Lightroom CC ‘v’ Lightroom Classic

15th January 2020

I was having terrible trouble with Lightroom CC. The instructions on many websites, blogs, within YouTube videos and The DAM Book Guide to Organising Your Photos with Lightroom 5 by Peter Krogh just did not make sense with the Lightroom I was using. Due to this, I honestly haven’t touched the Lightroom application. On opening it up, I found it hard to navigate and couldn’t see its worth.

Not having much spare time, I just literally did not bother to pursue Lightroom at all, until my tutor mentioned it again:

General questions

Below from

Did the name of the desktop version of Lightroom change?

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic is the renamed version of the Lightroom application you have used in the past, and it is optimized for desktop-focused workflows, including local storage of your photos in files and folders on your computer. The interface, photo import and organization functionality, and editing feature set are much the same as before. We are continuing to invest in Lightroom Classic.

What are the differences between Lightroom and Lightroom Classic?

Lightroom is the new cloud-based photo service that works across desktop, mobile, and web. Lightroom Classic is the desktop-focused digital photography product.Watch now

Adobe Lightroom ClassicLightroom ClassicAdobe LightroomLightroom
Where you prefer to do your digital photography workDesktop onlyDesktop, mobile, and web
Location of originalsLocal hard driveCloud
File backupNot includedAutomatic
Ease of useMost comprehensiveIntuitive, streamlined
Organization and photo searchManual keywordsAutomatic tagging and intelligent search

I have been reading quite lot of blogs and website pages connected with comparing the two different versions of Lightroom. One thing they all seem to agree on is that they will not be leaving Lightroom Classic for Lightroom CC. Having read this I looked at the version of Lightroom I was trying to work within and it was in fact Lightroom CC, which thinking about it should have been obvious as it came with the downloads when I joined up to Adobe CC online. When looking in my apps I found that Lightroom Classic was also available to download for me, so I downloaded this version as well. Then I found out why I couldn’t find anything that people were talking about – the interfaces are the same but their contents are very different.

As I understand it, Lightroom classic use to be a stand alone package that you would buy the license for but Lightroom CC was part of Adobe’s Creative Cloud subscription. Now both are available when you subscribe to Adobe CC but they still perform very differently.

Lightroom CC when you open it up is very well organised and efficient but actually looks like many of the apps I use on the iPad. This is something else that confused me as some of my apps are actually better than Lightroom CC and I couldn’t understand why my tutor had said this would be better to work in then Photoshop – although he did mention more than once to me about Workflow but I didn’t quite understand that concept at the time because I hadn’t received the DAM book.

Lightroom Classic is definitely the go to for advanced photographers and professionals. This is because it has more plugins available and other features that would be needed for the type of work that is being produced.

I also work on my iPad when I am out and about and I think that Lightroom CC with its less advanced and slimlined apps would benefit those who work on mobile devices and who predominantly use editing materials for social media platforms. It would especially benefit those working on phones and tablets who want to share instantly or upload to online places like YouTube, Flickr and Instagram.


Here I have included some of the reviews that people have given Lightroom Classic ‘v’ Lightroom CC. I have included the links to their websites so that you can read in-depth and see accompanying illustrations about the differences within the two.

Lightroom shoot-out: Classic vs CC

By James Paterons November 04, 2018 – Amateur Photography

On this webpage, James Paterson ‘weighs the pros and cons of each’ Lightroom. The 19 areas he looks at are, 1. What’s in a name? 2. Picking a plan, 3. Important similarities, 4. Cloud or local storage? 5. Integration with mobile, 6. Import dialog, 7. Albums or Collections? 8. Clever searches, 9. Dual monitor support, 10. Slider locations, 11. Workflow tricks, 12. History panel, 13. How do they sync? 14. Syncing in LR Classic, 15. Range Masking, 16. Classic modules, 17. Face recognition, 18. HDRs and panoramas, 19. Export options.

Their verdict is below:

For organising an image library, LR Classic wins hands down. Besides the Albums feature, LR CC offers minimal control and you can’t even rename your images; however CC does have its amazing Search bar. When it comes to editing images, both Classic and CC are equally good: Classic offers more advanced workflow options, but CC is slicker, and you can edit video. Of course, CC is designed for a different audience to those of us who’ve been using Lightroom for years. The features that aren’t there, aren’t there for a reason – things like Smart Collections, Import options, Range Masking, Soft Proofing, which are tools that the casual user doesn’t need. As such, for professional and advanced photographers and those familiar with Lightroom already, Classic is still the best choice. For beginners, smartphone-shooters, casual enthusiasts and anyone who wants to edit on-the-go, CC is the friendlier, slicker option. Amateur Photographer

Lightroom CC vs Lightroom Classic CC: 10 key differences

By Rod Lawton January 09, 2018 – techradar, The source for tech buying advice

This webpage looks at ten differences between the two different versions of Lightroom. It looks at, 1. Lightroom workflow (interface and modules), 2. ‘Cloud-first’ vs ‘desktop-first’, 3. Synchronization and editing, 4. Image organization, 5. Filtering your photos, 6. Using keywords, 7. Editing tools compared, 8. Photomerge for panoramas and HDR, 9. Can you use plug-ins? 10. Plans and pricing.

Their verdict is below:

There’s a lot to like about Lightroom CC. Its stripped down interface does lose many of the more in-depth options of Lightroom Classic CC, but it’s a much nicer and more efficient place to work. If only Lightroom Classic CC looked like this!

And there’s the rub. To get the slick, streamlined experience of Lightroom CC you have to commit to Adobe’s web-based storage system. If that’s no good to you, then you’re stuck with Lightroom Classic CC. It is the more powerful program of the two, but it’s not our favorite. techradar, The source for tech buying advice

My verdict:

After reading the different views of different practicing photographers and looking at the DAM book and taking into consideration the tutors recommendation my verdict is to use Lightroom Classic.

At present I am not using any one of the Lightroom packages and that is because, apart from the confusion to begin with, I am reluctant to let old skills that I have and those new ones that I have just been developing in photoshop go.

I have a problem, I am developing skills that I have always wanted to within Photoshop and coupling them with the other photography and design apps that I use on my iPad Pro.

The question is then, how will using Lightroom help me and my photography practice? Is it a requirement of the course to have to use Lightroom or any other editing suite or can we use and develop our own skills that we will use in the big world when we eventually graduate – well I am using them now for exhibition so do I need to learn Lightroom?

Thinking about workflow, I have my own method of classifying and finding images, although it needs refining, but it has worked all these years without trouble.

So what would Lightroom have to offer me for my type of photography, especially as many of my images are cross-apps in my real practices? Will I need it just for the ‘normal’ photos? Would I use Photoshop as well? It is very confusing.

What I will have to do now, is research Lightroom Classic ‘v’ Photoshop so that I can find out their differences and similarities and which one would therefore suit my creative photography.

One thought on “Lightroom CC ‘v’ Lightroom Classic

Add yours

  1. I’ve been through this loop and am sticking with my stand-alone version of Lightroom (6) and Photoshop (CS5.5). Btw there is little that Photoshop does that can’t be done in Lightroom but the little are very important to a photographer. For example, the clone tool in LR is not so easy; Skewing to right an incorrect perspective; layers which remain in a .psd as long as saved as such but the equivalent in LR can be easily over-written in the Library module. What I would like to know is how you integrate a Lightroom gallery, created in the Web Module into a WordPress site. I’ve researched and even read Victoria Bampton’s wonderful book from cover to cover and have yet to find a solution… if you or anyone has an idea do please let me know.


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