8 Replies Latest reply on Jul 5, 2017 12:52 AM by selondon

    Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone

    Professor Deb

      Calling on you Lightroom Mobile experts out there...


      I've set up the mobile sync between my iMac Lightroom and mobile applications, and I'm impressed with how well it works...so well than on an upcoming trip I'm planning on moving all photos I ingest into the iPad from the camera connection kit into Lightroom Mobile and promptly deleting them from the frustratingly straitjacketed Apple photos ecosystem, making my LR adjustments on the fly and letting it do the rest—hopefully to return home with a large chunk of processing already complete and files downloaded from the cloud.


      The question I have, though, is that when photos are synced down to my *iPhone* (original copies will come from the iPad), are these low or full resolution copies?

      I will be shooting a lot of Raw and don't want to eat up my space unnecessarily, as well as the greater network bandwidth required for downloads. The cross-device syncing is working perfectly...it's just that I can't tell if these are full resolution copies or not as there is no way to query the actual file size from Lightroom itself. Very confusing! The original Raw image file downloading to my desktop machine is working great, though, so that's good news.


      Thanks for any help,



        • 1. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
          john beardsworth Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          They should be low resolution, though I think you may be able to choose to download individual original files if they are on the server.


          For the trip, remember that uploading originals will take plenty of bandwidth. Maybe you will have enough, maybe not? Will the camera have a big enough flash card for it to operate as a backup?



          • 2. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
            Professor Deb Level 1

            I get the full resolution images on my desktop just fine...the Raw files are about 15 MB vs. 4-5 for .jpg

            My intent is to keep images on the card as well as the iPad as a backup. Have never lost an SD card due to corruption in all the years I've used them, though, so not too worried. They are so cheap any longer that I'll have several. I'll only be uploading over WiFi, so not too worried about bandwidth. If it turns out to be a problem I'll just postpone the sync until I have a fast connection.


            But what I don't want is to fill up my iPhone with full size Raw images when I do sync. When they sync from the cloud after I've imported to the iPad, on the iPhone they also have the "Raw" tag on them...I just can't tell if they are actually the full size or reduced size, and any attempt to export them so far turns them into jpegs, which tells me nothing...If Adobe would only show the file size with LR Mobile in the properties it would be completely clear.





            • 3. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
              Theresa J Adobe Community Professional

              The raw files do not sync. When you perform an edit in Lr Mobile, you are editing a jpeg preview. The edit information is synced back through the cloud to your other devices. The Raw tag is there to let you know what the original file format is. It does not mean a raw file was synced to your phone.


              The workflow you describe may work for you, but it isn't ideal. While it is possible to download the full res raw file from the cloud to your desktop, this has to be done one image at a time. Between the slow uploads, and the single file download, I personally won't work this way. Also, after you download the raw file to your desktop, that downloaded raw file is not linked to the desktop Lr catalog with the edits done in Lr Mobile. You essentially end up with two occurances of the same file, one that lives online and contains edits, and a copy of that image that you download. Ultimately I want all of my travel images imported into a single catalog that lives on my desktop. Uploading images online makes this almost impossible to achieve.

              • 4. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
                Professor Deb Level 1

                Your second paragraph doesn't reflect my experience at all so far. I've been doing testing and not only does the full quality, full size raw file get downloaded to the desktop, but all edits done in mobile (whether iPad or iPhone) are synced to the desktop and vice-versa. Also, all collection images are synced, not one at a time. It seems to be working flawlessly and quite amazingly well at that. Adobe seems to have gotten this figured out finally. I'm not talking about the web browser access to Lightroom, if that's what you're thinking. All I did was set up my collections to sync with mobile per the Adobe instructions, and it worked perfectly.


                I do understand that the full size raw images are not stored in the cloud...only the edit instructions get transmitted to a low-res proxy image. But that's not my question.


