Adobe Systems on Friday issued near-final release candidate versions of Lightroom 2.3 and the Camera Raw 5.3 Photoshop plug-in, software that can support Nikon's new top-end, $8,000, 24.5-megapixel D3X camera and Olympus' mid-range, $1,299, 12.3-megapixel E-30.
According to the release notes, the new Lightroom version also fixes a few bugs: a memory leak that could crash the software while people were making local editing adjustments to photos, a processing error handling smaller sRAW photos from the Canon 5D Mark II, a slideshow glitch, and problems uploading and burning files to discs.
Lightroom is designed for editing, labeling, and cataloging photos--in particular, the flexible but non-standard raw files from higher-end cameras. Adobe Camera Raw is used to handle raw files in the more general-purpose Photoshop software, letting people convert them into JPEG, TIF, or other more portable formats.
"The 'release candidate' label indicates that this update is well tested but would benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all customers," Adobe said of the software. The Mac OS X version of the Camera Raw plug-in will be available later Friday, Adobe's Web site said.
The Photoshop plug-in only works with the new Photoshop CS4 version, but people with older versions can convert raw images into Adobe Systems' Digital Negative (DNG) format and use that file. Adobe also released a new release candidate of the DNG Converter software that supports the new cameras.
Lightroom and Camera Raw are based on the same engine for interpreting and processing raw image files, which preserve more information than JPEGs and don't bake in processing effects such as sharpening, saturation, and white-balance adjustment.