Announcing the Upcoming Exposure X3!

We are very happy to announce the upcoming release of Exposure X3. It’s the latest version of our award-winning non-destructive RAW photo editor and organizer, and it includes a ton of helpful new features. You can view the Exposure X3 intro video above.

New Organizing and Creative Features

Side-by-side Comparison View

There’s a new side-by-side view that enables you to view multiple images. You can use this in several helpful ways. Together with Exposure’s new preset audition mode, you can now easily audition multiple presets, seeing them onscreen simultaneously. Or you can use side-by-side to speed up your image culling by comparing similar images to find the very best one.

Virtual Copies

You can even use side-by-side view when working with virtual copies, another cool new feature. Virtual copies enable you to create multiple variations of a single photo, without taking up additional disk space. This works great for experimenting with different creative looks. For you multi-taskers out there, you can work with two or three virtual edits on screen, and export one or all of them if you choose.

Linear and Radial Gradients for Local Adjustments

There are new linear and radial gradient tools for achieving a natural, seamless fade between two or more effects.

New Overlays, Blend Modes, and Toning Enhancements

New adjustable borders include grunge and wet plate looks. Additionally, there are new blend modes available for all overlays. New color and B&W toning enhancements give you greater control over your image adjustments.

Keywords and Collections

Master your workflow with new organizing tools like keywords and collections. Use keywords to add descriptive metadata to your photos, making it easy to organize photos around themes and to create keyword sets. Use collections and quick collections to flexibly group your images, no matter where they appear on your computer.

Sue Bryce Exposure X3 Demo

Master photographer and educator Sue Bryce is a longtime user of Exposure, and edits all of her work with it. She recently demoed Exposure X3 at The Sue Bryce Education Portrait Master’s Conference, a 3-day conference of master portrait photographers.

“Exposure is every action I’ve ever wanted, all in one software product. It helps me bring a painterly, Old Masters-feel to my images with one click of a button,” she said.

Pricing and Release

We’re excited to bring Exposure X3 to you later this fall, so stay tuned!

Exposure X3 is $149. If you already own Exposure, you can buy Exposure X3 for a special upgrade price of $99. If you buy Exposure X2 on or after September 1st, we’ll send you Exposure X3 as a free update!

Exposure X3

Try Exposure X3 free for 30 days, and bring your photos to life with gorgeous creative looks and a complete set of editing and organizing tools.

About the Author:

Finley Lee is the CEO of Alien Skin Software. He's a hobbyist photographer, electric bass player, video gamer, bread baker, and experienced napper.


  1. Karin Gottschalk September 12, 2017 at 6:03 pm - Reply

    Wow, X3 already! Looking forward to seeing what it can do.

    • Finley Lee September 12, 2017 at 10:43 pm - Reply

      We’re excited about the update, Karin! Let us know if you’d like a demo.

  2. Roberto Ornelas Orozco September 12, 2017 at 11:15 pm - Reply

    Will this update have kelvin degrees for white balance when working on raw images?

    • Finley Lee September 13, 2017 at 8:33 am - Reply

      Not in this release, Roberto. It’s on our list of future features to add.

  3. Christopher September 13, 2017 at 12:15 am - Reply

    Looks like some nice updates! Do the new the linear and radial brushes act as gradients?

    • Finley Lee September 13, 2017 at 8:31 am - Reply

      Yes, they allow you to apply any Exposure effect selectively to your image, using a linear or radial shape as a mask. I’ve been using the radial tool to add a little clarity and vibrance to the foreground subject in some of my nature photographs. It looks great and is extremely easy to use.

  4. Ed September 13, 2017 at 5:22 am - Reply

    So have the previous plugins been more or less discontinued? They still have much potential with new features and technologies but it looks like this is an photography only based thing now?

    • Finley Lee September 13, 2017 at 8:20 am - Reply

      Not at all. We’re happy for Exposure to fit into whatever workflow you choose, and it works quite well as a Photoshop or Lightroom plug-in. This release contains a number of improvements that plug-in users will enjoy – linear/radial local adjustments, new overlay graphics, overlay blend modes, and toning enhancements.

