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Luminar Neo Review + Free Luminar Neo Trial and Promo Code.

Luminar Neo Review

A lot has changed since my first Luminar Neo Review. Upon launch, Skylum Software‘s Luminar Neo was full of promise and framed with rough edges, but that was many moons ago. Today, Luminar Neo includes a complete feature set while being vastly more stable and significantly quicker.

Furthermore, the Luminar Neo Extension pack turns Luminar Neo into a fully-fledged AI-powered image enhancement suite with features such as AI Noise Reduction, Sharpening, and upscaling. So, is Luminar Neo worth it? Let’s find out. Jump to Conclusion

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Luminar Neo Review – Contents

What is Luminar Neo

Luminar Neo is an AI-powered photo editing application for PC and Mac. Released on the 17th of February 2022, Luminar Neo replaces Luminar 4 and Luminar AI. Read Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI.

Luminar Neo

Luminar Neo is different from other photo editors. Although Luminar Neo features traditional tools such as white balance and tone curves – these adjustments make way for tools such as Sky Enhancer, Golden Hour Glow, and Skin AI. Thus, the only thing you have to do to apply an effect is to drag an Effect slider.

As a result, Luminar Neo enables you to expertly edit a photo even if you don’t know anything about photo editing. For this reason, I consider Luminar Neo the best photo editor for beginners.

But as you will find out in this Luminar Neo review, Neo’s beginner-friendly design should not be confused with dumbed-down simplicity. On the contrary, Luminar Neo offers plenty for beginner and expert photo editors.

Luminar Neo Release Date

17th of February 2022

Luminar Neo System Requirements

Luminar Neo SpecificationsPCMac
ProcessorIntel Core i5, AMD Ryzen 5, or betterIntel Core i5 or Better, Apple M1
Memory8GB. 16GB Recommended8GB. 16GB Recommended
Operating SystemWindows 10 64 Bit (v1909 or higher)MacOS 10.14.6 or higher
Storage10GB (SSD Recommended)10GB (SSD Recommended)
Display1280×768 or better1280*768 or better
GraphicsOpen GL 3.3 Compliant GPU
Source: Skylum Software

Luminar Neo Cost

Luminar Neo costs US$119 when bought outright. Alternatively, you can subscribe monthly or yearly and receive the Luminar Neo extension pack. Visit Skylum Software for the latest prices.

Luminar Neo Promo Code

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Download Luminar Neo from Skylum Software

Download Luminar Neo Trial

Download the free 7-day Luminar Neo Trial from Skylum Software. No credit card is required.

What can Luminar Neo do

Photo Management

Photo management in Luminar Neo is pleasant, straightforward, and quite basic. For instance, you can assign your photos to custom albums and rate images as Favorite or Rejected.

Photo Management in Luminar Neo

If you’re looking for advanced photo management features such as tagging, face recognition, and geotagging – you can’t go wrong with ACDSee Ultimate. Read ACDSee Ultimate 2023 Review.


Presets in Luminar Neo present a one-click route toward a well-processed image. Furthermore, Luminar Neo has hundreds of presets varying from simple touch-ups to retina-burning art filters.

Presets in Luminar Neo enable you to edit your photos in a single click

And if you can’t find a filter you like, you can create your own presets or buy additional collections from the Skylum Software Marketplace. Read Luminar Neo Presets for more information.

Photo Editing

Editing your photos in Luminar Neo is easy. The tools you’ll use most of the time are Accent AI and Sky Enhancer AI, both of which you’ll find under Enhance AI. By tweaking these two adjustments, you can process your landscape photos to perfection. In the video below, you’ll see how easy it is to edit your photos in Luminar Neo.

How to use Luminar Neo to edit Landscape Photos

Then there’s Structure AI for adding a little pop, and you get all the usual stuff, such as color adjustments, sharpening, and noise reduction. And if you want to go old-school, you can access traditional adjustments such as Exposure and Tone curves under the Develop tab. However, this is Luminar Neo, and it wouldn’t be a Luminar without a spread of AI special effects.

Luminar Neo Key Features

This Luminar Neo review section will cover Neo’s headline features. These include.

  • Layers
  • Sky AI
  • Relight AI
  • Mask AI
  • Portrait Bokeh AI
  • Portrait Background Removal
  • Face AI
  • Skin AI
  • Body AI


Applying an effects layer in Luminar Neo

With Luminar Neo, you can add effects layers to your image or blend multiple images. Unlike layer-based specialty applications such as Adobe Photoshop, Luminar Neo does not have adjustment, text, and shape layers. On the upside, layers in Luminar Neo are easy and fun. Read Luminar Neo Layers for more information.

