23 Replies Latest reply on Dec 11, 2014 4:44 PM by areohbee

    import matching raw files?

    kemo sabe

      I'm switching from the discontinued Aperture, but my workflow doesn't seem to be supported in LR. I shoot raw plus jpeg, and store everything off-line. I import the jpegs-only for organizing and culling and for many purposes, they are good enough. For the special pictures, I import the matching raws for detailed processing. Aperture had an "import matching raws" facility. I haven't found anything like that in LR. Any ideas?

        • 1. Re: import matching raw files?
          dj_paige Level 9

          Lightroom allows you to select which photos you want to import, but thereafter it doesn't automatically import a RAW to match a JPG.

           

          You could import all the photos (the RAWs and the JPGs), and then stack them together automatically by capture time , which then allows you to cull and work with the RAW as required.

           

          Advice: Lightroom is different than Aperture. If your workflow and thought processes are that you need to do things that same way that Aperture did things, you are going to be disappointed with Lightroom. You might want to instead start developing workflows that make sense with Lightroom. We can help with that. In particular, the idea of "import the jpegs-only for organizing" doesn't seem to make sense to me in Lightroom.

          • 2. Re: import matching raw files?
            kemo sabe Level 1

            The benefit of importing jpegs-only for organizing is independent of the software. jpegs occupy 1/3 the size, and that means I can keep 3 times more pictures in my laptop library. I find that valuable. I only need the raw files for a small fraction of the pictures. Your solution of importing both takes 4 times the space.

             

            Werner

            • 3. Re: import matching raw files?
              dj_paige Level 9

              Photos are not actually stored inside of Lightroom, and so you can indeed import RAWs and JPGs into Lightroom and use up only slightly more disk space. No it does not take 4 times the space; the photos can be on an external drive, and not on your laptop's internal drive, and they become available for editing whenever the external drive is plugged in. Furthermore, you could use smart previews to allow editing of the photos even when the external hard drive is unplugged.

               

              But if you're going to always assume that Lightroom works the same as Aperture, you will have a very long and frustrating climb up the Lightroom learning curve. Better you should start from scratch and learn the most efficient ways to use Lightroom.

              • 4. Re: import matching raw files?
                kemo sabe Level 1

                Photos are not stored in Aperture either (they're in libraries), and you can keep masters off-line, with previews on-line, so that doesn't represent a difference. I do that for archived pictures. But the previews are inferior (even to the full-size jpegs), and if you need the raw to see a difference from the jpeg in the editing process, then editing a preview will not cut it.

                 

                Yes, I can solve the problem with an external drive, and obviously I do make use of external drives to store the raws, and some masters, but I find it very convenient to be able to store 3 times more pictures at what I deem the optimum quality, without having to connect external drives. In particular, importing the files in the first instance for a quick preview or show, does not require the external drive if you just import jpegs. If you import both, and you don't want to use 4 times the space on your laptop, you have to make sure the external is there and connected. That's an inconvenience.

                 

                I fully appreciate that I will have to learn to do things differently with LR, but that doesn't mean LR can't be improved. I think a feature like "import matching raws" would be valuable.

                 

                The programs *are* different, but their purpose is essentially the same. And I don't hold to the philosophy that if a user thinks a program would benefit from a new feature, there is something wrong with the user. That's a programmer's philosophy.

                • 5. Re: import matching raw files?
                  dj_paige Level 9

                  No one said you can't suggest new features, or implied there is something wrong with you, but in reading what you had written in your first two messages, I don't see a new feature suggestion.

                   

                  In any event, this is not the forum for new feature suggestions. They go here: Photoshop Family Customer Community

                  • 6. Re: import matching raw files?
                    kemo sabe Level 1

                    The feature suggestion is to add a facility to "import matching raw files". And I've already posted it in the photoshop family customer community

                     

                    Werner

                    • 7. Re: import matching raw files?
                      kemo sabe Level 1

                      To elaborate, this was an implicit feature suggestion. It was posed as a question as to whether something like that already exists, and I guess it doesn't.

                       

                      Werner

                      • 8. Re: import matching raw files?
                        areohbee Level 5

                        Kemo Sabe, (is mixed case OK?)

