Lightroom aka Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is a well-recognized photo editing tool. It is considered the best photo editing tool for both professional and personal needs. Especially it helps the users to manage and organize their photos effectively. Lightroom does have various excellent other features. For instance, camera and lens-based corrections and gradient adjustments, etc. But, the app has its own disadvantages. The raw conversion is considerably lagging. Moreover, it requires a subscription. Considering all these disadvantages, we have come up with the best Lightroom Alternatives to serve the purpose.

Best Lightroom Alternatives

  1. GIMP
  2. Irfan View
  3. Raw Therapee
  4. Darktable
  5. Luminar
  6. Apple Photos
  7. PhotoScape X
  8. Light Zone
  9. Photo Pos Pro
  10. Pixlr
  11. Photopea
  12. Pixelmator
  13. Polarr
  14. Inkscape


GIMP is an acronym of the GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is indeed the best Lightroom alternatives with powerful features. The app is free and comes with constant updates. Besides, you can also use the PhotoShop plugins here. The app has lots of added advantage that includes open-source code. GIMP can be used as software and online as well.

GIMP - Best Lightroom Alternatives
1. Open source code with a customizable interface.
2. Enhancing photos with digital retouching.
3. It can change functions.
4. Can work with various file types.
5. Comes with various basic and professional tools.
6. Easy to use interface that is very intuitive.
1. Sometimes, the app may freeze and hang.
2. You cannot process the images in batches.
3. The mobile and online version not too good.

2. Irfan View

Irfan View app was the oldest one that mainly positioned itself as an image viewer. Along with the viewer and slideshow creator, it comes packed with various tools. It includes a feature-packed image editor, batch file converter, scanner interface, etc. The app is open-source software that can be expanded via plugins. Moreover, the interface is very easy to learn and use.

Irfan View - Best Lightroom Alternatives
Irfan View
1. You can view images as slideshows.
2. The batch converter tools allow you to work with batches.
3. There are also options for screen capturing, effects overlay, etc.
4. Change color depths, sharpen, blur, etc.
5. Print, scan, and Email support.
1. Oldest software and looks outdated.
2. Only basic tools are available.
3. Not very extensive in comparison with other software.

3. Raw Therapee

Next on the list of best Lightroom alternatives is the Raw Therapee. It is yet another totally free software with open-source nature. Raw Therapee offers deep color correction tools, histogram matching, high dynamic range. It also has many more picture adjustment tools. It positions itself as a swift, advantageous cataloger supporting a wide selection of Raw files.

Raw Therapee - Best Lightroom Alternatives
Raw Therapee
1. It is an open-source raw photo editing software.
2. The catalogs are well-designed.
3. There are various advanced instruments for color corrections.
4. It is free so that the photo editing enthusiasts could explore.
5. Added, it has pre-processing, pattern noise, and chromatic aberration correction.
6. The tool is so simple and easy to use.
7. It does save a lot of time.
1. The UI is not so user-friendly.
2. The software is very slow in response.
3. No streamlining for the process of exporting.
4. Doesn’t have many tutorials and help tools.

4. Darktable

Darktable is a free, open-source software created for Mac and Linux based computers. Now we can use it for windows too. Darktable is a raw editor for non-destructible image enhancing software. The app is great for beginners, as it has the basic photo editing tools, including color corrections, filter application, etc. It is indeed the best Lightroom alternatives.

Darktable - Best Lightroom Alternatives
1. It has useful color correction tools like shadow and highlights.
2. Deep color enhancement tools, along with brightness, contrast, and saturation.
3. As it is open-source software, you can add various third-party plugins.
4. Give your photographs a filmy look with grain filters.
5. It is mainly for non-destructive image editing.
6. There are a large number of formats available.
1. No mobile and online versions.
2. It work slower when compared to others.
3. Only basic editing tools.

5. Skylum Luminar

The first attraction to go for it is its fresh and modern user interface. Skylum Luminar is just changing the dimensions of photography. The software comes with full AI enhancements. It is definitely the best photo editing tool now.

