What’s new in Lightroom CC 2018

The new release of Lightroom CC 2018, originally for the desktop, has now been renamed Lightroom Classic CC. This change is so that the new cloud-based Lightroom CC “App” can take the official Lightroom CC title.

Lightroom CC will now allow you to import, organise, edit and share photos on your smartphone, tablet and desktop via a much more simplified interface. The immediate advantage to Lightroom CC is that all your photos and their edits are stored in the cloud and are therefore accessible from anywhere.

The Lightroom CC 2018 interface has been overhauled

Lightroom CC 2018

Lightroom CC now automatically stores all photos online in their native resolutions with an initial limit of 1TB of cloud storage. Additional storage space can be purchased when required. As with Lightroom Classic CC, photos can also be kept locally, but this option needs to be enabled in the Preferences (tick the “Store a copy of ALL originals locally” checkbox).

The new Lightroom CC 2018 interface is very much paired back, focusing on the most important editing features. So although there are fewer options and panels, much of what has been removed was rarely used by the average user. Adobe seem to have taken Apple’s approach to controls and just made everything simpler. Some may call this as a “dumbing down” of Lightroom, but it’s more akin to streamlining.

There is a standard histogram with the ability to make selective tonal adjustments (exposure, contrast, highlights, shadows, whites and blacks). Colour control is also the same with temperature and tint, and the option to boost vibrance and saturation.

The new Lightroom CC 2018 Edit panels

Lightroom CC 2018 Edit Panels

The new Crop panel has the standard default aspect ratios to choose from along with custom dimensions. The straighten slider provides the ability to rotate the image to any angle (which can also be done interactively) – but the straighten tool which allowed you to draw a line on the image to align to, seems to be gone. A set of rotate and flip buttons are provided to quickly rotate 90 degrees in either direction or to mirror the image horizontally or vertically.

The Healing Brush Tool (previously Spot Removal) has still has the Heal and Clone modes. It works pretty much the same as before. It allows you to pick an area of the image to replace with new content. This is great for removing unwanted objects in the image and works using Adobe’s Content Aware algorithms.


The Adjustment Brush, Radial and Linear Graduated Filters are also present and accounted for in the new Lightroom CC. They work exactly as the did in the previous version with a clear feel to the Adjustment Brush especially.

As you’d expect, any adjustments made can be saved as a predefined User Preset. Along with your own custom presets there are a number of built-in presets divided in categories called Colour, Creative, Black & White and Components. The Components provide a typical set of Curves presets that can be used to enhance any image.

Some of Lightroom CC 2018 built-in Presets 

Lightroom CC 2018 Prests

Learn more about Adobe Lightroom with Web Studio Training

If you are a photographer who would like to learn more about Adobe Lightroom from an Adobe Certified Instructor, please check out our one day Adobe Lightroom Training course.