This morning, Skylum introduced Luminar Neo, a new creative image editor which empowers visual storytellers to bring their boldest ideas to life. Luminar Neo builds upon the unique, purpose-driven, AI editing technologies for which Skylum has become known for.

“As the latest member of the Luminar family, we designed Luminar Neo to allow artists to take on more challenging image creation work and achieve results which often seem unattainable,” said Dima Sytnik, co-founder and CPO of Skylum. 

Luminar Neo is meant to be an application that offers more customizability, and that builds upon the company’s LuminarAI software. The two programs will be sold side-by-side.

Innovative technologies that combine AI with human control

Luminar Neo will ship with several new features, including image layers, background replacement, relighting options, dust removal and more. The software analyzes each image to recognize the depth of the scene and its contents, which allows for precise control.

And best yet — all editing steps remain editable for complete control over the final image.


After being removed from LuminarAI, layers will see a comeback with Luminar Neo, helping creatives to further the boundaries of their photographs. Layers will also make adding things like watermarks easier than ever. With layers, you can apply any tool and any mask to any layer — in any order — multiple times.

Background replacement

Building upon the AI masking capabilities first introduced in Luminar 4, Luminar Neo allows for full background replacement of portrait photos. Users will be able to quickly replace a background with an entirely new image without having to manually mask out their subject.


A new relight feature will enable photographers to fix poor or backlit exposures with just a few clicks.

Dust removal

Utilizing artificial intelligence, Luminar Neo can automatically remove dust spots from your image. No more clicking and cloning out each dust spot!

Remove power lines

Perfect for architecture photographers, Luminar Neo will come with a tool that will help to automatically remove power lines in an image.

Mobile image management

Luminar Neo will also come with a companion mobile app. This will make it easy to add pictures captured on a mobile device to your Luminar catalog. Once edited, results can be sent back to the mobile device for easy social sharing or viewing on-the-go.

All-new editing engine for high performance

An all-new editing engine drives Luminar Neo, making it possible to apply multiple tools to an image without significant performance loss. The software allows for complex layering of several RAW images. Additionally, the new Luminar engine enables Skylum to further optimize and refine the entire image-processing pipeline.

While built atop an efficient new engine, Luminar Neo inherits the proven, AI-driven technologies which made LuminarAI a ground-breaking image editor.

“The goal of Luminar has always been to help everyone create images they truly love. With Luminar Neo, we empower even more artists and photographers to achieve their full creative vision,” said Ivan Kutanin, CEO of Skylum. “With new tools and a flexible editing workflow, they’ll find powerful new ways to create while being inspired to explore new ways to do so. We can’t wait to see what our creative community comes up with.”

Luminar Neo will continue to work as both a standalone application and a plugin for Lightroom Classic, Photoshop and Photos for Mac. Microsoft has also previously shown off an integration with Luminar, but no official announcement has been made about what that entails.

Our take on Luminar Neo vs. LuminarAI

The Skylum team has made it clear that Luminar Neo and LuminarAI are meant for different audiences. LuminarAI will continue to be sold and supported, but it will not obtain new editing tools. It will, however, obtain updates for OS compatibility, new camera support and other optimizations.

Luminar Neo is meant for photographers and creatives of all levels, and for those who want full control and options with their editing. LuminarAI, on the other hand, is meant for entry-level photographers and amateurs in photo editing, who enjoy a template-based workflow.

From what we can tell, Luminar Neo seems to be going after the audience left behind with Luminar 4. It is putting its focus on professionals and tech-driven creatives who like to push boundaries. Think of Luminar Neo as a sort of replacement for Luminar 4.

Pricing and availability

Luminar Neo will ship this winter, but pre-orders are currently available. Early bird pricing is available until September 19, 2021, starting at $54. Or, take advantage of a LuminarAI + Luminar Neo bundle so you can get started right away, starting at $83.

Current Skylum customers can get Luminar Neo starting at $34, or the LuminarAI + Luminar Neo bundle starting at $63.

Create more and get free bonuses, with Luminar Neo

Fulfill your creative ideas with Luminar Neo! Preorder now and get the Photofocus preorder bundle, full of extras like a deep dive training video, templates, LUTs, textures and more when Luminar Neo launches.