12 Replies Latest reply on Aug 4, 2016 8:40 AM by SVAID

    issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files

    SVAID

      Hello!

       

      I have a question regarding the conversion of RAW to JPEG files on Lightroom. In a nutshell, I had RAW files in my catalog which I wanted to remove and replace by JPEGs in order to save space. I exported each RAW file into a JPEG and saved in the same location as the RAW files. I then moved the RAW files to a separate folder on my computer, so the files would appear unlinked in Lightroom. I then reconnected them to the exported JPEGs. This went smoothly. Or so I thought. Now the files are still classified under file type “RAW” on Lightroom even though they are linked to JPEG files. I noticed that in “Metadata” the jpeg files have an XMP sidecar file attached to them and wonder if this is why Lightroom still reads it as a RAW file. Is there any way to change this or do we have to reimport the JPEGS? Ideally, I would love a solution where we could keep the tags associated with the original RAW file. Thanks in advance for any suggestions or information that would shed some light on how Lightroom treats these files/what to do. 

        • 1. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
          dj_paige Level 9

          As far as I know, you cannot reconnect a RAW to a JPG. If Lightroom still says the file is a RAW, then it is a RAW.

           

          So please explain exactly and in great detail what you did. Show us a screen capture of the result.

           

          The whole idea of reconnecting/replacing RAWs with JPGs does not fit into the design or concept of the Lightroom Library Module, and as far as I know, this is not possible; and furthermore it doesn't save space unless you delete the RAWs from your hard disk, which is a practice that is extremely discouraged.

          • 2. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
            JoeKostoss Adobe Community Professional

            You have not saved any space at all as pointed out by dj_paige, but in fact you have consumed more space on your hard drive by adding all those jpeg files.  If you really want to save space, put the raw files on an EHD and then link the LR previews to that EHD.  LR works perfectly well with an EHD.  This will free up a great deal of space on your computer.  As you take new photos, import them through LR to that same EHD and save yourself a lot of unnecessary work.

            • 3. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
              JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              JPEG files do not have corresponding XMP files. Those XMP files are related to the raw files. I think your reasoning to save space is not a very good choice. JPEG files are only 8 bit files and are highly pressed. Consequently, they have discarded a lot of valuable information. As others have suggested it would be a much better choice to simply retain the raw files and the adjustments you have made them. Then you can export as JPEG file when it's needed for e-mail or sending to a lab, etc. Once you have used the JPEG for it's purpose it can be discarded because it isn't needed anymore. If you want to have the absolute best quality possible in your images, it is a much better choice to retain the raw files.

              • 4. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                SVAID Level 1

                Thank you all for your responses. I will try and answer a bit more in detail on Monday, but just wanted to follow up to clarify that, I agree that getting rid of the RAW files is not a wise way to treat your information. We did not get rid of the RAW files, but simply moved them to another folder in our external hard drive. They are safe and sound--I treat them like digital negatives. However, I wanted to just keep jpegs in our lightroom folder (we don't need to work in RAWs, really, and we didn't want to have duplicates showing in the catalog). So we exported jpegs from the RAW files. The preview files in LR then showed them as missing the original RAW file. In an effort to keep the tags we had with the RAW files, we simply pointed the LR preview files to the jpeg files. They connected and now will go to the jpegs if you hit "Open in Explorer." When you look at them with "properties" in Explorer, they show as not having any tags or metadata. In LR they have a ".jpg" extension on the file in their preview image, but they are classified as RAW in the number counts under "file type" under index/contact sheet view. When you look at the "metadata" column on the right, it says that they have an XML sidecar file associated with them. Am I correct to assume that LR is still looking at an XMP file for this jpeg (that originally had a RAW file)? Thanks again, and sorry if it was unclear...I will follow up in more detail again next week.

                • 5. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                  DdeGannes Adobe Community Professional

                  Quote "Am I correct to assume that LR is still looking at an XMP file for this jpeg (that originally had a RAW file)? Thanks again, and sorry if it was unclear...I will follow up in more detail again next week."

                   

                  Lightroom does not create .xmp sidecars for dng files or rendered files like jpeg and tiff the metadata is stored in the file header.

                  .xmp sidecars are only created for raw files.

                  • 6. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                    JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    You seem to have a somewhat convoluted workflow. If image quality is of great concern to you then you should consider doing your work on the raw files. But that is your choice. However, you need to understand that neither Lightroom nor any other program creates an XMP file for JPEG files. The XMP files that you have are related to the raw files, and ONLY the raw files. There is no program that I am aware of that creates XMP files for TIF or PSD files either.

