LIGHTROOM - Automatically start generating 1:1 preview when CPU is idle

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  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
Sometimes waiting for preview generation can be absolutely painful especially when your computer doe snot come with a muscle CPU.
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Fay Hong Lo

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Posted 2 years ago

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avinash r, Employee

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Hi Fay Hong Lo,

The reason why we do not generate the 1:1 previews automatically is because of the storage issues. Since these previews are bulky in size, it occupies considerable amount of storage for even a small number of files. This will lead the application to become slower. Another reason being, we do not need it for general viewing purpose as standard-preview would suffice in most cases.
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Fay Hong Lo

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Avinash thanks for your reply and you got the point! Standard preview is suffice for photos which are captured with small aperture most of the time, for example landscape photography. However, as a portrait and wedding photographer, shooting at wide aperture f/2.8 or even wider is very common. I always verify the autofocus accuracy at 100% zoom-in for most of the photos. This is the reason why I always render 1:1 preview before I start any post-processing. The entire rendering process normally takes several hours for 2k+ raw files. I cannot survive without doing it as it takes around 4 sec when I zoom in. The waiting time is killer and absolutely annoying when I need to work on several thousands of photos continuously.

I know the pain of having limited storage as my 15" MBP retina has only 500GB flash memory. However, I would rather manage the limited storage space myself as the waiting time is much more painful. (Cache limit should be a solution?)

Having the 1:1 previews being rendered when the CPU has been idle (or low CPU usage) for a period of time (says 30 sec) definitely sounds good to me. Slower application should not affect too much as no one is attending to the computer. This should give the user a no waiting zooming-in experience.

Again, this is not a must-have function for all the photographers out there but does greatly help someone like me =) 
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avinash r, Employee

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So, am i understanding properly that you have a bunch of photos that you surely know will require 1:1 previews ? If that's the case, does building 1:1 previews during the import itself not solve your problem ?

I would like to mention that we had already thought of this idea. But found it to be not a feasible and scalable option to most of the LR users out there. Imagine LR automatically creating 1:1 previews for 1000's of files while you were away from your system and you come back and find the disk to be full. Also, since these previews are usually discarded after 30 days, such an accumulation would eat up your disk in no time. I hope this explanation is helpful to you.
I do appreciate your efforts on this idea :)