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Why won't Serif listen to customer needs and create a Lightroom alternative for us?


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If Lightroom serves your needs and actually does it all well, I am not sure why people don't just keep using it. It sounds to me like people want it but don't want to pay for it. I wonder if Adobe and others are getting the same requests, please make it cheaper and you will have way more users.  Is there more the hobby photographer community wanting pro tools for non pro work?

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43 minutes ago, wonderings said:

It sounds to me like people want it but don't want to pay for it.

I'm sure you've already registered a lot of requests/complaints/disappointment here - I'm from Adobe, I don't want to pay the gold-digger any more, but why doesn't Affinity do "exactly" the same thing as Adobe for a fraction of the price?! 🙂

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Lightroom does fit my needs, and I did pay for it.   I use Lightroom 6.41 the last Standalone perpetual licence version. I started with Lightroom V1   Adobe did say that Lightroom would continue like that rather than be CC and on subscription.   However, they changed their minds and stopped any support for the standalone version just before Google changed the API for Maps. So the whole Maps section of Lightroom V6 (or previous)  no longer works.   Perhaps I am just being cynical.  

I have asked Adobe, multiple times to fix the Maps in the last standalone version.  I, and I suspect most other users, would pay for a one off upgrade to V6.2 with the maps fixed.  Otherwise, I am looking for a non-Adobe alterative.

I pay for good tools.  I paid for Lightroom, I paid for Affinity  (both V1 and V2 universal licences), I paid for the Studio version of Resolve. I paid for DXO (and updates)   What I won't do is pay a subscription such than when I stop paying the tools stop working. I am getting to the time of life where I am semi retired.  It is not a full time (or even paying)  job for me. So I could be paying for tools for moths when I am not using them.

I don't mind paying Affinity (or Dxo or Black Magic etc) for updates if I need them But if I don't, I don't want the program to stop working (or have to keep paying for things I don't want)

The reason why I want Affinity to do a Lightroom’ catalogue type program is that sooner or later the Lightroom 6.14 will not work with Windows 12,13, 14 etc. Also it will integrate with Photo, Publisher and Designer. 

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On 11/27/2023 at 4:04 PM, KC Honie said:

For the price the affinity apps are great niche products, but they don't comprise a complete creative suite.

I don't think they are niche. Photo is very much mainstream.    Designer and Publisher less so but hardly "niche".

As for a "full creative suite"   No one other than Adobe does that?   
Even there, Adobe is not the "best in class"

I don't think Affinity needs to go for a Video Editor or an Audio or Music creation program.  However, a Bridge type program and an Image catalogue program do seem to fall into their domain.
 

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6 minutes ago, Pšenda said:

I'm sure you've already registered a lot of requests/complaints/disappointment here - I'm from Adobe, I don't want to pay the gold-digger any more, but why doesn't Affinity do "exactly" the same thing as Adobe for a fraction of the price?! 🙂

I have made suggestions for software they develop, I have never requested them to create software for me because I want something cheaper. I am happy with Adobe, I make my living with Adobe software and have no dreams of switching over to Affinity to replace Adobe anytime soon. Affinity has made some really great software for an amazing price, the majority of the pro world is using Adobe and thus they are the standard. There is a lot of power in being the standard, and a lot of benefits to everyone using the same thing. 

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10 minutes ago, Chills said:

I pay for good tools.  I paid for Lightroom, I paid for Affinity  (both V1 and V2 universal licences), I paid for the Studio version of Resolve. I paid for DXO (and updates)   What I won't do is pay a subscription such than when I stop paying the tools stop working. I am getting to the time of life where I am semi retired.  It is not a full time (or even paying)  job for me. So I could be paying for tools for moths when I am not using them.

I don't mind paying Affinity (or Dxo or Black Magic etc) for updates if I need them But if I don't, I don't want the program to stop working (or have to keep paying for things I don't want)

The reason why I want Affinity to do a Lightroom’ catalogue type program is that sooner or later the Lightroom 6.14 will not work with Windows 12,13, 14 etc. Also it will integrate with Photo, Publisher and Designer. 

