Have Adobe gone mad?

Started Jul 31, 2010 | Discussions
Class A
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Have Adobe gone mad?
Jul 31, 2010

Many people have all sorts of issues with Lightroom 3 (LR3) performance (slow import, local edit tools become unusable after a while, etc.).

Adobe actually have managed to ship a product that performs worse than the "beta 2" version that was available for testing before.

There is a "Why is Lightroom 3 so slow?" thread at the LR Adobe forum which currently has 688 replies and 34,958 views. (forums.adobe.com/thread/656635?tstart=0]) That's a lot of traffic compared to the other threads on this forum.

Do you think Adobe might be embarrassed to have shipped a product -- having marketed it as improving performance, indeed claiming that performance has been the top priority -- that often becomes is virtually unusable because it is so slow?

This is software targeted at professional photographers but the quality control has been nowhere near professional.

One of the quality "engineers", Dan Tull writes on the Adobe forum quote,

"The point I'm trying to make here is that the Lightroom team is a small one and that while these reports are important to us, they're not our only priority (there have been some important bugs other than performance ones and those take time, too) and our bandwidth is limited." (-> forums.adobe.com/message/3012666#3012666])

Pardon me?

There is a huge number of users asking whether they can get a refund because they want to revert back to LR2.7 because of LR3 performance issues but the response is "we have worse problems"? :eek:

Indeed, LR3 is full of bugs. Not little things you don't notice until you do strange workflows, no bugs that are in your face when you use the product in a normal way. Still the embarrassment of inflicting a memory leaking, error spewing ("assertion XYZ has failed"), crawling (molasses is a F1 car against spot removal and adjustment brush applications) mess on to professionals should be a bigger problem than the (admittedly high number of) bugs.

The sluggishness of LR3's user interface, for those affected, is a real shame because the ACR portion of LR is excellent, the image quality is really, really good. Unsurprisingly, ACR is developed by different people.

Granted a number of users have no performance issues but there are too many to make this a non-problem. Note that many of these affected users have very powerful machines, there is clearly something very wrong with the software.

What has the extensive beta testing period been used for? On what grounds do the quality "engineers" call themselves "engineers"?

In my book, being an engineer implies a minimum of professional standards. Real engineers have an education which has been accredited using the so-called "Washington Accord" agreement. I suggest that some professional engineering body demand that Adobe remove the preposterous "engineering" label in the LR3 credits screen.

What a disastrous release from Adobe and it irks me no end that there seems to be a common understanding that one cannot expect better from software these days.

If you are affected by LR3 performance issues please make a post at the "Why is Lightroom 3 so slow??" thread to show Adobe the extent of the problem.
-> forums.adobe.com/thread/656635?tstart=0
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JJMacks
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Indeed Adobe should do a better job. They need better system testing and regression testing plans for their software. I believe their programmers would ship a better product if they were given a proper amount of time. However management has their schedule set in concrete as to when they will milk their golden cow. When that cow fails to shine doesn't deliver the bottom line expected they will take notice perhaps it will not be to late by then. For I hope Adobe Image Processing software survives for I have invested a lot of effort, time and money learning, using and doing development using their software. I to old to have to switch to an other vendor.
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Jim Hess
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to JJMacks, Aug 1, 2010

That long thread you referred to is starting to get replies from people saying that they are tired of providing specific examples of what is going wrong. To my knowledge, Adobe seems to be aware of the problem but they don't indicate anywhere that they are getting close to a solution. Lightroom 3.0 is so unpredictable. My one computer runs it just fine, another computer is really sluggish. If they don't resolve the problem soon I think Lightroom will be doomed. And it's too bad, because when it works it really works well.

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dmcpics
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

I think anyone asking for a refund was just too stupid to use the 30 day trial first, which is the same thing as the full retail. Makes no sense to me that it's Adobe's fault.

For the record, I'm an Aperture user. I tried Lr 3 trial the other day and I must say it does an amazing job and I experience no slowdowns of any kind. If it wasn't for the horrible PeeCee user interface I'd switch in a heartbeat.

People need to learn to take responsibility for their own mistakes instead of blaming others. No one should be asking for a refund because after 30 days they would have been able to evaluate it fully. Don't like it or it doesn't run well, look elsewhere.

My 2 cents.

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vidrazor
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to dmcpics, Aug 1, 2010

When you have a monopoly in the industry, you can do whatever you want.

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WineO
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Is this a Microsoft / Vista equivalent?
Claude

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dmcpics
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to vidrazor, Aug 1, 2010

I don't think they have a monopoly. There's plenty of other choices. People choose Adobe software because it's better than the other choices.