Effects Layer

Sky AI Sky Replacement

Sky AI enables you to remove and replace your photo’s sky with another while relighting the scene to match. While Sky Replacement is nothing new, Luminar Neo has boiled down this once-complex task into just a few clicks. Best of all, its fun, and it works great.

Sky AI

Relight AI

With Relight AI, you can adjust the brightness and warmth of the foreground and background of your photo independently. This is extremely effective for correcting back-lit portraits. Read Relight AI with Luminar Neo for more information, or watch the Relight AI video tutorial below.

How to use Luminar Neo’s Relight AI tool

Mask AI

Mask AI is an automated masking tool designed to save you the tedious process of manual selection and brushing. Once your subject is masked, you can apply adjustments specifically to the masked subject while leaving the rest of your photo unaltered.

Overall it works pretty well, but it falls short; you can refine your selection with manual brushing. Read Luminar Neo Mask AI Review for more information.

Portrait Bokeh AI

Portrait Bokeh AI in Luminar Neo adds background blur, or bokeh, to your portraits and selfies. Best of all, it’s really effective, and you can adjust parameters such as depth, blur amount, and the brightness of specular highlights.

Portrait Bokeh AI

As a result, Portrait Bokeh AI is one of my favorite features in Luminar Neo and a great way to add a few thousand dollars worth of blur to your smartphone selfie.

Portrait Background Removal

As the name suggests, Portrait Background removal is a one-click tool for removing your subject’s background. This is useful if you want to insert a new background or use a background-less person in a graphic such as a Youtube thumbnail.

Portrait Background Removal in Luminar Neo

Overall, it works pretty well. Read Portrait Background Removal with Luminar Neo for more information.

Face AI

With Face AI, you can whiten teeth, remove dark circles under your eyes, redden lips, and much more, and it’s as easy as dragging a slider with your mouse. The Face Light adjustment is very useful for overcoming poor light and adding a little glow to your subject.

Skin AI

Skin AI is effectively what we used to call airbrushing. But in Luminar Neo, it’s nothing more than a slider. Simply drag the slider to the right to smooth and even your subject’s skin.

Plus, there’s a Shine Removal tool that does exactly that and an automatic Skin Defects Removal AI tool that sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t, but is well worth trying.

Body AI

With Body AI in Luminar Neo, you can shrink or enlarge your subject’s body and waistline. While it’s easy to be cynical about such features, it does work and does have practical applications beyond vanity, such as countering weight-adding wide-angle lens distortion.

The Luminar Neo Extension Pack

The Luminar Neo extension pack is a premium add-on for Luminar Neo and features six extensions, including Noiseless AI and HDR Merge.

With the extension pack, Luminar Neo transcends standard photo editing and becomes more of an image enhancement application like Topaz Photo AI. Read Topaz Photo AI Review

You can buy the Luminar Neo Extension Pack separately or pay a few dollars each month and receive both Luminar Neo and the extension pack.

The Luminar Neo Extension Pack is very much a topic of its own, thus best left outside of this Luminar Neo Review. For more information, check out,

Using Luminar Neo


Luminar Neo enjoys an attractive, minimalist interface with sensibly named tools and menus. As mentioned earlier in this Luminar Neo review, editing photos is extremely easy whether you one-click edit using Presents or apply your adjustments manually.

Luminar Neo’s interface is clear, attractive, and easy to use.

A nice addition to Luminar Neo is the ability to stack your favorite tools at the top of the list – a small feature that saves you time with every edit. Furthermore, batch editing is straightforward. Simply select the master image and then the other images you wish to apply the same adjustments and right-click Synchronise adjustments.

How to Batch Edit in Luminar Neo

Overall, Luminar Neo is ergonomically excellent. But what about the performance


I find Luminar Neo to be quick rather than instantaneous. For the most part, your image preview keeps up with your adjustments in real-time, but Luminar Neo will take a moment to rerender your image as you pan and zoom pan.

Understandably, Luminar Neo does chug a little when you’re applying one of Neo’s special effects, such as Sky Replacement or Portrait Bokeh AI. But in my opinion, the delay never feels unreasonable, given what you get in return.

Luminar Neo is fast enough for most use cases.

However, some disagree, and performance does seem to vary from machine to machine. I would say that many reports of poor performance originate from the earliest versions of Luminar Neo and Luminar Neo reviews. However, a lot has changed since then, and Luminar Neo is much faster than it was, and I am more than happy with Luminar Neo’s pace.

