What’s New in LRKeys v2 Pro

A) Key map handling now uses one file per map

  1. NEW: Save key maps to file individually as .lrk files.

This should be much more robust. Having each key map in its own .lrk file means you can save, back up, version or exchange individual key maps. Windows Defender seemed to sometimes take a dislike to the LRKeys ini file in the AppData folder, causing users to lose their customised key sets. LRKeys now defaults to saving key map files to My Documents.

When editing a key map, you will have the option to Save, or Save as…, making it easy to use one key map as the basis for another. The default key maps are read-only.

  1. Set of v2 individual key maps installed based on the v1 key maps

The default set of read-only .lrk files reflect the v1 default key maps which were accessible from the NumPad, adjusted to take advantage of the new features in LRKeys v2 (see more below).

  1. Convert your own v1 key maps to a set of .lrk files

Under File | Convert v1 Key Maps, this utility will load your V1 ini file and from it create a set of .lrk files, preserving any customised key map sets. But do not overwrite the default v2 .lrk files!

  1. NEW: Most Recently Used file list

LRKeys v2 will remember and automatically reload your most recently used (MRU) .lrk file. It will also remember up to four MRU files for you to quickly select from the File menu

  1. NEW: Favourite files list

You can also pin your favourite .lrk files to the File menu, and then use these in Macros. This makes it possible to switch .lrk files based on a single key press. By default, these are mapped to NumPad keys 1-4, and Macros are defined to mimic LRKeys v1 behaviour IF you pin 1:1_Default, 2:2_Tone Curve, 3:9_Brush and 4:8_Grad. If you pin different files, you will need to import (see below) and adjust the Macros in each file accordingly.

You can also clear your pinned file list and start again.

  1. NEW: Import and merge Macros from another file

Now that key maps are held in separate files, along with their Macro definitions, you might need to copy a new or updated Macro from one key map (let’s call it A.lrk) to another (B.lrk). You can do this by opening B.lrk, then going to File | Import Macros only, and selecting A.lrk. You can then save the merged file to a new name, or overwrite one of your existing files.

B) Other enhancements and fixes

  1. NEW: Added Dehaze and Texture controls

Since the release of LRKeys V1, Lightroom added the Dehaze and Texture controls. Dehaze was added to an interim release of LRKeys. Texture is also now available in the Basics section in LRKeys.

Added Texture (B/N), Vibrance (Q/W) and Saturation (E/R) to default key map. Texture replaces Dehaze on B/N, with Dehaze moving to . and / to reflect their order on the Lightroom Develop screen.

  1. Bypass LRKeys now on Alt+Esc

Moved Bypass/Re-activate LRKeys to Alt+Esc (instead of NumPad0 in LRKeys V1). This key is not editable.

  1. Use Shift for large adjustments and Ctrl for small adjustments in default mappings

Adjusted default amounts: normal key presses change +-3, a moderate amount. Shift makes large changes, +-20, while Ctrl allows for fine tuning, with changes of +-0.5.

  1. Use Alt to bypass LRKeys in default mappings

All default Lightroom keyboard shortcuts (for unmodified keys) have been remapped to Alt+key in LRKeys. So for example, the R key usually jumps to the Crop & Straighten panel. But in LRKeys, the R key changes Saturation. By pressing Alt+R within LRKeys, you will jump to the Crop & Straighten panel, without having to Bypass LRKeys, then re-enable it (using Alt+Esc).

A few Alt keys are mapped to specific Macros – see more on new Macros below.

A number of other useful Lightroom keyboard shortcuts have been remapped to Ctrl+Altl+key within LRKeys. You can see these listed in the LRKeys main screen.

  1. NEW: Non-API actions work on all screens, not just Develop

LRKeys, via its plugin, uses the Lightroom API to access some actions. The API only works when you are on the Develop screen. This limitation is enforced by Lightroom, and there is no known workaround.

There are two groups of API actions with only work when you are on the Develop screen:
i) All the exposure controls on all the Develop panels – Basic, Brush, Gradient, Tone Curve, HSL, Split Toning, Detail, Lens Corrections, Transform, Effects and Calibration. Sorry, but this means you can’t use LRKeys to change exposures while in Library Grid view, though I dearly wish you could.
ii) Some editing actions which have both a key press version and an API. For these, the API version is indicated in the name of the action with “(api)”, e.g. “Previous Photo (api)”. The API version should be more robust, but if you want the flexibility of using the shortcut when not on the Develop screen, you must use the non-API version.

