I decided to bite the bullet a couple of days ago and subscribe to the Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan. What that means is that for the sum of £8.95 per month, I get the use of Lightroom and Photoshop CC.
I went to Adobe, logged on with my Adobe ID (I already had one), gave my Paypal details, downloaded the Creative Cloud app and then installed Lightroom 5.7.1 and Photoshop CC 2014 directly on to my computer.
Photoshop was installed into a new folder on my hard drive, whilst Lightroom was installed over the existing version on my machine. Everything worked immediately with no problems. I installed Google Nik and it was recognized by both programs. According to the licensing, I can also install both programs on my laptop as long as both machines are not used at the same time to access the software.
I already use Lightroom and Photoshop CS6, so why subscribe? Well CS6 will not be updated any further, and that includes Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) for the application. Lightroom will also continue (for the present time anyway) as a ‘perpetual’ license, i.e not subscription based, and will include all Adobe Camera Raw updates. However if Lightroom’s ACR is updated (which it will be at some point) but the ACR for CS6 is not, then it could result in inconsistencies when images are passed from LR to CS6. This would be compounded with newer versions of LR when for example, new tools are added. If files on which these tools are used are then passed to CS6 there could be problems with the latter software unable to apply the LR edits. As someone who uses both LR and Photoshop for processing, this could present problems, hence my subscription to the Creative Cloud.
So how do you know if there is a possible problem with editing a LR file in Photoshop? Well, LR will warn you. You will see what is called the ‘ACR Mis-match Dialog box when you press CTRL+E or ‘Edit in Photoshop’ from within Lightroom.
This means that Lightroom’s ACR is higher than that of the version of ACR in the Photoshop software that you are using.
If you click on ‘Open Anyway’, then Lightroom would pass the file to Photoshop and the CS version of ACR would open the file. However, as Photoshop’s ACR is an older version than Lightroom’s the results could be inconsistent.
Taking the ‘Render using Lightroom’ route means that LR will render the image itself and then pass a tiff to Photoshop with all the Lightroom alterations added. This means that a tiff file has been created in LR whether or not you decide to continue with the edit after it opens in PS. It’s a file that may or may not be superfluous to you.