Adobe Announces Lightroom 5, Beta Available Now

Adobe Announces Lightroom 5, Beta Available Now

You might have heard some rumors spinning around earlier today regarding Lightroom 5, and those have been confirmed by Adobe in a Beta release of their latest iteration of the product. The Lightroom 5 Beta comes just 13 months after the availability of Lightroom 4, this time adding more options like a more advanced healing brush, radial gradient tool, smart preview, and high DPI support on Windows machines.

Lightroom 5 beta marks the fifth consecutive version Adobe has offered the software for public preview and testing prior to the final release. The final release is expected later this year.

Here is a list of the new functions you can expect:

  • PNG file support
  • True full Screen Mode
  • Configurable grid overlays
  • Windows HiDPI
  • Additional criteria for filters and smart collection
  • Lock zoom position preference settings
  • Keyboard shortcut to trigger tethered capture
  • Direction field in the EXIF metadata panel.
  • Persistent place in Collections
  • "Set as Target Collection" checkbox in Create Collection dialogue
  • Drag photo directly to a Saved Location in the Map Module
  • Drag Saved Location to a photo in the Map Module
  • Integrity verification of DNG Files


Along the lines of pure editing updates, expect:

  • LAB color readout
  • Keyboard shortcut to toggle between clone and heal modes
  • Duplicate local adjustments
  • Duplicate linear gradients
  • Aspect slider added to Manual Lens Corrections
  • Persistent clipping indicators between Lightroom sessions
  • Crop overlay aspect ratios


For sharing, updates include:

  • Visual indicator of Favorite book pages
  • Improved visualization of select book elements
  • Transparent buttons for improved Text creation in Books
  • More page text metadata options


Below you can see an example of the new radial gradient being used:



Another new feature analyzes your photo and can straighten it up for you automatically. Not hard to do manually, but a nice addition:



Finally, check out the results of the new beefed up Healing Brush, which can be changed to any shape you desire:



We have posted our top five favorite new functions to Lightroom 5, and if you want to download the Beta and try it out for yourself you can do so at What do you think? Will you be trying out the Beta? What do you want to see in an updated Lightroom? Let us know in the comments below.

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Native PNG SUPPORT! - W0ot!


Why would you need Layers in Lightroom?

Jason Vinson's picture

i would like to have some very basic layer functions in lightroom. blend 2 images together (multiple exposure type stuff or adding light leaks/effect) would also be nice to have a curves adjustment layer that could be applied to a specific part of an image. then better cloning/healing... with these pretty basic options i would almost never have to go into photoshop for my workflow.

Uh... That's what Photoshop is for.

I see no need to merge these two very distinct programs.

Jason Vinson's picture

Photoshop is for a whole lot more then what i listed. And the need would be to save a ton of time not having to jump from lightroom to photoshop as well as not having to create another file that takes up more space in addition to the RAW file just to clone out a power line / fence post or to add a light leak or some sort of texture overlay.

i agree that Photoshop has a very useful function and there are tons of uses that i would never expect to see implemented into lightroom. But the stuff i need to do in photoshop for the majority of my stuff would be a pretty minimal "merge"

James's picture

it wont let me download it right now, it says that the server is not responding

Server must be overloaded :)

Better overall performance.

I WISH we could LOCK the freaking panels ( specially the one to the right ). That small arrow to toggle ON/OFF the panel is so close to the scroll button!!!!


Jason Vinson's picture

i would LOVE for this to be a feature!!!!!!!!

Well honestly I don't have a problem with that because:
a) I use the Solo mode so I don't have to scroll a lot,
b) I use my mouse's wheel to scroll up and down so I never get that close to the tiny arrow :)

I would like a slimer, more fit, layout, better performance, but most of all, I want soft proof to load CMYK profiles.

I'd also like to see something like color balance and a more advanced split tone

Patrick Niddrie's picture

Really hoping they can do a bit better to improve the performance. I love the tools and features of Lightroom, but I find myself using Capture One and Photo Mechanic because of their much faster handling of RAW files. Waiting for Lightroom feels like you've got your feet stuck in the mud.

Would love better rendering of D4 raw files specifically. All other camera raw files look fine. I had to switch to Capture One which is good but clunky because lightroom's files looked terrible. Every profile they developed for the D4 looks like garbage.

Uh... from the Adobe site:
"You can download the beta and use it until the product expires on June 30, 2012."

... what?

It's a 'Beta.' If you download/use it now you're Beta testing. It's not a retail release version.

Look at the year again, and check what year it is now.

Haha, missed that.

I find it a good idea to always check that.

Based on this article's highlights of the new features... Yawn.

It'd be cool to see a polygonal multipoint mask along with the brush/gradient/circle


MOST important thing BETTER PREFORMANCE it really is the big bummer with lightroom, the preformance is just not there.

Also let me get costum keyboard shortcuts please. Not using a us keyboard layout is a pain in the but :(

I downloaded it and I'm jazzed. The one thing I wished Lightroom had was the ability to take out a stray hair. The Spot removal tool was great for a blemish, but not for a hair, or an unwanted telephone line, etc. That feature alone is HUGE!. There are also Smart Previews, great if you work on laptop. You can keep the originals on an external, create Smart Previews, which are smaller than the original files, and get work done on a laptop. That's just two.

You kidding me? It is amazing for removing power lines etc. Check out the advanced healing video. It can even be used to remove wrinkles.

Sharpening still can't comparable with Capture One 7. Still a plastic nylon overlay generator with a pinch of noise in the formula.

Looks like I'm echoing a lot of the same comments below. Faster performance, Adobe!

I can't download LR5 beta - it keeps telling me that it can't access server. Any advice?

Am I doing something wrong? or there is so much traffic and Adobe server got shut down?

Darien Robertson's picture

So I can't open my LR4 catalogs with it...