Last updated on October 18th, 2019

The world of photography gets you outside to capture the most memorable moments. But that’s just one part of the process. The second part is to manage, edit, and then showcase your images. And that’s what this Luminar 4 review is all about.

What is Luminar 4?

Luminar 4 is a photography software that helps with image management and photo editing. It’s known for its automatic sky replacement technology, and skin and portrait enhancers. It’s also an alternative to Lightroom and Adobe’s creative cloud monthly membership.

My Early Luminar 4 Review

I have a beta version of Luminar 4 that I’m going to review. The developer, Skylum, is still making updates to the software, so the final version may look or function differently.

Importing Images

Luminar 4’s importing process is straightforward:

  • Select the folders containing your images.
  • The software will scan the folders and add the photos to the library.

The software doesn’t duplicate the images, but rather it points to the images via database.

You can also import images via a SD card by using the Import Images to a Folder option.

Image Management

Luminar 4 organizes images according to how you organize your files in the backend. All my travel photography that were captured RAW are sorted by country folders.

There are also 3 types of tags that you can apply to your photos:

  • favorite or rejected
  • star rating
  • color label

The tags can be used to sort your images.

Editing Images

Luminar 4 comes with a variety of standard and advanced tools for photographers. I’ll go over some of their advanced tools.

Automatic Sky Replacement Technology

Photographing landscapes and cityscapes with a dull sky usually doesn’t cut it for many photographers. As a result, sky replacement or sky color grading is a common practice to edit an Instagram-worthy image. But masking can be difficult and time consuming especially when there are detailed objects such as tree branches or city wires.

As a result, Luminar 4 will automatically detect the sky, create a mask, and then you can replace the sky from a list of saved sky photos. Furthermore, relighting is automatically applied: the color of the sky will be applied to the rest of the image.

This feature saves photographers a considerable amount of time because it’s completed in a few seconds.

AI Skin Enhancer

The skin enhancer automatically detects the blemishes on the face and with one click removes them. It also allows you to adjust the smoothness of the skin using a slider. 

luminar 4 skin enhancer screenshot

Below is an example of the skin enhancer. I simply check marked the AI Skin Defects Removal box for the result without using the skin smoother. If you want to touch-up the face more, then you can adjust the skin smoother slider or use the clone & stamp tool.

Portrait Enhancer

This tool allows you to quickly edit your portrait photography. Luminar 4 includes dedicated tools for editing eyes, dark circles, face, eyebrows, lips, and teeth.

luminar 4 portrait enhancer screenshot

Below is an example of the results the portrait enhancer can produce with the above settings. I also used the skin ehancer to smooth out the skin a little bit.

Pros

  • combined image management and editing system
  • speeds up landscape photography workflow
  • speeds up portrait photography workflow

Cons

  • no spot healing brush
  • no straighten tool

Release Date

Luminar 4 is expected to be released on November 18, 2019.

Price

The Luminar 4 pre-order price is $79. The cost will rise to $89 on November 18, 2019.

If you decide to purchase Luminar 4 after November 18, then you can use my Luminar 4 coupon code for a $10 discount: aperlust.

Conclusion and Is it Worth Buying?

I’m a travel photographer and the main hype for me about Luminar 4 is its sky replacement tool. It saves so much time since it doesn’t require any masking.

It’ll also save time for portrait photographers since Luminar 4 has a dedicated section to quickly edit clients’ photos.

I think Luminar 4 is a good option for image management and editing. Especially if you want to save money compared to more expensive software.

 

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Software Name
Luminar 4
Operating System
Mac and Windows
Software Category
Photography
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