A few months ago Adobe surprised the photography world with a new public beta of Lightroom (it's fifth version) and only a couple months later that beta hit CA status. I must confess, it got me by surprise too. I am a fan and a heavy LR user, despite my reputation that I only work with Apple products. I do indeed own Adobe's CS6 and LR4.
I don't actually use Photoshop a lot for photography corrections, except for just a few things that Lightroom can't easily do. I merely exit to PS as an external to LR editor; I do what needs be done, and eventually go back to LR. The things I do in PS are perspective, keystone, healing corrections, but I also use the 'liquify' filter quite a bit.
When I therefore read about LR5's new functionality, it was love at first sight! Something like I experienced watching yesterday's keynote at the WWDC. Despite what the state owned Flemish TV in this country reported during today's evening news, by displaying the nerdiest 'analyst' in town, who claimed that Apple bluntly 'copied' the competition (suggesting Microsoft and Nokia, I guess). How thick do you need to be to dare say something like that on National TV? I betsa, she was simply thick. So many shameless idiots are trying to make a name for themselves and live their 5 secs in fame by taking the piss on Apple, but lack the elementary intelligence to grasp even one tenth of what the Jobs and Ive philosophy are trying to tell us. It's morons like that Flemish 'analyst' woman who actually made Jony Ive lose all his hair... by pulling it in frustration!
Back to LR5. Quite a bit of the new functionality is not immensely original (has already been available in PS for years) but it eliminated the need for a round trip to PS for healing and cloning, and perspective/keystoning corrections. Furthermore, LR5 has also introduced a 'radial' filter, whereby you subdivide a picture in two areas, around a circular contour that you create by clicking and dragging. You can separately define the effect you want inside and outside that area in terms of brightness, clarity, contrast, sharpness, noise reduction, etc... The picture I am posting here is the result of such a so-called 'upright' correction (perspective, keystone, etc) and a couple 'radial' retouches. No healing or cloning though. It's a picture of a church interior that I once shot during a visit in Rome, Italy. Mind you, the incoming light is real. I didn't make it up!
There's a lot more goodness in LR5, but there are equally as many articles available on the net, and I simply couldn't add any more value if I exhaustively went over those details again. Concluding, my advice to all the serious photographers out there is plain and simple: "Say what? Have you not upgraded yet? What the heck is wrong with you?"