Buy a card reader or copy the images from the camera to your hard drive using the File Manager for your OS then import them into LR.
1 person found this helpful
Slow importing is usually a hardware malfunction. If you use a card reader, try a different one or use the cable that came with the camera to connect it directly to the computer. If you use a cable, then try a card reader.
I'm using a special $80 hi-tech USB cable that I purchased a few years ago, because the D800 had problems importing from the camera when released. (It wasn't slow, but it would periodically disconnect in the midst of importing, so if you had 800 photos to import you might have to do 20 sessions of imports to get them all in; the USB cable I purchased was recommended on Nikon forums and completely fixed the problem at that time).
I will buy a card reader and try it that way, though it seems odd to me that if it is a hardware problem that Apple's Photo software is able to quickly and flawlessly import the photos from the same hardware. (As stated, even while Lightroom is open and unable to import the photos at anything but a glacial pace.)
I thought perhaps it might be a problem with Lightroom 5 and OS X 10.11.6, which is why I started here at the Adobe support forums. (I think I upgraded my OS since I last used the camera successfully with Lightroom on this computer).
I'm not sure how to use the "file manager" in OS X to manually copy files from the Nikon D800 to a hard drive. If you or anyone else is familiar with this process I'd appreciate details.
I thought about using Apple's Photo software to import the files sort of as you suggest, and then from there use Lightroom to add them to the library. However, my Apple Photo library resides on the internal hard drive and there is nowhere near room on that drive to import even a single card of D800 photos. (A full-frame 36 megapixel camera).
It's called Finder and it is very similar, if not the same, as Windows Windows/File Explorer. Copy from one folder, paste into a different folder.
Don't use Apple Photos. Photos will place your images into a Package folder that LR can't get to. That is unless you first set Photos not to do that.
I'm using a special $80 hi-tech USB cable that I purchased a few years ago.
You should have bought a $10 USB 3.0 card reader. That would have given you far more reliable connections. There is no USB cable that is worth more than a few dollars even USB 3 compliant ones. That said, if Lightroom doesn't work to import directly from the camera but another app does, I would suspect there is some problem with your catalog or with the destination where you are trying to copy images to. Try optimizing your catalog or restart your lightroom with the option key pressed and do a catalog integrity check. You can also import directly to your hard disk without involving Lightroom or Photos by using the image capture application that you can find in your Applications/Utilities folder.
P.S. your Mac Book Pro doesn't have a card reader? The older types all have one. Just use sd cards instead of compact flash and you can stick the card right into your computer. This will give you even better card reading speed than a USB cable or a separate card reader.