Reviews and overviews of mid/high segment cameras, software and other photographic stuff.

The version 3 of Adobe Lightroom brings very interesting (and sometimes needed) improvements.

Let''s see them all, module by module.

General

  • performance improvements, since LR 2 was quite slow. LR 3 is not as fast as we'd like, but scrolling in the library view and preview building is now visibly faster. The changes were also targeting catalogs with tens/hundreds of thousands of photos, where performances were unsatisfactory for an efficient workflow. Also, to improve performance, cache can be increased up to 200 Gb (if you have enough room on your disk....).

Today, one day before Photoshop Convention in Orlando, Adobe has released the beta 2 for Lightroom v3 which was near to expire at the end of April.

Curiously, yesterday there were a couple of leakages on this update: DPReview and Adobe Tv sites published something soon removed provoking an interesting debate on the imminent announcement.

Here are the good news:

  • support for video files. FINALLY! I made some tests and not all formats seem to be supported (especially MP4/H.264 have several variants) but it was a mandatory move.

Canon has announced a new consumer DSLR: the EOS 550D or Rebel T2i (USA) as an evolution of 500D.

Let''s see the main additions and improvements with comments as in the style of LightPoint articles:

On September 22nd 2009, Adobe has published first beta of Lightroom version 3 (RAW development and photo archiving).

Let''s have a look in detail at this beta.

The good news

Library module

  • restyling of the import module with some more intuitive layout (not a bigh deal) and with import presets that can be defined and reused (and this is good);
  • a new catalog structure to be able to better handle large catalogs (details are not disclosed so far);

On 21st of July Raw Therapee 2.4 has been released.

Raw Therapee (http://www.rawtherapee.com) is an open source (donation are appreciated of course) software for RAW development.

The 2.x versions are a big step forward with respect to version 1.x in terms of usability and some features (already included in version 1.x) are particularly interesting, especially how the RAW data are handled, achieving results in some areas better than most of other RAW converters, included the popular Adobe Camera Raw. Let's see.

Pentax has announced the new mid-range DSLR: K-7, let's say an evolution of K20D.

Here are the noticeable aspects of the new model:

  • video: nowadays it is mandatory (given the competition) to include video shooting capabilities. There are three video resolutions are offered: 640x416 or 1536x1024 (these have standard 3:2 aspect ratio of 35mm film, so not the classical VGA standard of 640x480) and an HD mode at 1280x720 with a 16:9 aspect ratio. The frame rate is 30 frames/sec for all video modes. Very interestingly, a socket for an external microphone is provided (it costs little but few models provide that).