How To Use Lightroom Compare View

For photographers that take a lot of photos, sometimes it is difficult to figure out which photo is the best within a group of similar photos or photos of the same item taken at different angles. Adobe Photoshop's Lightroom allows users to quickly compare photos via their Compare View feature. Users can see photos side-by-side and figure out which photo that they want to use, display or even give to a client.

Step 1: Understanding Compare View

Compare View allows users to take two images and line them up side by side. Basically, the Compare View looks similar to the Filmstrip view, except it only displays two images that were either selected by the user or that were located within the same folder. Users can then scroll through the images and find what is the best photo from the sequence (and still compare it with others if they so choose).

With Compare View, users can get an in-depth view of different photos and how they stack up against other photos in the collection.  Further, Compare View allows users to zoom in and out of photos. Users can also zoom into both photos at the same time by locking the Lock icon on the toolbar. Or, users can unlock the icon to zoom into only one image.

Step 2: How to Use Compare View

To use the Compare View feature, users need to be in the Library module. From there, follow the below steps:

  1. Users need to click on one image and then click on another image on the Filmstrip with which they would like to compare the first image.
  2. The images will now be displayed side by side.

If the users do not pick any images from the filmstrip, then the Compare View will open up the first photo in the Filmstrip and the one next to it. Once the photos are open, Compare View will pick a Select and Candidate image. The Select image is static and cannot be changed.  The Candidate image can be changed by the arrow button to move to the next photo in the Filmstrip. 

If users decide that they no longer want to keep the Select image as the set image, they can change the Select image by hitting the Swap button. The Candidate image will now become the Select image. Users just need to hit the button again to switch them back.

Step 3: Deciding on an Image

Once users find the image that they would like to keep, they can simply remove the other image from the screen by clicking on the X button under the image. 

Users can also just remove the Select image and look through all of the Candidate images until they find one that they would like to be the Select image. Once they do find their next Select image, they simply need to hit the Make Select button on the toolbar. This will convert the Candidate image into the Select image.

Once users are completely done, they just need to hit the Done button. This will get them out of the Compare View, but the Select image will still be displayed.