Luminar Flex Review 2020 – Do You Need This Plugin?

Luminar Flex

  • Platforms: Windows, Mac OS
  • Price: $59
  • FixThePhoto Editors' Rating
     
    (4.5/5)

Luminar Flex Plugin can turn photo editing into an almost completely automatic process. It works as a plug-in for Photoshop, Lightroom and Apple Photos. This Skylum plugin is rather powerful, so using it, you can achieve perfect results.

Luminar Flex alternatives:

  • ON1 Photo RAW
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    Developer: ON1
    $63.99 one-time payment
  • Aurora HDR
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    Rank:
     
    Developer: Luminar
    $99
  • Raw Therapee
    raw therapee logo
    Rank:
     
    Developer: Gábor Horváth
    Free
  • Polarr
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    Developer: Polarr
    Free
  • Capture One
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    Developer: Phase One
    $20/month
. .

What Is Luminar Flex?

Platforms: Windows, Mac OS
Price: $59

luminar flex interface
Pros+
  • Almost automatic image editing
  • A large set of Luminar Looks
  • Easy integration with Adobe software
  • Supports RAW image format
Cons-
  • The Clone Stamp tool is useless
  • Slow performance when photo retouching option is enabled
  • A lot of similar filters

VERDICT: Luminar Flex is a cool plug-in that is compatible with Lightroom, Affinity Photos, Photoshop Elements and Apple Photos. If you want to considerably simplify your photo editing workflow, then this plugin will be a smart choice.

The photo Flex editor plugin allows you to automatically enhance images and apply first-class filters. Luminar Flex features advanced controls that are easy to use. It is possible to customize the filters and edits if necessary.

Unlike the full version of Luminar, Flex doesn’t offer the same level of editing details, but you will definitely like the smooth and efficient photo editing process this plug-in ensures.

Luminar Flex Review

Skylum released Luminar Flex in April 2019. This plug-in allows photographers to use the capabilities of Luminar when working with third-party programs. Like Luminar 3, Luminar Flex offers several AI-powered features, including Accent AI, AI Sky Enhancer, Looks, Foliage Enhancer, Details Enhancer and others.

Perfect Interface for Beginners

luminar flex interface tools

If you used Luminar at least once, then it will be easy for you to cope with Flex editing since everything works the same as in the full version. Even if you are a total newbie, you can master the interface in a few minutes. At the bottom of the window, there is a set of Looks (an alternative to Lightroom presets). On the right, you can see the basic tools for color correction as well as a list of all filters and tools.

Using Luminar Flex as a Plug-in

luminar flex plugin for lightroom

Luminar Flex functions smoothly in Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Lightroom Classic, Affinity Photo, and Photos on Mac OS. Lightroom users can take advantage of using layers and blending modes. Thus, you can apply filters to layers as well as filters and textures to blending modes.

This plug-in also supports smart objects in Photoshop. Skylum recommends Luminar Flex to photographers who want to access Luminar features within one program without necessity to swap to the full Luminar version.

Smart Workspaces

smart workspaces luminar

My Luminar Flex plugin review would be incomplete if I didn’t mention the Workspaces. They contain a collection of filters for various types of photos. Skylum has released a new Workspaces set specifically for Flex users.

The available Workspaces include Drone & Aerial, Film Lab, Expert, Black & White, Image Aware, Intensify, Relight, Color, and Portrait. By clicking on the suitable photography genre, Flex will automatically select the tools to enhance your shot. That means you don’t need to waste time searching for the necessary filters.

Smart AI Filters

Most often, AI capabilities embedded in the software don’t work as smoothly as expected. The program may run slowly, lag or refuse to work at all. Due to the lack of features such as cataloging or retouching, Flex works rather quickly.

This plug-in has two functions which you can find in the full version of the Luminar photo editor. They are Accent AI and AI Sky Enhancer. I can confidently say that these are the main tools that you will use. Especially these functions will be useful for landscape photographers as apart from the image improvement, you can add some extra touch to your sky scenes.

Creating and Importing Looks

Similar to Lightroom, you can create your own Looks in Luminar Flex from scratch, save them, and even share them with other users. Also, it is possible to install custom Looks to the program and use them.

Auto Batch Photo Editing

luminar flex photo editing luminar flex photo editing
 

I can’t but mention auto batch photo editing capability in my Luminar Flex review. Firstly, I was skeptical about this function since you can’t control the photo editing process. All you need is to import the picture to the program, choose the genre of the photo from the Workspaces list and then the plug-in will select the settings for the picture processing.

While the program is loading, you can see all the changes in real-time. After the batch photo editing process is completed, all the pictures will be saved in a folder on your computer.

It is worth saying that the guys from Skylum know their job! The plug-in doesn’t apply the filter to the images blindly. It is really smart photo editing. This feature is definitely worth spending money on.

Luminar Flex Prices

Unfortunately, you can’t find Luminar Flex on the official website as Luminar 4 combines the functionality of Luminar 3 and Luminar Flex. However, it is possible to purchase this plug-in on Amazon. Here are all the possibilities to take advantage of Luminar Flex features:

VIEW PRICES USE LUMINAR DISCOUNTS

Luminar Flex Freebies

To reduce the time that you spend on image editing and try new approaches to color correction, our photo retouchers collected these free Looks designed specifically for Luminar Flex.

Bright & Airy

bright and airy freebies for luminar bright and airy freebies for luminar
 

This Look will come in handy if you want to make the dull shot a little brighter. Moreover, this filter will allow you to add an airy feel to your pictures.

Warm Light

warm light freebies for luminar warm light freebies for luminar
 

Pictures taken at sunrise or sunset look best in warm colors. However, you won’t achieve this result without further photo editing. This Look will allow you to add warmth to your shots and correct shadows.

Soft Portrait

soft portrait freebies for luminar soft portrait freebies for luminar
 

This is a classical Look that works great with portraits. It corrects white balance, enhances skin tones and improves the overall look of the photo.


Ann Young

Hi there, I'm Ann Young - a professional blogger, read more