Develop Value Mystery


Today’s Question: When I edit photos in Lightroom Classic and use the Clarity slider, the numbers showing the strength of the adjustment are white except for +30, which is gray. An adjustment of +30 still works, so it is not a real problem, but it is curious why that should occur.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The gray color for the value at +30 indicates that is the default value. In other words, you have changed the default from zero to +30 for the Clarity adjustment.

More Detail: A gray number for the value of an adjustment in the Develop module in Lightroom Classic indicates the slider is at its default value. A white number indicates the value has been changed from the default for the adjustment.

Normally, the value for Clarity would appear in gray when set to zero, and white when the slider is set to any other value. That is because the default value for the Clarity adjustment is zero.

If you see a gray number for something other than zero for the Clarity adjustment, that means you have changed the default value for Clarity to that gray value. In this case, the default value for Clarity has been changed to +30.

You can reset the value for various adjustments quite easily in Lightroom Classic. Start by selecting an image for which you have not already applied adjustments you care about, so you can adjust the settings freely. Then click the Reset button at the bottom of the right panel in the Develop module.

Next, change the value for the sliders for which you want to change the default values. For example, I often like to apply at least a slight increase in Clarity as well as Vibrance for most images, so I might want to change the default values for those sliders.

After changing the values for the adjustments you want to change the default value for, hold the Alt key on Windows or the Option key on Macintosh. While holding the Alt/Option key, you’ll notice the Reset button changes to a Set Default button. Clicking that button while continuing to hold the Alt/Option key will cause the current adjustment settings to be used as the new default values in the Develop module.