Lightroom Classic Desktop April Update – Raw & Creative Profiles, Preset Updates, and More!

Adobe Lightroom Classic

I’m excited to announce several updates to Lightroom Classic starting with the new and enhanced Raw and Creative Profiles. While the concept of Profiles isn’t new to Lightroom Classic, in this release, their power has been greatly enhanced. This video demonstrates how:

If you’re not familiar with raw profiles, here is a overview of the key concepts covered in the video above:


A profile is a set of instructions that is used to render a photograph, converting it from raw camera information into the colors and tones that we see. 

  • Every raw image must have a profile applied (and can only have one profile at a time).  
  • Profiles are nondestructive and can be changed  at any time without any loss of quality.

Previous to this release, Adobe applied the Adobe Standard profile (v2) to all raw files by default. While a few customers changed their default profile (to a camera matching profile for example), the majority of customers, the application of a profile just happened magically. 

  • In this release, profiles have been moved from the Camera Calibration tab to the Basic tab, making them easier to access. 

  • There are no “right” or wrong” profiles: they’re like filling in a pie – some people will choose cherry and others prefer peach.

Adobe Raw Profiles

There are six new Adobe Raw profiles which can be applied to raw files. The new default profile for raw files in Lightroom Classic is Adobe Color for color images and Adobe Monochrome for Black & White images.  

Adobe Color — was designed to be a great starting point for any image. The goal of this profile is to render a relatively neutral, baseline image that closely matches the original colors and tones in the original scene. It assumes that you want the ultimate control over refining and adjusting images in order to achieve the exact look that you want. In comparison to the previous default profile, Adobe Color is a bit warmer in the reds, yellow and oranges, has a very small increase in contrast, and, it does a better job of moving highlights between color spaces.  

Adobe Monochrome — ­was carefully tuned to be the best starting point for any black and white image. This profile slightly shifts colors as they are converted to grayscale – brightening the warmer colors and darkening the cooler colors. It also adds a small amount of contrast but allows lots of headroom for editing.  

The additional four Adobe Raw profiles that were created as starting points for specific types of images:

Top row left to right: Landscape, Neutral. Bottom Row left to right: Portrait, Vivid.

Adobe Landscape — ­adds a bit more saturation to all of the colors in an image and renders more vibrant blues and greens. While this profile adds a slight amount of contrast to the overall image, it also helps to maintain details by slightly compressing the  highlight and shadow values in scenes with significant contrast.

Adobe Neutral — ­reduces color saturation as well as contrast , rendering a flatter, low contrast version of the image. It‘s designed to give you the most headroom for post processing. This a great profile to start with if you have an image with delicate colors and gradients. 

Adobe Portrait — ­is tailored especially for portrait images. It has a slightly more gentle tone curve and is optimized for skin tones.  

Adobe Vivid — ­adds vibrance and contrast while still rendering natural skin tones and is a great place to start for images of people in a landscape.

Note: Standard V2 was the default profile in previous versions of Lightroom Classic.

If the image that you’re working with isn’t set to Adobe Color by default, most likely one of three things is happening:

You’re working on a non-raw photograph (like a JPEG or TIFF) – in which case the profile will just say Color because all of the rendering was done already (either in another raw processor or within the camera itself) and you can’t apply a raw profile to a non-raw file.

You’re working on an image captured as DNG via Lightroom on a mobile device and the default profile is Camera Default because images are be optimized differently for images captured on mobile devices. 

You’re working with a legacy file – in which case you will see the previously embedded profile which you can choose to change at any time (Lightroom won’t automatically update legacy files using the new profiles as doing so would change the look of the image.)

Adobe Camera Matching Raw Profiles 

In addition, Adobe created and ships Adobe Camera Matching profiles. These profiles are designed to match the preset “styles” that can be set using the menus on a camera. Because the style options differ among camera manufacturers, this list of profiles will change depending on your camera.

Adobe Camera Matching Profiles for the Canon 5Ds. Top row left to right: Faithful, Landscape, Neutral. Bottom Row left to right: Portrait, Standard, Monochrome. 

The Camera Matching monochrome profiles behave differently from other Black and White profiles (Adobe Monochrome, Legacy, and the Creative Profiles), by discarding the color information in the file. Therefore, the Black and White Mix sliders, are not available. You can however add color tints to these images using the Tone Curve, Split Tone, and color swatch with Local Adjustment tools. 

Legacy Raw Profiles 

Legacy Raw profiles are also included in order to maintain backwards compatibility when working with legacy files. 

Creative Profiles

In addition to Raw profiles, are several groups of  Creative profiles. These profiles are designed to apply more creative, stylistic effects to an image and can be applied to non-raw photographs (like JPEG’s and TIFFs). Creative Profiles can (but aren’t required to) use color lookup tables (LUTs) to remap color and tones enabling new and unique ways of processing images. Lightroom ships with several different Creative profiles including:

Artistic Profiles these profiles were designed to be more edgy, and typically have stronger color shifts. 

Lightroom’s eight different Artistic profiles.

B & W Profilesthese profiles were designed to create a more dramatic interpretation of the original image, some of these profiles increase/decrease contrast, others limit the dynamic range, and several emulate the effects of using color filters with film.  

An assortment of different Black and White profiles (01, 03, 06, 07, 08, 11, red, blue).

Modern Profiles these profiles were designed to create unique effects that fit in with current photography styles.

An assortment of different Modern profiles (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10).

