Adobe Previews Lightroom

The beta, which is available only for the Macintosh, sports an interface that focuses on the image, Adobe executives said. The touted Lights-Out mode, for instance, fades control panels and tools into the background as they're used and applied. Another feature, dubbed Identity Plate, lets photographers apply their own branding to both the application and the resulting images.

"Lightroom defines the future workflow for the professional digital photographer," said Seth Resnick, a professional photographer in a statement issued by Adobe. "It delivers exactly the functions photographers need to speed up their workflow."

Lightroom supports over 100 cameras and incorporates RAW conversion.

The beta can be downloaded from the Adobe Web site.

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Lightroom, which analyst see as Adobe's answer to Apple Computer's recently-introduced Aperture, will ship later this year in both Mac and Windows versions.