Luminar - Best Lightroom Alternatives
1. It has redefined photo editing tools that include layers, canvas, essentials, creative portrait, and pro.
2. Non-destructive editing and integrated image catalog.
3. You can add various third-party plugins.
4. AI sky replacement, Skin enhancer, etc.
5. Various new tools to change the dimensions of photography.
6. Best suits for new-age photographers who are all willing to explore various tools.
1. The user interface varies totally from previous versions.
2. The looks lack subtlety.
3. There is no virtual copies.

6. Apple Photos

Apple Photos is a product that came out as the iPhoto and Aperture merged. It works as an excellent photo processing tool. Apple Photos is the least recognized one. The main reason for its popularity is its simplicity. The app works great for beginners and professionals. For all these and more, it is indeed the best Lightroom alternatives.

Apple Photos - Best Lightroom Alternatives
Apple Photos
1. It is a free app and is simple to use.
2. You can sync all your photos and others to the iCloud.
3. An array of filters and varied photo editing tools.
4. You can create many photobooks, calendars, and slideshows very easily.
5. It has powerful post-processing and editing features.
1. Only compatible with Apple Products.
2. Projects printing requires desktop version.
3. Cannot add any third-party plugins.
4. No history panel, no brush adjustments, no graduate filters.

Related: Best Photoshop Alternatives

7. PhotoScape X

PhotoScape X is an all in one photo graphics editing software. The user interface is very intuitive and is easy to use. PhotoScape X has a robust set of tools covering crop, color adjustments, resize images, GIF animations. The app is very easy-to-use for the beginners. By the way that doesn’t mean that they are not suitable for the experts.

PhotoScape X - Best Lightroom Alternatives
PhotoScape X
1. Intuitive and easy to use interface for beginners.
2. The optimization is so good.
3. It does support various image formats.
4. It is absolutely free software.
5. Excellent batch editing tools and suits for various images and videos.
6. Screen capture option, Splitter, face search, raw converted, and GIF animations.
7. It does come with various tabs and is convenient to use.
1. Sometimes, the software works slow.
2. While doing project, the image quality might lose.
3. Must improve the GIF animations.
4. The export parameters are week.

8. Light Zone

The best Lightroom alternatives include Lightzone. It provides a straight-forward photo enhancement process and absolute control over the changes made on the images. It is open-source software that is mainly entitled to non-destructive images of various RAW formats. They have been positioned for trouble-free photo post-production.

Lightzone - Best Lightroom Alternatives
Likes Dislikes
1. Non-destructive editing tools.
2. It supports various Raw image formats.
3. Comes with image organizing features.
4. And with this, you can do quick and efficient photo editing.
5. The user interface is very convenient, that is so clean and stylish.
6. There are a few creative tools and tone editing tools.
1. Tools are a bit limited compared to other software.
2. There is no cataloging or obvious keywording.
3. Rotation and flip features are not so intuitive.

9. Photo Pos Pro

With Photo Pos Pro, you can get two interfaces. One is for beginners, and the other one is for professionals. Photo Pos Pro does support raw images. Apart from that, you can get a cornucopia of filters. There are a free version and a premium version ($29.99) that comes with 21 days of a free trial. So, the latest version comes with an intuitive interface that is redesigned and a plethora of tools.

Photo Pos Pro
Photo Pos Pro
1. The UI is easy to navigate and is constantly updated.
2. Two versions that suit both beginners and experts.
3. With Photos Pos Pro, we can create a new project from scratch.
4. You can get various tutorials and helps.
5. Excellent functionality and does support various file formats.
6. Balance between one-click manual and editing tools.
7. Rich text tools, masks, layers, batch operations, and convert the formats.
1. More expensive.
2. Difficult to start the photo editing process.
3. Steep learning curve.
4. Slow working with complex manipulations.
5. Needs improvement.

10. Pixlr

A web-based image editing software called Pixlr seems to be the best Lightroom alternative app. There are also native mobile applications for smartphones. Pixlr is a free application and features powerful tools. Simultaneously, the app is best suited for those who are looking for mobility. The app does provide essential security and ensures the privacy of the images stored.

