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By Jim Heid | Monday, June 14, 2010

Chris Orwig tours the new features in Lightroom 3

Earlier this month, Adobe Systems shipped Photoshop Lightroom 3, the latest version of its photo-management software for Windows and Mac.

When I saw that Lightroom 3 had shipped, one word came to mind: finally. Lightroom 3 had been available through a public beta program for many months, and the thousands of photographers who downloaded the prerelease version had the opportunity to provide feedback and influence the final product. Having thousands of cooks in the kitchen resulted in a pretty impressive stew, and Lightroom 3 brings enhancements to every aspect of the photographic workflow. Importing is easier, thanks to a redesigned Import dialog box.

Asset management is more powerful, thanks to the ability to import and manage DSLR video clips and new features for organizing and categorizing your shots. And exporting is more versatile, with enhanced printing features and built-in uploading to Flickr. In between importing and exporting is the Develop module, the place where you enhance the appearance of a photo. This is where you’ll find some of Lightroom 3′s most impressive new features. Lens Correction lets you fix the distortion that’s present in many lenses and also makes it easy to fix perspective problems, such as the “converging verticals” that are common in architectural shots. Lightroom 3′s improved noise-reduction features make it easy to remove the digital noise that often plagues photos taken with high ISO settings. And if you prefer old-school noise, you can use the new Film Grain effect to simulate the look of film.

There’s a lot more to Lightroom 3, and you can download a free trial to see for yourself. After you’ve done that, check out our latest release: Lightroom 3 New Features, an in-depth exploration of Lightroom 3 from photographer Chris Orwig. Later this month, we’ll be publishing Lightroom 3 Essential Training, in which Chris takes you on deep dive to explore every nook and cranny of Lightroom 3. Watching this course come together over the last few months has made me all the more grateful for the opportunity to work with Chris, who is as talented a teacher as he is a photographer. While we put the final touches on Chris’s epic, check out the rest of his courses in the Online Training Library®.

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