Lightroom: Interactive conversion to B&W with channel previews

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  • Updated 6 years ago
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I had an idea to enable more accurate conversions to black and white in Lightroom - If possible, one could hover over the name of the colour next to the slider in the convert to black and white tab to see a preview of that channel, i.e. a black and white representation of the distribution of that specific colour as seen in the 'channels' tab of photoshop (but with all 8 colours), so you know what parts of the image you will be affecting when you use the adjacent slider. At the moment,it seems for me at least more like guesswork as to what parts of the image will be changed with the use of each slider, but if you were able to see a tonal representation of each channel as you hover over the colour it would certainly help identify what parts of the image will change with manipulation.
Thank you
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David Hurley

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Posted 6 years ago

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john beardsworth

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Dragging sliders does reduce the process to a bit of trial and error or "guesswork", as you say, and also on a bigger screen it's not ideal to have to keep looking back and forth between the sliders and the image.

However, you don't have to bother with the sliders at all - the targeted adjustment tool eliminates that guesswork. It means that there's no need to go cycling through the channels, as you might have done in Photoshop in the past, and then deciding what you want to do. Instead, it's a more direct process. You just look at the image and decide "I want that area lighter" - drag upwards with the TAT - or "make the sky darker" by dragging downwards on it.

Once you use the TAT, you may wonder if there's any need for the sliders.
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Allan Olesen

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I don't know much about black and white conversions, but wouldn't you often be looking for a certain amount of local contrast in an area, rather than dark or light?

I suppose the TAT can't be used for finding the channel with the desired contrast. But a channel preview could.
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john beardsworth

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With the TAT, there's no need to find "the channel with the desired contrast".
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Allan Olesen

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Could you please explain why?
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john beardsworth

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By the way, there are B&W presets which you can use to get the equivalent of cycling through the channels in Photoshop.