BUG: duplicate import of iPhone Portrait Mode photos (HEIC) on iOS and macOS

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  • Problem
  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
LRCC-macOS detects Portrait Mode photos that were already imported using the LRCC-iOS app as new UNimported photos.

Steps to reproduce the issue:
iPhone X iOS 12   /   LRCC iOS 3.4.0
Macbook Pro macOS 10.14 (Mojave)   /   LRCC macOS 1.5

1) Take a Portrait Mode photo with the iPhone in HEIC format
    (ex: IMG_4322.HEIC)

2) On the iPhone, import the photo into Lightroom CC using the LRCC-iOS app
    the photo is converted and imported as JPEG (ex: IMG_4322.JPG)

3) Connect the iPhone to a Mac running LRCC-macOS signed-in with the same Adobe ID as the iPhone

4) Click on "+" to add a photo and select iPhone

5) The same Portrait Mode photo actually appears twice in the import window! and neither are tagged as "Previously Added"...
    Hovering with the mouse on the photos in the import window reveals that one photo is the original HEIC (IMG_4322.HEIC) and the other is the converted JPEG file... but with an 'E' in the filename (IMG_E4322.JPG)

6) LRCC-macOS allows you to import any of those 2 photos and this results in a duplicate or triplicate photo in the catalog

I am not sure what is the reason for the HEIC to JPG conversion during the import but at least the converted JPEG should be detected as "Previously Added" by the macOS app.

Could you please reproduce the issue and provide a fix in the upcoming version?

Thank you.
Photo of Valencia


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  • confused

Posted 2 years ago

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Photo of Charles Dragics

Charles Dragics

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Hi Valencia, thank you for the post and the detailed steps.  I cannot reproduce the problem using the exact steps you provided.  If I let the iOS app import a HEIC image that has edits or the Portrait effect applied, yes the file is imported as a JPG like your example: IMG_4322.JPG)

After that, when I point LRCC directly to my phone as you describe, it will import the original HEIC image, but I see LRCC block the JPG copy w/effects -- your example: IMG_E4322.JPG with an error "Some photos were not added.  Error duplicate image"

The only way I can get a third version of the image, another JPG copy, to import and make three of the same image as you describe it to Export a JPG from from the Mac Photos -- because this is compressed differently than the JPG gathered from your iPhone and they byte size and other attributes are different, import of a 3rd version of the image is allowed.

Is this possibly what happened?
Photo of Valencia


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Thank you for your reply Charles.

I tested this again and I have more observations:

- Immediately after taking the portrait photo using the iOS Apple Camera app, if you connect the iPhone to the Mac and open the built-in "Image Capture" application, you see 2 files for the same photo on the iPhone:
So the conversion and the 2nd file "IMG_Exxxx".JPG is actually created by the iOS camera app when capturing the photo and not by LRCC-iOS when importing... good to know.

- LRCC-iOS assumes the user wants to import the converted JPEG and not the original HEIC file...
Shouldn't it present both in the import screen and let the user decide which one to import like the LRCC-macOS app does to be consistent across platforms?
Maybe it could be an option in the Settings -> Import of the LRCC-iOS app?
(PORTRAIT HEIC: Import original HEIC, Import converted JPEG, Import both)

- When LRCC-iOS imports the converted portrait JPEG, it renames the file to remove the 'E' from the filename (IMG_4322.JPG instead of IMG_E4322.JPG).
It is unfortunate that Apple decided to use that confusing filename convention in the first place but shouldn't LRCC-iOS keep the original JPEG filename so that we could easily compare a folder containing photos exported using Image Capture with the folder containing the LRCC-macOS originals and get a 1-to-1 file match?
LRCC-macOS does keep the original filename when importing the converted JPEG... the behaviour should at least be the same across platforms.

- You are right, LRCC-macOS does block the 2nd import of the converted JPEG...
 I had not realized the duplicate image would be detected after clicking the "Add Photos" button... the confusion came from the fact that LRCC-macOS does not display the already imported JPEG as greyed out with the "Previously Added" overlay like it does for other imported photos.
Maybe this is a side-effect of the file being renamed by LRCC-iOS and hopefully it can be considered as an improvement for the upcoming LRCC versions?

Thanks a lot for the good work with LRCC so far!
Photo of Charles Dragics

Charles Dragics

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Thanks for your thoughts and feedback.  You make good points about consistency and giving the user options when importing.  The functionality and design on the iOS app was intended to keep import simple, and not clutter users' account with apparent duplicates.  There is ongoing discussion about how to handle HEIC images, and I will share your feedback with the team.

Thanks again,