I completely get it, and thought that way myself in the beginning when CC was the only option to continue on with Adobe. The changes I have seen in the design community that I interact with has been a big improvement. No more fragmentation, everyone has the same version, or at least access to the same version. Adobe has obviously not geared their software for the home user crowd. I myself would not pay for Adobe CC if I was not making money from it. The cost of a license is easily covered in a day for the software, so the money made by using it is easily justified. 

I am not doubting you when you say Lightroom might not work with future releases of Windows, is there some reasoning behind that? We have run 20+ year old software in Windows 11, and in Windows 11 ARM without issue. The one benefit of Windows is not much changes under the hood to stop older software from running. 

 

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11 minutes ago, wonderings said:

the majority of the pro world is using Adobe and thus they are the standard.

I am not sure whether that is true any more.

I see in the Resolve Forums many moving from Adobe.

I think it is true that the hobby, semi pro and some pro's are moving to the "cheap" options. However, many professionals (never mind the rest) simply don't want the Adobe Subscription model. 

 

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3 minutes ago, Chills said:

I am not sure whether that is true any more.

I see in the Resolve Forums many moving from Adobe.

I think it is true that the hobby, semi pro and some pro's are moving to the "cheap" options. However, many professionals (never mind the rest) simply don't want the Adobe Subscription model. 

 

I can only speak anecdotally. I work in print, wide format and signage. Everyone uses this software. From design houses to the print shops themselves. In the days of old it was always a gamble on what file type you would received and more so if you could even open it for editing or working on it. In a world where people work collaboratively, being on the same software version is huge. Also the use of AI now in Photoshop and Illustrator is HUGE. I use it daily and they are massive time savers. 

That being said, I have never had issues with PDF files created in Affinity. I can't say the same for Corel, Canva or other graphic apps people use that are more budget friendly. If pro's don't want to pay the money that is their choice, I wonder what their margins are like and if working too cheap... could be what the market can bare in their area. For what we do, and we have multiple users with Adobe CC, the price is covered easily with lots of profit to spare. 

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16 minutes ago, wonderings said:

I am not doubting you when you say Lightroom might not work with future releases of Windows, is there some reasoning behind that? We have run 20+ year old software in Windows 11, and in Windows 11 ARM without issue. The one benefit of Windows is not much changes under the hood to stop older software from running.

No information, just that "it might" especially as the Maps section of Lightroom no longer works because google changed their API  However you are right that MS Windows does tend to have very good backward compatibility (unlike Apple) 

I think part of the problem was both Apple and Adobe changed direction at the same time. I am still using a 2012 (pre Trash-Can)  Mac Pro and 2012 Macbook Pros but have transitioned to PC's and non Adobe software.

Every now and again when starting Lightroom I get a splash screen saying "would you recommend Adobe/Lightroom to others?" to which I give a hard "NO" and the follow-up question is what would make you change your mind to which I answer "Fix the Maps in V6.14, even as a one off paid upgrade"  I would pay £/$50 to have the maps fixed. Also, any other minor fixes they can do at the same time as a "last time fix"  I am not looking for New functionality, just not loosing what I had.

BTW it was not Adobe's fault that Google changed the API.  IT is just a pity that Adobe didn't fix it for the standalone version.  I come a cross a LOT of people still using the Pre CC version of Lightroom.  These people will not got to CC and Adobe would earn a LOT of good will (and make a profit) fixing it.

www.JAmedia.uk  and www.TamworthHeritage.org.uk
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2 hours ago, wonderings said:

If Lightroom serves your needs and actually does it all well, I am not sure why people don't just keep using it. It sounds to me like people want it but don't want to pay for it. I wonder if Adobe and others are getting the same requests, please make it cheaper and you will have way more users.  Is there more the hobby photographer community wanting pro tools for non pro work?