  5. Michel September 13, 2017 at 10:35 am - Reply

    Is there already a trial or beta version to get/download for Mac?

    • Finley Lee September 13, 2017 at 10:58 am - Reply

      There’s no trial available yet, nor a public beta. We’ll be releasing Exposure X3 later this fall. We will publish an announcement on our blog, social media, and email list as soon as it is available.

  6. Alain September 13, 2017 at 1:20 pm - Reply

    I think Alien Skin has become mature enough that I can finally leave Lightroom and its catalog!
    Can we export directly to Smugmug?

    • Jimmy Beech September 13, 2017 at 3:28 pm - Reply

      Thanks for commenting, Alain. You can’t export and upload in a single step from within Exposure. You can export files prepared specifically for Smugmug. This video shows you how to use Exposure’s quick export tool.

  7. Arne September 13, 2017 at 1:55 pm - Reply

    X3 sounds great – thanks! Any plans for implementing a direkt publishing to and managing of online services like SmugMug, Flickr, Zenfolio, Instagram, etc?

    • Jimmy Beech September 13, 2017 at 3:41 pm - Reply

      Hi Arne. Direct publishing to online channels is a good suggestion. It’s a feature that we are considering implementing into a future version of Exposure.

  8. Andrew Spencer September 13, 2017 at 4:12 pm - Reply

    Yay, excited!
    Love your work guys.

  9. Craig September 13, 2017 at 5:56 pm - Reply

    Hi guys love your products mainly the blistering speed of operation! What about tablet deployment? I would love to be able to use your products on an ipad pro with the pencil! Maybe its on the cards? Please say it is…… anyway will be upgrading when the time comes.

    • Finley Lee September 14, 2017 at 12:51 pm - Reply

      Thanks, Craig! We spend a lot of time optimizing, so I’m glad that this effort has helped you out.

      We don’t have plans for a tablet version at this time but I’ll add that as a feature request. Thanks for the comments!

      • Andreas Farsch September 15, 2017 at 7:20 am - Reply

        Hi Finley,
        I was about to ask the same question (about an iPad Version).

        I’ve been a user of Exposure for some years (since Version 6). I like it a lot, although my main software is still Lightroom and Photoshop. Exposure has become quite mature, so even as Lightroom and Photoshop combined might be still quite some way ahead, you have built something that

        a) focuses on the core features of photography without an overload of gimmicks

        b) you have it all in one piece of software, not two (or even more if we consider Adobe mobile apps)

        c) you make results easy to accomplish, because you provide an accessible way of editing complex matters

        If you could bring Exposure to an iPad, I would be very happy. And perhaps many others like me, too.

        So I’m hoping that this will be on the list soon. 😉

        • Finley Lee September 15, 2017 at 8:49 am - Reply

          Hi Andreas! It was great to read your comment because the points you mentioned are some of our design goals with Exposure. Photography software should allow you to focus on bringing out the beauty in your photos!

          We’ll consider the iPad app suggestion. Thank you for the feedback and for the kind words.

    • Graeme September 20, 2017 at 2:57 am - Reply

      Hi Andreas, it’s very easy, just sell your ipad pro, buy a surface pro, then you’ve got a better tablet a better pen and the X3, plus you get to dump crapple! It’s a win win!

  10. Fraser Smith September 13, 2017 at 8:28 pm - Reply

    I’m having a look at the X2 trial and so far I’m impressed. However, X2 doesn’t support my Canon EOS-M6 and, by the look of the RAW files support list, several EOS-M series cameras remain unsupported. How often do you release RAW file compatibility updates and do you have a list of those formats that will be supported by X3?

    • Finley Lee September 14, 2017 at 12:48 pm - Reply

      We’re currently working on EOS M6 support and are hoping to get it in the initial release of Exposure X3. It should be in there if we don’t encounter an unusual problems.

      There isn’t a complete list of RAW formats yet, but we will be adding at least 20 new cameras.

