First Look at Lightroom’s New Built-in AI-Powered Noise Reduction
In the most recent update to Lightroom, Adobe included an AI-powered noise reduction feature that works really well (they are tearing it up with their AI stuff). Here’s my first look at it and how to use it:
STEP ONE: Here’s our original Raw image, and at this size, you don’t see the noise very much, but if you zoom in to 100%, there’s noise a-plenty!
STEP TWO: Scroll down to the Detail panel, and at the bottom of the panel, under Noise Reduction, click on ‘Denoise’ (as shown circled here in red).
STEP THREE: The Enhance Preview window appears (seen above), and Denoise will be selected by default (as seen here). There’s an amount slider so you can increase or decrease the amount of noise reduction you’d like to apply, and it also shows the estimated time it will take to apply this fix (in this case, it estimates 55 seconds).
STEP FOUR: Here’s a zoomed-in before and after so you can see the results. I used Compare mode to show this because when it does its thing, it creates a new separate Raw DNG image, so you have your original and a new file). This is those two side-by-side). You can see it did a pretty nice job removing the noise (better than anything we had built in within Lightroom or Photoshop before.
Above: here’s a zoomed-in look where you can see it did a really nice job of holding the detail.
Next time you have a noise image, give this a try – I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the result. Let me know what you think. Have a great Monday, everybody!
P.S. The Lightroom Conference kicks off this afternoon with a special pre-conference session I’m teaching on “Lightroom Classic for Absolute Beginners” – then starting Tuesday, it’s two full days, two full training tracks, amazing instructors, and so much to learn (plus, the entire conference is archived for a full year for you to stream on demand). Don’t miss you – tickets and more info at bit.ly/3BqMWvN – see you online.
I’ve been very happy with the results of this new feature. I find it interesting that it requires the original RAW to work so no joy for some old jpgs. In any case, bump that ISO up without fear!
It isn’t an improvement but a new program behaving like external plugins, the result is good, however this monster DNG file breaks the workflow of LR. I have been using DxO noise reduction for years, I am not interested in this if not full integrated in LR.
No question it’s a significant improvement. On the other side of the coin, the resulting DNG file size is HUGE! My Sony A1 files of 50mb balloon to 225mb. Now the DNG includes the original raw file which could be eliminated if Adobe would add a switch in preferences BUT even without the embedded raw the file size would still be ~175mb.
I just tried the DeNoise feature this weekend, and I was a little stumped. WHERE does the DNG file go? I was working with my images that were in a Collection (Full Shoot) inside a Collection Set (Prom 2023). I could not find the new DNG file. It did not show up in my filmstrip like I expected. Any clues?
Look in the folder of the source photo.
I agree with Mark Casebeer. The new Lightroom Denoise is a vast improvement over what was there, but to me, it’s still not as good as Topaz Denoise AI.
Still, I’m very happy with the direction and improvements to Lightroom, particularly the masking. It’s definitely my go-to app, and most of the time, the only one I use to process a photo.
It’s a great start, but IMO it falls short compared to some of the dedicated noise reduction programs. I’m sure Adobe will be improving this as it’s the first version. Now, what we need to go along with Denoise is a Pro Sharpening tool. I’m not ripping Adobe, they have made great strides in Lightroom and Photoshop in recent years. I think the photographer’s plan is a bargain. I use both tools every day.