DXO-PL 4 released

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I have been a long time Lightroom/Photoshop user. I've never used another program to edit my raw images. (I honestly can't remember what I used before Lightroom.) I've downloaded a trial version of PL 4. I recently purchased the NIK collection. I have to keep running photoshop and lightroom for my jobs. But, I would love to know why you folks like PL 4 better. I am getting some nice results with it. But think I could do most of the same things in Lightroom. How often do they come out with new versions? Does it end up being less expensive than the Adobe subscription. I've spend so much time learning how to use Lightroom and all my old edits are in that software.

I still have 30 days left in the trial, so if there is something you think I should try, I would be grateful for the suggestions.
 
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For me, when I started using DXO Photolab 3 about a year ago, there was an intuitive grasp of how the software worked right from the get-go, it was straightforward for what I wanted to do and I was able to quickly figure out things and come up with decent results, which actually was rather important since right after I'd begun using it a friend wanted me to take photos at her retirement party -- ack, a baptism of fire!!! I had tried Capture One Pro and felt overwhelmed and frustrated by it and realized that some of the features it promotes are not something I'd ever need to use, and it just didn't seem intuitive to me at all.

I had used Photoshop years ago -- last time being CS 3 -- and then had been using Apple's Aperture for the years it was active and even for a while after Apple had stopped supporting it. I have never used Lightroom so can't speak to how that compares or contrasts with DXO Photolab 3. (I haven't yet updated to PhotoLab 4) I just like to be able to have my images in the software and run through a fairly streamlined, smooth process that doesn't require anything elaborate, and boom, the image is edited and looks pretty decent (except when I accidentally oversharpen or undersharpen, which has happened a few times, or fail to see and repair/remove a dust bunny spot or two and then have to go back and fix that later when I have finally noticed it). For me, DXO PhotoLab does what I need and want and I find it easy to use.

I like that the NIK Collection easily plugs in to DXO PhotoLab -- as well it should, of course!

I have never used a subscription arrangement so can't speak to cost comparisons, but I believe DXO PhotoLab upgrades full versions once a year, also offering a reduced price to current PhotoLab users, and during the entire year there are frequent (free) updates for the user.
 
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What was your motivation? If you explain that, maybe the PL users will be able to provide more helpful responses.
Mostly to see if there is an easier way to do things or more intuitive way. Also, I may want to cut back on subscription fees when Greg retires next year. But if you have to update every year to get new features, there probably isn't that much of a savings. I always like to see if there is something different that will make my photography better. I've already found some filters in Color Efex Pro that are improving many of my images in ways that I haven't been able to duplicate easily in Lightroom and Photoshop. The one I really like that a cafe member showed me is the Pro Contrast filter.
 
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In playing with the software I came up with a few things I do in Lightroom on a regular basis that I couldn't figure out in PL-4

1- Rotate while cropping. I do that very often, straightening up horizons and such as I crop.
2- Add a vignette.
3- Mask when I unsharp mask. In photoshop, you can set your sharpening amount, then hold down alt on the masking slider and it only sharpens the area shown in white. I use that all the time to take sharpening out of the sky, lessen the amount of sharpening on the skin, only sharpen edges of foliage, etc.

I'm sure you regular users probably know how to do these things in Photo Lab. I tried to find tutorials to help me with no luck.
Mostly to see if there is an easier way to do things or more intuitive way. Also, I may want to cut back on subscription fees when Greg retires next year. But if you have to update PL every year, there probably wouldn't be that much of a savings.
 
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Messages
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For me, when I started using DXO Photolab 3 about a year ago, there was an intuitive grasp of how the software worked right from the get-go, it was straightforward for what I wanted to do and I was able to quickly figure out things and come up with decent results, which actually was rather important since right after I'd begun using it a friend wanted me to take photos at her retirement party -- ack, a baptism of fire!!! I had tried Capture One Pro and felt overwhelmed and frustrated by it and realized that some of the features it promotes are not something I'd ever need to use, and it just didn't seem intuitive to me at all.