                         

                        You are not the first to want such a feature. Lightroom's handling of raw+jpeg leaves some things to be desired. Because of how Lightroom works (importing both does NOT require significantly more storage), most people think it's not such a big deal - if not enough room on laptop for raws, then put them on external drive instead. If you want raw development capability when offline, develop the smart previews until raws are online.

                         

                        That said, I have developed a (free) plugin called "Raw Plus Jpeg". It has the feature to import jpegs corresponding to already imported raws, but at the time of this writing, does not have the feature to import raws corresponding to already imported jpegs. I have received multiple requests to augment it with the feature to import the raws for the jpegs, and will be implementing that feature soon.

                         

                        I don't know if you'd be willing to use a plugin for such capability, but it'll be available soon as an option if you want.

                         

                        Rob

                        • 9. Re: import matching raw files?
                          kemo sabe Level 1

                          Thanks. I look forward to trying the plugin when you have implemented the feature.

                           

                          I don't know what you mean when you say importing both does not require significantly more storage. It is not significantly more than importing raws, but a raw is typically 3 to 4 times the size of a jpeg (on my camera anyway, using 14 bit with lossless compression, and the best jpegs), so importing both takes at least 4 times the space as importing jpegs only.

                           

                          If you mean it is not significantly more when an external drive is used judiciously, then I suppose I agree, but I find importing jpegs first, and raws when you need them, really minimizes the need for connecting external drives, and for me, that represents much greater convenience.

                          • 10. Re: import matching raw files?
                            Dustin Black

                            kemo sabe,

                            I 100% share your frustration. I, too, am switching over and have drug my heals for the last year or two solely for this function. I also find it frustrating when trying to explain it to my LR friends.

                             

                            I like having the ability to import 1000 jpgs, sort them/rate them and then only import the matching RAW of the best 100 (or however many). I still keep a record of everything I shot, but I don't chew up hard drives as quickly. Over time, not importing several thousand unneeded RAWS add up in storage, in backup, in processing speeds. . . Let's hope with the wave of migrants, LR will listen and my LR friends will finally see what we've been talking about.

                            • 11. Re: import matching raw files?
                              john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              IImport only the raw files and generate "smart previews". This is the Lightroom way to do what you want.  You don't need the JPEGs or plugins.

                              • 12. Re: import matching raw files?
                                areohbee Level 5

                                kemo sabe wrote:

                                 

                                I don't know what you mean when you say importing both does not require significantly more storage.

                                Well, if you import the jpeg and throw away the raw, then yeah - you save a lot of storage, but if you are keeping the raw for possible import later, then you're still having to store it somewhere - that's all I meant - the act of importing doesn't consume storage, not throwing away raws is what takes storage - whether they're imported or not.

                                 

                                Put another way: when you import a raw image, it just makes a small entry in a database, it doesn't make an internal copy of your raw file. OK, yeah: it'll copy it from your camera card, but you need to do that anyway if you want to have the option to import later, whether importing now or not.

                                 

                                Not my most eloquent description, but does that make sense?

                                 

                                In other words, a raw file takes the same amount of space on your disk whether it's been imported or not, thus you don't save any storage by not importing it (you can only save storage by deleting the raw file itself from your disk).

                                 

                                Don't get me wrong - I'm not trying to suggest there is no value in being able to defer importing of the raw file - there are a fair number of people who want to do it - NOT to save storage, but for "workflow" purposes: start with the jpeg and do minor edits if any, then import raw only if more painstaking editing is warranted.. - that way you don't have raw images cluttering your catalog when you have no use for them, yet.

                                 

                                PS - another storage saving technique: convert some raws to lossy DNG - for those 2nd rate photos which don't now and never will warrant the full raw treatment. Adobe did a super job of supporting a "near raw" editing experience (and result), with only a fraction of the storage.

                                 

                                Rob

                                • 13. Re: import matching raw files?
                                  areohbee Level 5

                                  kemo sabe wrote:

                                   

                                  Thanks. I look forward to trying the plugin when you have implemented the feature.