                    • 7. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                      dj_paige Level 9

                      SVAID wrote:

                       

                      Thank you all for your responses. I will try and answer a bit more in detail on Monday, but just wanted to follow up to clarify that, I agree that getting rid of the RAW files is not a wise way to treat your information. We did not get rid of the RAW files, but simply moved them to another folder in our external hard drive. They are safe and sound--I treat them like digital negatives. However, I wanted to just keep jpegs in our lightroom folder (we don't need to work in RAWs, really, and we didn't want to have duplicates showing in the catalog). So we exported jpegs from the RAW files. The preview files in LR then showed them as missing the original RAW file. In an effort to keep the tags we had with the RAW files, we simply pointed the LR preview files to the jpeg files. They connected and now will go to the jpegs if you hit "Open in Explorer." When you look at them with "properties" in Explorer, they show as not having any tags or metadata. In LR they have a ".jpg" extension on the file in their preview image, but they are classified as RAW in the number counts under "file type" under index/contact sheet view. When you look at the "metadata" column on the right, it says that they have an XML sidecar file associated with them. Am I correct to assume that LR is still looking at an XMP file for this jpeg (that originally had a RAW file)? Thanks again, and sorry if it was unclear...I will follow up in more detail again next week.

                      You have major misunderstandings about how Lightroom works.

                       

                      If you want to move RAW photos, that have been imported into Lightroom, to some other folder or disk, that's fine, you can move them in your operating system and then reconnect to them using the "Find Missing Folder" command or by clicking on the exclamation point icon, as explained here:  Adobe Lightroom - Find moved or missing files and folders In this way, the RAWs are still used by Lightroom, wherever they are on your hard disk(s).

                       

                      There is never a need to replace RAWs with JPGs. Lightroom doesn't work this way. Replacing RAWs with JPGs gives you no benefit whatsoever, it results in a loss of quality, and actually creates other problems. It does not save space if you are keeping the RAWs. In other words, this is a bad thing to do and a total waste of time. And if you are able to do this (I am skeptical that it can be done), the keywords, edits and other metadata will not transfer.

                       

                      Can this be fixed? I don't know. If you could show us a screen capture of how your LIbrary module looks, we might know. I specifically asked you to explain in great detail what you did, but this has not been done. Stating you "simply pointed" doesn't really give me enough information to understand what you did. I want to know the exact sequence of commands (using the exact name of the command) or the exact sequence of mouse clicks (explaining exactly where you clicked), so we can understand what was done.

                       

                      Lastly, metadata such as edits, keywords and any other work you do is, by default, NOT stored in the JPG file nor is it placed in an XMP file in the case of RAW photos. So examining the file in your operating system will not show the keywords and edits. If you want the metadata and edits to be stored in the JPG or XMP file in the case of RAW, you have to specifically instruct Lightroom to put that information into the JPG or sidecar XMP file in the case of RAW..

                      • 8. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                        SVAID Level 1

                        Wow. Maybe we should have prefaced our post by saying that we are relative newbies at LR. As promised before, here is a more detailed explanation of what we were trying to do and what steps we took. Thank you all for taking the time to patiently get us up to speed and help us with this little experiment we tried. 

                         

                         

                        Existing situation before our "workaround:"

                        RAW files were imported into LR, sometimes with jpegs, sometimes on their own. Some of these RAW files had tags in LR. We only wanted to have jpeg files in the LR archive. Probably the best option may have been to export the RAW files to jpegs using LR and then move the RAW files to another location and then delete the preview images in LR. When we tried this, the exported jpegs did not have any of the original tags that he RAW file did. So we tried a workaround to try and export and then import jpegs in a way that would keep the tags of the RAW and maybe reduce a step or too. It didn't work out so well. This is what we tried.

                         

                        1) Selected "Export...", Export to "Hard Drive" (to our external hard drive, where all of our catalog images are stored), Export To: "Same folder as original photo", no file renaming, Image Format "JPEG", Include "All Metadata", then hit "Export." We then clicked "Show in Explorer" on the CR2 file and a window in Windows Explorer shows up and we can see that a RAW were created in the same location on the hard drive.

                        2) We moved the RAW files from their original location on the hard drive in Windows Explorer to another folder that is not cataloged in LR.

                        3) The RAW files in LR now have a "missing" icon on the top right that says "Photo is missing." We double-clicked the icon and a window saying the original file could not be found, "would you like to locate it?" Hit "Locate"

                        4) The folder that had the original comes up in Windows Explorer. Instead of clicking on the CR2 file, we click on the jpeg version that has the same name and different file extension. "The file has a different name then the one you are trying to locate. Are you sure?" Hit "Confirm"

                        5) The file is reconnected in LR, but this time it has an extension of ".jpg". The tags have stayed intact.

                         

                        At first this seems like all is successful (replacing a RAW file with a jpeg by reconnecting it). But we notice that under the "Library Filter/File Type" that the file is being treated as a RAW file, and not a jpeg. So something is awry. So digging a bit further, clicking on "Show in Explorer" definitely brings up the jpeg on the hard drive. Looking at the "Metadata" column on the right side, it has the file name with a "jpg" extension. But it also shows "xmp" under "Sidecar Files." See the screenshot below to see what we mean.