You have missed the point in its entirety... 🤦‍♂️

Most of us are here because we didn't want to participate in a subscription model, most are very happy with Serif's Affinity perpetual model.  A number of us left Adobe for Capture One because of the switch to subscription only, then Capture One made the switch to a de facto subscription model.

If we as photographers return to Adobe then we get Lightroom and Photoshop so that leaves Affinity on the outside looking in.  It is a much more elegant roundtrip between LR and PS than between LR and AP or C1P and AP/PS.

The raw developers among LR, C1P and AP are massively different.  The reason we as photographers are so hard over on an Affinity Lightroom replacement is because the raw engine would be the same and moving between Affinity Photo and Affinity Develop would be seamless.

For me it not about the cost, but being able to provide the best content.

Edit:

So what I did is ditched Capture One Pro, because of the switch to de facto subscription (you can still buy a perpetual license but it is a point release only), for the Adobe Photography package that includes among other things:

Lightroom Classic
Lightroom CC
Lightroom Mobile
Photoshop Mobile
1TB Storage
Some other goodies

Now Affinity Photo sits unused, camera raw is the raw developer shared between LR/PS, roundtrips are seamless and OMG, the power of PS is mind boggling, the masking tools of LR and PS are nothing short of amazing.  Photoshop is lightyears ahead of Affinity Photo.

Would I purchase Affinity Develop if they were to offer it?  Of course, I would love to try it, but it looks like I am back with Adobe for the foreseeable future.
 

 

 

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33 minutes ago, Chills said:

I am not sure whether that is true any more.

I see in the Resolve Forums many moving from Adobe.

I think it is true that the hobby, semi pro and some pro's are moving to the "cheap" options. However, many professionals (never mind the rest) simply don't want the Adobe Subscription model. 

 

Adobe used to be the main go to for pretty much any industry that involved image editing, whether it be stills, video, or textures. While they are still leading in a lot of areas, Adobe products are no longer the only viable alternatives on the market. Even if something like Photoshop is still the standard, it is still perfectly possible to replace it with alternatives depending on your specific needs. Blender, Aseprite, Inkscape, and the Affinity Suite managed to replace what I did in Photoshop and Illustrator almost completely for me (only needed to convert Affinity files to PSD for work purposes). I only use Substance Painter from Adobe regularly nowadays, which is not as easy to replace, but I do have a couple of alternatives that I am keeping my eye on for the future.

I used to use After Effects back in the day as well, but since I am not working with animated vector art as of now I have less need for it. Might try using Resolve and Blender for creating UI vector protoypes in the future if the need ever comes.

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On 10/6/2023 at 2:04 PM, Archangel said:

I agree that Serif would benefit from creating a media manager Lightroom alternative, another option would be to allow Affinity Photo, Designer and Publisher to link to an already existing alternative such as Faststone viewer, XnViewMP, Darktable or Digikam. Of course, this might be difficult to achieve with Serif's software development policy.

AcDsee is an excellent DAM program that has the ability link to virtually what ever editing software you choose.  In fact you can select a host of various editing softwares and select your favorite as the default editor.  

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1 hour ago, KC Honie said:

Would I purchase Affinity Develop if they were to offer it?

There would still be people who say "it doesn't have x feature from Adobe. If only it had y feature I would buy it. Without z feature it is useless". As people from time to time complain about APub, AD, APh today. As has been mentioned, some people want 100% of every feature of a certain Adobe product at 1/10 of the cost for a perpetual licence. Gimme a Rolls Royce at the cost of a Ford Escort. 

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1 minute ago, Daltongang said:

AcDsee is an excellent DAM program that has the ability link to virtually what ever editing software you choose.  In fact you can select a host of various editing softwares and select your favorite as the default editor.  

All ACDSee does is link to different editors, what we are talking about is tight integration between the image developer and the image manipulation apps, i.e., LR and PS both use camera raw and raw images are developed the same between both apps.

That is not the case when, for example, round tripping between C1P and AP...

