Lightroom Killer Tips: A New HDR Feature in Lightroom 4.1


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Episode Summary

There's a little feature in Lightroom 4.1 (the latest update to Lightroom 4) that lets you take a full 32-bit image (basically, an image with crazy amounts of tonal range in it) right into Lightroom. So instead of tonemapping your HDR image in Photoshop, you can use the controls you're already used to in Lightroom to do it. It's pretty amazing when you see it in action and just how far you can push the image to get the most range and depth from it. Plus, it's kinda cool to think where the technology can go from here. Enjoy!

Lightroom Killer Tips Episodes

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  1. Sonny Eppes says:

    As an architectural photographer this is worth the price of LR. Many, many thanks for the huge tip.

  2. kathleen moody says:

    wow… cool tip

  3. Matt,

    1. What version of Photoshop is required for this to work?
    I have Version 4 and I do not think I will have soon the available funds to upgrade to last version. :-)

    2. Is there in the development plan for Lightroom the built in full feature to create and develop HDR photo? Meaning without using Photoshop or other external applications !

    3. Not linked to this subject, I would really appreciate a tutorial on how to create GREAT Photo Books (albums) using Lightroom (on the level Scott Kelby is doing). I have a lot of travel photography and event photography and I really want to make some albums with them.
    I would also like to know how to print these albums using other services providers as in Romania using Blurb service would be more expensive.

    Thank you,
    Victor Fomino

  4. Robert Rath says:

    Hi Matt,

    Thanks for uncovering and demonstrating this gem!

    I’d like to point out that back in Lightroom working with that really deep 32bit tiff the noise reduction maths fell completely to pieces with completely bizarre effects being created as the noise reduction value is increased.

    Are you are aware of this as an issue?

    Again thanks again for your tips. I don’t miss any!

    … Robert Rath

  5. Robert Rath says:

    Hi Matt, thanks for this little gem! One thing I have noticed is that when working with this huge dynamic range 32bit tiff file the noise reduction maths in the develop module does not work properly creating some bizarre flaring effects . You need to save as a 16bit tiff and re-import after doing the tonal work before you can use the develop module noise reduction. Hope this is useful … Robert Rath

  6. Melinda says:

    This is amazing! I am not a big HDR person, but have struggled through the Photoshop interface quite a few times. So much easier (and fun) to do it in LR!

  7. Michelle Warth says:

    I did this to a few photos of a very old abandoned house. They turned out great. Thanks for the info.


  8. Dan says:

    Love this tip…thanks! I’m using it alot now. However, I have one big issue — once the 32bit file is in lightroom, I’ve made adjustments and would like to *again* import back into photoshop. I can’t seem to do it. Photoshop doesn’t seem to allow me to load 32 bit files. I’m using CS5….maybe an upgrade is necessary?

  9. Bari Sanger says:

    Do you need Back-Up Plug In for LR4 to get everything backed up on a RAID 1 Drive?

  10. Gary says:

    Upgrade time coming, Thanks for the info

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