WARNING: If you trigger an API action while not on the Develop screen, the on-screen message will say that LRKeys is sending the raw key press instead. This allows you to use any default Lightroom keyboard shortcuts while on other screens without Bypassing LRKeys – but be aware that if you thought it would perform the LRKeys action, this might actually trigger an unwanted default action! For example, on the Develop screen, the default mapping of key U is to decrease Temperature, but on the Library Grid screen, key U will unflag the selected photos even if LRKeys is active.

All other actions can be used on other screens. For example, the following new Macros work on other screens, too:

MyGoto BasicKeyset1 (Alt+D), ToneCurveKeyset2 (Ctrl+Alt+T), AdjBrushKeyset3 (Alt+K) and GradFilterKeyset4 (Alt+M), which load Favourite key map files 1-4 and also reveal the appropriate panels.
Goto First Photo/Goto Last Photo (default mapping Home, End) – why did Adobe never implement these?!
Back 10 photos/Forward 10 photos (default mapping Shift+T, Shift+Y)
– Medium Noise Reduction (default mapping F6) illustrates how to give Preset mappings a more intuitive name, making it much easier to remember what they do. This Macro opens the Detail panel, and calls Preset 06, which by default applies some noise reduction.
– Create Virtual Copies in Collection (default mapping Ctrl+Alt+’) is useful in my wedding workflow. I often copy photos into a targeted Collection, e.g. as candidates for conversion to Black and White. But I want to convert a copy, not the original. So when I’ve got a complete set in the Collection, this Macro creates a virtual copy of every file in the Collection, then inverts the selection ready to delete the originals from the Collection. I’ve deliberately left the delete action out of the Macro, just in case I trigger this Macro at the wrong time!
MyGoto ClientSurveyMode
(default mapping Ctrl+Alt+N) both switches to main screen Survey mode and Second Screen Survey mode. I use this a lot with visiting clients.
Select Next 6 photos (default mapping Ctrl+Right). I use this Macro when showing clients several photos at once in Survey mode.

All default key maps now use the non-API version of actions where both are available.

  1. Added basic keys for use in Macros

All the basic keyboard keys now have actions in the System section, so you can construct even more custom Macros.

  1. NEW: Create Collections from file

For my own Wedding workflow, I create one Lightroom catalog per wedding. I find this more intuitive than having one huge catalog. However, I end up creating the same Collections for every wedding for things like Black and White selections, or Portfolio pick. This routine allows the creation of these Collections to be automated.

It takes a plain text list from a .txt file and creates one Collection per line, using the text as the name of the Collection.

You can also create a Collection Set by prefixing it with * in the list to create, e.g. *TestCollection1 will create a collection set called TestCollection1. You will need to drag Collections into your new Collection Set manually.

This action will switch screens to the Library Grid, as you cannot create Collections from the Develop screen.

Find this action in the menu at File | Create Collections from file. There is a sample .txt file in <MyDocuments>/LRKeysPro

WARNING: There is no automated validation of what you have typed in your text file, but there is a dialog box for you to confirm the action after it has read the file, before it creates the Collections.

  1. Simplified menu and menu bar buttons

Duplicate buttons and deprecated features removed. Fonts adjusted to make the important “Start LRKeys plug-in” button more prominent.

  1. Made it easier to free up license keys for re-use

Renamed this feature Help | Free up used license keys, and added it to the menu even when this instance of LRKeys is not registered. So you no longer need to contact me if you move computers and want to re-use your existing license keys on the newly installed LRKeys!

  1. Removed Mouse Scroll functionality

This feature was not intuitive, with users missing the default mouse wheel functionality, so it has been disabled.

  1. Improved updating and display of key map in LRKeys main screen

The design of the main LRKeys screen has had an overhaul. This screen shows your current key map graphically, and this display should now be easier and more intuitive to read.

Also fixed a bug where the main screen display could get out of syc with the current key map.

Moved the screen displaying all the Lightroom default keyboard shortcuts to Help | View Lightroom Defaults.

  1. Bug fixes

Fixed bug where Macro actions got added in reverse order. New actions are now added at the end of the existing Macro, or after the action you have highlighted.

Fixed bug where Tab key mappings didn’t appear in LRKeys main screen.

Fixed bug when mapping Zero key