Aaron Shepard: I use Lightning for printing, because it excels at that. But I use Bridge and Camera Raw for editing, for several reasons:
-- Commands are much easier to locate than in Lightroom, which seems to revel in hiding important functions, including important ones available ONLY if you know the keyboard commands.
-- Camera Raw lets you choose the color space you want to edit in by changing the output space. The histogram then conforms to that space. Lightroom pretty much sticks you with ProPhoto, which isn't best for book publishing and doesn't match the original space of my camera's JPEGs. (Or do the new proofing functions take care of that?)
-- Camera Raw doesn't mess with your mind by asking you how to reconcile differences between image data and catalog data. It just reads the image data.
-- Most important, the editing area of Camera Raw is bigger than Lightroom's, so you can see more of your picture or see the whole thing bigger. This is important if you don't have a huge monitor.
-- Examples of hidden commands in LR, please? Speaking of keyboard commands, one should learn to use them to increase workflow efficiency anyways.
-- LR sticks to ProPhoto, true. But you can export files to other color spaces in the Export dialog box. My workflow is pretty much Adobe 1998, which is smaller than ProPhoto (but not as small as sRGB). But I've adapted just fine. For color/density critical stuff, I get the image in the ballpark in LR while leaving some breathing room in the histo before sending off to PS as an Adobe RGB TIFF and finish the image off in PS.
-- Just have LR update using the image data just like ACR. No need to let it mess with your head. Don't let the software rule you. You're the ALPHA dog :-)
-- Haven't used Camera Raw in a while. I'm using a 24" 16:10 monitor and I can toggle into full screen mode with the F and Tab keys easily enough.
ACR and LR's raw conversion engine is the same, so I stick with LR since I use it for image management.
GoremanX: None of this explains why I can't just use some other cataloging software and use Lightroom solely for image processing. I find the Lightroom catalog features to be sorely lacking, my preferred catalog software does a much better job of organizing and retrieving my images (yes, even different versions of the same image). But every time I want to process a photo in Lightroom, I have to trudge through the tedious import process, even for ONE STUPID PICTURE.
This forced Adobe cataloging crap is merely a means to lock users into a purely-Adobe workflow. Nothing more, nothing less. And it's insulting.
@daMatrix,I used to use IMatch+ACR, and when LR first came out I started using it but didn't give up my previous workflow. Once LR2 came out and I was comfortable with it, I dumped the IMatch+ACR workflow. It wasn't that much work. All of my images were categorized, I used a script to convert the categories to IPTC keywords, and then in LR it's easy enough to search for those keywords for which I wanted categories and dumped them in appropriate categories. Not perfect, and still tweaking files from a couple years ago as I come across any that need more work. But overall not a big deal for me. Again, I work much faster and save loads of time, which equals more productivity and ultimately more money.
I do still use IMatch occasionally. Sometimes I need to export the IPTC and EXIF data from a set of my files, so I export them as low-res jpegs, import into IMatch, and export the metadata to csv.
@beeguy,When you export in LR, you can set the color profile of the exported file.
JohnyP: a few issues:- Adobe LR is an ugly and slow product. I can forgive ugly, but can't forgive slow. That's on a Intel Quad Core CPU with enough RAM and an SSD drive (images are on a conventional 7200RPM drive)- Tagging of pictures takes time that i don't have- LR interface is not intuitive (at least to me).- Junk Adobe installs along with LR is troubling (all kinds of executables get started ever time you boot a computer after LR installation)- it costs too much- doesn't solve the physical location issue (backups of my computer still contain just folders organized by some other method, not what is shown in LR)- import process is annoying- adobe bridge is a half joking attempt to recreate a Windows Explorer- meta-data is not my best friend (maybe yours), not everyone needs to tag a blue flower picture with words "blue" and "flower". - Creating a logical structure inside the LR vs physical structure on the HD is not really different or faster.
