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Macphun’s Luminar Expanding to Windows this Summer

It's a cross between advanced editing programs like Lightroom and quick, preset-heavy, social media editing tools like Instagram.

Though Lightroom is still king of the hill when it comes to RAW processing and non-destructive editing, there’s a good chance that you’ve heard of Macphun software and Luminar, especially if you’re a Mac user. They’ve been an Apple App Store Editor’s choice for five years, and Luminar just won a TIPA award for “Best Imaging Software” in 2017.

But if you’re a PC user and have never heard of the California based company or its software, don’t be concerned: the software has been exclusive to Mac, until now. This July, Macphun will be releasing a public beta version of Luminar for Windows. If you’d like to give it a try, you can sign up for it on the Macphun website. There’s also video of people looking inexplicably happy.

Luminar on a Microsoft Surface. Photo courtesy of Macphun

Not familiar with Luminar? It’s a cross between programs like Lightroom and quick, preset-heavy, social media editing tools like Instagram, but it has an adaptive interface that allows you to keep the interface simple and fast (Instagram) or more complex and advanced (Lightroom).

Unfortunately, Luminar does not have an asset management back-end or database connected (though it can be used as a Lightroom plugin). This means that for now, you’ll need to keep using Lightroom or another asset manager if you want that functionality, which makes it difficult to justify adding new software to your workflow. However, Macphun is working on a browser/management system for Luminar, according to their website, and perhaps it will be finished this summer as well.

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  • I can’t justify using this as a Lightroom plugin, unless the presets are based on film types or film processing, and not just, for example, a filter to make things blue or to add weird vignetting effects. But then, I’m kind of a purest when it comes to looks.

    • I haven’t actually used this software yet; they’re going to pass along a Windows version when it’s ready for testing. My impression is that it’s intended for quick, trendy processing rather than anything more technical or unique, but I’m not really familiar enough with it to know for sure.

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