In the past, running beta and release candidate software could be challenging. But, I’ve noticed in the last year or two, that beta, and more particularly release candidate software, can often be as stable as the final release. It may well be, that Microsoft raised the bar for both beta, and release candidates, with reasonably flawless releases of Windows 7 in both these formats.
Adobe, well known for its very expensive, though admittedly highly sophisticated applications (with high production costs), has just cleared release candidate 3.4 of its Photoshop Lightroom 3, for download.
Adobe’s definition of a release candidate –
A “release candidate” label indicates that this update is well tested but would benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all of our customers. The Lightroom 3.4 update includes support for many new cameras and lens profiles.
If you’re unfamiliar with Lightroom, try this description I came across not too long ago – “For the uninitiated, Lightroom is Photoshop’s specialized sibling; where Photoshop is an imaging Swiss Army Knife, Lightroom is a steak knife for photographers.”
A little confused? I must admit – so was I. So, try this definition from Adobe –
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 software unites your digital photography essentials in one fast and intuitive package. Create something beautiful. Express your vision. Move your audience.
Lightroom gets you there with the tools you need to create great images, manage all your photographs, and showcase them with style and impact.
If you’re a high level photographer, or you have aspirations in that direction, you might consider downloading this release candidate. There’s no guarantee that this is a perfectly flawless application, but if it’s relatively so, you just might save yourself $299 USD.
Personally, I’ve taken advantage of this offer and plan to test drive Photoshop Lightroom 3.4 in the coming weeks.
Windows – XP with Service Pack 3, Vista (32 bit and 64 bit); Windows 7 (32 bit and 64 bit), 2GB of RAM, 1,024×768 display
Mac OS – OS X v10.5 or v10.6, 2GB of RAM, 1,024×768 display
Languages: Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Swedish.
Check it out at: The product page.
Download at: Adobe Labs
As with all beta, or release candidates, take sensible precautions prior to installation. This should include setting a new restore point.
Note: The application installed with no difficulty on my test system.
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