Article is not really useful
> "Adobe LR is an ugly and slow product." I agree that it's slow. But what it lacks in speed, it makes up for in workflow. Overall, my LR/PS workflow allows me to save time from shoot to backup to organization to publication.
> "Tagging of pictures takes time that i don't have"Then please tell me how you organize and retrieve photos in a timely manner.
> "meta-data is not my best friend (maybe yours)"Then you should forget about any kind of image management and either go off of memory or a physical card catalog system. But you don't have the time.
> "it costs too much"You gotta be kidding.
If you don't have the desire to organize images, that's fine. I for one have a catalog of hundreds of thousands of original RAW files plus tens of thousands of TIFF files from film scans. So for me, you're excuses aren't valid. A bit of time now saves me lots of time later. Obviously you have no need for any DAM so why bother posting?
jonska: I use Lightroom and quite like it despite various shortcomings (the uploading features are a nightmare, as someone else mentioned).
Here's my problem: When I have gone through a shoot and processed to my satisfaction, I export a few images as jpegs. I do this at full quality and then resize using one of several other programs - mostly Irfanview. The reason I do this is that I want to see the *actual image* that I am uploading, sending by e-mail, burning to a cd etc. This can't be done in Lightroom which only alllows resizing at the time of exporting.
So. Now I have duplicates (i.e. jpeg exports), which I also want to keep (e.g. in case someone asks for a copy, I want to upload to another site etc.) and organise. This means that I now need a separate DAM programme to keep track of my jpegs (about 10% or less than the number of my raw images).
I'm sure others have this problem. What do you do?
"I'm sure others have this problem. What do you do?"
I don't have this problem at all. Anything that I export that I plan to keep on file, I make sure that it gets added back to the catalog. You can even stack the resultant jpegs with the original so that the it looks less cluttered.
acidic: It should be noted that just because the LR Catalog file is backed up does not mean the image files are backed up. Someone will undoubtedly confuse the two and will lose their image files as a result.
My biggest gripe with LR is that it lacks metadata import/export functionality. It would be nice to be able to export IPTC/EXIF data form a catalog (or subset of the catalog) as a .csv file, as well as import that data back in. Many image databases allow this, so I'm sure Adobe is more than capable of adding such a feature.
Imagine creating an iTunes Library, importing your music, and categorizing it all (dinner party, love-making, workout, relaxing, road trip, etc). If you lost your Library file, you still have your mp3s, but your categories will be lost forever. LR catalog file is sort of like that. If you lose the catalog file, your images can still be safe, but much of the data that you associated with it is lost.
Now if you lose your images files, LR will still have a record of that image, but the image itself will be gone (except for the 'preview' and thumbnail). So it's important to back those up as well.
During the import process, LR offers the option of making a backup of that photo . If you're doing this, it makes sense to put the backup copy on a separate drive (in case the main drive crashes). Alternatively, you can backup the image via other methods, including burning to a disk, copying to a different drive, etc.
When you import an image into LR, LR notes it's location (e.g. C:/Photos/2012-12-28), and makes a preview.
When you make adjustments to an image within Lightroom (tonal adjustments, caption, keywords, catalogs, etc), those adjustments get stored in the LR catalog file. So when you look at an image in LR, it knows what information is associated with that image and it presents it to you (adjustments, captions, etc).
By default, all of this additional information is stored in the LR catalog file, and will not be embedded in the image.
The reason why the LR catalog file is so important is because it contains all of the instructions about where your images are, how they should be displayed, and what other information is associated with it.
davidstock: I'm not convinced. If we are relying on metadata tags anyway, isn't it possible to search just as well in Bridge as in Lightroom? Personally, I like having a logical file folder system. But if for whatever reason I don't know where one of my files is, I simply do a metadata search in Bridge--just like in Lightroom.
The only downside of Bridge seems to be slightly longer backups, which I find to be a non-issue. I've never had it slow me down. (I use continuous automated backups, as well as late-night automated backups.)
