Adobe 2020

Adobe updates Photoshop, Bridge, Adobe Camera Raw, and Lightroom periodically. Most of the time the updates are small and occasionally they are big and monumental.

We got a big update recently with Adobe Bridge 2020 and Camera Raw 12.3. It’s always fun to see what new, major changes are under the hood.

I was processing photos today and thought I’d see if Adobe’s HDR had been improved when compared with Aurora from Skylum or Nik’s HDR.

Over the years, Adobe’s HDR hasn’t been very good compared with Nik’s or Aurora. Adobe Camera Raw 12.3 is almost where it needs to be but still not quite.

Here’s my test:

Noto, Sicily, Italy, photographed with the sky and highlights perfectly exposed. The shadows were brought out with the shadow slider in Adobe Camera Raw 12.3.
Noto, Sicily; Italy. Same scene but a blend of seven images. The images were photographed at 3-stops under, 2-stops under, 1-stop under, perfectly exposed, 1-stop over, 2-stops over, and 3-stops over exposed. The images were blended in NIK Efex Pro 2 HDR software.
Noto, Sicily; Italy. The same seven images are above. The images were blended in Skylum’s Aurora HDR 2017 software.

I like the RAW image but also like the Nik HDR image.

What do you think?

Author: kathyadamsclark

Professional photographer leading workshops and tours.

2 thoughts on “Adobe 2020”

  1. I am bothered by the shading on the right side of the NIK HDR shot., particularly the sky and the wall.

    I think the latest version of Aurora HDR would do a better job vis-vis the 2017 version.

    Of the 3 you posted I like the raw best but I would open the shadows just a titch more.

    My 2 cents worth! Anthony


    1. Agree with you completely, Anthony. Thanks for your input. I left the dark right side in the Nik image to see if it bothered anyone else. I didn’t like it at all. The latest Aurora version might be better than the 2017 version. True.

      I’m finding that I need to shoot HDR less and less. Adobe’s highlight and shadow slider are amazing. Modern cameras capture so much dynamic range that it’s easy to expose for the highlights and then open the shadows later in processing. HDR used to be the only way to capture all the dynamic range in a complex photo. Not so much today.

      Appreciate your input. Thanks!


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