Finally, Before/After Previews Come to Camera Raw

OK, well I guess “technically” you could see a before/after in Camera Raw but it could not have been clunkier (just turning on/off the Preview checkbox wouldn’t do it â” that only showed you a before/after of the particular panel you were currently using). But this is way beyond that as Adobe took the awesome before/after side-by-side, top-and-bottom, split-view and related stuff from Lightroom and finally (finally!) brought them over to the current version of Camera Raw (Adobe snuck these in the latest update for Photoshop CC subscribers).

You access these before/after views from right below the preview window (I circled it in red above). Better yet, although the Preview Checkbox is now gone from the Camera Raw interface, pressing the “P” key now actually does what you always thought it should â” now it shows you a real before/after of ALL the changes you made in to the image anywhere in Camera Raw.

Hats off to Adobe who has been sneaking lots of new little features into Camera Raw in the past year, stuff like: Export Option Presets, Auto Levels (automatically setting your white and black points for you), Auto White Balance, Visualizing Spots (from Lightroom), ACR-toning for 32-bit HDR images and a whole bunch more (I did a whole class on it on KelbyOne â” if you’re a subscriber make sure you check it out â” even I was surprised how much has been added since Adobe doesn’t make a big fanfare about it anymore â” they just release ’em when they’re ready).

Anyway, that’s just a quickie for today in case you missed the new feature add — hope you all have a great start to your week!



P.S. Happy Cinco de Mayo!

  1. Ironically if you press Q first, (to go split view preview) then press P it flips the before/after changes in the photo’ but doesn’t update the labels each time you keep pressing P. So suddenly “before” is now “after” and vice versa.
    Quality Assurance is top notch at Adobe, good to see our money is going to the right departments.

  2. Although I don’t use Camera Raw that much, doing most of the work in Lightroom, I know how much you’ve struggled with the Before/After Preview when showing changes on the Grid. One less frustrating thing in Photoshop! Adobe must have felt your pain. :-)


    1. Right, and I’ve been teaching that for years, but most people would never figure that out. Plus, it’s not a split screen or any of the other features, which is really what this post is about.

      1. Isn’t that why we teach, and write? To explain the truth?
        If people could figure all these things out on their own, you and I would be unemployed. Right? :-)

  3. Scott:

    Your Camera Raw courses are the best! I learn new stuff (technical term) each time. I have a suggestion … could your team please post dates when each class is posted. Sometimes it is not apparent which one was first.

    Thanks again for all the good info!

      1. Scott, may I add an unrelated idea for your team to consider please. Following the superb episode of the Grid featuring the amazing Regina Pagles there were a lot of calls for her to do a KelbyOne class. She says she’s not keen to do it as she doesn’t see herself as a teacher. Then boom. It came to me. You and she do a class together! You could base it around an informal chat as you talk about her workflow and then together you put it into practice in the studio. She teaches but without having to chat directly to camera, you get to ask all the questions we are all dying to ask and we all end up learning how to take portrait work to a level that previously could only be dreamed about. What’d you say ? Thanks for listening. Keep up all your great work!

  4. OK, this is embarrassing! It’s like buying a Ferrari and finding out, years later, that you can actually start the thing and use it for more than just a flower pot! Which is why I follow Scott (he can burp and someone would learn something from it). Thanks for the info, Scott!

  5. It would be cool if when in the Split-Screen before/after mode it was possible to drag the dividing line left or right to emphasise the difference in a more relevant area of the image. Nice update anyhow!

  6. Hi Scott,

    just a small problem with ACR 8.4, I got the last version but don’t have the new features before/after. The only one ist the “old” P top right. Any suggestion ?

    Thanks in advance – Guido

  7. Hate the new update…im so much used to the old preview that I cant handle the new one now. ok, agreed for few pro people it can be “Awesome”, “wow”…but i would be happy to see oldpreview option with the new one as well

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