The minor backup issue seems like a small trade-off for the security of having all the image data saved in the file itself. The internet is full of confused or desperate people who lost or damaged their Lightroom catalog because of a computer problem or even an upgrade to their hardware or software. I'd rather have files, complete with their metadata and processing, that can be opened in a variety of programs.
"...move a lot of photo files from one place to another on your computer - say from ...Drive C: to ...Drive E:. You will then have to re-compile the catalog."
No you won't. When Lightroom can't find the photos, you can just point to the new location. It's just like moving music files in your file browser, and then iTunes not being able to find it (only easier in LR). You can tell then tell it where to find those files.
Or you can just move the files from one drive to another from within LR.
Besides, it's not so often a LR user will move old pictures off of one drive and on to another. And if they have to recompile the catalog, so what? It's not like they're going to move the photos to a new drive routinely.
Bridge is limited to keywords, color codes, and stars. LR can do user-defined categories, hierachical ones at that, as well as manage a controlled vocabulary. If you don't have the need for any of this or don't understand the difference, then Bridge is fine for you.
AlexBakerPhotoz: My problem is that I began storing digital images long before I started using Lightroom. I was for quite awhile a database designer and developer, so I understand the design and agree with it, I just wish I'd started with it at the beginning of my switch to digital photography 10 years ago. Now I have 82,300 images to date and it's like the plant in little shop of Horrors. I do have a semi-efficient folder system that I created when I was using Bridge, that works OK for me in Lightroom too, but the effort to go back and apply more data to all those old images in the catalog and also the xmp and xmp sidecars is daunting.
No problem. Just import those images in their exisitng folders into your LR catalog. No need to move those photos into new folders. Since you have them category folders, jut select one and add a bunch of broad keywords that represent each folder, and create a new category for it and apply that as well. As you have time, just go back and keyword/categorize in LR. No need to do it all at once. Doing in batches means that 82K images is probably more like 10K metadata edits (due to similar content).
This is a project that can take years. I've been using LR since v1, and I am still setting aside a couple hours a month to do just that for my old film scans. I still have lots of film to scan, and I don't anticipate finishing that until 2016 or so!
adhall: I thing Apple Aperture is a much better implementation for library management. It's faster, you can import/export metadata and splitting/merging libraries is much simpler.
Still waiting for Aperture 4 though...
Yeah, but LR does better raw conversions and plays nicer with Photoshop.
Still waiting for Adobe to add metadata import/export though... :-)
gaiaswill: (I am not a pro.)
I am currently storing all my images on my main hard drive. I will be getting a NAS in the near future and would like to move all my images there. How can I preserve the validity of my catalog when I move the photos?
Another way to do this is to move the folders and images to its new location from Lightroom rather than Windows Explorer. Either way is fine.
You can always use Bridge instead of LR. That's what I used to do when I used a different cataloging application. But then the purely Adobe workflow won me over, despite LR's cataloging shortcomings. Sometimes it sucks, but overall I work far more efficiently and consistently than ever before.
" I'd rather have files, complete with their metadata and processing, that can be opened in a variety of programs."
LR doesn't prevent you from doing so for jpeg/tiff/psd. For raw files, you can have LR create sidecar xmp files with your changes, either by default or manually. If you don't like sidecar files, well, good luck with your other programs. With LR, you can at least convert your raw files to dng files on import, allowing you to embed your changes directly into the file. This is no different than Bridge, which WILL NOT embed changes into native raw files.
But if you prefer using Bridge and an outdated hierarchical filing system, feel free. Think of your mp3 collection, and finding your music by metadata searching instead of using a database driven media player like itunes :-)
It should be noted that just because the LR Catalog file is backed up does not mean the image files are backed up. Someone will undoubtedly confuse the two and will lose their image files as a result.
