More Efficient Spot Removal in Lightroom

Cleaning up sensor dust, hot pixels, acne, or other particulate distractions that can manifest themselves in your photographs can be frustrating and tedious. Fortunately for you Adobe users, Lightroom has done its best to try and make that as easy and simple as possible.

Now, automatic lens and camera profiling can do a decent amount for adjusting for lens distortion and hot pixel removal. But even the automated processes still struggle with some of the more intense hot pixels, and it definitely can't automatically remove sensor dust on its own. Well, at least right now it can't; who knows what it will be capable of in the future.

For the time being, however, it seems that the task of removing lens dust, sensor dust, and strong hot pixels comes down to us. The spot removal tool is a very simple tool: it works similarly to the spot removal and cloning tools that are available in Photoshop. However, there are a couple differences between removing spots in Lightroom versus doing such a job in Photoshop. For one thing, I will tell you this: if you have more than a couple dozen spots to remove, then the processing power of Photoshop will be much faster than Lightroom. The spot removal tool in Lightroom takes more time to process. However, that aside, there is a very nifty reason for cleaning up sensor dust and other spots in Lightroom. This video highlights exactly how helpful this tool can be when needed.

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2 Comments

marcgabor's picture

Pretty cool! I did not know about this feature. However, that's an insane amount of dust! I don't really do anything to keep dust off the sensor and I've never had more than a couple of spots on any single image from my Nikon DSLR or Fuji mirrorless. Every time I change lenses on a mirrorless camera I worry about dust since I can see the naked sensor but rarely is it an issue in real life.

Spy Black's picture

Having spent years working with Photoshop, I find the majority of LR tools to be crude, the spot tool being no exception. The masking tools are Jurassic, as they are also in Capture One. The luminosity, color, and noise reduction tools being the best use of LR/CO, only because they do so on RAW data. If Photoshop could do everything it does directly on raw files I would never waste my time with LR/CO.