March 23, 2023

Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI: 6 Key Variations to Know in 2023

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In case you’re having bother selecting between Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI, I don’t blame you!

In spite of everything, each photograph modifying apps have been launched inside virtually a yr of one another, sharing comparable branding and options.

Nevertheless, since Luminar AI is not out there, the choice is straightforward – purchase Luminar Neo, which has all the newest instruments and updates.

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Nevertheless, if you happen to’re an current Luminar AI consumer and questioning whether or not to improve to Neo, the choice is just a little more durable.

I used to be in the identical place not way back, in order that’s why I’ve written this information 🙂

Let’s take a more in-depth have a look at the important thing variations between Luminar AI and Luminar Neo so you possibly can determine which AI photograph software is best for you.

The place to Get Luminar Neo and Luminar AI in 2023

As of 2023, Skylum has stopped promoting Luminar AI, that means that new customers should now buy Luminar Neo. 

(This isn’t a foul factor since Neo is the newer, higher software program which now options Extensions.)

You possibly can obtain Luminar Neo right here (Use code shotkit10neo to save lots of $10)

Neo presents a 30-day money-back assure and is accessible for Home windows and Mac.

In case you’re an current Luminar AI consumer, use this hyperlink to improve for a reduced value.

Skylum Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI: 6 Key Variations

Once I interviewed Skylum, right here’s what they needed to say:

“Luminar Neo expands creativity in comparison with Luminar AI. Luminar Neo is totally totally different from earlier Luminar apps.

Nevertheless, it retains your favorite Luminar AI instruments and expands your arsenal with extra state-of-the-art applied sciences and essential modifications at its core.

Luminar Neo improves on all earlier variations of Luminar primarily based on suggestions from photograph lovers everywhere in the world. The result’s a brand new photograph editor that helps you obtain photographs simply as you imagined them.”

That is all nicely and good, however as somebody who’s making an attempt to determine between Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI, we’d like specifics to make a sound judgement name on which photograph modifying software program to purchase.

Let’s check out the 5 key variations between Luminar Neo and Luminar AI right here in 2023:

1. Modular Engine: quicker, much less resource-intensive, simpler to replace

Presets and different instruments are faster in Luminar Neo than in Luminar AI.

What differentiates Luminar Neo from all earlier variations of Luminar is its ‘modular engine’.

‘Modules’ assist to evenly distribute the load whereas utilizing the assorted modifying instruments in Luminar Neo for quicker picture processing.

That is key when evaluating Luminar AI vs Luminar Neo, and it’s essential to know simply how huge a profit it truly is.

The modular engine lets you apply numerous totally different instruments to a picture with out vital efficiency loss, with all edits saved mechanically.

The place that is most noticeable is if you’re utilizing the assorted AI-powered instruments in Luminar Neo, equivalent to Sky AI and the brand new Relight AI software.

The brand new modular engine additionally makes use of much less reminiscence (RAM) and cupboard space in your laptop. Customers with low-powered computer systems who have been annoyed with sluggish efficiency in Luminar AI ought to have a greater expertise with Neo.

In my Luminar Neo evaluation, I discovered that whereas the AI instruments in Luminar Neo may positively be faster, there was a noticeable enchancment in velocity when in comparison with the identical instruments in Luminar AI.

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Lastly, a modular engine signifies that the brand new structure of Luminar Neo is extra versatile, permitting Skylum to replace it extra simply sooner or later.

In a super world, Luminar AI would have been constructed on this similar modular engine, however for no matter cause, it wasn’t. To benefit from the quickest model of the software program but, you want to purchase Luminar Neo.

2. New instruments to repair widespread issues confronted by photographers


Luminar Neo makes it very easy to use brightness changes to things in photographs.

All of us do our greatest to get the proper image ‘in-camera’, however typically, there’s one thing out of our management that may spoil the picture.

Luminar Neo options a number of brand-new instruments which will help us repair these points a lot quicker than through the use of Photoshop or every other picture editor.

When coming Luminar AI vs Neo, that is the largest promoting level – Skylum has no plans so as to add these options to its older software program app.