                                  You're welcome, but I'm not sure it will help you, the way I was planning to do it, since there is no storage advantage - I'd be assuming the raw is already on the disk, adjacent to the jpeg file (if the "import raws correpsonding to jpegs" feature is implemented in the same fashion as the existing "import jpegs corresponding to raws" feature). From what I'm gathering, you want the raw to be kept on some sort of auxiliary "not always connected" storage, which is temporarily connected when need be to "import" raw files, at which time, raws are copied to "primary" (always connected) storage, and the secondary/auxiliary storage is then disconnected - is that correct?

                                   

                                  Rob

                                  • 14. Re: import matching raw files?
                                    kemo sabe Level 1

                                    <i>Import only the raw files and generate "smart previews". This is the Lightroom way to do what you want.  You don't need the JPEGs or plugins.</i>


                                    Actually this has been suggested, but it is not what I want to do.


                                    (1) The smart previews are significantly inferior to full-size jpegs, so editing is not optimum, and I need to tether to get full use. On the other hand, for many pictures, and many purposes, full-size jpegs are fully adequate. That means I can keep more files in their optimum quality on my laptop without needing to tether. I find that an enormous convenience.


                                    (2) Importing raw to the laptop requires more space on the laptop, and an additional step of moving the files later to an external drive, or it requires the external drive every time you import pictures.


                                    For quick viewing and culling and the lions share of processing, I much prefer to import jpegs first, and raws when you need them. I still use the preview / off-line masters for archiving pictures.

                                    • 15. Re: import matching raw files?
                                      john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                      Have you actually tried using smart previews? In my experience, they are every bit as usable as JPEGs and mean a less convoluted workflow. It may not be what you want to do, but I'd suggest it's what you should do, or at least try.

                                       

                                      The additional step of moving the raw files, or connecting the drive, takes how many seconds? I'd be amazed if a JPEG-first workflow, then sorting out that problem with plugins, is going to be more pleasant or efficient - quite the contrary.

                                      • 16. Re: import matching raw files?
                                        areohbee Level 5

                                        kemo sabe wrote:

                                         

                                        (2) Importing raw to the laptop requires more space on the laptop, and an additional step of moving the files later to an external drive, or it requires the external drive every time you import pictures.

                                        OK - I think I'm starting to catch on to what you are trying to accomplish. I'll need to re-think that plugin feature - thanks for the edification..

                                         

                                        PS - I totally understand the desire to start with a full-rez processed jpeg instead of a non-processed lower-rez smart preview.

                                        • 17. Re: import matching raw files?
                                          kemo sabe Level 1

                                          Rob Cole wrote:

                                           

                                          Well, if you import the jpeg and throw away the raw, then yeah - you save a lot of storage, but if you are keeping the raw for possible import later, then you're still having to store it somewhere - that's all I meant - the act of importing doesn't consume storage, not throwing away raws is what takes storage - whether they're imported or not.

                                           

                                          Put another way: when you import a raw image, it just makes a small entry in a database, it doesn't make an internal copy of your raw file. OK, yeah: it'll copy it from your camera card, but you need to do that anyway if you want to have the option to import later, whether importing now or not.

                                           

                                          Not my most eloquent description, but does that make sense?

                                           

                                          In other words, a raw file takes the same amount of space on your disk whether it's been imported or not, thus you don't save any storage by not importing it (you can only save storage by deleting the raw file itself from your disk).

                                           

                                          Yes, of course. But I'm not at all concerned about total hard disk space. What I meant about saving space is saving space on my laptop, where disk space is constrained, especially with SSDs that I'm fond of.

                                           

                                          The camera cards can be dumped onto external drives at my leisure, but copying to the laptop is often done in the field, and it's nice to be able to copy the jpegs only and still get high quality without tethering, and then load the raws when you need them. When the projects done, they can all be archived, keeping only the previews.

                                           

                                           

                                          Don't get me wrong - I'm not trying to suggest there is no value in being able to defer importing of the raw file - there are a fair number of people who want to do it - NOT to save storage, but for "workflow" purposes: start with the jpeg and do minor edits if any, then import raw only if more painstaking editing is warranted.. - that way you don't have raw images cluttering your catalog when you have no use for them, yet.

