5 Replies Latest reply on May 5, 2015 7:30 PM by SeanMcCormack

    Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?

    JeffSP

      I have a 2010 27" iMac with an i7 processor and 16GB of RAM, several Firewire 800 & USB 2.0 connected external drives, as well as a 15TB NAS. I primarily shoot with a Canon 5D MkIII, which creates some pretty large RAW files. When I import my images, I generate 1:1 Previews, as well as Smart Previews. When talking to a buddy of mine, a fellow photographer, he suggested that I could increase my speed with Lightroom CC (or v5) by storing my original images on a local, external drive, and turning it off and working off of the Smart Previews. Once I'd completed my rating, picking, and retouching in the Development module, that then I could turn my external drive back on which would allow LR to sync, and then I could Export, make books, slide shows, etc. as normal.

       

      I'm not convinced that I'd see any speed improvements by using his method, so I thought I'd throw the question out to the community. Using the above described method, will I see any speed improvements in LR CC because it's working off of the much smaller Smart Previews? Or will it actually be working off of the larger 1:1 Previews that were created during Import, as I suspect it will be? I'm guessing that I could move the Previews to the same external drive as the original images, and then turn it off, forcing LR to use the Smart Previews.

       

      Thoughts?

       

      Thanks!

       

      Jeff

        • 1. Re: Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?
          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          I don't believe you would see much increase in speed trying to do that. One thing to consider is that when working with smart previews you won't be able to round-trip to Photoshop or other plug-ins. That may or may not be a consideration for you. Another thought is that the develop module does not use 1:1 previews. Those previews are used in the library module. I do most of my work in the develop module, so I don't use 1:1 previews.

          • 2. Re: Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?
            JeffSP Level 1

            Hi Jim,

             

            You're right about the round-tripping to Photoshop or plugins, so that's something to consider. Good point. However, I think you're mistaken about the 1:1 previews, as it's my understanding that those are used in the Develop module, while Standard previews are used in Library, Slide Show, Print and Web modules. I could be mistaken.

             

            Jeff

            • 3. Re: Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?
              JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Okay, have it your way. But I'm right.

              • 4. Re: Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?
                JeffSP Level 1

                I'm not doubting that you're right. I've just heard otherwise. I certainly don't know, which is why I said that I could be mistaken.

                 

                When are 1:1 Previews used? Why is it that Adobe suggested that one generate 1:1 Previews upon Import?

                • 5. Re: Does working with Smart Previews speed up LR?
                  SeanMcCormack Adobe Community Professional

                  1:1 Previews are used in all parts of Lightroom. Except Develop, so I'm afraid Jim is right. Develop uses the Camera Raw Cache, Fast Load Data from DNG if they have them, and Smart Previews that are available to get the controls active faster while loading the full sized preview in the background. Using just Smart Previews is faster in the sense that they will load quicker because they're smaller, so there's less to process. They're not the same quality as the original so you can never give a 100% guarantee that the Smart Preview edit will be the same as with the original. 99% of the time.. yes. If you're on an SSD you might notice a marginal difference, but you've already got a massive speed increase just by being on a SSD.