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Aurora HDR 2018: The Pre-Order has arrived!

September 08

8 min. to read

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Aurora HDR 2018: The Pre-Order has arrived!

In August, we announced Aurora HDR 2018 and teased several of the new features and capabilities for you, like a brand-new user interface, lens corrections and increased speed.

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-orderPhoto by Alik Griffin What we didn’t tell you all (which was really hard to keep a secret!), was that Aurora HDR 2018 has been completely re-written from the ground up.  Our engineers chose this route in order to deploy cross-platform (Mac & Windows) code, create a more modern user experience that makes the hdr software so much easier and more enjoyable to use, increase performance, and to develop a new and smarter algorithm for tone mapping.

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(2)Photo by Dima Sytnik Tone mapping is at the heart of any HDR tool, and we think that ours is pretty amazing. The new algorithm analyzes a single image or brackets separately, automatically detecting dark and light zones and adjusting the level of detail which will produce the most natural and realistic starting image possible; where you take it from there is up to you!

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(3)

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(4)Photo by Trey Ratcliff Another massive improvement to Aurora HDR 2018 is the new HDR Enhance slider in the main HDR Filter panel. Using smart “behind-the-scenes” image analysis, this single slider adds details and clarity to an image, adjusting colors, details and contrast without creating artificial halos or other problems. Moving the slider also adjusts the intensity of changes, making the picture look more natural or revealing a more dramatic look, depending on what you want.

Many people asked for a Lens Correction tool, and you’ll find that one plus a Transform tool thrown in for good measure!  And, for any photographer who truly wants to craft their final image, our new Dodge & Burn tool was tailor-made for you - Pro photographer Matt Suess has already declared it his favorite new feature!

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(5)Photo by Scott Davenport Aurora HDR 2018 has so much in it (see full list below), we’re confident that you’ll love it.  Today, the software is available for pre-order at through September 27 at a special price for new users of just $89. Current users of any prior version of Aurora HDR can upgrade for $49. Anyone who pre-orders Aurora HDR 2018 will immediately receive the following fantastic bonuses:

  • BONUS: Trey Ratcliff Deep Dive video

  • BONUS: Travel Photography Tutorial by Matt Granger

  • BONUS: Source Brackets  

  • BONUS: 3-month Zenfolio Pro website, including a complimentary design consultation

When the software ships to customers in late September, the MSRP for new users and existing customers will be $99 and $59 respectively!

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(6)Photo by Jason Odell

New HDR Software for HDR photo editing now ready for pre-order(7)Photo by Dima Sytnik


  • NEW: Next-generation Tone Mapping – A new smart Tone Mapping algorithm automatically reduces noise, and produces more realistic and natural initial results.

  • NEW: Mac and Windows versions – Aurora HDR 2018 is available both for Mac and PC users, enabling mixed-computer households to share the same product key.

  • NEW: Lens Correction Tool* – The new Lens Correction filter easily fixes all kinds of lens distortion, from barrel and pincushion to chromatic aberration and vignetting.  

  • NEW: Transform Tool* – Easily scale, rotate and shift your image to better fit your vision.  

  • NEW: Dodge & Burn Filter – Selectively lighten or darken specific areas of an image to artfully direct your viewer’s eye towards the key subject of your image, similar to a traditional darkroom technique.

  • NEW: HDR Enhance Slider - Adds details and clarity to an image, adjusting colors, details and contrast without creating artificial halos or other problems.  

  • NEW: User Interface – A new, modern and responsive user interface brings a powerful, yet  joyful experience to HDR photo editing.

  • NEW: History Panel – An easy-to-reference list of edits made to your image, the History panel allows you to click on any editing step to revert the photo to an earlier stage of editing.

  • NEW: Touch Bar support for Mac – Aurora HDR 2018 adds Touch Bar support to give new MacBook Pro users fast access to key editing features and speed up their workflow.

  • NEW: Image Flip and Rotate* – Perfect for correcting photos with incorrect horizons or making creative compositions or other stylistic changes to an image.

  • IMPROVED:  New Structure Algorithm – The re-developed Structure tool allows you to adjust detail and clarity of an image to get a classic HDR effect with great detail or a smoother effect with less details.  

  • IMPROVED: RAW handling – An improved RAW conversion brings out more details in shadows/highlights, displays colors more accurately and reduces noise in RAW files.  

  • IMPROVED: Crop tool update – Now specify custom crop sizes for even more versatility.  

  • IMPROVED: Speed – Faster merging and masking performance, improvement in RAW image processing.

  • OTHER ADDITIONS: More blend modes, improved color temperature, better image radiance, and an improvement whereby custom textures can now include RAW files.

Of course, Aurora HDR 2018 will work as a standalone app, as well as a plugin to Lightroom and Photoshop on both platforms, and Apple Aperture and Photos on the Mac.

Thanks for inspiring us to create the best image processing software available! Enjoy Aurora HDR 2018.

* Lens Correction and Transform tools, as well as image flip and rotate will be available in the Mac version at launch, and arrive in the PC version with the first free update in the beginning of October. Other tools and features that are currently available for Mac only would be added to PC version by the end of the year.

Support Note: If you own an earlier version of Aurora HDR and choose not to upgrade, we will continue to support it with performance updates, and you’ll of course be able to use all the current tools and features your version contains, just as you do now.


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Team Skylum


Our team of passionate photography enthusiasts at Skylum has been committed to assisting you in discovering the world through your lens for over a decade. We're dedicated to providing photographers like you with easy-to-use tools and valuable resources to help you capture your vision and produce beautiful photos. Our articles are filled with friendly tips, industry insights, and inspiring stories from other creative individuals in photography. Together, we can help you grow your photography skills to new heights. Join us on this exciting journey of exploration, creativity, and growth.

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