After reading so bad feedback from other people, I was very concerned to upgrade to Luminar 4.3, but I would like to show you my first experiences after applying the new update:
The update itself has been smooth and quick: the program offered the update, downloaded and installed it without any glitch. It asked to update the catalog for the 4.3 format (probably it is not fully compatible with version 4.2), and it was done very quick.
The program started a little bit slower than before (the first time of the "day" is quite slow, but next times it improves). Curiously, I do not know the reason why sometimes is quicker than others to open. I have had NO issues at all at starting.
The catalog was there, without any picture lost. Nevertheless, the time to have one picture available for editing is still equally slow (6-9 seconds, depending of previous edits applied to the picture).
Regarding the new features:
1- Search function: Very nice and quick. Well done!.
2- Look preview: Incredibly useful to see how the Look "looks" in your picture. Very quick, by the way.
3- New Crop function: I needed some time to be comfortable with it, but although it has not many new possibilities, it is quick and useful. For me, the best improvement is the 90 degrees rotation.
4- Stability and speed: From stability point of view, the program was already stable for me. From time to time, I have had some crashes using the new crop, but I think that they are related to moving quickly forward and backwards in the history, or trying to change between pictures very quickly. It also occurred before the update. Regarding the speed, it is quicker applying the sliders, the masks or the looks, but on the other hand, it has not improved too much the speed in the following aspects: exporting to jpg, erase mask, moving between pictures, applying erase or cloning. These are still slow, especially when you try to change to edit another picture (time up to you are able to start editing).
5- Masking: it is much snappy than before. The transparency is also very useful to see the part you are masking, although it has a drawback: it is more difficult to distinguish the opacity level. We cannot have everything in this case!. About the mask history, I do not see a clear applicability (it is very easy and quick to erase), and if you come back all steps done, you can be in an state that you think the mask tool is broken: you are still in the mask screen but you cannot apply the mask. The "workaround" (may be is it on purpose?) is to hit again edit mask on the tool you were using. By the way, why do you have not implemented something similar to the erase mask?. It is not the erase history (undo) we are expecting, but it should be basically the same process of mask history.
6- New folder for custom skies and objects: It is good to have the custom skies in the main list, although be aware, if you have a lot, they can crowd the list!.
7- New Shuttle sky object: without comment.
8- Localisation improvements: I reported some errors in the Spanish ones and they are corrected, but there are new strings that have not been already translated.
9- EXIF data is exported again for user names (in Windows) with an blank space or special characters (non ASCII)!. Hurra!. This is not a new function, but a terrible bug introduced in version 4.2 (version 4.1 was OK) and corrected now.
As a summary, this update has a good improvement in speed, but not in all areas. The bug corrections are for sure well received (especially the EXIF one). Search function and quick look previews are very nice new functions. Crop has had a good improvement, but the other new functions, although they are welcome, they are not so useful or has less applicability.
Still waiting some basic functions that should not be so difficult to implement: History in erase and clone (undo), button to exit erase or clone without applying any change, lasso or straight lines in erase function for windows users (why this difference between Windows and Mac?, e.g. the introduction of plugings in version 4.2 for Windows users was possible at the end, and now I cannot live without it), border detection in masking, etc ...
To be honest, I expected a little bit more from this update. Anyway, Skylum, please continue in this good line. Before, I never tried to improve my pictures because PS or Lr were very complicated to use (at least for me), but with Luminar 4, I made a "quantum leap".
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