Dunno... not here to defend Adobe. I just see it differently.

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Bob Walters
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Works great for me.
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Lr3 is at least as fast as 3 Beta and is lightning quick on my new powerful 64 bit Windows 7 desktop.

It is also surprisingly fast on my old, weak, laptop running Windows XP home edition. The ancient (by today's standards) laptop is only noticably slower in a few areas; most functions happen in a blink of an eye.

Not to say you don't have a legitimate gripe, but (for some reason) many of us are as happy as can be with the performance of LR3.

Bob
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vidrazor
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Re: Works great for me.
In reply to Bob Walters, Aug 1, 2010

I don't think they have a monopoly.

Fairly close to one, in many ways. Don't know of any photo retouchers that work with anything other than Photoshop, or line work not done in Illustrator, recently most page layout is done in InDesign, web design done in Dreamweaver, animation done in Flash (think South Park), and a good chunk of motion comps in After Effects.

So pretty close to a monopoly, especially when it comes to prepress. Photoshop/Illustrator/InDesign pretty much rule the roost. If you're a commercial photographer needing to work in that system you will probably lean towards Lightroom to some degree as well.

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colinadams
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to dmcpics, Aug 1, 2010

dmcpics wrote:

I think anyone asking for a refund was just too stupid to use the 30 day trial first, which is the same thing as the full retail. Makes no sense to me that it's Adobe's fault.

Good suggestion.

So I just tried the free download under wine, and it failed miserably.

I'll stick with the GIMP until I see a Linux version.

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Class A
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to dmcpics, Aug 1, 2010

dmcpics wrote:

I think anyone asking for a refund was just too stupid to use the 30 day trial first, which is the same thing as the full retail. Makes no sense to me that it's Adobe's fault.

So you think there is nothing wrong with shipping a product that contains a lot of bugs and has performance issues on many machines? Not Adobe's fault? N.B. Adobe accept returns of LR3 and refunds people. Go figure.

Note that LR3 beta 2 was pretty much OK. It wasn't lighting fast but not as slow as the final release. I noticed performance issues regarding local edits with it as well but isn't it normal to assume that a final version will have ironed out basic problems? That the final version will work according to the expectations a professional photographer would have who needs to, e.g., work through hundreds of wedding photos quickly?

What about the professionals who upgraded from LR2.7 to LR3.0 in good faith and now are stuck with LR3 catalogues LR2.7 won't read but a virtually unusable LR3? Were they too stupid to trust Adobe not to make two steps backwards?

I'm genuinely happy for those who enjoy a fast LR3 performance, I wish I were one of them. But it is a sad reality that there are many who are plagued with intolerable performance issues. Some of these issues can be addressed by leaving full screen mode and resizing your LR3 window till it becomes small enough. Then updates to the preview image in the development module can become faster again. Good grief, what did they do during testing? Never tried a multitude of Windows machines? Never took reports from LR3 beta 2 users seriously? Note that it isn't the case that the hardware causing the problems isn't up to spec; it could provide sufficient performance for handling full screen updates. Many users report fine performance with low spec machines. There is simply something deeply wrong with the software.

Note that the difficult stuff -- image rendering and the database functionality -- is dealt by ACR (also by Adobe but dealt with by a different team) and (to the best of my knowledge) a third party database respectively. All the LR team need to do is write some GUI glue code that doesn't interfere with the proven functionality of the aforementioned code they are using. It isn't that hard.

Back to the question whether anyone buying LR3 is stupid. So what are the alternatives? What other software on Windows gives you image management with local edits? If Picasa had local edits, I'd still be using it. At least it can scroll through an image library smoothly without jerky jumps.

Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe Adobe have a monopoly and exploit it. Not only can they afford to release a product that hasn't been sufficiently quality controlled (remember there are many more bugs other than performance issues), but they can still deprive users from having access to basic clone/patch functionality that goes beyond abuses of the spot removal tool. This functionality has been on the wishlist of users since version 1.0 and what does Adobe give them in version 3.0? The much harder to implement lens correction (local edits have to be warped!). I'm sure there are more photographers with portrait applications or similar that crave for clone/patch support than there are photographers with a dire need for lens correction. The latter is a nice incentive for LR2.7 users to upgrade but Adobe can still force people to shelling out bucks for an additional Photoshop license if they have more than very trivial clone/patch needs. I'm convinced that if Adobe didn't have a monopoly in the PC market, they would have been forced to provide better clone/patch support a long time ago. Aperture apparently is not enough of a rival, being confined to the Apple platform.

