Lightroom/Camera Raw: Disable built-in lens profile

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I own Micro43 and compact cameras, where lens profiles are integrated in RAW files. With software like Capture One Pro, I can easily enable or disable theses built-in profiles. Actually, there is even a slider allowing to enable 0% or 100% of the built-in profile, and whatever percentage in between.

In LR (CC, Classic or LR6), the checkox for enabling or disabling profiles does not work with built-in profiles, which always stay enabled. This seriously limits the possibilities of several cameras which possibilities get unleashed by actual RAW developpers like Capture One Pro.

I'm actually a COP user (after switching from LR) but DAM sucks with COP and this built-in lens profile thing is the only deal breaker for me to come back. So please let users disable built-in lens profiles, or at least offer workarounds.

As a workaround, a dumb "zero" profile that would replace the built-in one (not coming on top of it) could do the job.
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Tokumeino

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Posted 2 years ago

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Pierre Gérard

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I've just bought a Fuji XT30. There is an in-body option to enable or disable lens distortion correction, which means that Fuji - just as Nikon - is perfectly fine with using the sensor uncroped. Unfortunately, LR doesn't honor the user choice and forces the profile to be enabled.

This feature request beeing 1 year old, and still not taken into account by Adobe, I now beleive that they will never put the 1/2 day developer effort to solve the issue. I've now switched to Capture One Pro which lets the user the creative choice of which correction to apply. For multi-device work, backup and face recognition, I subscribed to Mylio which compliments COP just perfectly. So bye bye, Adobe.

It is really a shame that an official rep of Adobe doesn't even write a word or too, even "we won't support that because we want to force you to crop your sensor". At least, we would know. It was a memeber of the support team who asked me to post here to get feedback, and I have none.
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Dirk Hobman

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Automatically and irreversibly applying built-in lens profiles is also a serious bug in Adobe Camera Raw. When processing DNG files from, for example, a drone like the DJI Mavic 2 Pro, Adobe Camera Raw automatically applies the lens correction built into DJI’s DNG files. As a result, lens distortion is applied and CANNOT BE UNDONE. The lens distortion correction is so extreme that it causes serious image degradation, especially in the corners. Adobe: What is the point of a raw file if you force the user into accepting edits that cannot be undone?! Adobe has just turned all the advantages of a raw file into all the limitations of a JPEG.

To get around this problem, I’ve had to switch to a raw editor that does not do this. As a result I purchased Affinity Photo. The more I use Affinity Photo, the more I like it. And I especially like it in consideration of Adobe’s recent threat to price their Photo plan at $20 per month instead of the current $10 per month. To be honest, I’m now one step away from leaving Adobe once and for all, and this is coming from a professional photographer!

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DP HOME

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> To get around this problem

just use exiftool and get null the tags in DNG files ...
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Bryan Hansel

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I tried to figure EXIFtool out and it doesn't make much sense. It would be nice if there was an easy way to use EXIFtool in Lightroom.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Here's how to remove embedded lens corrections:

1. Convert a folder of raws to DNG using Adobe's DNG Converter:
https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/adobe-dng-converter.html

2. Run ExifTool over the folder to remove the lens corrections:
https://forums.adobe.com/message/10070106#10070106

3. Import the modified DNGs into LR.
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Daniel Binkard

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We need to have the option to disable built-in lens profiles from being automatically applied. Not having this option takes away from the freedom we should have to work with raw files. There is no good reason to force users to accept a lens profile, particularly when image data might be cropped out, as seen in some of the above examples. I have no problem with the profiles being applied by default, but I want the freedom to turn them off.

The current arrangement is little different from being locked into a high-contrast color profile, with no option to use a neutral color profile.
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Autumn Eden

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Two years later, and we still don't have a fix?

I was in a drone forum today, where someone was sure his "RAW files were being
cropped" and I assured him this wasn't the case. Until someone said that
Capture One allows you to disable the embedded lens profiles, and that opens up the final "cropping" step after the bit fiddling the lens fixing does.

So we have a large group of people (drone fliers), who see one thing on their screen, compose the shot perfectly, shoot in RAW (like we should almost always do), and when they open it in ACR or Lightroom, they are FORCED into this weird cropping, which removes visible data, and there's no current way to turn the application of these embedded lens profiles off.

Please consider a checkbox option to allow us to disable embedded lens profiles in ACR and LR. (I use LR CC Classic and have an Adobe Creative Cloud account.)

Thanks!
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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It's frustrating LR doesn't let you disable the embedded lens profile. But there is a tedious workaround: 
https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/disable-built-in-lens-profile?topic-reply-lis...
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Autumn Eden

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Yeah, I saw that workaround and it's less than ideal. I shoot thousands of images per day, and I don't want to add another two or three steps to my RAW workflow.

I can't imagine this would take Adobe more than a day to implement, test and push out with the latest Adobe CC release. Why isn't this a thing yet? Have any engineers replied? Two years is unacceptable.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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I agree, it's a tedious workaround for a trivial omission from LR.
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Guy Tal

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The thundering silence from Adobe employees on this thread likely suggests that it's a business decision, and not a product (user-oriented) decision, perhaps to curry favor with some manufacturers. Can an Adobe employee please comment on this thread to let us know the real reason you chose to take control away from your users, rather than empower us to make our own choices?
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Bryan Hansel

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I agree. It's like when Nikon was saying that all Nikon users should run the RAW files through Nikon's software before using Adobe's software. It was a business decision and not one that favored users.
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Bryan Hansel

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I've also noticed that panoramic shots using Photo Merge aren't stitching right when this setting is on. You still have to go into the drop menu and find the right lens. Shooting a D850 and Z 7 next to each other with the same lens and the same pano gear results in near perfect results with the D850 and messed up results with the Z 7. There shouldn't be much if any difference between the two when it comes to getting a good stitch. 
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Camera Raw Engineer Chris Castleberry has stated that Adobe obeys the wishes of Sony with respect to external lens profiles:
https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/disable-built-in-lens-profile?topic-reply-lis...

