Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Lightroom 3 Beta 2 - Tethered Capture

A feature added to Lightroom 3 Beta 2 is native support for shooting tethered.  I could not wait to give it a try, so I am sharing a rather lame, but amusing to me, test shot.

A click File -> Tethered Capture - > Start Tethered Capture launches this spare dialog box that gives you options for naming files and where to save them.

Lightroom recognized my Nikon D700 immediately.  The shutter button in the tethered capture window fires the camera or just capture files as you shoot using the camera's shutter release.  Captures are displayed automatically on a secondary display by default.  Any camera Develop mode preset can be applied as you shoot, which is a real time saver.

The functionality hits the sweet spot for most uses, but a few features are missing.  While Lightroom can read camera settings like f-stop and shutter speed, but not set them.  There is no intervalometer, either.  Nikon shooters will have to buy Camera Control Pro if they need one full remote control or time lapse.

Some other random observations:

  • Performance is noticeably better than Lightroom 2
  • I left Lightroom 3 Beta 2 open over night.  Eighteen hours later, Lightroom was crawling, running much slower than the previous evening.  Closing and launching again cleared up the problem.  The Beta needs some code clean-up.
  • Plug-ins work properly now.  Nik tools, for instance, died during launch with Beta 1.
  • The new noise reduction is very effective.  You get a choice about whether to apply it or not.
  • The film grain effect is a nice addition, but limited.  Nik software in particular still has a superior grain engine.
  • I can't wait for the final product!
  • Man, would I have loved this tool when I was shooting catalogs!

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