Adobe Lightroom 3 review

The powerful lens correction profiles and amazing noise reduction, combined with excellent management make this a tool that all photographers should have.

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Whether you’re a professional photographer or enthusiast, Adobe Lightroom has quickly become the must-have managing and pre-processing software. With version 3 just released, there's even more reason to rush out and buy it.

The headline new feature is the Lens Correction profiles. This feature lets you quickly apply fixes to photos, including distortion (barrel and pincushion), chromatic aberration, and vignetting. Profiles can be applied in two ways: automatically by reading the lens information from an image's metadata, or manually by selecting your lens from a drop-down menu.

For each of the corrections, a slider lets you take manual control. For example, you may want to leave natural vignetting in place if it adds to the composition of a shot. Using our test photos we were massively impressed by how powerful and how simple this feature is to use.

Lightroom 3 manual lens correction

The software comes pre-set with a range of profiles for Canon and Nikon cameras (created by Adobe) and some Sigma lenses (created by Sigma). However, the current range of lenses built in is rather poor. Fortunately, Adobe has a free Lens Profile Creator.

All you have to do is print out the target pattern, take a shot of it using your combination of body and lens - you can even create profiles for compact cameras and phones - and import the photo into the software. It takes care of the rest and generates an automatic profile for you to use. If you're not comfortable doing this, profiles can be generated and shared by others, so within a few weeks you should be able to download the correct profile for your camera or lens.

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