  • Relight AI – if you happen to don’t have a flash or reflector, it’s widespread to have a photograph that’s correctly uncovered for the background, whereas the topic (the foreground) is simply too darkish. With the Relight AI software, you possibly can management the foreground and background exposures individually – synthetic intelligence detects objects and human figures and recognises a 3D picture house. It’s like having the ability to add a digital flash, however with the sunshine wanting gentle and natural-looking.
  • Take away Powerlines – mechanically removes any undesirable telephone or energy traces in your journey and panorama photographs. That is just like the clone software in Lightroom or Photoshop, however Luminar Neo does it in only one click on, versus having to ‘paint’ over the traces manually to pick them.
  • Take away Mud Spots – do away with grime, sand or mud spots which seem in photographs when your digital camera sensor or lens is soiled. That is far more widespread than you’d assume, even with new digital camera gear.
  • Take away backgrounds – mechanically take away the background for a portrait and swap it for an additional one in seconds.

The Take away Powerlines and Take away Mud Spots instruments are a pleasant addition to Luminar Neo (and unavailable in Luminar AI).

For my part, the Relight AI software is well worth the value of Luminar Neo alone – with out it, you’d must fastidiously ‘brush’ over the topic or background utilizing an area adjustment brush in Photoshop or Lightroom, which may take hours of fiddling to get good.

Then there’s the unbelievable background removing software which does an awesome job – no tedious masking wanted. Even when the AI doesn’t fairly get it proper the primary time, you should utilize the sensible refinement brush to right the choice.

As soon as your topic is masked, it can save you the portrait as a separate PNG, letting you swap out the background to no matter you want.

3. AI Masking to save lots of time with automated object choices

masking tool

Synthetic intelligence can establish objects in photographs for quicker choices in Luminar Neo.

Even skilled retouchers wrestle with masking in post-production. ‘Masking’ includes manually deciding on numerous components in a photograph (often by ‘brushing’ over them with a variety software), with a purpose to present, conceal or edit them.

When evaluating the variations between Luminar Neo vs AI, the brand new masking characteristic is a notable addition that’s helpful for loads of pictures genres.

The brand new AI Masking software is simply out there in Luminar Neo and lets you mechanically create masks for numerous varieties of objects: people, buildings, skies, autos, water, mountains and each man-made and pure floor.

The AI Masking software takes a number of seconds to analyse your photograph, then supplies you with a choice of ‘tags’ of the assorted objects the factitious intelligence has recognized, which you’ll be able to toggle on and off.

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One factor’s for positive – AI Masking saves plenty of time on guide choices – when evaluating Lumnar Neo vs Luminar AI, the latter solely presents primary native masking (all totally guide), whereas in Luminar Neo, it’s all automated.

This unlocks extra prospects for creators, to separate the background from the foreground, edit colors with out influencing different objects within the photograph, mix photos, or apply a filter or a black-and-white impact to a masked object for a artistic contact.

AI Masking is much from good, nevertheless it’s thrilling to see the place it’s heading. Because it’s solely out there in Luminar Neo, it’s a pleasant little bonus modifying software to have if you happen to often must carry out masking, and one thing that Luminar AI doesn’t supply.

4. Layers Mode


Layers might be added to spruce up photographs in Luminar Neo.

Whereas Luminar Neo isn’t a completely layer-based modifying app like Photoshop, it does supply some enjoyable methods so that you can apply layers (overlays) to your photos to make collages, add double publicity results, and extra.

(Beforehand, you couldn’t discover layers in Luminar AI or Neo, however as of late 2022, this characteristic was added to Neo.)

It’s also possible to use mixing and masking modes on the layers, then combine them with Luminar Neo’s filters, LUTs and different AI instruments to create one thing solely distinctive.

When evaluating Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI, this goes far past what you are able to do with the single-layer mode in Luminar AI. Furthermore, making use of a Preset or LUT doesn’t discard beforehand made modifications, because it does in Luminar AI.

In case you’re a fan of experimenting together with your photos, the brand new Layers Mode is plenty of enjoyable, and solely out there in Luminar Neo.

5. Luminar Share App

This app is exclusive to Luminar Neo and lets you shortly share photos between your desktop and laptop computer.

Whereas Mac customers might already be utilizing AirDrop to do comparable cross-device sharing, the Luminar Share App permits photos to be shared on to and from Luminar Neo, which leads to fewer clicks and a smoother workflow.

