Lightroom 5 beta has made it’s debut last month. This newest version has several interesting upgrades to the develop module. First is the ability to work on images while they are offline. In the past if you disconnected a hard drive the images would come up in the catalog with ? Marks indicating they were offline. Now you can generate a lower resolution DNG file either during download or after the images are imported. Then while you are traveling you can continue editing them. Once you reconnect to the originals everything sync’s up.
Another improvement is to the clone/healing brush. Now instead of just discrete circular corrections you can drag across the defect like you can in Photoshop. It still doesn’t offer the precision of Photoshop but it’s a big improvement over the LR4’s tool.
Lightroom 5 introduces the Radial Tool. This offers the same slider corrections available under the brush tool but offers a more global way to make selections and you have the option to invert the selection.
Finally, there is a new perspective correction tool. Under the lens correction tab is the Upright tool. It will automatically correct an image for vertical and horizontal distortion often found in architectural photos. You can get these results by tinkering with the manual controls but this is pretty quick and impressive for a smart filter.
There are a number of other smaller upgrades, but none are set in stone yet. DPReview gives a good overview of the new upgrades at:
I look forward to the new upgrade and plan to get it once it’s out. These new options are certainly an improvement.