I had used Photoshop years ago -- last time being CS 3 -- and then had been using Apple's Aperture for the years it was active and even for a while after Apple had stopped supporting it. I have never used Lightroom so can't speak to how that compares or contrasts with DXO Photolab 3. (I haven't yet updated to PhotoLab 4) I just like to be able to have my images in the software and run through a fairly streamlined, smooth process that doesn't require anything elaborate, and boom, the image is edited and looks pretty decent (except when I accidentally oversharpen or undersharpen, which has happened a few times, or fail to see and repair/remove a dust bunny spot or two and then have to go back and fix that later when I have finally noticed it). For me, DXO PhotoLab does what I need and want and I find it easy to use.

I like that the NIK Collection easily plugs in to DXO PhotoLab -- as well it should, of course!

I have never used a subscription arrangement so can't speak to cost comparisons, but I believe DXO PhotoLab upgrades full versions once a year, also offering a reduced price to current PhotoLab users, and during the entire year there are frequent (free) updates for the user.
It sounds like it works really well for you. I think that most of the software out there does pretty much the same things. You just find the commands in different places. I do like the U-Point technology that DXO has.
 
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I never used Lightroom. Did try Photoshop and found it too complex and too much for my needs (perhaps it was because all the folks who "helped" me with it were not photographers, but computer scientists enamored with software for softwares sake). Nikon capture was fine for 95% of my needs but it stopped evolving. DXO is easy to use, simple, flexible, intuitive, and with Nik it covers 99% of my needs. I also use Affinity Photo for stacking, panos, and the like, and for repairing old photos. The fact that PS has 24 ways to each thing is both a blessing and a curse and it's not very intuitive.
 
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I tried LightRoom for a while, but there were three things that drove me away:

1) the monthly charge to use it;

2) the requirement to "import" photos into Photoshop before using it and the fact that if you use any other software to move or delete photo files it creates chaos;

3) the fact that I could never reproduce the look I was getting with Nikon Capture NX2.

DxO Photolab respects the folder structure you have set up on your computer. No problem with moving or deleting files outside the program. And I really like the tools available in PhotoLab now that I have used them for a few years.

There is a small savings in cost vs. LightRoom but it is not great. DxO issues a new version once each year and upgrades for current users are $70. You don't have to do the upgrade to continue using the version you have, but the new versions usually have features that I find worth the cost.
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Moscow, Idaho
I tried LightRoom for a while, but there were three things that drove me away:

1) the monthly charge to use it;

2) the requirement to "import" photos into Photoshop before using it and the fact that if you use any other software to move or delete photo files it creates chaos;

3) the fact that I could never reproduce the look I was getting with Nikon Capture NX2.

DxO Photolab respects the folder structure you have set up on your computer. No problem with moving or deleting files outside the program. And I really like the tools available in PhotoLab now that I have used them for a few years.

There is a small savings in cost vs. LightRoom but it is not great. DxO issues a new version once each year and upgrades for current users are $70. You don't have to do the upgrade to continue using the version you have, but the new versions usually have features that I find worth the cost.
I agree. Spot on.
 
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[Lightroom's] requirement to "import" photos into Photoshop before using it and the fact that if you use any other software to move or delete photo files it creates chaos;

My solution to that was to remove the files from Lightroom's catalog after post-processing them though that was so long ago that I don't remember the process for making that happen.

I now only use Lightroom's Book module. I use it because I don't want to take the time to learn any other process for making books and because Lightroom's Book Module automatically uploads to Blurb. There is also that I consider Lightroom to be essentially free. That's because I subscribe to the Adobe Photography plan, that I use Adobe Camera Raw with every image, that I occasionally use Photoshop with some images, and that I never use Lightroom unless I'm creating a book. That's a lot as far as I'm concerned for only $10 per month.
 
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I may want to cut back on subscription fees when Greg retires next year.

