Lightroom 2.0 Beta Q&A

Since the release of the Lightroom 2 public beta last week I’ve gotten a lot of questions via email and comments. I’ve been gathering them for a giant Q&A and that’s what you’ve stumbled on to here. Let’s get started:

Is Lightroom 2 beta going to be the only thing you’ll cover on this site from now on?
No way. Here’s the way I see it. Is LR 2 beta cool? Definitely! Am I going to move all of my production work over to it right now. Definitely not. It’s just too early. I’ll use it because it does make a large portion of my work faster but I’m going to stick with tips, news and tutorials that the bulk of people visiting here can use. I’m sure I’ll have in influx of LR 2 related stuff for the first couple weeks because that’s what people are asking for but it’s not going to take up everything. Sound good? (that’s not really a question by the way)

Why is Adobe doing a beta again with Lightroom 2?
They’re releasing a public beta again to get your feedback on the features. How they work, whether or not they work and do they work as intended. However, they are not releasing a public beta so you get to use LR 2 for free for a few of months. Adobe is recommending that you do not use LR 2 for production purposes. In fact, they’ve gone as far to make it so your LR 1 catalogs won’t even import into LR 2. In a nutshell, it really is just for testing purposes.

Will Lightroom 2.0 beta try to upgrade my Lightroom 1.0 Catalog/Library?
Nope. LR 2 beta doesn’t touch your LR 1 catalogs so rest assured that you can install them (and run them) side by side without affecting each other.

Can I export my catalog in Lightroom 1 and then import it into Lightroom 2?
Nope. If you want to use LR 2 then you’ll have to start a whole new catalog.

Well what the heck can I do to get my LR 1 photos into LR 2?
Start from scratch. There’s no tip, trick, or workaround that I can give you for this. Just import the photos like normal. If you only have a few folders it’s not a huge deal. If you have 50 or 100 then prepare to spend some time with it.

Will any work I do in LR 2 beta be preserved when the final product is released?
Right now we just don’t know. Adobe isn’t making any promises that the catalogs and everything you do to your photos will be preserved when you install the final LR 2 non-beta software. They’re usually pretty good about that stuff though, but don’t count on it. Remember, this is just for testing purposes.

Will my Lightroom 1 catalogs be preserved when Lightroom 2 officially ships and I buy/install it?
Definitely. If you upgrade when the final software is released, rest assured your catalogs from LR 1 will move over to LR 2 very easily.

Will presets from LR1 work in LR2?
So far I haven’t had any problems. They’ve worked just fine.

Will the final shipping version of LR2 be a free upgrade?
Abso-freakin-lutely not. I’m 100% sure that Adobe will charge you for LR 2 when it officially ships. My guess is that there will be an upgrade price and a full price much like there is with Photoshop today.

How much will it cost?I have no idea. I’d guess the full version will cost somewhere near what LR 1 cost (again, just a guess). Then take 50-75% of that and you probably have a good guess at the upgrade price.

When will LR 2 be officially released?Adobe isn’t saying yet. I don’t think the beta cycle will be as long as it was for Lightroom 1 (over a year) though.

Well, I’m actually very frustrated because the feature that I wanted most doesn’t seem to be included in LR 2 beta. That sucks!Well Mr. McNasty, it doesn’t mean that it definitely won’t be there. Adobe usually comes through with some new features that weren’t in the public beta. If you’re worried though the best thing you can do is give your input on the Lightroom forums that Adobe has set up. Here’s the link so take your nastiness and go there 🙂 Seriously though, the folks on the Lightroom team are very good at listening. It doesn’t always mean that a feature will make it in but you can bet that they’re trying their hardest to get as much as they can in and still make a quality product.

Well that wraps up the Lightroom 2 Q&A. I’m sure I’ve missed something so make sure you leave a comment to let me know if there’s still something you want to know.



  1. Tony 4 July, 2009 at 02:56 Reply

    This question is a tad old now, but I just recently started using Lightroom again, but I just realized that I did a lot of work on LR 2 Beta, but I need that to go into LR 2 (the actual release). How do I do this? Is this the same as transferring LR 1 stuff to LR 2 beta as mentioned above?

    Thanks, -Tony

  2. phyllis celmer 5 June, 2009 at 22:23 Reply

    OK, how do you get the new LR too install over the LR 2 Beta. The message I get is, ‘that it can’t since I have a newer version on my Mac’ – the 30 day trial in longer over so it can’t be used…..

    I sent 3.25 hours on hold today with Adobe and I hung up knowing they had closed at 5 PM and I would be on hold until tomorrow…. ooops Monday.

  3. Hans 30 June, 2008 at 13:09 Reply

    I have used Version 2 but found that the photo’s opened in PS CS3 have totaly diiferent colours than they appear in Lightroom V 2.
    I compared the settings between 1.4 and 2 but can’t find any difference.
    This does not happen with V 1.4. The photo’s look the same in V1.4 as in PS CS3.
    Has one n explaination for this?