                What I'm seeking to understand is when the images get transferred to my iPhone that are tagged "Raw", are they in fact the full size image or not. There is a preference check on LR Mobile that says "Load Full Resolution" which according to the Adobe help on this says "Switch on to load the original (full resolution) photos on your device. Switch off to load smart previews of your synced photos." It seems like I'm only getting the smaller files on the iPhone with it turned off, but it's still not 100% clear.

                • 5. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
                  selondon Adobe Community Professional



                  All RAW and Jpegs imported through LrM & LrW will upload to the 'Lightroom Cloud' and be stored there at their Full Resolution, from where they all sync back to LrD.


                  This Cloud Storage is not part of of the 20GB Creative Cloud and isn't recommended as a backup, although this is meant to be coming at some point.


                  On your iPhone when editing, you are correct. 'Load Full Resolution' will download the Original, otherwise you'll be working on the Smart Preview, which may be fine.


                  Editing either will increase the size LrM takes up on your phone but you can always 'Clear Cache' afterwards at Collection level or Overall. This may be worth doing on your iPad also after it has finished uploading.


                  Also, when you are planning on editing where there is no Internet connection, be sure to 'Enable Offline Editing' for desired Collections when you do have WIFI before that. This will again increase the size of LrM on the device but you can Disable and Clear Cache at a later date. At least I think that's how it works!


                  As a side note, as you probably know, Collections synced from LrD can only upload Smart Previews to the Cloud.

                  1 person found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
                    Theresa J Adobe Community Professional



                    Sorry, I misunderstood how you were uploading your images. I thought you were uploading through LrW but you are using LrM. I havn't tried that with a camera connection kit. I have shot plenty of raw images with my phone using LrM, and those images do sync automatically back to my desktop as you describe. This works well until I want to remove the images from the sync, but not delete them from my desktop. If I delete the image from LrM, it will delete the image from LrD. I discovered however that I can use LrD to remove an image from the 'All synced images' collection and it will remove it from LrM, but not delete it from LrD. It's clunky, but it works.


                    It looks like you got the answer you were looking for from selondon. Thanks for posting your question. We all learn something from it.

                    • 7. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
                      Professor Deb Level 1

                      So that switch for "Load Full Resolution" and then the collection option to "Enable Offline Editing" are two different things?


                      Still not so clear about this. If I have it set to Load Full Resolution, doesn't that by default load the full image, and whether one is online or offline it shouldn't matter? I get that the web version is a proxy, but still confused about the mobile copies.


                      At this point, though, I've cleared enough space on my both my phone and iPad for any circumstance. The only reason I'll use the iOS photos is to import images to LRM and immediately delete them from the iOS photos app. Apple's system is nothing but grief for me LOL!

                      • 8. Re: Lightroom Mobile sync between iPad and iPhone
                        selondon Adobe Community Professional

                        They are kind of different, yes.

                        In my understanding 'Load Full Resolution' (if turned on) downloads the Original when you access a Photo (in Loupe View I believe it's called). Otherwise a Smart Preview will download.


                        If you don't have Internet connection, you won't be able to edit any Photos that are not local on your device (Originals or Smart Previews) as the Servers cannot be reached. You can only view thumbnails. This is why they have the option to 'Enable Offline Editing' to plan before you go (for either Originals or Smart Previews).



                        One of the things I am unsure of, is what happens when you upload into LrM or use its Camera. It does upload the RAWs/Full Size Jpegs to Adobe's Servers (not a Proxy) but wondered what happens in LrM after uploading has completed. I thought LrM did some housekeeping but just found this thread again, where amongst other info, the knowledgeable Jim Wilde advises to 'Clear Cache' after sync finishes:



                        https://www.lightroomforums.net/threads/deleting-photos-on-mobile-device-without-removing- elsewhere.30296/#post-1205078


                        So potentially RAW and JPEG uploads will remain editable in the app until Clear Cache is performed.



                        It is pretty confusing but yes, beats the Apple Photos option... when Adobe Revel Cloud Storage closed I gave it a go. Tried to share an Album Link but had to create a another Shared Album to do it. Why? Don't get it myself, apart from the cost!