Considering that you're spending only $10 per month for your Photoshop Photography subscription plan, how much would you save by changing software? And would that tiny savings be worth all the trouble of learning how to use that new software? Think of all the things you could cut back to save $5 per month, which would be half of what you're spending for your Adobe Photography subscription plan. My guess is that there would be a LOT less sacrifice in saving that $5 per month in something other than your photography hobby. As an example, if you go to Starbucks regularly, that would bring up an easy way to save a lot more than $5 per month.
 
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I never used Lightroom. Did try Photoshop and found it too complex and too much for my needs (perhaps it was because all the folks who "helped" me with it were not photographers, but computer scientists enamored with software for softwares sake). Nikon capture was fine for 95% of my needs but it stopped evolving. DXO is easy to use, simple, flexible, intuitive, and with Nik it covers 99% of my needs. I also use Affinity Photo for stacking, panos, and the like, and for repairing old photos. The fact that PS has 24 ways to each thing is both a blessing and a curse and it's not very intuitive.
I use Photoshop mostly for work. Lightroom is very similar to Photo Lab in the basic adjustments and it works with the Nik collection the same way Photo Lab does. So I probably don't have much reason to change over. I agree that Photoshop can be very difficult and confusing. But, if I do need to do something specific, I can usually find the steps online to accomplish the specific task. For work I do simple things with layers like making maps with arrows. So my skill set is pretty basic. But, I have spent a lot of time learning Lightroom.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
21,596
Location
Idaho
I tried LightRoom for a while, but there were three things that drove me away:

1) the monthly charge to use it;

2) the requirement to "import" photos into Photoshop before using it and the fact that if you use any other software to move or delete photo files it creates chaos;

3) the fact that I could never reproduce the look I was getting with Nikon Capture NX2.

DxO Photolab respects the folder structure you have set up on your computer. No problem with moving or deleting files outside the program. And I really like the tools available in PhotoLab now that I have used them for a few years.

There is a small savings in cost vs. LightRoom but it is not great. DxO issues a new version once each year and upgrades for current users are $70. You don't have to do the upgrade to continue using the version you have, but the new versions usually have features that I find worth the cost.
Your #1 and #3 reasons are the same reasons I was considering other software. I like the look I get with Lightroom, but I was wondering if there was something I would like better. I wouldn't know unless I tried. And, I still plan on experimenting for the trial period. It seems that the cost savings isn't significant with Photo Lab, so that really isn't an issue either now that I realize that you have to pay to upgrade each year. I've learned how to import in Lightroom and I have even been working on facial recognition in it to tag my photos. It will take a long time to get them all tagged, but I like that capability. So, for now, I see no compelling reason to switch unless I see a significant improvement in the look I am able to achieve with Photo Lab. Thank you for your comments.
 
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Messages
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Location
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My solution to that was to remove the files from Lightroom's catalog after post-processing them though that was so long ago that I don't remember the process for making that happen.

I now only use Lightroom's Book module. I use it because I don't want to take the time to learn any other process for making books and because Lightroom's Book Module automatically uploads to Blurb. There is also that I consider Lightroom to be essentially free. That's because I subscribe to the Adobe Photography plan, that I use Adobe Camera Raw with every image, that I occasionally use Photoshop with some images, and that I never use Lightroom unless I'm creating a book. That's a lot as far as I'm concerned for only $10 per month.
It's not hard to remove files from the catalog, although I only do that if I delete them from my computer. I agree that the $10 a month is not a lot. I was spending a lot more than that when I used to buy the software outright and bought new versions every time it was updated.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
21,596
Location
Idaho
Considering that you're spending only $10 per month for your Photoshop Photography subscription plan, how much would you save by changing software? And would that tiny savings be worth all the trouble of learning how to use that new software? Think of all the things you could cut back to save $5 per month, which would be half of what you're spending for your Adobe Photography subscription plan. My guess is that there would be a LOT less sacrifice in saving that $5 per month in something other than your photography hobby. As an example, if you go to Starbucks regularly, that would bring up an easy way to save a lot more than $5 per month.
I totally agree.
 

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