Vintage Profiles these profiles were designed to replicate the effects of analogue imagery.

An assortment of different Vintage profiles (1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10).

Creative profiles have an Amount slider which can be used to decrease/increase the intensity of the profile.  Note:  it is up to the creator of the profile to define exactly how far the “intensity” can be changed. In other words, you might see subtle or more aggressive changes on a per-profile basis.


Previewing and Applying Profiles

You can hover the cursor above a profile to preview the effect in the preview area, however you need to click the profile to apply it (as well as preview an accurate rendition of the image in the Histogram Panel).

Double click a profile to simultaneously apply it as well as close the Profile Browser.

Once a profile has been applied, use any of the other slider controls in any of the other panels to make additional modifications to your images. Profiles don’t change slider values. 

Quickly Accessing Favorite Profiles

Click the star icon to add a profile to the Favorites group. Click the star again to remove it.

Quickly access Favorites from the Profile drop-down menu (without having to use the Profile Browser).

Including Profiles in a preset

When saving a preset, you can choose to include Treatment & Profile to save the profile as a part of a preset (just as you would any other attribute or setting in Lightroom). 

A number of additional features have been updated in Lightroom Classic including:

Preset Enhancements

Presets are now saved as XMP files, making them compatible  and accessible across all of the Lightroom products, Camera Raw, and Camera Raw as a filter in Photoshop. Existing presets are converted to XMP as part of a catalog upgrade or during the launch process. Note: presets will be renamed in the OS by adding “~” to the start of the filename, but the name of the preset will not change in Lightroom. 


The Dehaze slider has moved from the Effects to Basic Panel and in Copy Settings and Preset creation dialogs, Dehaze is under Basic Tone.

Tone Curve

The Tone Curve Panel has been expanded for more precise adjustments.

Import Grid Performance Improvement on Windows 

When importing images from connected devices, images will appear in the Import Grid in batches, even before all of the images have completed scanning,

Face Tagging 

The Face Tagging engine has been updated to provide better face detection and recognition and includes has two new options:  “Skip over photos that have not been previously indexed” and “Skip over photos with manually confirmed faces”, when selecting Library > Find Faces Again. 

This release also contains big fixes and added support for new cameras and lenses. 

The SDK info for creating custom profiles can be downloaded from this link:

Adobe Lightroom Classic

Posted on 04-03-2018


  • By Photo Tours South America - 11:26 AM on April 3, 2018  

    This is huge! Thank you Julieanne. I was getting a little frustrated with skintones rendering by the legacy color profiles in ACR. I’ll download the update and check it out.

  • By Seth - 1:47 PM on April 3, 2018  

    After updating I no longer have access to my numerous folders of presets… it’s bad. I really wish I hadn’t updated. Is there a reason or solution?

    • By Seth - 1:49 PM on April 3, 2018  

      Or can I revert to the previous version?

      • By Austin - 3:12 PM on April 6, 2018  

        Second the need for some help with presets!

        • By Julieanne Kost - 1:54 PM on April 7, 2018  

          The best place for help is

  • By Felix - 3:16 PM on April 3, 2018  

    Is it just me or is the face recognition broken for everyone? Almost no faces are recognized correctly anymore.

  • By Jim Mitchell - 9:01 PM on April 3, 2018  

    I opened my LrCC Classic, but did not see the profiles

  • By Trevor Morris - 12:22 PM on April 4, 2018  

    First, great update! However, I’m not seeing the Profile: Amount slider. Is the Profile slider only available for Mac? I’m seeing it in various Mac screen captures / tutorials, but not for Windows (nor on my Windows machine). Thanks.

    • By Trevor Morris - 3:39 PM on April 8, 2018  

      Based on Micah’s comment below, I see now that the Profile’s Amount slider is only available when a creative profile is selected — which in hindsight makes sense.

  • By Jim Mitchell - 12:57 PM on April 4, 2018  

    I don’t see this on my Lr? Are they time phasing the upgrades?

  • By Trevor Morris - 4:00 PM on April 4, 2018  

    Another thing: twice in the last couple of hours, Lightroom has frozen up / crashed while not using it for a period of time (i.e., it was running in the background). Latest Windows 10, latest Lightroom, latest drivers.

    • By Trevor Morris - 3:40 PM on April 8, 2018  

      Background crashing is definitely an issue. At least on my setup.

  • By Micah - 11:44 AM on April 5, 2018  

    My RAW profiles are gone. 🙁

  • By Mike Hodgson - 11:08 PM on April 6, 2018  

    Your excellent video shows the profile amount slider viable at all times (sometimes greyed out and other times active). I suspect this only happened in a beta testing version. The released version only shows the amount slider when the creative colour profiles are activated. You might want to point this out. It caught me out!

    • By Trevor Morris - 3:40 PM on April 8, 2018  

      Agreed with Micah. Caught me as well.

  • By jenna wagner - 11:22 AM on April 13, 2018  

    I have updated the software and do not see this option available. At first I realized I was trying to use with a jpg image, but then when I selected an NEF image, it still wasn’t available. Am I doing something wrong? I thought NEF was a RAW image.

  • By Amanda - 10:37 PM on April 13, 2018  

    I cannot save my presets anymore to my computer there is no way to do this? The old way does not work (try it first before replying and you will see for yourself there is no way) ..does anyone know what you are supposed to do. Very frustrating. Its only showing me folders that were there BEFORE the update, all the new preset folders created will not show.