Lightroom versions and the best one for you

There are now 3 Lightroom versions.


It’s a good thing but it can feel like a complicated thing, right?

Today I’m sharing what I’ve learned from my hours of research — both reading through Adobe’s docs and playing around inside each Lightroom.

Let’s get to it, shall we?!

Which lightroom version should you use?

When I started there was just one good old version of Lightroom. 

And I guess when I say that, I start to sound really old, but the thing is that since the beginning of Lightroom, there has only even been one version. 

Lightroom would update that version and make you pay for the updates. I think that’s why so many photographers are still using Lightroom 3, 4 and so on.

Lightroom 3, 4 and so on are different updates inside that very first version of Lightroom.

Aka grandma Lightroom.

And while there’s a lot we can learn from Grandma Lightroom (how to not recover or restore whites, etc), it’s time to get to know the new Lightroom.

The update that Lightroom released with the 2 new versions of Lightroom is the biggest update in over a decade. 

So what exactly are these versions of Lightroom?

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Different Lightroom versions

1. Lightroom

2. Lightroom Classic CC

3. Lightroom CC

Prefer to watch?

Click play below and I’ll explain the difference between these Lightroom versions and how to know which one is going to be best for you.

Plus, I edit a photo of this cute dog and share extra photo tips. So… watch below!

Lightroom version 1: Grandma Lightroom 

“Grandma Lightroom” isn’t the official name of the oldest, outdated Lightroom but it’s what I’ll be calling the good ‘ol regular version of Lightroom.

This regular version of Lightroom can handle your photo editing for you, but it’s missing the newer features that let you take full control over your editing.

Things like precise control over highlights, whites and the smaller details in your image.

But you and I know those small details add up and while your clients might not be able to put a finger on it, they can tell.

Since you’re in the business of setting yourself apart, I’d recommend switching over to the paid or subscription versions of Lightroom: Lightroom Classic CC and Lightroom CC.

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Lightroom version 2: Lightroom classic CC

This is the ferrari version of Lightroom.

Built for the pros.

For the ones who need precise control over the details.

If you own a business, this one is for you.

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Lightroom version 3: Lightroom CC

Hello, mobile editing!

This Lightroom will still edit a pro image for you, but it’s not designed for bulk editing. Can you sync your edits? Yes.

But it’s not as user friendly when it comes to syncing edits.

So this Lightroom? Well, I use it on my phone to edit 2 types of photos:

  1. Mobile smart phone images

  2. Quick pro edits — If I needed to throw an image from my camera to my phone and get it uploaded to Instagram, this version would let me do that all on my phone.

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choose what’s best for you

If you’re on the fence, you could switch over to a subscription plan for a month, play around and decide for yourself what’s going to work best for your business.

Lightroom versions — Lightroom Classic CC vs Lightroom CC

Love pinterest?

You and me both! Pin this image so you can come back to this post anytime.

Name your board "Lightroom tutorials" so I can find your faves!


How much does Lightroom cost?

There are 2 main Lightroom packages on the monthly/yearly plan…

  • $9.99 — Lightroom CC + 1 TB of cloud storate

  • $9.99 — Lightroom CC + Lightroom Classic CC + Photoshop + 20 GB cloud storage

You can view the different Lightroom subscription plans here.

I went with the second option because I don’t need the cloud storage (I have a hard drive that I use to backup my photos).

So glad I did because having both Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic CC has been a workflow game changer!

What version of Lightroom are you using? What do you think about the different Lightroom versions?