That is nice for Instagram, the place any edited picture might be shortly and simply shared out of your laptop to your telephone.

The app is simply appropriate with Luminar Neo, not Luminar AI, though if you happen to’re a Mac consumer, Air Drop does one thing fairly comparable.

I positively wouldn’t say that the cell app is any cause for current Luminar AI customers to upgrader to Luminar Neo, although. It’s only a good worth add.

6. Luminar Extensions

extensions screen in neo

Neo might be improved with Extensions.

In 2022, Skylum launched seven ‘Extensions’ for Luminar Neo, together with:

  • HDR Merge for creating excessive dynamic vary photos simply.
  • Noiseless AI for eradicating picture noise and bettering element
  • Upscale AI for enlarging photos with out dropping high quality
  • Background Remover
  • Focus Stacking
  • SuperSharp AI
  • and extra

Because the identify implies, these Extensions lengthen the prevailing capabilities of Luminar Neo, providing you with extra choices for what you are able to do to your photographs.

In case you determine to pay for a Luminar Membership, you get entry to all of the Extensions without delay, together with any future releases.

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In any other case, Extensions should be bought individually – you merely select those which might be most relevant to your wants.

For me, one thing like Upscale AI is a superb choice for upscaling my outdated 10MB smartphone photos, or enlarging marriage ceremony photographs for albums.

Luminar AI doesn’t help Extenstions – they’re unique to Luminar Neo.

Relying on what you want to do to your photos, these Extensions could also be a robust cause for a Luminar AI consumer to improve to Neo in 2023.

The Way forward for Luminar Neo (In comparison with Luminar AI)

As we’ve seen, Luminar Neo additionally presents a number of new instruments and options that differentiate it from Luminar AI.

Luminar Neo has inherited options already current in Luminar AI, equivalent to the flexibility to create presets, dodge & burn instruments, cloning, and the radial and gradient masks.

Though there was no official assertion on this from Skylum, Luminar AI has been retired in favour of Neo, which can inherit all future updates and current AI options.

(One thing comparable occurred with Luminar 4, which was brushed underneath the carpet in 2021, a lot to the annoyance of current customers and followers of the software program – myself one in all them!)

It’s clear that if you happen to’re involved about having the newest and biggest model with all key future updates, Luminar Neo is your greatest wager in 2023.


Is Luminar Neo higher than Luminar AI?

Sure, Luminar Neo is best than Luminar AI. It presents extra options and might be up to date simpler and extra often. The Extensions alone make Neo way more highly effective than AI.

What’s the distinction between Luminar Neo and AI?

The principle distinction is that Luminar Neo is constructed on a modular engine, permitting updates to be made simpler and extra often by Skylum. This implies Neo will all the time have the newest and greatest options, and it will probably help Extensions, which add instruments to the prevailing options.

Do I would like each Luminar AI and Luminar Neo?

No, you don’t want each Luminar AI and Luminar Neo. If you have already got LumAI and are pleased with it, you need to keep it up. If, nonetheless, it runs slowly in your laptop otherwise you want another performance, you need to take into account shopping for Lum Neo.

Is Luminar AI being discontinued?

Luminar AI was discontinued on October third, 2022 by its maker Skylum. The software program will proceed to obtain sporadic updates, however no new options can be added.

Is Luminar Neo a alternative for Luminar 4?

No, Luminar Neo is just not a alternative for any of the earlier iterations of Luminar – it’s a model new software program, written from the bottom up. 

Who’s Luminar Neo for?

Luminar Neo is essentially a easy photograph modifying software program for novices to get nice ends in report time with no prior modifying expertise. Nevertheless, it additionally options highly effective instruments which are perfect for extra skilled retouchers, photographers and editors. {Many professional} photographer used Neo for all their modifying wants.

Last Suggestions

It’s clear that Luminar Neo presents a number of key advantages over Luminar AI.

In case you’ve by no means bought a Luminar app earlier than, the choice is straightforward – get Luminar Neo.

You’ll profit from the newest instruments and options, plus common updates that maintain introducing new ones.

(Luminar AI will proceed to be up to date to repair points, however new options can be launched solely to Neo.)

In case you already personal Luminar AI, the choice is just a little more durable, however I hope the above variations will allow you to determine whether or not you want to improve to Luminar Neo.