Lightroom Vs Photoshop – Which One Do You Need Actually

Lightroom and Photoshop- two heavyweight post-processing tool and our curious minds want to know, who is the winner or is there any. Who doesn’t know choosing the right tool helps to uplift skill further? We all know, even if we are proficient in taking dazzling photos, you need some added skills on post processing as well.

Lightroom and Photoshop are the greatest creation of Adobe cloud which are truly designed for the photographers. And off-course these tools work like magic to turn your works into something more professional. So goals are same.

Should it be Lightroom? Adobe Photoshop? Only one of the two or both?

Each program has distinctive characteristics and is designed specifically to fit for certain workflows. So, before evaluation we’ll try to break down each tool’s characteristics to help you decide which program to use.


The Photoshop was introduced on late 90’s and started to become popular very rapidly. It’s a simple photo editing tool and is widely used by most of the novice and expert graphic designers, architects, publishers, photographers and mostly 3D artists.

What it does actually? This tool allows you to switch multiple paragraphs into a single panorama or eliminate skin blemishes or removing the background from a specific snap- making a model look taller, sharper or slimmer further. Thus the list goes on and on.

Actually, it’s quite tough to list down what Photoshop can do! In a simple sentence, Photoshop has become a major part of altering an image.

How To Know When I Should Use Photoshop?

When your job is to tune the final look of an image or to create an animation, paintings or pencil sketch, you need Photoshop. Besides this software can perform specific tasks like advanced retouching, manipulating or image raster to vector that no other tools can.


The Major Strengths Are

Layers: It allows creating and editing different layers for the same image. In one layer you can modify a model’s hair and add sunlight in another. After saving the PSD, it allows you to go back to edit from any particular layer as well. You can play as much as you can with different layers. NO matter how you do, at day end, subject is going to be more interesting.

Record Actions: Why do people record? The answer is- it lets you review the workflow if you somehow need it again. Photoshop allows you to record any workflows you perform and save it to review later. After recording different steps, you can combine them as well.

Advanced Retouching And Composite: Photoshop allows doing any advance manipulation, like pixel level controlling, making a subject smaller or taller or slimmer. Many times we need to slice or dice multiple images to create something unique. It’s not only a great tool for Individual photo fine-tuning but also professional design agencies like clipping path service providers are widely using this on top.

HDR: There are times when photographers want to blend more than one images to make cinematic marvels. You might know how difficult it is to pull out highlights and shadows. No worry, Photoshop is your solution. This software lets you control highlights and shadow very easy.

Stitching Panoramas: “Photomerge command” let you join several snaps together into a panoramic image. These snaps can be tiled horizontally, vertically, or even both.

Control Over The Smallest Details With Advance Spot Removal And Healing: From an array of magical tools, Photoshop’s healing brush and patch tools are very impressive. It’s best to correct spots and imperfections of small dots, dust, and micro blemishes. These tools can choose sample pixels within proximity and let you remove spot real quick and simple.

What You Can’t Do With Photoshop:

All other mighty tools have some limitation and Photoshop is no different from that. Let’s see some major drawbacks.

One: Many times photographers need to work directly with raw files from the camera. But this option is limited in Photoshop. There is a remedy- you need a separate plug-in.

Second: Obliviously after returning from a trip you can expect a large number of captures. You open your Photoshop and try to import, export or organize in a batch. But unfortunately, poor image management system of this software will fail you to manage and organize snaps.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

The name has the answer. Lightroom can do task similar to Photoshop and some of the specific subset that Photoshop might never can.


Though Photoshop is an advanced image altering software, sometimes designers started to have nightmares when it comes to organizing large numbers of files. That’s when the new demand of image management system evolved.

There is more- as catalog grows, finding specific thumbnails and metadata from hundreds of files becomes tougher. Besides, there were no other reviewing options available as well.

Though the inclusion of Adobe Camera RAW in Photoshop allowed smother opening, editing and converting RAW files, then again organizing process remains challenging and complex.

This image management software (Lightroom) works as a middleman where you can import batch images and export them after completing the edit.

How To Know When I Should Use Lightroom?

Here are some true usages of Lightroom:

  • Lightroom has built-in-Raw editing option. Which means; like Photoshop, you don’t need a separate plug-in to edit RAW files.
  • It’s flexible and easy to use especially when you need simple editing with a large volume of snaps. The process is faster as well.
  • Sorting and finding images based on many criteria is never been easier
  • A large list of pre-determined presets can save hours. After editing a photo you can save the combination and apply the same process to other images as well! Isn’t that interesting? Besides saving time, it has live preview features.

Lightroom Has Some Disadvantages Also.

One: This tool is handy for light edit. As full Photoshop features aren’t included, advance post-processing as creating vectors or raster images are not possible.

Two: Layer options are also missing. Without Photoshop you can’t use blending mode.

Wrapping Up:

Both Lightroom and Photoshop are very user-centric software for post-processing. It’s really tough to make the final call to announce the winner. But the truth is, you need both; I use both.

No matter which tools you are using, the main goal is to turn your work into something professional. Photoshop has some advantages and drawbacks as well as Lightroom. But together they are very powerful to make an image more realistic. So you actually need both.

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1 Comment

  1. Praveen Verma

    Great comparison between Photoshop and Lightroom. I never used Lightroom software before. After reading this whole post I think both softwares are best in their own place and both have its own pros and cons. I always work in Photoshop for graphics designing, but looking to try Lightroom also.

    Thanks for this awesome post.

    Have a great day ahead.
    Praveen verma

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Lightroom Vs Photoshop – Which One Do You Need Actually