For those who missed it Lightroom 2.0 went gold last week and I had a chance to play with it on the weekend. I must say I am impressed. For those participating in the beta none of this will be news but for those who haven't here's some of the selling points which make me love it even more: - Selective sharpening on export, the options are simple yet effective for a quick send to a friend via msn kind of picture. Nice to have and I will probably use it often but never for archiving. - A gradient tool. Yes finally the ability to create an almost ND grad filter. Now there's no reason to go into photoshop anymore. Well I say almost because you gain no dynamic range since you're still only using one frame, but HDR stuff and multi frame blends is not what lightroom is about. - An exposure painter with proper masking, and excellent brush options. This is the number 1 reasons I jump into photoshop and now I don't need to anymore. - Many other things which interest me much less so I won't even mention them. Anyway here's a quick example of what the gradient tool, exposure painter, and sharpening do. Don't critique my methods though this was a 30 second job : On the left: RAW file exported to JPEG. On the right (or bottom depending on your screen) : RAW with gradient at the top to the centre, exposure painter on the left and write of our subject, and on export the screen sharpening option was selected. All other options are on default.