Jan Toude: Similar method: field camera + DSLR, no parallax issues:http://shadrin.rudtp.ru/Personal/Shadrin_Canon-VS-4x5Film_frame.htm
The problem with that is that large format lenses don't resolve nearly as much lp/mm, which can be a problem for 20MP+ dSLRs. It can be solved by stitching more images and reducing the final image size (and still end up with a huge file). Problem with that is time shooting, and time post processing.
malabraxis: -'full size' professional DSLRs won't fit comfortably with a lens attached-oops.. that does not bode too well. Never understood why most backpacks lack proper interior design. The pouch at the bottom holding the lenses, flash and DSLR looks like its ready to fall out when opened!If you really going outdoors and need to connect, why carry a laptop? Surely a tablet makes more sense, so why sew one one. And as any outdoor photographer knows, a proper, decent tripod is a must, but this model cannot carry one?On the plus side, love the colours; makes it easier to find afterwards when lions chased you round the bush!
1. First sentence in the article: "...geared towards the 'on-the-go amateur' photographer" so no it won't fit a pro dslr.
2. Nowhere does this say that this is specifically for "going outdoors" to connect.
3. Tablets are useful, in fact I don't bother taking my laptop all the time on trips anymore. But some still work on the road or in the air: selecting, captioning, editing, post-processing, etc. Not to mention storage and backing up.
4. Tripods are NOT a must. Sure they're a very useful tool, but continually imrpoving high ISO IQ and fast lenses reduce the need to always have one. This bag is not specific for "outdoor photographers."
5. Have a happy new year.
Roland Karlsson: For far away subjects you can use an ordinary lens and a modern stitching software without any problems. There is no need for a shift lens for this, nor is it any advantage.
If things are near, you need to rotate around the input aperture of the lens. That true for both an ordinary lens and a shift lens. So .. for the ordinary lens you need a tripod and panoramic head. But ... for the shift lens you need a tripod and a tripod thread on the lens. If you move the lens you only can use it for far away subjects.
If you have a tripod thread on the lens, then the only advantage is that you get a consistent focus plane. If you torn the entire camera, then you also turn the focus plane, which might be problematic.
So - except for the focus plane stuff - I see no advantage of getting any shift lens.
I actually think a shift lens is easier to deal with than a nodal bracket, which must be adjusted for each and every lens (or zoom focal length). At least with a shift lens, it's guaranteed that all static objects will line up. Of course the shift lens is more limited in the number of frames you can stitch. It's also limited to stitching in one dimension.
Back in my pano head days, I used to carry two. One setup for my 50mm and another for my 85mm. Nowadays, I don't bother.
I've been using T/S lenses for quite some time, mostly for landscapes and studio stills to increase DOF. But today's photographer don't care about such nonsense. The only reason why they'd want a T/S is so they can selectively throw a scene out of focus, which they no longer need a T/S for. Instead, they use the built-in fuctions of their cameras/apps/photoshop to do what they think is the same.
I've also used my 90mm TSE extensively for stitched panos, especially in the 6MP (10D, 300D), 8MP (1D2, 20D) and 12MP (5D) days, but nowadays, 21MP (5D2) is more than enough for most of my needs so I don't bother. I also used pano heads quite a bit, which most newbies don't realize is essential for truly accurate stitching, especially when foreground objects are present. These days, I feel that pano head=too much gear to lug.
Today, most are content with handholding their shots and stitching together in PS, cloning in anything that doesn't line up that nicely. Hell, I'm guilty of it myself.
This would be a dream come true (for hipsters).
Analog is coming back for various media, not because its practical, not because of functionality, and certainly not for quality. But because it's cool.
For the bearded guy who wears women's jeans while riding a fixie: Too bad that you won't be able to pretend to be shooting film. You'll actually have to shoot film.
valentin_neda: This is how a digital back would look on a Nikon Fm3a:
Just get an Olympus OMD. Purpose buit, smaller, and less buggy I'm sure.
Ivan Lietaert: "a top notch fast 35mm autofocus prime without breaking the bank"Priced £900, the author obviously must be making a fortune writing for DPreview! This lens is priced at a working man's monthly income. I wouldn't call that cheap! Please think twice before you write this kind of thing!
@Kodachrome200There is no free lunch anywhere but at least you have 1 pound fish.