                         

                         

                        Lightroom Screenshot.JPG

                         

                        Just to clarify: We know the difference between jpegs and RAW files. We know how to properly move and relink RAW files when they are moved. We use LR to archive student work, and so the tags and the numbers that come up under the tags need to be accurate. We were a bit unclear and a bit naive when we started and to not have what looked like two references show up in the index view (the RAW and the jpeg). But since then we have learned about the LR preference for treating RAW + jpeg files together and are less concerned with separating out the RAW files. We also learned about the "stacking" feature that LR has, so we only see one of image preview of the files in the index view. We also didn't think jpegs had sidecar files (see above). Did we create a monster? Is it time to go back on the path we strayed from?

                         

                        At this point we may try and put the RAW files back with the jpegs so we can have the correct tags and everything is stored together. Either that or just have to redo and retag all of this jpegs. Probably the best thing is just to put the RAW files back in. We didn't try this on that many files, but wanted to see if maybe we found out we could undo what we did on the mis-linked jpegs and maybe find what the best suggested workflow for this is. This is not our workflow for this, just something we were trying. Is there a way to undo this on the files we did this to (there are not too many, but it would be helpful to not have to redo them)?

                         

                        We were curious about what happened and wanted to make an effort to find out what happened, and in so doing, learn a bit more how LR works under the hood, or maybe get suggestions on how to use RAW + jpeg together, or an explanation of the proper workflow, so we know better next time and can learn in the process. For example, is there a way to export RAW files to jpegs so their tags are preserved in LR? If there are terms or something else that we are not saying correctly or if there are other articles that may help explain the way LR works that we are misunderstanding, please let us know. Thanks!

                        • 9. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                          dj_paige Level 9

                          Existing situation before our "workaround:"

                          RAW files were imported into LR, sometimes with jpegs, sometimes on their own. Some of these RAW files had tags in LR. We only wanted to have jpeg files in the LR archive. Probably the best option may have been to export the RAW files to jpegs using LR and then move the RAW files to another location and then delete the preview images in LR. When we tried this, the exported jpegs did not have any of the original tags that he RAW file did. So we tried a workaround to try and export and then import jpegs in a way that would keep the tags of the RAW and maybe reduce a step or too. It didn't work out so well. This is what we tried.

                          I cannot see a justification or benefit for replacing the RAWs with JPGs in Lightroom. In fact, you don't state a justification for doing this. I consider this to be a fundamental mistake. And so most of the rest of your discussion seems to be irrelevant to me.

                           

                          You want to keep the RAWs in your Lightroom. I am adamant about this as the proper workflow in Lightroom.

                           

                          Summary: if you really want to do what you state, provide your reasoning.

                           

                          ... or maybe get suggestions on how to use RAW + jpeg together, or an explanation of the proper workflow, so we know better next time and can learn in the process. For example, is there a way to export RAW files to jpegs so their tags are preserved in LR? If there are terms or something else that we are not saying correctly or if there are other articles that may help explain the way LR works that we are misunderstanding, please let us know. Thanks!

                          You can instruct Lightroom to consider JPGs and RAWs together as separate files, or not. This is completely your choice. How to set file import preferences in Lightroom

                           

                          You can export RAWs as JPGs with metadata included, this is an option in the Export dialog box. Select "All" under metadata in the Export dialog box. How to export Lightroom files to disk or CD

                          • 10. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                            SVAID Level 1

                            Is there a way to have Lightroom treat RAW and JPEG files as a single RAW+JPEG after they have already been imported? The closest thing to it seems to be stacking, which seems a little bit clunkier. I already have a catalog that is filled with jpegs, and if I put in their corresponding RAW files at this later date, I would want them treated as one file so it does not appear like we have duplicates. We are trying to find an answer to our very specific setup, thanks.

                            • 11. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                              JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              It isn't clear to me what your expectations are as far as having the JPEG and raw file treated as a single file. They are two separate files. The JPEG file is a pixel-based image and the raw file contains raw image data that must be converted. So how do you plan to use the two files as a single file?

                              • 12. Re: issues replacing RAW files with JPEG files
                                SVAID Level 1

                                Hi Jim,

                                 

                                Sorry if unclear. We just don't want to browse two through two versions of what looks like the same preview files on LR. It looks like duplicate files, and makes browsing take a lot longer... We like the fact that are treated them as one with RAW+JPEG. This was part of the original reason we didn't put RAW files into our catalog. Basically we treat our LR catalog as an archive for a bunch of school work. Though we want high-res images and we keep our RAW files just in case, mostly the archive is for documentation, so jpegs work just fine. What is more important to us though is the accuracy of the keywords and the numbers that are kept in the Keyword List. We originally thought putting in the RAW files would throw off the numbers too, in addition to making us sort through what looked like double the amount and a somewhat more disorganized catalog (with some apparently duplicated and others not).

                                 

                                We don't necessarily want to use the two files as a single file, just want to view the information in our catalog that way. This is something we are just exploring now, as originally (see original question) we wanted to just keep the jpegs in the catalog to keep it cleaner and easier to organize (while keeping the RAW files in a separate location).

                                 

                                We are still working on resolving the original question (undoing our experiment of replacing a RAW file with a JPEG) and may post an update if we finally get it or move on.

                                 

                                Thanks!