      • Finley Lee September 17, 2017 at 2:01 pm - Reply

        I can confirm that Canon EOS M6 support will be in the initial X3 release.

      • Frank F September 29, 2017 at 2:44 pm - Reply

        20 new cameras? Hope Panasonic G8/G80/G81/G85 is one of them. Cam is out since a year IIRC? And what about support for GH5? Camera support is more important tham bringing new features in my opinion, and not only support for Canikon camp.

        • Finley Lee September 29, 2017 at 2:54 pm - Reply

          Yes! Exposure X3 will have support for all the cameras you mentioned.

  11. fil September 14, 2017 at 6:41 am - Reply

    Still no support for Affinity Photo ????, Most people banned photoshop since subscription move!

    • Finley Lee September 14, 2017 at 9:50 am - Reply

      You can easily launch Affinity from Exposure.

      We don’t test against Affinity, but if it handles Photoshop plug-ins properly Exposure should work with it. If not, it’s something Serif needs to fix.

      Give Exposure’s standalone features a try. You may find with the latest improvements you don’t need any other image editors 🙂

      • Iulian Ursache March 21, 2018 at 4:44 pm - Reply

        It is not about launching Affinity for a RAW, Tiff, or a Jpeg file. I would like to see Affinity file information when Exposure is used for digital asset management as a Lightroom replacement.

        • Jimmy Beech March 22, 2018 at 7:02 pm - Reply

          Hi Iulian – thanks for commenting. Support for Affinity Photo files is something that we have on our list of features to consider adding in a future version of Exposure. I’ll add notes to our feature request log about your interest in viewing Affinity Photo file information when using Exposure to manage your image files.

    • Craig Pickles September 14, 2017 at 11:08 am - Reply

      I think if most people banned Photoshop, Adobe would have changed the decision/model. Still, other options, especially good ones like Alien Skin’s Exposure, that are advancing the ball, are great for the industry.

    • Phil Rose September 14, 2017 at 4:49 pm - Reply

      Most people ‘banned’ Photoshop? Not sure what you mean but I’m still using Photoshop.

  12. Natan September 14, 2017 at 3:26 pm - Reply

    Will it open Aperture libraries?

    • Finley Lee September 14, 2017 at 4:30 pm - Reply

      I’m sorry to say that we don’t migrate Aperture data.

      • Ricardo September 15, 2017 at 10:22 am - Reply

        why? I still have not found a replacement as good as Aperture

        • Finley Lee September 15, 2017 at 11:48 am - Reply

          We haven’t gotten many requests for it, to be honest. It’s a substantial project, so we’ve prioritized other features.

          One problematic aspect of migrating edits from other programs is that each has its own proprietary RAW engine. It’s difficult –
          in some cases impossible – to guarantee that photos look the same after migration.

          Exposure has the ability to read standard XMP metadata entries. If Aperture will output this information it could provide a limited migration path to Exposure. Here’s an article that discusses this in the context of Lightroom:

  13. will September 14, 2017 at 4:28 pm - Reply

    Hi just one question really. Is it faster than Lightroom? If so, I’m sold.

  14. will September 14, 2017 at 4:31 pm - Reply

    Also, does it have some kind of function for importing Lightroom catalogues?

    • Finley Lee September 14, 2017 at 4:39 pm - Reply

      Not at the moment. I’ll record this as a feature request to be considered for later releases though.

  15. Dennis September 14, 2017 at 5:12 pm - Reply

    Looks great!

  16. Mike September 14, 2017 at 5:26 pm - Reply

    Will it have a print module like Lightroom where you can print images from and the option to print multiple different images onto one piece of paper. This is a crucial option for my workflow?

    • Jimmy Beech September 14, 2017 at 10:01 pm - Reply

      Hi Mike, thanks for commenting. Printer support is something we have considered adding, but it’s not planned for this release.

      • Brian September 19, 2017 at 12:53 am - Reply

        Please consider moving print higher on your priority list. Exposure is a great tool but lack of print ability leaves me (and likely quite a few others) tied to Adobe. To my mind it’s the one significant feature missing from X2/3.