                                           

                                           

                                          Right. But they do also clutter your disk and limit your storage if you find it convenient working on a laptop without external drives.

                                          • 18. Re: import matching raw files?
                                            areohbee Level 5

                                            Got it .

                                            ~R.

                                            • 19. Re: import matching raw files?
                                              kemo sabe Level 1

                                              john beardsworth wrote:

                                               

                                              Have you actually tried using smart previews? In my experience, they are every bit as usable as JPEGs and mean a less convoluted workflow. It may not be what you want to do, but I'd suggest it's what you should do, or at least try.

                                               

                                              Yes, I have tried using smart previews, and find them much inferior to full-size jpegs. Moreover, I find that loading jpegs first, and raws when you need them to be far less convoluted, provided the software has an import matching raws feature.

                                               

                                              Have you tried using matching raws? It may not be what you want to do, but I'd suggest it's what you should do, or at least try.

                                               

                                              The additional step of moving the raw files, or connecting the drive, takes how many seconds? I'd be amazed if a JPEG-first workflow, then sorting out that problem with plugins, is going to be more pleasant or efficient - quite the contrary.

                                               

                                              Making sure the disk is with you, digging it out and connecting it, and having it dangling from the laptop on your lap is a drag. And the extra step of moving the files is the sort of thing that doesn't get done until you find your laptop is full, and your disk is at home....

                                               

                                              Take it from someone who has tried the LR method, loading jpegs first and raws when you need 'em is vastly more pleasant and efficient.

                                              • 20. Re: import matching raw files?
                                                john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                Then I leave you to Rob's embrace!

                                                • 21. Re: import matching raw files?
                                                  areohbee Level 5

                                                  kemo sabe wrote:

                                                   

                                                  I look forward to trying the plugin when you have implemented the feature.

                                                  I opted for a somewhat unconventional solution - dunno if it will suit you well enough or not.

                                                   

                                                  It's a "Script" (not a plugin), which presents a "subservient" lua script that you can edit to return requisite info:

                                                  misc_scripts_import_raws_for_jpegs.gif

                                                  You don't have to edit it - you can use 'Raw Source Folder' button which sets the main critical thing..

                                                   

                                                  Looks a little scary at first, but is actually pretty easy to use..

                                                   

                                                  The main limitation I know of: does not support transferring metadata from jpegs to raws, but that can readily be done (in batch) using a plugin like my RelativeAntics (free) or John Beardy's Syncomatic (not free), or one at a time using Lr proper.

                                                   

                                                  robcole.com - MiscLrPlugins

                                                   

                                                  Rob

                                                  • 22. Re: import matching raw files?
                                                    BR4DY Level 1

                                                    Have just switched from the discontinued Aperture too... can't believe Lightroom is missing a feature to match RAW files.

                                                     

                                                    I shoot RAW + JPEG in the field, with the JPEG's instantly shared via wifi to my laptop or iPhone/iPad via EyeFi card. The client can then rate images, add captions, select which photos they want. When back in the studio, I can then plug in the RAW files and then import all the RAW files which pair up with the corresponding JPEG, and any adjustments to the image or meta data is automatically applied to the RAW.

                                                     

                                                    Is there any workflow which allows people using low-res jpegs to later match them up with RAW files? I can't seem to find a work-around for now. Obviously implementing a feature that allows you to click "match RAW" when importing the card would be the best.

                                                    • 23. Re: import matching raw files?
                                                      areohbee Level 5

                                                      Yeah, Lightroom is a raw (or whatever your original format is) editor, not a raw+jpeg editor - as a courtesy it will keep jpeg from getting lost (manage as sidecar), but it has essentially zero features for allowing you to switch back and forth, compare, match, etc.. If you want to do anything in Lr with the jpeg, you have to import separately, at which point Lightroom promptly severs all ties between raw & jpeg pair..

                                                       

                                                      RawPlusJpeg plugin might help. Also, Relative Antics supports auto (and/or manual) synchronization of raw/jpeg metadata and/or develop settings if in same folder stack and all criteria are met.. Both plugins are free, written by me, and readily findable using internet search.