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Which One Has Better AI Features?

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Key Takeaways

  • Lightroom and Photoshop both have a range of AI editing tools.
  • Photoshop’s Spot Healing feature is efficient and effective for removing multiple imperfections from images quickly.
  • Lightroom performs better at automatically detecting and masking areas for editing, making it more accurate in making bigger changes.



Lightroom and Photoshop have a handful of AI tools to help you edit your photos more effectively. Having used both apps extensively, I’ll compare their AI features in this comprehensive guide. From basic edits to advanced fixes, you’ll get the full scoop.


Basic Adjustments

If you’re going to use AI editing tools in Lightroom or Photoshop, it’s best to start with the basic adjustments. Let’s now cover both of these in detail.

Lightroom

Lightroom’s best basic AI editing feature is its noise-removal tool. Adobe introduced the feature in 2023, and it makes it much easier to get rid of grain if that isn’t your preferred photographic style. All you have to do is select Denoise, choose how much you want to add, and let the app create a DNG.


When editing in Lightroom, you can also use an Auto button to change the exposure, shadows, colors, and white balance. Lightroom also uses AI to automatically adjust your white balance. To be honest, though, I don’t normally use auto adjustments in Lightroom unless I want an idea of how to edit, because I often find them way off the mark for my photography style.

Lightroom has an automatic straightening tool, which I use quite often, and it usually delivers accurate results. The app also has red eye correction.

Photoshop

Photoshop has many of the same AI editing tools as Lightroom. For example, if you use Camera Raw, you can automatically adjust the brightness and colors. In the app itself, you can pick Auto Tone, Auto Contrast, and Auto Color (one of many ways you can change the color of an image in Photoshop).


Auto Tone, Color, and Contrast in Photoshop

I used to use these much more than I now do, but they’re pretty useful if you’re still learning how to use colors in Photoshop and sometimes slip up.

Lightroom’s automatic straightener is really useful, and I particularly like using Auto Contrast in Photoshop. There’s very little setting the two platforms apart in the way of basic adjustments, so I’m giving both of them a point.

Winner: Tie

Fixing Mistakes in Your Images

Even if you get the technical details right in your photos, you may sometimes need to fix blemishes and other marks. For example, when I photograph with my Fujifilm camera on a sunny day, spots will often appear in the sky when I upload my images for editing.


Lightroom and Photoshop both have a handful of AI image-fixing tools, and we’ll go cover these in the two sections below.

Lightroom

By far my most frequently used AI repair tool in Lightroom is the Healing feature. When you click on a spot or blemish in your picture, Lightroom automatically detects a repaired part of the photo and changes the area you want to heal. It’s pretty helpful if you only have a few small adjustments.

However, I have noticed that using the Healing tool in Lightroom can become quite laborious if you have multiple areas to fix. If I have dozens of spots to remove from a picture, I normally perform my basic adjustments in Lightroom and finish off with some retouching in Photoshop.

If you want to learn more about healing your images in Lightroom, consider checking out these common camera problems that Lightroom can fix.


Photoshop

Photoshop also has a handful of AI retouching and healing pictures. From personal experience, I have found that its Spot Healing feature is much more efficient than Lightroom. After tapping your screen, the image will fix itself within a few seconds. So, if you have multiple areas to change, it’s a much better option.

The Healing Feature in Photoshop

When you use Spot Healing in Photoshop, you can adjust the size of your brush to customize how much of your image you choose. The same is possible in Lightroom, but because of Photoshop’s efficiency, I’m giving it the point.

Winner: Photoshop

Image Ideation

Besides using Photoshop and Lightroom for editing pictures you’ve already taken, you may also want to consider using them for conceptualization.


In 2024, Adobe released a new feature in Photoshop that lets you generate an image from scratch, Generate Image. The feature uses Adobe Firefly’s Generative AI technology, and you can enter a text prompt to get the type of photo you want. Photoshop lets you choose a reference image from its catalog, and you can upload your own reference picture if you’d prefer.

Generate an image in Photoshop Beta

At the time of writing in May 2024, this feature is available via the Photoshop Beta app in Adobe CC. However, it’s likely that Adobe will roll the tool out to the full version of Photoshop at some point. Since Lightroom doesn’t have these kinds of features right now, Photoshop wins this one.

Winner: Photoshop


More Advanced Editing

Once you’ve made basic adjustments, you can use AI to add some polish to your pictures. One of Lightroom’s handiest in-app AI tools is the ability to automatically detect the sky, a background, or objects. After doing this, the app will mask this area, then you can edit it however you want. It’s sometimes inaccurate, but you can erase parts of the mask that shouldn’t be there. In Lightroom CC, you get generative removal tools.

The Sky Selection Tool in Adobe Lightroom

Meanwhile, Photoshop lets you remove the background in your images if you’d like. It’s quite hit-and-miss from personal experience, so you might want to stick to manually removing parts of your picture for now. Photoshop also has Generative Fill and Object Selection.


The Remove Background Button in Adobe Photoshop

Lightroom’s AI features were more accurate when testing the apps for more advanced edits, so I’m giving Lightroom the point here. If you’re new to Lightroom, you may also want to learn some simple ways to improve your editing skills in the app.

Winner: Lightroom

Photoshop narrowly beats Lightroom when tallying up the points for each section. However, both apps work better together rather than against each other. Since you can get both apps in a Photography Plan, it might be worth downloading both and experimenting with all of their features.


The Spot Healing tool in Photoshop is excellent, but I like Lightroom’s Denoise tool. Meanwhile, Photoshop’s automatic color and tone edits are better than what Lightroom offers. And if you want to make more advanced AI photo edits, you should pick Lightroom.

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