canon have their own softwares. I am not sure if they are free.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: rpt on June 27, 2013, 02:28:16 AM
GIMP is free but similar to photoshop.
http://www.gimp.org/ (http://www.gimp.org/)

Nikon and Canon have their own softwares. I am not sure if they are free.
Canon's DPP is free and comes with the camera.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Hobby Shooter on June 27, 2013, 02:42:02 AM
+1 for DPP that you get for free with the camera..
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Dick on June 27, 2013, 03:18:29 AM
Since I am not a professional, I can not justify purchasing lightroom.

This makes no sense. Lightroom is not expensive. The cheapest lens you have likely costs more.

Either way, I use Aperture. I'm not sure if it really makes a difference which program you use if you know how to use it.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Hillsilly on June 27, 2013, 03:31:34 AM
Capture one is cheaper than Lightroom.  Unfortunately, you've just missed their 50% off sale (which dropped the price to $49).  This week, DxO Optics is on sale (but still $99).  Lightroom occassionally goes on sale / has price drops, but because the new version 5 has only just been released, I wouldn't expect any good deals for a while.

Have you looked at Adobe Creatve Cloud pricing?  $10/mth gets you Photoshop or Lightroom.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Drizzt321 on June 27, 2013, 03:32:46 AM
Since I am not a professional, I can not justify purchasing lightroom.

This makes no sense. Lightroom is not expensive. The cheapest lens you have likely costs more.

Either way, I use Aperture. I'm not sure if it really makes a difference which program you use if you know how to use it.

Unless he just bought a Rebel kit, maybe even an older one like the T2i, and maybe has the 55-250 alongside the 18-50.

DPP is quite good for it being free, although I haven't tried out any of the image management stuff that comes alongside DPP. There are really 2 parts to something like Aperture or Lightroom. First is image management, organizing files, searching files, etc. The second is actually making the edits and then exporting them to JPG (or TIFF, PNG, etc) for uploading. The advantage with Aperture or Lightroom is the catalog remembers what edits you did, so you don't have to go back and re-create them if you lose the exported image, or need to make a slight adjustment or get a higher resolution image for large prints.

Although with Lightroom being $150 full retail, it's hard to say it's hard to justify purchasing it. If you have some money issues, save up for a few months. It'll be worth it, simply for the ease of image management and storing what edits you performed. And not being a 'professional' is not a reason for getting something like Lightroom. Photoshop, sure, maybe, it depends on what you need to do for your hobby. But Lightroom is quite valuable to both the _working_ photographer and the hobbyist who wants to have a smoother workflow and high quality editing and RAW conversion.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: duydaniel on June 27, 2013, 03:33:34 AM

This makes no sense. Lightroom is not expensive. The cheapest lens you have likely costs more.


You'll never know.
Something may be cheap to some are not to others.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: SilverSnake on June 27, 2013, 03:59:03 AM
Have you looked at Adobe Creatve Cloud pricing?  $10/mth gets you Photoshop or Lightroom.

I may be missing something, but it doesn't seem like Lightroom is one of the options for the "single app" plan in Creative Cloud (maybe a regional limit?), and you only seem to get the 9.99$/mo if you buy (or own) a CS3+ license already, it's a temporary promotion. Commiting to a year gets you a price of 19.99$/mo and if you want to be able to cancel at any time it jumps up to a whooping 29.99$/mo and by then I'm not sure we can call it "cheap" anymore.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: kentandersen on June 27, 2013, 04:35:04 AM
I used DPP combined with Gimp for years.

That is a great budget combination. You are really not missing much, and can achieve almost everything with it. Google for tutorials, and you will find great videos helping you getting started.

Now I am using lightroom together with Gimp and the packages from NIk software.

The thing I love with lightroom, is that I can adjust one picture, and then copy everything I have done on all the other pictures. That saves me alot of time. I am also editing directly from the Raw file wich gives a much bether end result, and normaly i get what i want directly on lightroom.

It is worth the price, but you can also live without it. If you are a beginner with a low budget, DPP and Gimp will be a great starting point and bring you all you need to start editing youre pictures.

DPP i mostly used to set the whitebalance.

