Elements ACR and update thumbnails for jpegs

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The huge advantage of the parametric editing of jpegs (and other image formats) in ACR is that the parameters are written directly into the metadata header of the file itself. That means you can choose to keep the parameters or change them, even going to the original version without creating 'versions' which are useless duplicates.
That works well for jpegs first created in PSE ACR, but what about such jpegs with the metadata written by LR or PS?
The very nice thing is that if you open such files in the PSE ACR, you are able to go back to the original or to modify the parameters to your taste. Of course, You are limited to the available features in the PSE ACR, which do cover the main needs. The files edited in the ACR/LR 'ecosystem' are useable by PSE, PS and LR.

However, what I see as a big oversight is that if the file has been edited first outside of PSE, The thumbnail in the organizer reflects only the original version and ignores the embedded settings.
- 'Update thumbnail' does nothing
- worse, editing in PSE ACR works well but the thumbnail is never updated.

The workaround would be to export such jpegs as DNGs (the thumbnails are updated), but that defeats the advantage of avoiding to create new files. Saving a new version set has the same drawback.

Since the creation of organizer thumbnails is a process totally managed within the PSE catalog, that would leave the original unchanged. I consider that the 'update thumbnail' command in the organizer should absolutely work.





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Michel BRETECHER, Champion

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Posted 4 weeks ago

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Andrew Rodney

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Parametric edits of JPEGs and otherwise is the same in Lightroom and ACR. 
I don't use PSE, not sure about its thumbnail generation. That said, in Lightroom and ACR, Thumbnails in Filmstrip ARE updated when such edits are applied to a JEPG so I would wonder why it's not the case in Elements. 
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Michel BRETECHER, Champion

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I did not mention that there is no thumbnail problem with raw files edited first in LR/PS and with metadata saved in xmp sidecar files. I have only to 'update thumbnail' in the organizer. I can keep the settings, revert to original or use the available tools in the basic and other available tabs. For instance, I can revert from a crop and a B&W conversion.

The thumbnail generation in the organizer is automatic at import time, when saving or manually 'updating'. The resulting image has all settings applied (including those not introduced in PSE ACR), it is resized into two tiny sizes (360 x 240 px max) blob fields of the cache (sqlite database) stored inside the catalog folder. I don't see any difficulty for that update, rather an 'oversight' as suggested before. There may be a conflict with the tag in the metadata preventing the update.

Solving that apparent bug would mean a significant advantage for the ACR/LR ecosystem over third-party solutions. Files edited parametrically in al three softwares would be available without database conversions (LR can convert PSE catalogs).
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Michel BRETECHER, Champion

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New:
I just realized that I was wrong to think that the 'Update thumbnail' function was ineffective ONLY with files edited externally of PSE ACR (by LR or PS). As a matter of fact, the thumbnail is not edited either if the original ACR edits have been made in PSE.
So, the parametric (non destructive) workflow works correctly except for non-raws where you never see the edited thumbnails; you are blind. The organizer recognizes the ACR edited files ok and opens them automatically in ACR as expected. This clearly shows that not updating the thumbnail is not 'as designed', it's a bug with a consequence I do find rather dramatic: I have seen users fooled by the lack of thumbnail uptdating and thus convinced that PSE can't work parametrically.

On the other hand, there have already been complaints from a number of PSE users who want to open such ACR edited jpegs without the edits in the normal pixel editor.

The obvious solution is to be clear about the choice of workflow in the organizer: you should have the choice to open and process jpegs from the organizer either in the pixel editor or ACR. That was what John R Ellis had provided in the past with its 'OpenInAcr' app.

Such a choice does exist in the editor, you can 'open' or 'open in ACR'. You can open many jpeg files at the same time in ACR for a very efficient workflow. I do process more than 90% of my jpegs in ACR only, without having to use the pixel editor. The lack of the ability to open in ACR directly from the organizer has to be compensated by a workaround. It's to open my jpegs by batches in the editor with 'Open in ACR', followed by adding 'automatic' instead of 'default', clicking on 'Done'... and that's it. All those jpegs now open automatically in ACR from the organizer, even if the thumbnails are not updated. It's a bit as if Adobe did not want to show how powerful PSE can be.