Software & Accessories / Re: Manfrotto 055xprob VS 190xprob tripods and Canon Speedlite 580EX II? Lightroom?« on: December 04, 2011, 10:29:35 AM »
I'm going to add a minority opinion on Lightroom.
I bought it about six months ago. I really wanted to like Lightroom. I tried it a few times and was greatly disappointed. I bought Scott Kelby's book on it and will probably get back to it one of these days, but here is my take:
I'm used to the Bridge interface for file management. I don't need or want an elaborate file management system, so I'd rather stick with what I know for something mindless like file management. I can double-click on an image in Bridge and it brings it into the Adobe Raw editor from Photoshop. Everything I've read indicates that there is no difference between the Photoshop Raw editor and Lightroom's Raw editor (the same adjustments are available in both).
I'm very used to the Photoshop Raw editor. It's what I know and use and I am comfortable doing my adjustments there. As part of my personal workflow, I usually open the file as a "smart object" in Photoshop, duplicate it one or more times and then go back into Raw to adjust specific areas of the image on these various layers. (later using a mask and the brush tool to overlay the layers).
One of the problems I found with Lightroom, was that when I double click to open a smart object in Raw, Photoshop defaults to its own Raw editor, so I end up working in the Photoshop Raw editor anyway. There may be some way to change that, but from my perspective, as long as I was going to be working in Photoshop Raw for half or more of my layers, why bother with a second interface?
I did not find any advantage to developing the image in Lightroom as opposed to Photoshop's Raw editor, so I guess for me, I haven't felt a strong need to change my workflow. I intend to make an effort at some point to go back and really give Lightroom another chance, but I've found I'd rather spend the time shooting and editing photos than learning a new program at this point.
On the other hand, for about the same money and at about the same time, I bought a "pro" version of OnOne Software's Photo Tools (Actually I think I got a free stripped-down version with Photoshop and then upgraded to the "pro" version). I use it almost daily. Yes, there are tons of cheesy effects that I would never use, but there are about a dozen really useful tools that I have come to absolutely rely on to save time and give me the look I'm after. For the money, I'd pick this over Lightroom any day (yes they are two different animals, but that's the point -- you already own a Raw editor with Photoshop, while the OnOne plug-ins give you something new.
Bottom line: If you own Photoshop already, Lightroom gives you a different interface and a different file management tool, but it doesn't give you a different Raw image editor.
I'm just one user, and I'm in the minority, but I just thought you ought to hear another opinion.
At this stage (and I'm willingly trying to use and learn LR3 at this point for a second time) I'd second that. Not sure if that really is a "minority opinion". I even recently went to a LR workshop and even there were quite a few people who are well aware of all the limitations and some buggy behavior of LR3.
For a photo-management library I find it very slow and cumbersome to add new stuff. Takes a while and tends to crash along the way (on a dual core 2.5 GB PC with a fast HD). And then there is the issue that I can't find a simple way to sync to PC's libraries. Without exporting things to my already existing file folder system on an external network drive I see no benefit here at all. Just more stuff to remember to update and back up.
The work flow may be very intuitive to some. I find it still weird and find myself jumping back and forth and scrolling a lot. The Bridge>CS5>file folder system> rinse/repeat approach is probably what I'll go back to. But hey, the experiment was only $90 and certainly looks pretty with the dark interface.