That being said, I recommend you try Luminar Neo for yourself. The Luminar Neo trial is free, seven days long, and no credit card is required. Download Luminar Neo Trial free.

Is Luminar Neo any Good?

Luminar Neo is relatively cheap, straightforward to use, and feature-packed. As a result, I consider Luminar Neo the best photo editor for beginners and experts in a rush.

The only potential downside to Luminar Neo is speed. And I say potential because I have always found Luminar Neo to be fast enough. But don’t take my word for it; try Luminar Neo for yourself, free of charge. Download Luminar Neo Trial free.

Luminar Neo Compared

Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI

Initially, Luminar Neo had just enough rough edges and absent features to justify Luminar AI’s continued existence. However, this is no longer the case, and Luminar AI is now discontinued.

Luminar AI is now discontinued. Read Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI Comparison

From a practical point of view and as someone who owns Neo and Luminar AI, I can say Luminar Neo is superior in every way. If you already own Luminar AI and are considering upgrading, I think you should. As an existing customer, you’ll even receive a discount. Read Luminar Neo vs Luminar AI for more information.

Luminar Neo vs Luminar 4

Luminar Ai was never quite the upgrade Luminar 4 owners were waiting for. While I liked Luminar 4, Luminar Neo is many years ahead. Read Luminar 4 Review

Good old Luminar 4.

Luminar Neo vs Lightroom

I consider Luminar Neo and Lightroom to be very different products. Whereas Luminar Neo leans into AI for beginner-friendly effects, Lightroom relies on traditional adjustments and a little expertise.

But, as a fan of both, whether you choose Luminar Neo might come down to the economy of scales. In other words, you must use Lightroom a lot to justify its perpetual US$9.99 per month subscription. In contrast, you can own Luminar Neo forever for the same money as one year’s worth of Lightroom.

Luminar Neo vs ON1 Photo Raw

ON1 Photo Raw is a substantial all-in-one photo management and editing tool, which, like Luminar Neo, is loaded with AI effects such as Portrait Enhancement and Sky Replacement. Read ON1 Photo Raw 2023 Review.

Furthermore, ON1 Photo Raw includes many tools featured in the optional Luminar Neo Extension Pack, such as AI-powered noise reduction, upscaling, and HDR.

However, ON1 Photo Raw isn’t quite as accessible or as easy to use as Luminar Neo. So, if you’re happy to ascend a moderate learning curve, ON1 Photo Raw offers much more bang for your buck. But if you want to edit photos as quickly and easily as possible, I recommend Luminar Neo. Read Luminar Neo vs ON1 Photo Raw.

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Luminar Neo is the best photo editor for beginners on the market today. Furthermore, Luminar Neo has enough fun and time-saving features to keep even the most seasoned photo editor happy.

Luminar Neo

Once you grow used to Luminar Neo’s effortless brand of photo editing, it isn’t easy to go back to manual brushing and tone curves. In many ways, this makes sense. After all, we’re all looking for an effect, and unlike traditional photo editors, that’s where Luminar Neo begins rather than ends.

Is Luminar Neo Slow

Nevertheless, Luminar Neo isn’t perfect. Thanks to the heavy lifting Luminar Neo does, it can chug a little, especially when you apply one of its headlines AI effects, such as Mask AI and Portrait Bokeh AI.

But context is important when it comes to speed and when you consider how long it would take you or me to craft these effects manually, waiting a few seconds for Luminar Neo to do it for you feels like a good deal.

Regardless, such things are subjective and machine-specific. Thus, I recommend you take advantage of the free Luminar Neo trial. Download Luminar Neo Trial free.

Is Luminar Neo worth it?

Luminar Neo is one of the most innovative feature-packed photo editors on the market today, yet somehow manages to be supremely easy to use and cheaper than its rivals.

Whether you’re a seasoned photo editor or a complete beginner, Luminar Neo offers a swift and fun route toward a well-processed photo. And if you’re still using Luminar 4 or Luminar AI, Luminar Neo is the upgrade you’ve been waiting for. Highly recommended.

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Get Luminar Neo

PLUS! SAVE 10% with Promo Code SP10NEO | SAVE $10 with SILENTPEAKNEO10


Buy Outright

Ultimate Photography Pack – own Luminar Neo outright plus tons of extras.

$1029 $149


Subscribe monthly or yearly and get all upgrades plus the extension pack with the Pro package.

$119 p/y

Try Free

Try Luminar Neo free for 7 Days – No Credit Cards, No Nonsense. Download Now


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