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Is it Worth to Use Aurora HDR 2020 Version? Here Is the Latest Review

What is the best HDR software for HDR photographers? Is it Aurora HDR? If you have no idea whether Aurora HDR can be your best HDR photo editor, you can check this article. Here’re the detailed overview, review, tutorial, comparison and alternative about Aurora HDR software in 2020. Just read and see whether Aurora HDR is worth to use or not.

Aurora HDR


Part 1: Aurora HDR Review

What is Aurora HDR

Skylum Aurora HDR has been awarded as the world’s most advanced HDR photo editor. You can combine images captured in different exposures into an HDR image, or you can create a tonal map of a RAW image using Aurora HDR as well. Well, it is possible that you can get the entire palette of what human eyes can see, which is impossible for most single exposures. Therefore, you can expand the tonal range of an image far more than a single exposure using your camera only.

What You Can Get from Aurora HDR

The Aurora HDR latest version upgrades Quantum Pro engine and releases many other advanced HDR editing features. Just put 3 or more different exposures of the same scene into Aurora HDR. Later, you can create HDR photography with ease. Here is a brief instruction of Aurora HDR.

1. Tone-mapping technology for not only single but also bracket images with the Quantum HDR engine.

2. Get the highest quality of bracket merging and color enhancement.

3. Auto-detect and batch process brackets.

4. Recognize and eliminate noise on HDR photos while preserving high quality.

5. Work as a standalone HDR photo editor, or a plugin for Photoshop, Lightroom, Elements and Apple Aperture.

6. One click to apply over 80 looks to enhance and stylize RAW images.

7. 11 integrated LUTs packed with LUT mapping filters.

Aurora HDR Pros

1. Make HDR images with layers, masks and blending modes, just like Adobe Photoshop.

2. Preserve all editing history and adjustments with the non-destructive history panel. Or you can save HDR as JPEG or TIFF without editing history.

3. Offer 20+ editing tools for HDR creation, such as HDR enhancer, lens correction tool, transform tool, polarize filter, smart tone and more.

4. 1 Aurora HDR license can be used up to 5 Windows or Mac computers.

Aurora HDR Cons

1. Aurora HDR works better with a high-end gaming computer. Otherwise, you will find that Aurora HDR is buggy while processing RAW images.

2. Beginners need to spend weeks to be familiar with Aurora HDR interface and advanced filters.

3. Its tech support team does not respond promptly.

4. Many users complain that Aurora HDR cannot be downloaded on some newly-bought computers.

Aurora HDR Software

Aurora HDR Cost

The price of Aurora HDR full version is $99. You can use Aurora HDR license on 5 computers. The Aurora HDR free trial is available for all new Skylum users. You can download Aurora HDR free trial to access all features within 14 days. As for existing users, you can get Aurora HDR upgrade with $59.

Want to get an Aurora HDR discount or coupon code? You can get up to 50% off Aurora HDR from Macphuncoupon, Offers, Colormango and many other promoting sites. Even though you are not satisfied with Aurora HDR 2020 version, you can get a refund with the 30-days money back guarantee.

How to Use Aurora HDR

If it is the first time you use Aurora HDR, you need to download and install Aurora HDR on your computer first. Just as above mentioned, Aurora HDR can work as a standalone HDR editing software or plugin. The following will show you easy steps to use Aurora HDR tools. If you want to get more details, you can check Aurora HDR tutorial video from its YouTube channel.

Step 1: Run Aurora HDR. Drag and drop a photo into the Aurora HDR interface directly. You can have a quick preview in a new dialog window.

Step 2: Click the gear Settings icon. Turn on Color Denoise or Chromatic Aberration Removal to remove noise and purple/green fringe from the image.

Step 3: Click Create HDR to start editing an HDR image.

Create HDR Aurora

Part 2: Aurora HDR VS Lightroom VS Photomatix VS Luminar

Aurora HDR VS Lightroom

Different from Lightroom, Aurora HDR allows users to create HDR with layers, masks and blending modes. You can process HDR images with both Aurora HDR and Lightroom. But compared with Aurora HDR, Lightroom provides less HDR functions. If you subscribe to Lightroom, you can run Aurora HDR as a Lightroom plugin. Even though you cancel the subscription, you can still run Aurora HDR as a standalone HDR image editing software.

Aurora HDR VS Photomatix

Photomatix requires less memory space, HDD and one-time purchase. The interface of Photomatix is a little outdated than Aurora HDR. Aurora HDR offers a right-hand toolbar, while Photomatix offers a left-hand toolbar. Actually, you can get more presets and other HDR editing tools from Aurora HDR.

Aurora HDR VS Luminar

Luminar has a clean interface with fast processing speed. In the comparison of Luminar VS Aurora HDR, Luminar offers easy photo editing tools. Aurora HDR focuses more on HDR merging, processing and editing. The full version price of Luminar is 2/3 of Aurora HDR.

Part 2: Aurora HDR Alternative

If you are not satisfied with the above HDR photo editors, you can take a look at WidsMob HDR. It can be your cheap Aurora HDR for Mac alternative. You can own this HDR photo editor with only $19.99, which is 1/5 of Aurora HDR price. The user interface is clean and simple. Once you import 3 images with different exposures, the program will recreate HDR images automatically. Later, you can adjust tone length, tone saturation, brightness and ghost suppression to make your HDR photo look better.

1. Create an HDR photo by combining a set of 3 different bracketed photos automatically.

2. Advanced tone mapping algorithm.

3. Enhance your HDR photo with HDR alignment, Ghost reduction and tone mapping.

4. Adjust HDR photo parameters to get the best HDR results.

5. Support JPEG and RAW images captured by DSLR cameras or smartphones.

6. Reasonable price with free updates.

Download for Mac Version

Step 1: Run WidsMob HDR. Click Import to add at least 3 images into the Aurora HDR alternative software.

Import Photo on HDR

Step 2: You can see the bracketed images in the main interface. Click Next on the lower right corner to move on.

Import HDR Photos

Step 3: Move the sliders of Tone Length, Tone Saturation, Brightness and Ghost Suppression freely. Those HDR parameters will show the real-time HDR result in the preview window.

Auto Align HDR Photos

Step 4: Adjust HDR effects with Color Filter, Color Opacity, Saturation, Contrast, Vignetting and Effect.

Saturation on HDR

Step 5: Click Save to save your HDR photograph as PNG, JPEG or TIFF format based on your need.

Download for Mac Version


Aurora HDR is a high-end HDR photo editor for professional users. If you want to get the latest HDR editing filters and presets, you can free download Aurora HDR and try its free trial first. Don’t forget to search Aurora HDR coupon code before buying its full version. But if you just want to quickly make natural or extreme HDR photos, you can get the advanced HDR algorithm technology from WidsMob HDR as well. For beginners, WidsMob HDR might be a better choice than Aurora HDR. After all, you can spend 1/5 of Aurora HDR to get its permanent license.


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Peter Wood
Peter Wood
Peter Wood, a senior editor, focus on photography design and editing software and devices.

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