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Lightroom 4.3 VERY slow

Jan 30, 2013 5:10 PM

Tags: #problem #lr4 #lightroom4 #lightroom_slow

I dont think I'm alone with slowness using Lightroom 4. For what it's worth my story is I was using LR 2.6 and worked really well until I recently got a Canon 5D MkIII and needed to upgrade above LR2.x. LR4.3 is VERY sluggish compared to what I had - probably 3-4 times as slow rendering each photo preview when I'm using Develop or Loupe and sluggish making adjustments even basic ones like exposure.


I have tried:

-Optimising the catalog

-Increased the Camera Raw cache to 30GB

-Rendering 1:1 previews at max size

-Purged cache and rebuilt previews

-Set sharpness and grain sliders to 0 (I'll do that last in my processing)


I have even checked it against my Mac Book Pro speed which runs on an SSD and it's slightly better but still not nearly as fast at LR2.6.


I am using a 27" imac with 12GB RAM and 2.8ghz i7. I use this computer solely for editing so I'm not running any other software which means RAM isnt the issue. Processor speed isnt bad so it must be the software right?!


Any ideas?


Would downgrading to LR3.x be any better?



  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 5:15 PM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    Here is what Adobe says about optimazation of Lr: l

    Also, many users have reported that switching Hyperthreading off helps.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 5:46 PM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    I have no experience with that.

    I'm running Lr 4.3 and it's not slower than Lr3.


    I remember some people have said they would want to switch back to Lr3, but don't know if that helped.


    Have you read through this humongous thread:

    It has over 300 posts - all about speed.

    And here is another one saying that Lr 3 is slow:


    How many hard drives have you got?

    The bottle neck with today's computers is the reading and writing to and from the hard drive. If there's only one drive in you book, that's probably where the bottle neck is.


    Keep in mind that Lr continuously reads from and writes to the catalog. When you are in the Develop Module, each step is written to the catalog and immediately it and all the previous steps are read back. As an aside: That is probably the reason why clearing the History helps performance, particularly with the Clone Tool.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 5:59 PM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    Another thing:

    Here are the system requirements for Lr 4.3. Does your book qualify?


    Mac OS

    • Multicore Intel processor with 64-bit support
    • Mac OS X v10.6.8, 10.7, or v10.8
    • 2GB of RAM
    • 1GB of available hard-disk space
    • 1024x768 display
    • DVD-ROM drive (if installing from DVD)
    • Internet connection required for Internet-based services*
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 31, 2013 1:30 AM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    I can now report from both sides of the fence. Up until yesterday, I had a four-year old Core2Duo system, 8GB, that had the dreaded slowness. Not as bad as described above perhaps, but there was clearly something not working as it should. Using matrix-based monitor profiles and updating video card drivers relieved some of the symptoms, but the disease was still there.


    At the same time I used an i5 16GB system that was much better. Not good (as in instantaneous), but acceptable.


    This morning I fired up my new system for the first time and sent it on its maiden voyage. Naturally the first thing I did was open Lightroom 4.3, and...yes. So that's how it's supposed to work! Snappy, immediately responsive, switching images like nothing ever happened.




    Now this is a pretty high-spec'ed machine, i7-3820, Asus P9X79 pro, 32GB, SSD. Let's not hope these are the real requirements for good Lightroom performance. But I did reuse the old video card, an ATI 6670 running the 12.8 driver, and it works just fine.


    At the moment it's a pretty lean setup: Aside from mobo and video drivers I've only installed Lightroom, CS 5.5 Design Premium and Eizo calibration software. Anti-virus, mouse and keyboard drivers, file synchronization software, font manager and Office remain. I'll keep a close look at how Lightroom behaves as these are added.


    Bottom line, and there's no doubt about it: Brilliant as it is, there is sickness in the Lightroom code somewhere. For some people, the unlucky ones,  the symptoms are bad. Most people get away with a mild flu, and some are immune.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 31, 2013 2:05 AM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    Well, the thing is that process version 2012 that Lr 4 uses is more CPU-intensive than previous versions. There is just a lot more math. So process version matters, and a faster processor will make a difference.


    But these i5 and i7 CPUs aren't slouches to begin with. They should be able to handle most of what's thrown at them. This sluggishness just doesn't happen elsewhere - not in video, not in any of the CS apps.

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    Feb 1, 2013 5:55 AM   in reply to twenty_one

    I'm more or less done setting up the machine, and now Lightroom is even faster (cache and previews fully populated I suppose).


    Everything I do now is absolutely instant. This is flat-out crazy. I'd never thought this kind of speed was even possible with Lightroom 4. This must be what they're seeing in San Jose.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 1, 2013 6:00 AM   in reply to twenty_one

    It's always been like that on my Windows machine. Glad you've joined us!


    Bob Frost

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 1, 2013 6:03 AM   in reply to DarrynMckay

    DarrynMckay wrote:


    Yep tried all those things on that list.....which is the only help I got from "support" as well. Has anyone been able to downgrade back to 3.x with any improvement in speed?


    Don't forget you can continue to use Process 2010 (as in LR 3.x) in LR 4. Just select Process 2010 in the Calibration panel and ignore the update ! that appears against these images. Should be faster and you get to use the other features in LR4.


    Bob frost

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