What I use on Gimp is sharpening tools (to paint sharpnes on specific parts of the picture), to clone away things, and to improve pictures with to much contrast (brightening dark areas and darkening to bright areas). I also use Gimp to adjust the white and black point, if I want to pimp up the colours.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Hillsilly on June 27, 2013, 06:26:01 AM
Have you looked at Adobe Creatve Cloud pricing?  $10/mth gets you Photoshop or Lightroom.

I may be missing something, but it doesn't seem like Lightroom is one of the options for the "single app" plan in Creative Cloud (maybe a regional limit?), and you only seem to get the 9.99$/mo if you buy (or own) a CS3+ license already, it's a temporary promotion. Commiting to a year gets you a price of 19.99$/mo and if you want to be able to cancel at any time it jumps up to a whooping 29.99$/mo and by then I'm not sure we can call it "cheap" anymore.

OK -  you might be right.  I signed up a few weeks ago and as a CS4 user, my memory is a little hazy about the fine print, who gets discounted pricing and whether Lightroom was available.  (FWIW I signed up for the full package and consider it a bargain compared to what I pay normally.  Am very happy - Thanks Adobe!).
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: LarryG on June 27, 2013, 06:44:49 AM
The free alternatives are good, but paying a little will gain a lot...plus more likely to find support and instructional videos. While I currently use Lightroom and Photoshop, for years (since it was a 'must have' shareware) I used Paint Shop Pro. Corel keeps sending me upgrade emails. I noted a year ago that Corel had a program - AfterShot Pro. I haven't used it other than downloading a trial, but my jaw dropped. I has the look and feel of Lightroom - sliders and all, and lacked only one or two features in my quick review. Well worth downloading the trial (hidden in the "download' section as primary page only shows the purchase option).

Currently on 'sale' for $49, but seems like always on sale. Also a secondary sale "get for $20" if purchase any other program. Paint Shop Pro X5 Ultimate is $55 non-upgrade. The combination of those 2 would be dynamite. Paint Shop Pro, which does perhaps 95% of what Photoshop does, also includes the NIK plugins in the Ultimate version of X5. Frankly, while I have CS6 which will be good until I retire at which point there is no way I would consider CC's monthly obligation on fixed income. I would go to this in a heartbeat - and probably Final Cut in lieu of Premiere Pro, but would look at Corel's video option.

Original poster didn't state if using Apple or Windows. AfterShot is Mac/PC, while all others, including some discusse by others, are PC only. Would need to run in Parallel/Bootcamp on Apple, but don't know how well (i.e. sluggish) that transition is.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: noisejammer on June 27, 2013, 07:18:53 AM
Capture One v6 Express is available for free if you use the coupon code "DCM2013" . Try http://www.phaseone.com/dcm (http://www.phaseone.com/dcm) . You will need to create an account but it's a $99 product without the code. Windoze or Mac.  If you want to upgrade to the latest release (that's v7), they're charging $34.50 until Sunday. The Pro version will cost $249 for the upgrade.

Another free alternative is Raw Therapee. This is released under GPLv3. http://rawtherapee.com (http://rawtherapee.com) . I haven't tested this yet but after reading the docs, it looks really interesting. This is a Windoze / Mac / Linux release.

Finally - Iridient - not free and I have no experience of this one because it's Mac only. http://www.iridientdigital.com (http://www.iridientdigital.com)
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: eninja on June 27, 2013, 10:00:21 AM
Hi, I refer cheap in the context that I will only use the software like 4 times a month, and I am not sure if this trend will go on.

I heard lightroom is heading to subscription version, and want to avoid this.

I have a 6D, 28mm 1.8, and recently 75-300 iii, 430ex ii. $150 software is not even yet in the list.

I am already using DPP. I was looking for a software mask and edit selectively portion of image.
That could do HDR look photo seamlessly, and non destructive one.