        • Finley Lee September 19, 2017 at 6:30 pm - Reply

          Thanks for the feedback. We’ll consider it as we plan the next release.

  17. Mark September 14, 2017 at 6:05 pm - Reply

    I’m trying to move away from the mega-vendor we all use, so I’m very excited to try X3.

  18. Beverly September 14, 2017 at 6:10 pm - Reply

    I’m excited can’t wait to upgrade.. Will you send out a link or is the link available on your website..

    • Jimmy Beech September 14, 2017 at 9:54 pm - Reply

      Thanks for commenting, Beverly. Later this fall, when Exposure X3 is available, we will make an announcement here on the blog. If you have purchased Exposure X2 after September 1st, we will email you with a link and license code for your free upgrade to the new version.

  19. Andy Buckley September 15, 2017 at 4:19 am - Reply

    Hey, so just to be absolutely sure—if I buy Exposure X2 today, I’ll get X3 as a free update when it releases? I really can’t wait to try it out!

    • Jimmy Beech September 15, 2017 at 8:02 am - Reply

      Hi Andy — yes, that’s correct!

      • Andrew Buckley September 15, 2017 at 8:36 am - Reply

        Excellent! I’ll pick it up tonight 🙂

  20. Bayek September 15, 2017 at 8:09 am - Reply

    The video says: ‘Try it free today.’ Can I download a trial somewhere?

    Thanks, bayek

  21. Racer70 September 15, 2017 at 1:28 pm - Reply


    I am planning to ditch LightRoom at some point, held back primarily by the catalog, collections, tagging, type stuff.

    Can you tell me what LR catalog features you will NOT have in this release? Surely you have some kind of checklist.

    Can you verify that two people can be working simultaneously (not on the same photo). The single user restriction is a big problem for me and my wife working on typically 1,000 photos from a trip.

    Is there an interface to Shutterfly? She uses them to make books of our travels.

    • Finley Lee September 15, 2017 at 2:25 pm - Reply

      Exposure has largely caught up to Lightroom in terms of key organization features, but there are a few differences. X3 won’t have smart collections, but has similar functionality in its filtering presets. You can have it remember a filter for all 5-star images, for example. We don’t have as extensive IPTC support, and there’s no gps/map capability in Exposure.

      Collaboration is one of Exposure’s strengths, and it’s certainly possible to be working on photos in the same shoot simultaneously, though as you mention we don’t recommend working on the same photo simultaneously. We do this a lot here at Alien Skin. Our shared photos live on a shared file server and we’re able to easily collaborate on ratings and edits without copying files between computers.

      We don’t currently have an interface to Shutterfly. Publish services are something we’d like to add in a future release, but for now Exposure has a flexible options for exporting images using predefined settings including size, metadata, and color space.

  22. Boerge September 15, 2017 at 2:26 pm - Reply

    Exposure X3 please also in German language!

    • Finley Lee September 17, 2017 at 1:41 pm - Reply

      I’m sorry, but we don’t have any international localizations planned at the moment.

  23. Eduardo Barbosa September 16, 2017 at 8:42 am - Reply

    This is a very interesting set of features. Can’y wait to get my hands on it…

  24. jed best September 16, 2017 at 10:42 am - Reply

    Can you import a txt file of hierarchical keywords, ie Lightroom? Also, what about collection?

    Thank you

    • Finley Lee September 17, 2017 at 1:40 pm - Reply

      Yes, In Exposure X3 you can import and export keyword sets. Keyword sets are a way of grouping Exposure’s hierarchical keywords.

      Collections can’t be imported/exported, but collection information lives in a photos metadata. So if you copy the photo to another computer, it will show up in the same collection when you open it on that computer.

  25. Andrew Spencer September 18, 2017 at 5:22 pm - Reply

    Hey Guys.