The reason why I get upset is because I really like the LR user interface and the overall functionality. If only it worked as advertised, I'd be snug as a bug in rug (scratch the "rug" if there is no clone/patch support :)). I'm also upset because the hard part (ACR + database) works excellently and the LR3 team screws up on the comparatively easy part.

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Class A
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Answering my own question it seems like Bibble 5 ( http://bibblelabs.com/ ) might be a good alternative.

Does anyone know of further alternatives (non-destructive editing with local / selective adjustements0?

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dmcpics
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Actually, I agree with you that Adobe and other software manufacturers shouldn't put out buggy software, but let's get back to reality and realize the amount of variations in hardware that have to be dealt with and also how complicated todays software has become. So the reality is you will always see initial software releases being full of bugs (one man's bug is another man's non-issue). It's just the way it is and I don't see it changing for the better. My point was that Adobe is offering you a 30 day window to try the software and if you find it doesn't work for you, well, then you can move on to something that does work for you. But, and this is a big but, people are just plain stupid and run right out and buy it, ignoring the 30 day window. That's not Adobe's fault.

That's all. I hope I've clarified my position.

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dmcpics
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

What about the professionals who upgraded from LR2.7 to LR3.0 in good faith and now are stuck with LR3 catalogues LR2.7 won't read but a virtually unusable LR3? Were they too stupid to trust Adobe not to make two steps backwards?

Yes, they were stupid. no professional should commit their livelihood to newly released product. That's not professional, just stupid. Good faith from a software vendor? C'mon now, let's get back to reality.

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dmcpics
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to colinadams, Aug 1, 2010

So I just tried the free download under wine, and it failed miserably. I'll stick with the GIMP until I see a Linux version.

And it's free! It's all about choices. You've made yours and it cost you nothing. Adobe lost a sale and you win. Love those 30 day trials.

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dmcpics
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Re: Works great for me.
In reply to vidrazor, Aug 1, 2010

Don't know of any photo retouchers that work with anything other than Photoshop, or line work not done in Illustrator, recently most page layout is done in InDesign, web design done in Dreamweaver, animation done in Flash (think South Park), and a good chunk of motion comps in After Effects.

My point is, there are other choices, but Adobe is the best choice in those categories. It's not a monopoly because the majority have chosen Adobe products. It actually show's Adobe makes the best choice, but certainly not the only one.

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gollywop
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 1, 2010

Class A wrote:

Answering my own question it seems like Bibble 5 ( http://bibblelabs.com/ ) might be a good alternative.

Does anyone know of further alternatives (non-destructive editing with local / selective adjustements0?

Adobe ACR 6.1.

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Scales USA
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to Class A, Aug 2, 2010

Although I had problems with the beta, I have had no problem wiith the production version.

However, I bought a new pc expecting that the slowness of the beta was due to my video card.

With a I7 Processor, 64 bit windows 7, fast but not super fast video card, it has not had issues. I've never gone back and tried it on my older maching which was pretty fast, but I have seen video cards and their drivers make a huge difference.

Always update your video card driver if you have issues with imaging or graphics, it seems to me that they are always playing catchup with new software.

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Class A
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Re: Have Adobe gone mad?
In reply to dmcpics, Aug 2, 2010

dmcpics wrote:

I hope I've clarified my position.

I personally have no problem with having spend money on my license. I'm hopeful that 3.1 will have sorted many of the issues. I'm just annoyed that there is this common notion ("back to reality") that it is normal for a company like Adobe to ship a defective product after such a long time of beta testing.

Of course you can say "what do I care what they ship, I don't like it, I'm not paying" but what if LR pretty much is exactly what you want and no other product comes close to that? What if LR would be the perfect tool for you if only the programmers and quality control had done a decent job? Wouldn't you be frustrated that the carrot is being dangled in front of your nose but someone keeps saying "No, you cannot have it. I didn't manage to clean it. I had plenty of time to clean it and it is the least you'd expect before I start offering to you, but no, you'll have to wait some more month. I'll keep dangling it for the time being"?

Please don't confuse frustration with stupidity.

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Class A
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Re: Works great for me.
In reply to dmcpics, Aug 2, 2010

dmcpics wrote:

It's not a monopoly because the majority have chosen Adobe products.

Does it make a difference as to why the majority use LR? I could be wrong, but I believe that Adobe have a quasi-monopoly on image management software like LR. They certainly have on Photoshop.

I'm not convinced that every Adobe customer has evaluated all their options before committing to Photoshop and/or Lightroom. These tools are simply part of the gospel; they are the typical first recommendation, aren't they?

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