Adobe Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic: What’s the Difference?

Adobe offers Lightroom and lightroom classic. Lightroom Classic is a standalone, licensed product whereas Lightroom app is a part of the creative cloud subscription model of Adobe. Adobe has stopped offering perpetual licenses; therefore, you have to subscribe to the monthly subscription plan to use lightroom classic and lightroom desktop versions. Photoshop is another software offered by Adobe just like Lightroom. The main difference between the two is that lightroom is faster and perfectly suitable for the workflow of the photographer. Photoshop is a faster software for finer image editing. This article will compare lightroom, lightroom classic, and photoshop. Also, we will guide you about which of them is easier for beginners. Read along to know Lightroom vs Lightroom classic as well as Lightroom vs Photoshop.

Adobe Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic: What's the Difference?

Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic: Which is the Best?

The following table compares Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic. The table tells us about the different features of Lightroom and Lightroom Classic.

Feature Lightroom Lightroom Classic
Rename photos No, lightroom doesn’t allow the user to rename pictures or photos. Users are allowed to rename the photos or pictures in Lightroom Classic.
Colour labels Lightroom doesn’t have the feature of color labels. Colour labels are available in lightroom classic.
Merge HDRs and Panoramas Only in the desktop version of lightroom users can merge HDRs and Panoramas. Users can merge HDRs and Panoramas in Lightroom Classic.
Edit full-resolution images on mobile devices. Yes, you can edit full-resolution images on mobile devices. You cannot edit full-resolution images on the mobile version of lightroom classic.
Images must be on Adobe’s cloud server Images should be on Adobe’s cloud server if you’re using lightroom’s unique features. If you’re using Lightroom Classic images must be on adobe’s cloud server.
Can be split into multiple catalogs While using lightroom files cannot be split into multiple catalogs. Files can be split into multiple catalogs if you’re using Lightroom Classic.
Greatest magnification to view photos You can view the pictures from the greatest magnification of 2:1 in lightroom. 11:1 is the maximum magnification to view photos in lightroom classic.
Secondary screen While using lightroom users are unable to use the secondary screen feature. The secondary screen feature is available in Lightroom Classic.
Target Audience Can be used by beginners, and newbie photographers. Advance photographers and professional photographers.
Price $9.99 per month with 1TB of cloud storage. $19.99 per month with photoshop and 1TB of cloud storage.

The table details Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic with the basis of differences.

Lightroom App

It is a powerful video and photo editor application that lets you organize, edit, store, and share videos and photos across different devices such as mobile and desktop. Lightroom app allows you to create millions of videos and photographs from anywhere. The app has 1TB of cloud storage and various editing features with an easy-to-use app interface. The originals and edited pictures can be stored in full resolution in the cloud storage. The users can share and showcase their pictures in fun ways. The following features are available in the Adobe Lightroom App:

  • Video Editing: Lightroom’s photo editor can be used for editing videos also. You can apply different changes such as trim, editing, and retouching videos. You can change the contrast, highlights, and colors of the video as per your own choice.
  • Anywhere Editing: You can find filters, sliders, and pre-sets. Lightroom is a simple application cum software that can be used to create photos or pictures that look exactly how you want them to. Full-resolution pictures can be edited from the web, mobile, and desktop.
  • Smarter Organization: Machine learning is used by Adobe to recognize the background content and people in your pictures to automatically apply searchable keywords. The auto-tagging feature makes the searching task extremely easy. You can easily create albums on any person or content.
  • Large Storage: Lightroom offers 1TB of storage which means you can access the entire library of your full-resolution pictures and videos anywhere from any device such as mobile or desktop.
  • Easy Sharing: The editor application lets you share your photos with your loved ones, clients, and audience at large through social media. Lightroom allows you to post photos directly to your social media account. You can also share the albums of lightroom on the web. Using Adobe Portfolio, you can showcase your talent in photography on your website.
  • Learn from the pros: Lightroom has in-built tutorials and inspiring content that greatly help beginners. It is a step-by-step process that teaches you lightroom from beginners to advanced levels.
  • Subscription Terms: You can use the application for free for the first week. After the free trial is over, you have to pay either monthly or annually to avail yourself of the services of Lightroom. You can select the option according to your preference. After that you will be automatically charged through your Microsoft account. To stop the services, you have to open the settings option and turn off the auto-renew feature.
  • Age Limit: The user should be at least 13 years of age to agree to and accept the terms and conditions of Adobe.

All the applications offered by Adobe require a free Adobe ID that is a part of the free creative cloud membership. You must be connected to the internet to avail yourself of Adobe’s services. Its services of Adobe are not available in all countries and countries.

Also Read: How to Cancel Adobe Acrobat Subscription

Is Lightroom Easy to Use for Beginners?

Yes, The application is perfect for beginners use. It has an easy interface that can be easily followed as per the guidelines. Users having limited experience and knowledge can instantly learn Lightroom and enhance the picture to make it look far better. Lightroom offers a wide variety of features that enable users to experiment with new techniques and tools while improving their skills. Raw photos require some level of editing and development, and lightroom fulfills both of these requirements.