    Will overlays include some way to add logos, watermarks?
    And, I’ve always thought the secondary display options are clunky. I would prefer to show thumbs with meta, search etc. on one screen and editing tools with the one image being worked on in the main screen. Currently, it’s back to front with thumbs in the work area.


    • Finley Lee September 18, 2017 at 5:35 pm - Reply

      In X3, watermarks are added as part of an export operation. Your watermark can contain text you specify, graphics/logos, or even text from a file’s metadata. There are flexible size and placement options so you can put it wherever you’d like on your image.

      Thanks for the feedback on the secondary displays setup. I’ll record that as a feature request to be considered for a future version.

  26. Andrew Spencer September 19, 2017 at 3:21 am - Reply

    Yay, thanks for the update Finley.

  27. Rowan September 19, 2017 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    Hej! Will this version have hue and luminance controls? Thanks, R

    • Finley Lee September 19, 2017 at 6:29 pm - Reply

      I’m assuming you’re referring to per-channel control over hue and luminance to go with our per-channel saturation sliders on the color panel. These didn’t make it into the X3 release, but are very high on our list for the next one.

  28. Joanna September 22, 2017 at 8:57 pm - Reply

    Will this version include .png export? Right now I have to do it manually in Photoshop and I need to have it in my batch workflow. It’s the only thing I’ve found to be missing.

    • Finley Lee September 25, 2017 at 4:49 pm - Reply

      Exposure X3 won’t have PNG export, unfortunately. I just added your comment to our list of feature requests.

      We are able to read PNG files already, so hopefully it’s not too much of a step to support that format in the export process too.

  29. Isaac September 22, 2017 at 10:47 pm - Reply

    Hi! I’m excited to try this out. Migrated to Lightroom from Aperture and have never been pleased with the workflow and performance that lightroom offers.

    Any idea how Exposure X3 performs on say a i5-7600k vs Ryzen5 1600X? Can it take advantage of all the extra threads that the AMD chip has (12 vs 4)?


    • Finley Lee September 25, 2017 at 5:06 pm - Reply

      Exposure’s code is extensively multithreaded. It will scale up to use all the cores on your system, so you should see a boost when using the AMD. We’ll have a trial available when X3 comes out if you’d like to check it out before purchasing. I think you’ll be really happy with the performance!

  30. RW September 26, 2017 at 4:44 am - Reply

    Please could you look at addressing some strange JPEG behaviour, whereby in an application like adobe bridge the image seems to load as a very small thumbnail, and takes a long time to render a full-size preview. This is very frustrating when trying to make selections on a large number of processed images, and only seems to happen when rendering directly out of the standalone app. As opposed to say processing them as batches through photoshop (which takes longer).

    Also will the new raw support have the option to save edits to xmp files?


    • Finley Lee September 26, 2017 at 10:25 am - Reply

      We haven’t encountered the Bridge behavior you mentioned. Is it possible that your export is set to resize on output? I opened a support ticket and one of our techs will be in touch to help troubleshoot.

      Exposure will write an XMP file containing the edits when you export using the ‘original’ file format. Unfortunately, the edits settings are not useable by other photo editors. Because each company’s raw editing engine is wildly different, it’s not possible to come up with a conversion between slider settings in different editors in a way that preserves the appearance of the edits.

  31. Cora Coronel September 29, 2017 at 2:31 pm - Reply

    I’m Exposure 2 user and I’m in love with it. Did you already send the upgrade?

  32. Tracy Valleau September 29, 2017 at 2:46 pm - Reply

    You may consider this a bit bizarre, but… I already own X2. (and lots of previous versions, which would qualify me to upgrade to X2. Yes: X-TWO.
    That would mean I bought it after Sept 1, and would that therefore qualify me for a “free” upgrade to X3?

    In short: I’d be paying for X3 now instead of later.

    • Finley Lee September 29, 2017 at 2:57 pm - Reply

      Tracy, I see that you bought X2 last year. As an owner of X2, you’re eligible for our upgrade pricing.

  33. Tracy Valleau September 29, 2017 at 3:04 pm - Reply

    Yes. I understand that. I’m just trying to get paying for it behind me. I’m not eligible for a free upgrade. It will cost $99. That’s fine.