  4. Charlotte 17 April, 2008 at 07:07 Reply

    Adam: if the presets are placed in the correct folder, in application support/adobe/lightroom/dev, then I found that they can be used from both versions of LR


  5. Timothy Mathews 10 April, 2008 at 08:10 Reply

    Here’s are 2 questions that’ve been bugging me and likely others have asked them.
    What is the difference between “Clarity” and sharpening?

    Is The Vibrance Slider similar to manipulating the curves inside LAB colourspace?

  6. Timothy Mathews 10 April, 2008 at 07:10 Reply

    I’ve tried LR2 a little but one of the big new features, its integration with Photoshop isn’t working for me. I simply get a message that Photoshop CS3 isn’t installed, but it is. I can’t use any if the edit in Photoshop options including Panorma, which would be a really nice feature and save me going into the bridge. Any idea how to fix this? Anyone else having this problem?

  7. Ned 9 April, 2008 at 17:21 Reply

    Simple question…anyone, anyone…Can I not import new photos, edit all day in the Beta LR, export to another location and reimport to LR1….just can’t go back and adjust changes? In other words…act like LR2 is it, just save work before Beta expires and I download the final version of LR2 .

    Less flexibility sure, but usuable yes, versus just playing with it on test shots.


  8. William Chinn 9 April, 2008 at 12:34 Reply

    LIGHTROOM MUST: Check out the Julieanne Kost – The Complete Picture – Episode 1, for Lightroom cropping on Adobe TV. It is 28 minutes of constant note taking on how Lightroom does it and why you should. If anything there is too much here without the capability to permanently store. Strongly suggest Adobe put it on iTunes or suffer the download resources.

  9. Peter Marcaurelle 8 April, 2008 at 16:24 Reply

    With all the PR that you, Scott and the other NAPP staff and members provide to Adobe, maybe Scott or Larry could work out a upgrade deal exclusively for NAPP members 🙂

    Comments on Lr beat –

    I’m finding that auto masks appears to work real well if the edges are clearly defined however I wish there was some method of defining a boundary in those areas that are much less defined , something like a selection tool ? Am I missing something ?

    I haven’t found any presets that have not worked thus far and other templates in web and print module seem unaffected.

    I really like the concept of the picture package. Do you know if there is a way to allowing placement of different images within a picture package without creating multiple page print out ? Example – (1) 5×7 and (1) wallet of two different images on the same page to minimize use of paper.

    Regards and thanks,

  10. Rob O 8 April, 2008 at 14:29 Reply

    I also have imported photos that came into LR2 intact with changes, metadata etc.. I’ve separated and backed up everything- but yeah I’ve brought several copies from my old library- copied them to a new location and added them to my new LR2 library no sweat!

  11. Andre Berg 8 April, 2008 at 13:46 Reply

    “Start from scratch. ThereÂ’s no tip, trick, or workaround that I can give you for this.”

    Actually, I’ve found that I can start with an import of photos that preserves:
    – an updated preview (=final image after adjustments in LR 1)
    – latest changes
    – keywords (LR 2 build a complete keyword hierarchy like the one I had in LR 1!)
    – metadata (copyright info, captions, titles etc)
    – presets

    What I don’t seem to get is:
    – collections
    – history changes (but you get the “before” (original) photo and the “after” (latest changes applied) photo)

    Pretty cool if you ask me! For those interested, you can read more over at my site:

  12. Charles Bishop 8 April, 2008 at 13:38 Reply

    I love your podcast, but they are no longer showing up in “iTunes.” The last one I got from iTunes was 3/12/2008. Do you know if Lightroom 2 will be a free upgrade for current Lightroom 1.3 users?


  13. Rob O 8 April, 2008 at 13:11 Reply

    Here is what I wrote on my blog for friends yesterday
    “Think about that… Dodge & Burn… In Lightroom! By itÂ’s very nature of being in Lightroom- non-destructive dodging and burning. ThatÂ’s something we are looking forward to in Photoshop CS4!
    Now I should point out that we essentially have had non-destructive dodging & burning for quite some time if you follow John Paul CapinegroÂ’s “Lightening & Darkening” methods(like I used above). But still, how cool is it that Adobe is trying this stuff out that will clearly show up in CS4 on us in LR2? I think itÂ’s pretty cool.”
    I have run into a couple of things here and there- like opening a file in PS if PS isn’t already running I’ve had LR2 abandon the opening before PS can get completely open(running in Rossetta perhaps)- but otherwise find things very smooth- and cool!

  14. Denis Pagé 8 April, 2008 at 11:21 Reply

    “…LR 2 beta doesnÂ’t touch your LR 1 catalogs so rest assured that you can install them (and run them) side by side without affecting each other.”

    True for the catalogs but not so for the programs. Using a foreing language version of LR 1.x, after installing LR2.0 Beta, my 1.x installation turned back to english. Just revert it back to French or German and all still work fine.

  15. Roger Bourland 8 April, 2008 at 10:06 Reply

    I really appreciate your work! Have a question for you.

    I have built up a wonderful collection of LR develop presets, including yours. They suddenly disappeared from my LR external disk. Can’t find them anywhere. And everything else is there. Have you heard of this happening before? And if so, do you have any idea as to why it would happen and how it can be solved? (case of the missing presets!)


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