macOS Catalina : Lightroom 6 be lessened but not totally dead

In spite of the abandonment of the 32-bit, macOS Catalina does not sign completely the death of Lightroom 6. This version, the last update dates back to the end of 2017 (v6.14), occupies a special place for Adobe customers : this is the last available in a perpetual license, all subsequent ones require a subscription to the Creative Cloud.

“Is that the old versions gold perpetual Lightroom Classic are compatible with macOS Catalina ? No, the older versions of Lightroom Classic have not been designed gold tested on macOS Catalina “, says Adobe is a new technical data sheet.

Lightroom 6.14 on macOS Catalina

According to our test, the situation is a bit more nuanced. Lightroom 6.14 is still running in part on our MacBook Pro 13″ 2016 who has just switched to macOS Mojave to Catalina. The application is launched and the Library modules, Development, Books, Print, and Web work as a whole. We still can catalogue, edit and export photos, the main functions of Lightroom.

Incompatibility of videos

However, the videos are no longer supported. Lightroom 6.14 does not know at all to read (but they are still referenced in the catalogue with their associated metadata).

The utility ArchiChect, which reveals the components 32-bit applications, shows that this version of Lightroom operates a QuickTime component is now obsolete to manage the videos, hence the incompatibility.

The 32-bit components of Lightroom 6.14

The Slideshow module does not work anymore for the same reason and it does not have to apparently rely on the capture in connected mode (tethering) for Canon cameras, and Leica.

Lightroom 6 is therefore disabled on macOS Catalina — we can also add to it the module Cards that has stopped working in the past year, and Adobe has said on multiple occasions that there would be no patches. The support of this version, which was launched in 2015 stopped by the end of 2017.

Where the discourse of Adobe, which is to say that the older versions of Lightroom are not compatible with macOS 10.15. This is reinforced by the fact that their installers are 32-bit. This means that if you did not have Lightroom 6.14 already on your Mac before you go to Catalina, it will be impossible to install it on the new system, according to the publisher.

Adobe recommends using it Catalina the latest version of Lightroom Classic, the 8.4.1… which is not free of incompatibilities ! As shown in the same sheet, the tethering with Nikon cameras is subject to a bug and the tool Lens Profile Creator (which allows you to create lens profiles) does not work because it is 32-bit. These two problems should be fixed one day or the other.

The perpetual license of Lightroom 6 was sold for 130 € at the time (upgrading from a previous version cost 74 €). The subscription to Lightroom Classic today costs from 11,99 €/month with a one-year commitment, is 143 € a year. This subscription includes in addition to the new Lightroom based on the cloud (20 Gb of online storage) and Photoshop, but if you do that make these two software, the subscription becomes quickly more expensive than the perpetual license.

Otherwise, DxO PhotoLab and Luminar, which are each made of a catalog in the last year, will be delighted to host your photos and videos, not to mention Capture One gold ON1 RAW Photo.

In its latest version 20.0.6, Photoshop has it also concerns identified with Catalina. They relate to the file name in the save dialog box, the plug-ins that are not always recognized, the droplets that are created on earlier versions, and the tool ExtendScript Toolkit no longer works. In the meantime patches, Adobe provides interim solutions.