    For reasons of my own, I’d like to pay that $99 NOW instead of in a couple of months. So: if I bought -another- upgrade to X2, Now, for $99, would that purchase entitle me to a Free upgrade later on?

    I’m simply trying to spend my $99 NOW instead of in November.

    Probably too complex… I’ll just wait

    • Finley Lee September 29, 2017 at 3:17 pm - Reply

      Ah, I understand. Yes, if you bought another copy of X2 now we’d send you X3 when it comes out. I’m hoping it won’t be as long as November! If it helps, we’ll be sending a reminder in email.

  34. Martin Reddy September 30, 2017 at 9:59 pm - Reply

    Awesome, I love this app/plug-in and use when ever I can. My suggestion would be to expand on the textures + light effects to have more manipulation control. I know this can be done via multiple layers though it would be great to be able to do in one.

    Cheers and I`ll happily upgrade when out

    • Finley Lee September 30, 2017 at 10:15 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the comments, Martin. I’ll take your feedback about increased control of overlays to our design team. We’ll consider it for a future version of Exposure.

  35. Patrick de Bie October 2, 2017 at 4:30 am - Reply

    Is there a list available which camera’s and lenses X3 supports?

    • Finley Lee October 2, 2017 at 6:19 pm - Reply

      We’ll publish a final list when we ship, hopefully very soon. Is there a particular camera you’re interested in having support for?

  36. Michel October 2, 2017 at 5:00 pm - Reply

    Is tethering something you are also considering for a future update/version?

    • Finley Lee October 2, 2017 at 6:25 pm - Reply

      We have discussed the possibility of adding it. Is there a particular camera system you’d like to see supported in a tethering scenario?

  37. Wayne hatfield October 4, 2017 at 12:11 pm - Reply

    I have 6 alway to X2 will we have to pay full cost or will there be a up grade price??????

  38. Ramesh S.A October 21, 2017 at 5:50 am - Reply

    hI.. the shadow tool to me is not quite okay. when used the entire image gets overexposed with loss oof contrast. ots not as effective as what i have ssen in Lightroom

    • Jimmy Beech October 23, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the suggestions, Ramesh. Could you supply us with a few images that we can test the shadow control with? That would be the best way for us to make development refinements. Please send our support team a ticket with images attached and a description of the issue you noticed. Here’s a link to start that process.

  39. Dave November 19, 2017 at 12:34 pm - Reply

    So if I bought Exposure 2x 6 months ago, I am not eligible for the 3x upgrade for free?

    • Jimmy Beech November 20, 2017 at 2:00 pm - Reply

      Hi Dave! Unfortunately no. We sent out free upgrades to anyone who purchased Exposure X2 on or after September 1st. Everyone else that owns a previous version can buy the new Exposure using the upgrade price.

  40. Theo Noetzli February 3, 2018 at 7:15 am - Reply

    Hi, after importing my RAW pictures as DNG from Lightroom I miss that I can’t see the GPS data in Exposure and the possibility to directly show the place on google maps (or some other map service). On my older picures from the Canon 7D I’ve manually inserted GPS data and all the pictures from my iphone have already that data. So it’s a pitty, I can’t use it in Exposure ;-(

    • Finley Lee February 5, 2018 at 8:46 am - Reply

      Hi Theo,

      Thanks for the comments. As you observed, Exposure doesn’t currently have the ability to show GPS information. I have recorded this request for consideration in future updates. If you could view and edit GPS data, and launch Google Maps in a web browser, would that meet your needs?

  41. Mark Dell February 26, 2018 at 4:07 pm - Reply

    iPad Pro usage would really be helpful do you have plans for this at all

    • Jimmy Beech February 27, 2018 at 12:07 pm - Reply

      Thanks for commenting, Mark. At this time Exposure is limited to Mac and Windows traditional operating systems. There isn’t an immediate plan to add iPad support, but I’ve added your query to the feature request log.

Leave A Comment