Lightroom works more than just as an editing tool. It is considered the most powerful and non-destructive photo management system that has almost all the essential features of Digital Photography. Lightroom comes with a cost but the features offered by lightroom are up to the mark that justifies the price.

For beginners who capture their pictures and videos in the RAW file format, lightroom is the best available option. The RAW file format tries the capture the detail more precisely and these pictures have to be processed initially. Dedicated software is required to view the pictures that are in RAW file format.

Professional photographers use lightroom classic as it edits and manages the photos as a Part of the Photography package. The package includes Lightroom CC (mobile version) and photoshop as a part of the subscription. Anyone can learn lightroom easily because it has so much to offer and the vast scope of learning. Is Lightroom easy to use for beginners question can be answered with the following points:

  • Photo Management: No person wants to lose their photos. Lightroom is a well-organized photo-saving system equipped with easy and quick backup facilities which are essential for every user. Also, the application offers easy search tools to the users- to help them locate the file.
  • Computer consumes less time: People want speedy processes to be integrated into their work. Lightroom removes distractions from the picture’s background. All the unwanted and unclean particles are removed from the faces of the subjects. The wrinkles are removed from the face of older subjects. The application selects keepers from a shot and batch processes hundreds of images.
  • Doesn’t harm the images: Lightroom offers non-destructive editing because it never actually alters the pictures. The catalog of edits is separate from the actual pictures. The application records the edit history that helps the user to pick up from the left of the editing work. The reset option brings back the picture to its original version so that you can start editing from scratch again.
  • Protects the quality of social media: Whenever you post pictures on social media, you notice that the quality of the picture deteriorates. Social media crunches the photos if the pictures are large-sized. Lightroom solves the problem most efficiently. Users can create export pre-sets to size the picture into the perfect size for different social media platforms.
  • Give your pictures the professional look: Lightroom creates professional photos for the users. The application helps to process RAW photos with popping colors, sharpness, and balancing tones. The files are saved in the RAW file format in Adobe Lightroom.
  • Monetize your photography with lightroom: Professional photographers can use lightroom to create money. There is no need to be a high-end professional any photographer can use the application to make money. You can sell your pictures online in adobe stock. Many people use the personal sales method to make money. Also, the application allows designing a photobook in adobe lightroom.
  • More time for photography: Lightroom is an efficient photo editing app. All the editing is done at a faster pace thus saving a lot of time. Photographers can use this time to capture more attractive pictures.

What are the Two Types of Lightroom?

Lightroom app has two versions: Lightroom Classic and Lightroom CC. Lightroom CC is the most favorable and smart choice for beginners whereas lightroom classic is the desktop version of Adobe’s lightroom image manipulation and organization software.

Lightroom Classic

Adobe Lightroom Classic

Lightroom Classic has advanced itself with every update. The functionality of the software keeps improving with every update. It offers plenty of control and specificity to the user.

  • Lightroom classic is a more comfortable and comprehensive application where you can use keyboard shortcuts to jump from one module to another.
  • The users are allowed to apply their preferred settings. Pre-sets can be easily created, exported, downloaded, and purchase several times.
  • In lightroom classic users can expand the storage without paying any fee because the images are stored on the computer’s hard drive.
  • Lightroom classic functions offline also which means you can work without much interruption. Shortcuts can be created to speed up the workflow in lightroom.
  • The application offers options such as exporting, printing, watermarking, and slideshow creation. The editing task is easier with multiple programs and requires few steps thus increasing efficiency.
  • Users generally lose the flexibility of being able to work from multiple devices. And the learning part is a bit difficult as the person progresses.

Also Read: How Can You Delete Adobe Account

Lightroom CC

Adobe Lr

The most ideal and user-friendly program for beginners and professional photographers. The application works across different platforms and devices such as iPad or tablets, smartphones, and desktop computers. The functionality and interface of Lightroom CC remain the same.

  • The application functions consistently across various devices and the consistency streamlines the workflow thereby minimizing the learning part.
  • You can access the most amazing editing tools and pre-sets. The place where you’re working and the device on which you’re working doesn’t matter.
  • The interface of lightroom CC is very intuitive and efficient allowing beginners to excel in the learning process. Pre-sets can be created and then applied, also the user can make adjustments to the photos such as brightness, vibrance, contrast, and white balance.
  • Lightroom CC enables the user to perform color grading. The noise reduction feature is also a unique functionality offered by the software.
  • The files are stored originally as DNG RAW files and JPEGs in the cloud enabling the user to access the files from anywhere and from any device using Adobe credentials.
  • The automatic file backup process minimizes the worries related to hard drive failure and file loss. Lightroom CC helps in exporting images to social media directly and you can download high-resolution image files and much more.

Now that you know about Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic differences, read the next section to know about Lightroom vs Photoshop differences.

Lightroom vs Photoshop

Now that we are clear about lightroom vs lightroom classic as different versions of same tool let us talk about Lightroom vs Photoshop. Both Lightroom and Photoshop are digital photography editing programs. Both applications have a proper functional crossover at a very high level. The applications meet different goals and are used for different needs.