Pixlr - Best Lightroom Alternatives
1. Pixlr is totally free to use, and it is a web-based one.
2. It can run on any web-browser irrespective of the operating system.
3. There are tools for quick fixes.
4. It does have various complex editing tools.
5. There are several other tools like layers, filters, magic wand, brushes, object transform, digital painting, and inking.
6. Other tools include texts, fonts, lasso, eraser, adjustments, color replace.
7. You can have options to photo collage and image retouching.
1. Though this works online, it requires the support of Flash.
2. The app can be replaced soon.
3. The ads are more annoying and cause distraction.

11. Photopea

Photopea is an online photo editing software. It is an easy-to-use software, and all you have to do is go to their website to proceed with your works. Later, you can download the project in various formats. If you have used PhotoShop, then the interface of Photopea would be very familiar to you. Moreover, this is a free and open-source software.

1. Without Photopea, we can edit anywhere on any device.
2. You don’t have to download.
3. There is no restriction to use the free version.
4. It has large features, tools, and filter options.
5. And it works perfectly in any browser.
6. Moreover, this gives an absolute Photoshop-like feel.
7. It handles various advanced editing very easily.
1. Sometimes, network failure can stutter the process.
2. It doesn’t work really well with .psd files.
3. Have a few problems with layers.

12. Pixelmator

Pixelmator is a powerful image editor designed especially for Mac. The UI is very friendly. The advantage of a Pixelmator is that it comes with machine-learning capabilities. It detects the image automatically and carries out various processes. Above all, it gives a smooth experience as it responds fast.

1. It comes with a single-window layout. No floating widgets, and all the tools are easily reachable.
2. The user interface is very friendly and intuitive.
3. It does support non-destructive editing.
4. The machine tools assist the users in various ways.
5. Filter, text tools, color presets, repair tools, template gallery, and layer style.
6. Dynamic paint blending, brushes, effects, shapes, drawing tools, and color adjustments.
1. It behaves clunky in many situations. So controlling it is a bit harder.
2. It lacks lots of professional features.
3. Exclusive for Mac not suitable for Windows.

13. Polarr

The best LIghtroom alternative includes Polarr. It is a user-friendly, cross-platform support application for photo editing and other purposes. The interface is not only intuitive but is also easy to use. There are two options available you can use it for free. Or you can get a premium plan that costs around $9.99/month. It is meant for the deep color corrections of JPEG images.

1. It has many tools and various options.
2. It is a cross-platform tool available on various platforms.
3. Comparison mode to compare the before and after editing.
4. To the precise color correction.
5. Offline mode available.
6. Can work with large files.
7. Intuitive and easy to use interface.
1. When compared to
others, the subscription is a bit expensive.
2. Raw files aren’t available.
3. No support for third-party plugins.

14. Inkscape

The next on the list of best Lightroom alternatives is Inkscape. It is a free, open-source, and vector graphic software. Node is the notable feature of Inkscape. It enables the editors to manipulate the images, objects, and graphics of an image. Moreover, the software comes with a clean and steady interface. Above all, it is more flexible and versatile.

Likes Dislikes
1. With Inkscape, you get an option for Node editing, alignments, and distribution.
2. The vector-editing tools are huge.
3. Lot more tools for drawing, shaping, calligraphy, pencil, and pen tools.
4. You can use various extensions to expand the functions.
5. Various file format support.
6. Text support, Bitmap tracing, grouping objects are few other considerable options.
1. The processing tools are quite slow.
2. It cannot be used by those who aren’t well experienced.
3. You can export CorelDraw projects.
4. No frequent updates.

15. is a free application and offers only a few functions for image editing. It is a top-rated photo editing tool for Windows PCs. The time taken to explore and use the app is very little. The UI is quite simple and very easy to easy. You can do multi-level image editing with this app.
1. It does support various plugins.
2. It also provides advanced editing tools with layers and curves.
3. Easy and convenient tool to use.
4. A lot of tools and effects.
5. You will get lots of tutorials.
6. It can save the images in various formats.
7. History tracing and various updates frequently.
1. Not a powerful tool.
2. Gives only basic image editing tools.
3. Limited Brushwork.
4. There is no burn and dodge.
5. We cannot edit the texts once done with them.

So yeah, here we are ending the list of the best Lightroom alternatives. Did you have any interesting suggestions? Then hover to the comment section below and post your options.