I will try those softwares you guy have mentioned.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: sanjosedave on June 27, 2013, 10:42:13 AM
1. picmonkey.com

2. Adobe offers 30 day free trial for most of its products, try LR to see if it does what you want

3. Wait until the Holiday season where you can usually find Photoshop Elements for ~$50

4. Take a class at a community college, making you eligible for the education discount
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Harry Muff on June 27, 2013, 10:56:19 AM
Just pony up for Lightroom. If that is out of your price range, then you've picked the wrong hobby.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: sunnyVan on June 27, 2013, 11:58:31 AM
I'm not a professional either. I started using LR two years ago. Before that I used iphoto which at that time I thought was adequate until I realized what LR could do. You could use Photoshop elements.  I got it for like 60 bucks. But if you want to spend more time shooting and less time editing you should make an investment and get LR. Don't underestimate the post process.  It's as important as the shooting process. It is part of the creative process. 
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Drizzt321 on June 27, 2013, 12:46:50 PM
Hi, I refer cheap in the context that I will only use the software like 4 times a month, and I am not sure if this trend will go on.

I heard lightroom is heading to subscription version, and want to avoid this.

I have a 6D, 28mm 1.8, and recently 75-300 iii, 430ex ii. $150 software is not even yet in the list.

I am already using DPP. I was looking for a software mask and edit selectively portion of image.
That could do HDR look photo seamlessly, and non destructive one.

I will try those softwares you guy have mentioned.

No, Lightroom is, and for the near future, will remain available in retail boxed copy (and upgrade pricing). It _is_ available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud (aka call home DRM), but last I heard a perpetual license will remain available for a while to come. This is a worry for me as well, and if they go that direction I'll have to figure something else out, or switch software :\

For doing masking, don't know what GIMP's capabilities are these days, but Photoshop Elements has some of those capabilities. I know there are other pieces of software (forgot which) that focus on HDR merging, so you can look for those. Just export as TIFFs from DPP and pull them into that software which will output a separate TIFF/JPG/PNG.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Grumbaki on June 27, 2013, 11:05:35 PM
Just pony up for Lightroom. If that is out of your price range, then you've picked the wrong hobby.

That's a bit harsh but the bottom line is true. Evn with alternative approach ( http://alesserphotographer.com/blog/a-lesser-photographer-a-manifesto (http://alesserphotographer.com/blog/a-lesser-photographer-a-manifesto) ), photography still isn't for the feint of wallet.

Other than that +1 for Darktable and +1 to all "save, it's worth it" comments.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: wsmith96 on June 27, 2013, 11:43:36 PM
I used Corel's Aftershot pro for a while - picked it up from corels website for $30.  Pair that with a ~40 paintshoppro package and you got a decent budget setup.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Drizzt321 on June 28, 2013, 11:46:59 AM
Just pony up for Lightroom. If that is out of your price range, then you've picked the wrong hobby.

That's a bit harsh but the bottom line is true. Evn with alternative approach ( http://alesserphotographer.com/blog/a-lesser-photographer-a-manifesto (http://alesserphotographer.com/blog/a-lesser-photographer-a-manifesto) ), photography still isn't for the feint of wallet.

Other than that +1 for Darktable and +1 to all "save, it's worth it" comments.

Wow, thank you for that link. Captures a good bit of where I think I'm going as I've started to shoot a lot more film, and experiment with different film cameras and formats.
Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: eninja on May 07, 2014, 09:16:22 PM
I was the op. I visited sagelight website and I am glad development or shall I say its moving forward after all.
I like sagelight because I haven't tried lightroom, and its cheaper. And I also like how my photo react base from different settings(handle bar) I move. I'm not a professional or expert or pixel peeping, I just find sagelight easy to use.

I want to support sagelight, that is why I am sharing this. It amaze me that all the code, sagelight software and algorithm was coded by just one person..

http://www.sagelighteditor.com/ (http://www.sagelighteditor.com/)

http://www.youtube.com/user/SagelightEditor (http://www.youtube.com/user/SagelightEditor)

If anyone of you is bored or something, could you install sagelight and play with it, and compare to lightroom??
I believe sagelight comes in 30 day free trial.

Thank you.


Title: Re: Any Lightroom Alternative for Retouching photos?
Post by: Mt Spokane Photography on May 07, 2014, 11:06:40 PM
For quick and dirty edits, I use ACDSEE 17 while I use Photoshop and LR for most of my work.  Even the base ACDSEE 17 will edit raw images and save them as 8 bit jpg images.  You still have the original 16 bit image if you want to do another edit.
 
Its inexpensive but quite powerful.