Adobe Lightroom Mobile update takes HDR photography to the next level

Lightroom on smartphones is getting an upgrade that lets you capture HDR images in RAW.

But wait, you might be thinking of how you’ve had and HDR capture mode on the iPhone since forever. You are right about that but Adobe’s newly updated app lets you capture images in an uncompressed format that captures even more distinct levels of light.

Adobe claims the new HDR mode will let users achieve the ever-fabled “DSLR-quality on a smartphone.” But what Lightroom Mobile really comes with is the technology allowing it to use Adobe Camera Raw just as its desktop version does.

Like your smartphone’s built-in HDR mode, Lightroom Mobile will automatically scan the scene to determine the best exposure range before taking three RAW images. All the user has to do is keep their phone steady.

From there the mobile app can automatically align everything in the shot and merge tone mapping to minimize blown out highlights and dark shadows. Users are also left with a 32-bit RAW image that they can further tweak in Lightroom Mobile.

The only catch with the new feature is you’ll need a practically brand new phone to use it. As of this writing, Adobe says only the iPhone 7 (Plus), iPhone 6 (Plus), Samsung Galaxy S7 (Edge), and Google Pixel (XL) support the new RAW HDR capture tool. 

However, we’re sure this list will grow given the recent spate of new phones from MWC 2017.

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.