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4 minutes ago, LondonSquirrel said:

There would still be people who say "it doesn't have x feature from Adobe. If only it had y feature I would buy it. Without z feature it is useless". As people from time to time complain about APub, AD, APh today. As has been mentioned, some people want 100% of every feature of a certain Adobe product at 1/10 of the cost for a perpetual licence. Gimme a Rolls Royce at the cost of a Ford Escort. 

That is not what is being discussed here, I understand that the Affinity apps have lesser features than do the Adobe app.  I am ok with that, I simply want a photo developer that is similar to LR, C1P, DxO, etc that uses the same raw engine as AP...  Then you have seamless integration among the various Affinity apps.

Without that app it forces one to move to another solution.

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3 minutes ago, KC Honie said:

All ACDSee does is link to different editors, what we are talking about is tight integration between the image developer and the image manipulation apps, i.e., LR and PS both use camera raw and raw images are developed the same between both apps.

That is not the case when, for example, round tripping between C1P and AP...

Raw is raw, the nature of any raw file is proprietary to the camera manufacturer.  Companies may develop their own engine, but the raw file is still just that, a proprietary raw file.  

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2 hours ago, Optische Ausrichtung said:

Why won't Adobe listen to customer needs and develop a non-subscription version of its software?

You mean like Adobe Photoshop Elements (which includes a DAM) that was selling for $59 on Black Friday? It has been sold for decades under what is now referred to as a "perpetual license." It has some features way beyond those of APhoto, but lacks some professional level features.

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13 minutes ago, KC Honie said:

That is not what is being discussed here, I understand that the Affinity apps have lesser features than do the Adobe app.  I am ok with that, I simply want a photo developer that is similar to LR, C1P, DxO, etc that uses the same raw engine as AP...

So in fact, it is exactly as I wrote above. You want APhoto to be like some other product: Solution: Use some other product.

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15 minutes ago, Daltongang said:

Raw is raw, the nature of any raw file is proprietary to the camera manufacturer.  Companies may develop their own engine, but the raw file is still just that, a proprietary raw file.  

Unfortunately you don't understand the nature of a raw developer.

Each app developer has their own proprietary raw development engine, Adobe uses Camera Raw, C1P and DxO roll their own as well, AP uses the open source LibRaw.  Each of the engines develops the raw image differently (that is why C1P made such headway against Adobe, their raw developer engine was much better).

The raw file is immaterial the magic is how you develop that file...

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6 minutes ago, LondonSquirrel said:

So in fact, it is exactly as I wrote above. You want APhoto to be like some other product: Solution: Use some other product.

Nope not at all, you are simply being pedantic and not listening to what people are asking for, I want Serif to complete the suite of apps (that 5 years ago they said they would do).  I don't want a LR clone, I want develop module with a DAM, that conforms to Affinity standards, not Adobe's standards...

In fact I am back to LR and PS.  I will no longer use AP because it is not integrated with LR like PS is

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3 minutes ago, KC Honie said:

The raw file is immaterial the magic is how you develop that file...

Bingo

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3 minutes ago, KC Honie said:

Nope not at all, you are simply being pedantic and not listening to what people are asking for, I want Serif to complete the suite of apps (that 5 years ago they said they would do).  I don't want a LR clone, I want develop module with a DAM, that conforms to Affinity standards, not Adobe's standards..

I suggest you go back to the original post and see what was requested. You are trying to hijack the thread into something else. Let me quote a snippet for you, and compare it to what you have just written: "So why won't you listen to your customers and release a Lightroom alternative?".

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6 minutes ago, KC Honie said:

I want Serif to complete the suite of apps

^ emphasis mine.

In exactly that sense, as a graphic designer (and not a photographer) who makes excessive use of the whole suite, I'd expect Serif to complete the suite of apps with a proper DAM, not just a "DAM for photographers". 

In other words, asking for a "Lightroom knockoff" doesn't make sense in the full Affinity context. If anything, it should be a "Bridge knockoff", but then some.

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