So it's a reasonable assumption that Adobe is also obeying the wishes of manufacturers with respect to embedded lens profiles. If that's true, people should be complaining to the manufacturers at least as loudly as to Adobe.  (In my opinion, both are equally negligent in ignoring the desires of their customers.)

The underlying dynamic is likely driven by Adobe's legal department, rather than a business or product decision for "currying favor" with camera manufacturers. In another context (reading capture-date time zones from metadata), an Adobe engineer indicated that Adobe's legal department believes that Adobe software should not, without the manufacturer's legal permission, read information from non-industry-standard, manufacturer-specific metadata fields (e.g. Makernotes and raw information). 

Thus, it appears that Adobe needs contractual permission from each manufacturer to read their raw files. This gives the manufacturers like Sony negotiating leverage with Adobe over what LR may do.

I don't know of other software vendors who have adopted Adobe's legal interpretation about non-standard, manufacturer-specific data fields in raw files. There's certainly a lot of software out there that reads all sorts of non-standard manufacturer-specific metadata.  I spent some time a couple years ago looking online to learn if this legal interpretation was used by other companies and couldn't find anything. In general, laws about "reverse engineering" are a complicated mess and vary by country (and even within the US). 
(Edited)
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Guy Tal

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I'm not a lawyer but I would be very surprise if Sony, or any other manufacturer, claimed legal rights over how the files produced by their products are used (can you imagine Microsoft demanding to have a say in the content of documents created on MS-Word?).
Manufacturers have a vested interest in forcing certain settings to make up for possible weaknesses in their products (e.g. softness at edges of some lenses, or imperfect color rendition). Adobe should not. And users deserve to know what the data actually looks like when making buying decisions.
Perhaps Adobe has consented to this in exchange for early/better access to manufacturer specifications, but clearly this comes at a cost to users. I see nothing wrong with allowing manufacturers to provide their own profiles, and to give users the option of using them, but they should not be forced onto users. If Adobe is legally bound to do so, whoever negotiated this deal, perhaps unwittingly, has put their RAW conversion products at a disadvantage as other software vendors clearly do allow users to override these profiles.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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According to Adobe Principal Computer Scientist Simon Chen, the Adobe legal department believes that Adobe needs permission from manufacturers to read non-standard data fields: 

https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/iphone_video_capture_time_is_shifted_upon_imp...
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Guy Tal

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That shouldn't be an issue here since the suggested workaround strips this data completely and RAW conversion still works.
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I've been testing the Luminar Flex plugin for LR by Skylum software. It allows opening the LR raw image file using its own raw converter with built-in distortion correction disabled. It's a destructive workflow, but another way to achieve that objective. I then use PS's Adaptive Wide Angle Filter to correct distortion with very little loss of image area. See below link:

https://console.getsatisfaction.com/photoshop_family/conversations/disable-built-in-lens-profile?rep...

Here's the Luminar Flex output file with no distortion correction compared to LR rendering. Skylum doesn't seem to have any issues with disabling the built-in lens corrections.


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DP HOME

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> According to Adobe Principal Computer Scientist Simon Chen, the Adobe legal department believes that Adobe needs permission from manufacturers to read non-standard data fields: 

dear, to read the data is one thing - and what to do about it is another story ... for example PhaseOne is also not a one man shop that might be under the radar of camera manufacturers and yet they allow users to disable profiles... so please do not overchampion your Adobe's advocacy... 
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Jao van de Lagemaat

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They don’t need to read any data fields, simply give us the raw data as they are in the file and don’t apply the profile
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Technically, of course, it's trivial to allow the lens profile to be disabled. But the issue appears to be driven by legal and contractual concerns.  Adobe believes it needs contractual permission from the manufacturers to read their proprietary raw files, which gives the manufacturers negotiating leverage to ask Adobe not to allow disabling of lens profiles embedded in those raw files. 
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DP HOME

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>  But the issue appears to be driven by legal and contractual concerns. 

PhaseOne example clearly shows that it does not
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Robert Somrak, Champion

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Different company, different or no contract.
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DP HOME

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indeed - different companies, different attitudes towards what the users want :-)...  take Fuji for example - Phase One has a deal with Fuji and there is a free Capture One Express Fujifilm ... Adobe has a deal with Fuji and not only we don't have a free LR Express for FujiFilm but we can't switch off profiles :-)
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Johan Elzenga, Champion

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Maybe that’s the deal...
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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"please do not overchampion your Adobe's advocacy"

Trying to understand Adobe's behavior is hardly advocating for them or agreeing with their decisions. Indeed, I wrote above, "In my opinion, [Adobe and manufacturers] are equally negligent in ignoring the desires of their customers." 

I also wrote above that Adobe appears unusual in its legal interpretation regarding non-standard, manufacturer-specific data in photos and that other companies haven't adopted that interpretation. Observing that Phase One may be one of those companies doesn't help us understand Adobe's position or contradict my analysis.