Adobe Lightroom 4.2 issues solved. Leaves a bad aftertaste

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A couple of weeks ago I wrote about some Lightroom 4.2 performance issues. I finally finished the job, despite the issues. To fix the problem, I had to go through several things that were recommended on the Adobe support forum. Including setting up a new catalog, optimising the old one (several times), making sure OS and everything was up-to-date (everything was), making sure there were no preview renders going on (there weren’t), making sure Lightroom wasn’t writing XMPs automatically, increasing the raw cache size from 10GB to 50GB (does that even make sense on a catalog that holds less than 5000 pictures?!)

The good thing: LR4.2 is now performing at acceptable speed.

The bad thing: I have NO idea whatsoever, which of the above steps actually made the difference and at this point I don’t have the time to do any deeper analysis on the problem.

And neither should I have to.

The whole incident leaves a really bad taste. I love Lightroom. I’m passionate about Lightroom. I’m actually so passionate about it, I teach Lightroom. It allows me to do things I couldn’t do just a few years ago. Lightroom has become the hub for 100% of my photography. But please, can anyone explain to me why a point update from 4.1 to 4.2 should require some customers to go on a week-long hunt for a solution to a problem that wasn’t existent on the same system with the same catalog just a minute before the update?

What’s going on at Adobe? (oops, I think I have a a deja-vu) – your guess is as good as mine. Let me try: maybe Adobe didn’t finish testing 4.2 before they released the software to the general public (sure feels like it to me). Or maybe the beta tester base was too small (which could have resulted in them not catching the big bugs). Or maybe Adobe’s quality standards have been dramatically lowered over the last year (I sure had that feeling when the 4.0 update killed my tone curves back in May).

I’m getting really tired of this. Adobe, please don’t make me go through this again when you release 4.3.

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Should you upgrade to Lightroom 4.2? After today, I’m not so sure.

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Update Oct/29/2012: I managed to solve the issues. How? Beats me.. read all about it here.

Update Oct/16/2012: Adobe has merged my problem report with another few that circle around the same topic. You can find the merged thread here. If you experience similar issues with Lightroom 4.2, please consider going there and marking the thread +1 to help raise awareness!

Lightroom LogoThe other day I updated Lightroom to version 4.2, which for me resulted in a massive slow-down on my mobile system. I didn’t have the time to test on my Mac Pro yet and I won’t until next week, as I’m traveling.

After the tone curve problems and other issues that Adobe introduced with Lightroom 4.0 and their subsequent (and over two months in the making) 4.1 update in May (I’ve written about it), … I can’t help but feel a bit like “here we go again”.

Everything had been great in the five months since 4.1 came out. Good performance on my mobile setup, tone curves working fine, new 2012 process doing good.

The new issues with version 4.2 don’t seem wide-spread, but when I typed Lightroom 4.2 into the Google search box, the first suggestion that came up was Lightroom 4.2 slow… maybe it’s just too new and we’ll have to wait for the reports to come in.

My two specific issues are these:

Issue 1: I love smart collections. One way I use them often is this: I set the smart collection to only show unflagged images, then when I press the x (reject-flag) key on pictures, they instantly disappear from the collection.

Not so instant anymore since version 4.2. I’ve had to wait anywhere between one and 20 (twenty!!) seconds until the flagged pictures went away. It used to be a great way to narrow down a selection together with a client, instead, today it made me look bad.

Issue 2: Import speed. I don’t use the fastest cards, but half an hour on a 4GB card full of RAW images is simply too much. It didn’t happen right away. But during the course of a few imports, LR’s import speed slowed down dramatically. And I’m not talking about preview rendering times, just the simple import.

When restarting LR, things seem to speed up a little, but not for long.

I’m quite frustrated with this experience. Please let me know in the comments if you’re seeing a performance increase or decrease since the update to Lightroom 4.2.

If you’ve got speed-related issues like I do, please consider to +1 the problem report that I filed with Adobe today to help Adobe see that it’s a real issue. (Update: after Adobe merged it with another thread, this is the new location).

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5 Weeks (8): After Dark = Awesome

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This is the last part of the 2012 North American tour recap.

I ended the tour by treating myself to one of the most creative photo events I’ve ever been to: After Dark.

After Dark Studio Sessions

The sessions with creative photographers include pretty much all topics, from studio photography to seeing light to post production to how creativity works. Together with a bunch of vendors who provide equipment to play with. It’s the perfect organised chaos with tens of sessions and activity and the sessions can last far into the small hours of the day. Night location shot anyone? It’s called After Dark for a reason…

After Dark Available Light

Listen to the TFTTF episode that I recorded with After Dark founder David Junion and fashion photographer Brian DeMint.

» more from the 2012 tour

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5 Weeks (7): Canyonlands Landscape Photography Adventure

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Let’s continue to recap of 5 awesome weeks with the very special workshop at Canyonlands National Park in Utah. I teamed up with Jon Miller, Monika Andrae to bring some adventure to the tour. Good thing we had done something similar at three Everest Treks in 2009, 2010 and 2011 ;)

We met in Ft. Collins, CO to stock up, but before the tour I first did a quick stop at the Mt. Everest Cafe to do some ad hoc food photography.

Mt. Everest Cafe Ft. Collins

But on to the Canyonlands 2012 tour.

First we went supplies shopping:

Chris and the moose

then we went food shopping

Food shopping for Canyonlands 2012

then we packed the car, took off to Grand Junction where we added two cars to the mix

Getting the cars ready

The team of photographers before the tour…

Canyonlands 2012: the team

…and during a 6am sunrise photo shoot…

Canyonlands Sunrise

… and at the last day of Canyonlands (click the image for a bigger version):

Canyonlands 2012: Group Shot

By the way, SPAM for breakfast (together with oatmeal, eggs, potatoes and coffee) is actually quite tasty, especially if fried by Jon Miller.

Jon makes breakfast

Here’s a look at some of the super advanced camera tech that we had on the tour:

» more from the 2012 tour

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5 Weeks (6): Harsh Sun, Urban Photography and a Secret Ballroom

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Toronto was a productive time! (and yes, this is part six of the 2012 North American tour recap)

Water fountainsRelease pixie Matt Ravsitar Armstead posted an episode of TFTTF about dealing with harsh sunlight. That episode was pre-recorded before the trip. I pre-recorded a few but didn’t use as many as I thought I would. Oddly enough, being far away from home can sometimes turn into a bit of a productivity boost.

Jail KitchenI discussed the goings-on at Efke and Kodak on TFTTF with Monika, as the news broke that yet another film manufacturer will leave the playing field.

Ballroom TorontoExplored an abandoned hotel ballroom somewhere in Toronto with Monika and Sean.

At the end of the week we held another awesome workshop, this time digital and grouped around urban photography. A perfect way to wrap up two great weeks in a great city!
Toronto Urban Photography 2012 Group Shot

» more from the 2012 tour

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