Lightroom app is the most appropriate tool to process and manage thousands of photos and videos that are present on your device. In contrast, Photoshop gives greater control to the user to achieve outstanding edit that helps you to make a few images look perfect.

The below table compares Lightroom vs Photoshop.

Basis of Comparison Lightroom Photoshop
Definition It is an application that combines the two important of image management and image editing. Photoshop is a pixel-based editing software used to edit thousands of images.
Usage Lightroom is a beginner’s software loaded with a lot of pre-sets with efficient workflow, used for large quantity images. Photoshop is used for advanced, detailed editing as it is based on pixels. The pixel-based module enables the user to work even on a single pixel as well.
File Format Lightroom doesn’t offer the “save” option. All the instructional sets are saved in a catalog file in the XMP format Edited files are saved in PSD or PSB formats in photoshop.
Functionality Lightroom is a global program that works all over the image. Photoshop is a pixel-specific application that works on the minimal detail of the image.
Image Management The application is based on image management and thus offers efficient workflow to the users. In photoshop it is very difficult to work on a group of images or multiple images. The efficiency somehow decreases in photoshop.
Easy usability Lightroom is a very easy software and beginners can easily learn it. Photoshop on the other hand has several complications making it difficult to use and learn.
Purpose of Use A lightroom is a simple software having an easy-to-use interface that is used for straightforward editing. People use Photoshop usually for advanced purposes such as image manipulation and image retouching.
Scope Lightroom is used only for editing images. Graphics cannot be edited using Lightroom. Photoshop is used to edit photos as well as graphics.
Graphics processing and editing Lightroom cannot be used for editing graphics. The graphic editing feature is missing. Photoshop is used for rendering 3D graphics or for adding text over 2D graphics.

Now that you know about Lightroom vs Photoshop differences, read the next section to know which one is more easier.

Is Photoshop easier than Lightroom?

Adobe Ps

Yes, since photoshop is much popular because of how easy it is to use, the simpler interface gives it an edge over Lightroom app. Is Photoshop easier than Lightroom question can be answered better with following points.

  • Photoshop vs lightroom are among the most famous photo editing software programs available in the market. Each of them offers a wide range of features and can be used for a lot of different tasks ranging from photo touch-ups to complex tasks such as image manipulation.
  • Lightroom is the easier of the two software programs as it offers a simple interface to its users. The software focuses more on basic photo editing. Photoshop focuses more on advanced-level photo editing; therefore, it is more complex than the former.
  • For Users that are just starting their photo editing journey then Lightroom is the better alternative as it is easier to use and learn. The application is specially designed for raw development and editing.
  • Lightroom contains a large variety of features and processing tools that prove to be appropriate for photographers.
  • Lightroom’s solid photography workflow is remarkable as it makes the user more efficient. Many photos can be processed quickly without closing and opening them.
  • The cataloging feature keeps your work organized in one place, enabling the users to find the files more promptly.
  • Lightroom is a media management tool that allows the user to create folders and sub-folders in the hard drive to save the work. Users can also mass rename the files according to their preferences.
  • The application never permanently changes the original file which means image editing is non-destructive in lightroom. But Photoshop is a hybrid of non-destructive and destructive editing.
  • Lightroom keeps historical changes, unlike photoshop, which means you can go back to reset the earlier settings after making all the necessary and relevant changes.

While compairing Lightroom vs Photoshop, both are powerful editing software programs. Both of them have their strengths and weaknesses. Some people find photoshop easier to use than Lightroom; for some people, it is vice-versa. Personal preference varies, so there is no fixed answer to this question.

Also Read: Is Photoshop Express Free?

What Does Lightroom Do that Photoshop Doesn’t?

Lightroom app comes out as a simpler tool than photoshop because the software program’s main focus is a workflow, not design. Now that you know the difference between Lightroom vs Photoshop, we have shown a unique features of Lightroom app. The following features can only be found in lightroom and these are not available in Photoshop:

  • RAW editing: The photos captured in the RAW format can be manipulated in lightroom directly. In photoshop an additional plug-in has to be there. The plug-in is known as Adobe Camera RAW and it works as an image editor for files in RAW format.
  • Batch editing: Batch editing refers to bulk editing of the images. Lightroom app offers the feature of batch editing to its users. You can apply batch editing to a bunch of files at once saving a lot of time. The saved presets can be applied to several images.
  • Non-Destructive editing: Lightroom offers non-destructive editing which means the original file is not permanently damaged. You can easily recover the original file and make fresh changes as per your requirement. The application creates a backup every time you make a change to your edited image. You can make a number of edits to a picture and still recover the original file instantly.


So, the above article tells you about different photo editing software programs namely Adobe Lightroom app, Adobe Lightroom CC, Adobe Lightroom Classic, and Adobe Photoshop. You can also understand the difference between Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic and Lightroom vs Photoshop. You can easily compare the features of all the editing programs and select the most suitable one. For easy comparison, the information is available in tabular form. We hope that Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic differences helped you to figure out which one you should use. Do tell us which of the above-mentioned software program you chose. If you have any queries regarding the above-mentioned programs feel free to ask us using the comment section below.

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