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Lightroom 4.1 - Slideshow soft/slightly blurred once exported as video and burned to DVD.

Aug 7, 2012 5:54 AM

Tags: #lightroom #not #video #1080p #export #slideshow #preset #dvd #soft #imac #sharp #clients #blurred #4.1 #sharpness #loses

Hi there,


I have been struggling with this issue for so long! I hope someone can assist me. When I create a slideshow of images set to music in Lightroom 4.1 (the same issues were had in Lightroom 3) and play it back - it looks sharp and beautiful. Once I export this slideshow (by selecting Export Video) and choosing 1080p in the video preset box and then play it back on my iMac it then looks somewhat soft. Once I then burn this slideshow to a DVD it looks even worse... it really makes great photos look terrible - the eyes in portraits are not sharp anymore... etc.


Does anyone have a solution to this? Am I selecting the wrong setting (1080p?). I want my clients to be able to play the slideshow back on their own computer (and possibly DVD player).


Help please...



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    Aug 11, 2012 11:31 AM   in reply to kazcoul

    If originals are raw files then the most likley reason for the softness is lack of sharpening after they've been downsized for 1080p. The usual workaround is to export the originals as JPEG or TIFF at the size you need for the slideshow (i.e. 1920 by 1080 pixels), applying some output sharpening as part of the export process (see screenshot below). If images require a large amount of downsampling then set sharpen for High rather than Standadrd. You should also set Lr to reimport these files as part of the export process. After export/import is complete the images should be in good state for exporting as a slideshow.




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    Aug 11, 2012 2:59 PM   in reply to Ian Lyons

    With all due respect, this should not have to be addressed with a "workaround" ... it defeats the whole purpose of using Lightroom as the centerpeice for a RAW image workflow, if one must export or create additional copies of images in order to maintain sharpness for the creation of a slideshow ... For myself, this could add up to many thousands of images per year that must be generated to perform such a trivial task that should have been addressed long ago ... Adobe should have paid more attention to this module over the past several iterations and improved it to the point where the user could apply sharpening to the images as a part of the process of creating a slideshow. Otherwise, how is Lightroom to be considered a workflow solution ... when all it does is create more work for the user to accomplish their tasks? Unfortunately the Slideshow module has lingered in obsurity since v1 with hardly any consideration by the development team whatsoever.

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    Aug 12, 2012 12:39 PM   in reply to kazcoul

    Do realize that burning to a DVD you get very low resolution images as DVDs are only 480p so your DVD burning software has to scale the exported video down by a very large amount. If the scaler in the DVD burning software you use is not very good, you'll get very soft results. Let alone that the pixels in a standard video DVD are not even square! Even if the scaler is very good you'll never get very good results as 480p is just not very low resolution for still images and you'll always see pixellation or very soft images. Ian's response up there is very good advice and probably gets you fairly good quality when burning DVDs from the final files. That said, my experience is that you're often best of just burning the 1080p files to a data DVD with the files and hoping that your client has a BluRay player that can play these files (very hit and miss unfortunately). So don't let it get touched by and video DVD authoring software. You can also dump it on a USB stick. Many TVs and BluRay players nowadays have USB slots from which they will play the H264 encoded files Lightroom generates.

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    Aug 13, 2012 8:39 PM   in reply to kazcoul

    The reason is that your eye is much less discerning for moving images. You are much more likely to see limited resolution issues on still images. Movies are much less critical and many people do not notice the difference between a DVD (maximally 480p) and a 1080p BluRay except in still images even though the BluRay disc has 6 times the number of pixels.


    >Isn't burning to a DVD/data DVD exactly the same? I am confused by what you mean to try here?


    Video DVD is a different thing from a dataDVD. To be able to play on a standard settop box DVD player, the video has to be transcoded to standard definition mpeg2. The maximal resolution for standard video DVDs is a pityfull 720x480 pixels (for the Northern American NTSC standard). It is slightly higher in Europe (but not much). Burning a data DVD (or CD) is just what the name implies, it creates an exact copy of the H264 mpeg4 high def file that Lightroom outputs. The problem is that not many players play such files or can read data DVDs/CDs and you basically need a good BluRay player to play these. But if they do, you'll get full 1080p quality and in general you will not be able to see any softness except on absolutely gigantic TV screens.

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    Aug 14, 2012 2:17 PM   in reply to kazcoul

    The LR slideshow module has had problems since its initial introduction and the issues have not been fixed in LR4.1. There is also an issue of resample artifacts (jaggies) when using portrait orientaion images in a slideshow on Windows platforms.. See this thread:



    Here's an excerpt from the above thread link:


    LR has at least three different implementation versions, concerning this LR Slideshow Module behavior:


                             Stroke Border           Portrait Images

    Mac OS:            Causes softness         OK (no resample artifacts)

    Windows Vista:  No issues                    Resample artifacts (jaggies)

    Windows 7:        Causes softness         Resample artifacts (jaggies)

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    Aug 26, 2013 9:33 PM   in reply to trshaner

    Ok i was really excited when i try out the slideshow on LR4 (4.4VER). But i was shock when i see my final output looks low qaulity using high res images. Something is not right. Scramble around to come across this forum. 


    Kazcoul mentioned "uncheck" the Stroke Border but it doesn't work. Is there a straight on solution to this?

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    Aug 27, 2013 10:48 AM   in reply to captureasia

    The only way I am able to get good output from the LR Slideshow module is to resize the images first using the Export module. You need to make them the exact size for the output resolution and layout size you will be using so LR's Slideshow module won't resize them.


    Here's a procedure for creating 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution Slideshows with 2:3 crop ratio image files (i.e. most all DSLR images):


    1) Export the images to a new subfolder, check 'Add to this catalog,' and ‘Rename to’ ‘Custom Name - Sequence’ to retain sort order.

    2) Use Export settings JPEG, sRGB, Quality 91, Width & Height 1539x1026, Sharpen for Screen Low or Standard, based on your after preference after reviewing.

    3) Open the new subfloder with resized image files in the Library module and select Sort: ‘File Name’ to set correct sort order.

    4) In the Slideshow module select the ‘Widescreen’ template and set Layout Guides (L, R, T, B) = 10, 10, 10, 44. Uncheck 'Stroke Border. You can save this as a Slideshow> NewTemplate for future use.

    5) From Slideshow module Export to  Width & Height 1559x1080 for PDF, or 1080p for video output.

    I currently use ProShow Producer, but the above LR procedure is fairly simple and creates  slideshows with sharp rendering.

    How do intend on viewing your slideshows?

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