The Light tool contains the most essential controls for adjusting an image. The Light tool contains color and tone adjustments that should be made.  This sets the stage for all the adjustments that come after.

Standard Controls

  • White Balance. The Eyedropper can also be used to click on an area that should be white or neutral gray to calculate a custom white balance. If working with a raw file, use the White Balance preset list to choose from a variety of presets that are similar to a camera’s white balance menu.
  • Profile. Are you looking for truly professional control over your raw files?  Be sure to give DNG Camera Profiles a try. Luminar recognizes the industry standard DCP files that you may already have on your computer (or have bought from third parties). These offer greater control over how the color and tone in the raw file is handled. Need a bunch of free DCP profiles? Just install the free DNG Converter from Adobe.
  • Temperature. Use this slider to warm or cool a shot.  This adjustment essentially adds Cyan or Yellow to an image to change its color temperature.
  • Tint. This adjusts the amount of Green or Magenta that is added to a shot.  It is useful for removing color casts from an image.
  • Exposure. Adjusts the global luminance of the image. Moving this slider to the left results in a darker image (reduction of exposure value). Moving this slider to the right results in a brighter image (an increase of exposure value).
  • Smart Contrast. Adjusts the contrast of the image. Contrast is the difference in luminance or color that makes an object in an image distinguishable from another. Practically speaking, contrast is determined by the difference in the color and brightness of an object in relation to other objects within the same field of view. The Smart abilities of this correction limit the shifts in color and prevent the details from becoming blocked up.
  • Highlights. Adjusts the brightness of the brightest areas of the image. Moving the slider to the right cause very bright areas to become brighter, while moving the slider to the left, makes them darker.
  • Shadows. Adjusts the brightness level of the darkest areas of the image. Moving the slider to the right will cause such areas to become brighter and additional details will appear. When moving to the left, such areas become darker, and the number of shadow areas in the image generally increases.

Advanced Settings

  • Whites. Adjusts the white point of the histogram and white tones in the image. When moving to the right, the brightest tones will become brighter while the histogram stretches to the right. Moving the slider to the left will cause white tones in the image to become darker and the histogram to compress to the left.
  • Blacks. Sets the black point of the histogram or black tones in the image. Moving the slider to the right, black tones become brighter and the histogram compresses to the right. Moving the slider to the left, black becomes darker and the histogram stretches to the left.


One of the most powerful tools for adjusting tones to brighten, darken, add contrast and shift colors. Curves can usually be applied to all channels together in an image, or to each channel individually. Curves can help you manually fine-tune the brightness and contrast of the image.

  • Tabs. You can make a curve adjustment to all channels equally or to an individual channel (such as to blue to emphasize the sky).
  • Sliders. At the bottom, there are sliders that let you adjust black and white points of the histogram (the leftmost and rightmost sliders), as well as the middle bend of the curve (the central slider).
  • Points. You can add up to 10 control points.  Drag up to add contrast to an area and down to lighten the area. Multiple points can be employed for contrast adjustments based on tonal range.

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