10 Best Drone Photo Editing Software in 2020
If you took amazing raw drone photos and now are looking for a free and best drone photo editing software to make photos pop and vivid, look through these 10 best photo editing softwares that are easy-to-use and make deep color correction fast.
Here you’ll find both professional software offering more advanced photo enhancement features, as well as simple drone photo editors that have fundamental tools for adjusting brightness, shadows, saturation, contrast, sharpness, cropping, and more.
Each of them proposes a trial version or is completely free. You can also learn how to choose the best drone for photography if you would like to buy a professional one.
Adobe Lightroom opens this list. It is one of the best drone photo editing software according to FixThePhoto, a photo editing service that offers professional image enhancement services online.
Adobe Lightroom is the best software as it has a large set of tools and excellent performance characteristics. Lightroom image management system is based upon a directory. It works on the principle of deferred photo editing.
In other words, when downloading a photo taken with the drone, processing it, and closing the program, you do not lose anything. You do not even need to save and upload the photo again. When you open the photo editor again, you will continue editing from the same place.
Also, you have the opportunity to add metadata, keywords, use presets. Lightroom will allow you to edit TIFF and JPEG files, but more importantly, it offers integrated RAW processing.
Besides, it supports not only 16-bit image processing but can also convert to 32-bit HDR files.
You may use its “lens correction” because the DJI Phantom 4 drone may give you frequent distortions at the output. Such distortions will be removed by applying specific settings in the camera profile. Moreover, there are some other useful tools, such as panorama, HDR fusion, as well as tools for cloning and deleting content.
The reason that Photoshop is only in the second place on this list is the lack of the ability to organize or search for photos.
Contrary to many opinions, that Photoshop is a photo editing software designed exclusively for designers or artists; it has a couple of useful tools and features for ordinary users. Photoshop provides all the information and full access to color management in RAW, TIFF, and JPEG files. There are several excellent tools for creating HDR images, panoramas, masking, and cropping tools that are so useful for drone images.
In addition to presets, you should remember that Photoshop supports third-party plug-ins. You can add external functions and tools to improve the drone image or optimize and accelerate the workflow with their help.
You may add colors to your photo, as well as adjust the balance and shades of the gradient using the advanced curves. Moreover, Photoshop will allow you to combine two pictures and create an entirely new image.
This photo editor software can also boast of some additional functions as well. For example, you can remove the sky from your photo and add beautiful clouds using a unique overlay.
AirMagic is a relatively new project developed by Skylum. The application offers a new idea of artificial intelligence. The interface of this drone photo editing software is quite simple and intuitive.
AI-based editing copes well with contrast and color. The automatic masking process works excellent. Batch processing makes edits of multiple photos fast and efficient if you are working on Mac, but some errors may occur on Windows. Short instructions, one slider, and many preset make the program very user-friendly.
If you want to enhance drone photos quickly and easily, AirMagic is an excellent choice. It is worth mentioning that this image editing software can be installed as a plugin for Adobe Lightroom Classic and Adobe Photoshop.
You can access AirMagic through the menu “Filters” in Photoshop or by using the export function in Lightroom.
Corel PaintShop Pro
Corel PaintShop Pro is a decent replacement for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom. The reason is that you get a professional photo editing software and an identical set of tools for drone photo editing for the one-time payment.
There are such features as selection, removal, creative filters, adding text, and basic digital drawing tools.
It supports layers and plugins like Photoshop. The only difference that the developers promise to fix is the lack of 32-bit file processing.
In addition to the basic tools, the program has a separate 360-degrees editing window. This tool offers two functions: aligning and removing a tripod head.
You can also move your 360-degree image to the main workspace and use the ‘Adjust’ and ‘Effects’ tools (for example, those affecting brightness, sharpness, tone, and color).
Corel PaintShop Pro is an excellent program for drone photo editing. It is more affordable than Photoshop and more advanced than Photoshop Elements.
The combination of powerful Photoshop tools, a simple learning curve, possibility to work on all platforms makes GIMP an undisputed leader when it comes to the best free picture editing software.
However, if you look deeper, you may be upset about the lack of 32-bit and even 16-bit version processing support. Nevertheless, the application has other advantages.
It offers a file browser for searching and opening images, many correction tools, well-developed text features, a lot of filters, and various effects for making your drone footage breathtaking.
GIMP is not as powerful as some paid programs mentioned above, but it is functional. The software supports third-party plug-ins, which makes it even more efficient.
Corel AfterShot Pro
It is another equally effective alternative to Adobe Lightroom from Corel – AfterShot Pro. You can edit and manage JPEG and TIGG files taken by your photography drone with this photo processing software.
Lightroom fans may like the fact that files are arranging in Corel AfterShot Pro using catalogs or folders, for those who want to use a more specialized management system.
This program supports various plug-ins. Some image editing features include HDR support, restoration of selection, batch photo processing, non-destructive image editing, lens correction, camera profiles, a library of presets, and quick batch processing tools.
Moreover, AfterShot has ready-made correction filters and a set of brushes, textures, and backgrounds. AfterShot Pro is an excellent option if you need a fast and powerful RAW editor and do not want to pay a monthly or yearly subscription.
RawTherapee is an entirely free program for your drone photos, which is suitable for all platforms. However, deep photo retouching capabilities are significantly inferior to GIMP, except for 16-bit-processing support.
Therefore, it cannot be called the best photo editing software; it’s instead for color correction. Nevertheless, RawTherapee has a basic set of tools and a simple learning curve, which makes it suitable even for beginners.
Since it is open source, you may change the photo editor manually if you have basic knowledge of programming. Improve the program without waiting for the next update. Plug-ins support also deserves your attention.
Polarr Smart Photo Editing
Many users call Polarr one of the best alternatives to Lightroom. It is a perfect photo editing software, which has a lot of tools for in-depth image retouching and basic photo enhancement.
We edited our drone photo on our old laptop. The program showed good results. Each stage of image editing was carried out instantly, until the last phase in which the picture was saved. The free version is almost the same as the Pro option. However, it has a few drawbacks.
The editor in the free version does not support RAW files. Also, there are no masks and layers.
In our opinion, these features play a vital role in some situations and make performing some tasks just impossible. Polarr will be an excellent option for beginners, but it will be useless for more professional works.
PicMonkey Photo Editor
PicMonkey is a useful image editing software for amateur drone photographers. You can use basic tools, adjust shadows, lights, effects, or filters even on your smartphone.
It provides maximum creativity. However, the best thing is that the user interface is simple so that you can use all its powerful features without experience.
PicMonkey editor has its Cloud Storage analog called HUB. This function allows you to store and arrange photos at libraries in an unlimited number.
Pixlr Photo editor online
Pixlr is an online picture editing software designed for photo editing and design (drawing).
Its main difference from other photo editing apps is an orientation on Photoshop but not on Instagram, which is typical for many online editors.
It offers impressive features. Some tools are copied from Photoshop. The interface is also very similar to this program.
The image editor supports plug-ins, but the only thing you may not like is the lack of RAW files support.
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