Which one would work better? (I'm thinking Photoshop). Want to be able to do as much as possible - portrait photography is important, also HDR, RAW, masking, all basic essentials too. I'm used to using Photoshop, but have to upgrade.
That's how I see it, too. Lightroom is all about organizing with some editing (smart use of camera raw) while Photoshop is about a per image manipulation. They work towards different ends. You can do a lot of what Lightroom does with Bridge but it's much simpler working in Lightroom and doing Lightroom edits and only going to PS when you need to.
I have been using Photoshop way before Lightroom ever see the light so I do not see any need for having Lightroom where you can get the same functions (and more...) you want to achieve in your digitized photo. Also for file organization, Photoshop has Bridge.
I started using LR4 earlier this year as an addition, not a replacement, to Photoshop. Bottom line - LR4 is most useful if you are managing and processing a lot of photos. If not, Photoshop is just fine.
For example, I frequently photograph charity or other non-profit events and will typically take several hundred photos at each event. On a month long trip to China, I shot over 3,000 photos. LR4 does a great job of importing the photos (with a backup copy)into the desired folder(s); allowing me to delete the bad photos; selecting the best photos using either the compare or survey functions and creating a collection; applying a common set of corrections to multiple photos; and exporting in mass all of the processed photos for posting to a web site. By comparison, before LR4 I would individually open each image in Photoshop; process it; and save it.
On the other hand, if I am focused on processing a small number of high quality images (for example, for printing enlargements), I will use Photoshop.
I have both but have never used LR only because the "threat" of having to catalog all of the 4 terabytes of images I have is simply overwhelming. If I was starting from scratch, I might seriously consider LR.
I can't imagine working with that many images without a sophisticated cataloging tool. I have many gigabytes of images - more than 50,000 images - and have barely scratched the surface of LR. But here are some of the things I do with it:
- keyword tag images with people's names or subject type - "waterfall", etc. - quickly flag interesting images for later processing (or for deletion) - apply common edits (WB, etc) to an entire shoot - (my latest and favorite, thanks to some Nikonians) create "publish" sets of the same images for different target media (print, iPad Retina, iPhone Retina, etc) from the same source edited images - with 1-click updating to each target after changing the I age set or editing images - allow for an automatic backup copy of your images at ingest time (I actually don't use this as I have other backup strategies in place)
If you've got some basic folder-based organization strategy already, then the initial import into LR is pretty painless. It will simply retain the folder hierarchy you already have.
I'm not trying to be critical, but suggesting that you could gain some value from exploring this product. Obviously, you've been successful with what you're currently doing. I'd also suggest that the free-trial is usually only going to frustrate you, unless there's a single killer feature you just need to test. Really getting the value from a complex program like this will take time.
I do about 75 to 80 percent of everything in LR4 now but I couldn't live without Content Aware Fill in CS6. I like resizing and sharpening much better in CS6 also but if you could only have one I'd get Lightroom.
I've been a Photoshop users since 1990 as part of my day job. But for images, I find Lightroom more efficient for PP of 90% of my images. For the rest I use Photoshop, but mainly as a vehicle to use NIK filters (Color Efex Pro, HDR Efex Pro, and Silver Efex Pro). About the only Photoshop tool that sees any use is the Clone Tool, and that very rare (the LR Brush is frequently enough).
Jon Kandel A New York City Nikonian and Team Member Please visit my website and critique the images!