5 Replies Latest reply on Dec 9, 2014 4:12 PM by johnrellis

    How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?

    ceruleangazelle Level 1

      When I convert a file to DNG format in Lightroom, it changes the capture time in the metadata to the current date and time, rather than copying the source data.  Is there a way in which I can tell it to leave my dates alone?

        • 1. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
          Benjamin Root MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          Have you tried "embed original raw file"?

          • 2. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
            johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

            The DNG conversion normally does transfer the metadata from the source file into the DNG.   It may be that the source file doesn't have a capture time embedded within it, in which case LR can sometimes get squirrelly. The most effective way to troubleshoot this:

             

            - Select a source file that has this problem.

            - Post a screenshot of Library grid view showing what LR thinks is the capture date under the thumbnail.

            - Convert to DNG, but don't delete the original.

            - Upload the DNG and the original to Dropbox (or similar) and post the link here.

             

            That should provide all the information needed to understand what's going on and come up with a solution.

            • 3. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
              ceruleangazelle Level 1

              I have selected the Embed Original Raw File option, however in this case I am converting from a JPG rather than a RAW. Not sure if that makes a difference here.

              • 4. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
                ceruleangazelle Level 1

                Hmm, well I guess you got the problem solved for me, in a way. While in the process of taking the screenshots of my conversion process and library, I noticed my mistake. It seems that what the conversion process was changing was the "Metadata Date" and "Date Time" fields, but "Date Time Original" and "Date Time Digitized" were remaining the proper, original date.

                 

                The cause of my confusion was that my Metadata panel view was hiding all but the "Date Time" field, so it appeared as though it had overwritten my prior date information.  I guess the coffee hasn't kicked in yet this morning.

                 

                Thank you both for the assistance!

                • 5. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
                  johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

                  You wrote: “I noticed my mistake. It seems that what the conversion process was changing was the ‘Metadata Date’ and ‘Date Time’ fields, but ‘Date Time ‘" and ‘Date Time Digitized’ were remaining the proper, original date. The cause of my confusion was that my Metadata panel view was hiding all but the ‘Date Time’ field, so it appeared as though it had overwritten my prior date information.”

                   

                  Date/times in photo metadata can be very confusing.  There are all these fields with confusing names imposed by legacy industry standards -- I challenge anyone except a metadata nerd like me to remember the meanings and differences of Date/Time, Date/Time Original, Date/Time Digitized, Capture Time, Metadata Date, Modify Date, ....  The worst are the two XMP fields Date Created and Create Date, which have two very different meanings!  And every app and operating system makes a half-hearted attempt to "simplify" it for the user by choosing different names.   

                   

                  LR makes no serious attempt to make this easy for the user, and over the first several versions, it's handling of date/times was pretty sloppy. (It still has outstanding bugs that don't crop up that often in practice.)  You would think that at least LR would provide roll-over tool tips on the field names in the Metadata panel explaining each field.

                  • 6. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
                    ceruleangazelle Level 1

                    It is definitely confusing, and I am sure some of the variable date fields I have have been added by other software that I had used previously. I have experience in exiftool.exe. Maybe I should perform some batch cleanup of the extra date fields.

                     

                    Regarding the date metadata, since you seem knowledgeable. One last question for you: When using the F2 rename feature in Lightroom, do you know which of the several metadata dates is used to generate the filename when using Date (YYYYMMDD)?

                    • 7. Re: How do I preserve date/time when converting to DNG?
                      johnrellis Most Valuable Participant

                      In general, it uses Date/Time Original (the date/time of image capture).  But, without testing, I don't know how Rename handles images and videos missing Date/Time Original (e.g. which other date field it uses instead).  LR still has some bugs and inconsistencies in handling such images.