Lightroom: Ability to sync Smart Collections/Albums (Lightroom CC / Mobile / lightroom.adobe.com)

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  • Updated 3 days ago
  • (Edited)
Collection synching / Lightroom Mobile is a great addition to Lightroom 5.4. Please extend this functionality to Smart Collections as well.
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Geoffrey Roth

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Posted 5 years ago

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Doug Witsken

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I agree completely with Geoffrey! Smart Collections are such a powerful tool to organize photos in LR, I have far more Smart Collections based on Keywords than regular manual collections. The inability for LR to sync Smart Collections is a disappointment and limits the value of LR Mobile for me. Please add this feature to a future release!
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Joel Aarons

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Completely agree! Come on Lightroom!!!
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Pidu Peyer

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Yes indeed - I am waiting for this feature too!
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Patrick Garrett

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Me too. Would make using Instagram easier by getting desired photos to my smartphone.
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Nicolas Le Cam

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I also would LOVE this feature
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Adrian Crawley

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This would be a super feature. I know it would be really good to be able to sync a smart folder with images from the last 7 days, so that they can be retrieved easily. Most of the work on an image, in my case, will be done in the first few days.
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Gabriella Wetli

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This woukd be so much easier, showing clients new photos on the ipad that get collected automatically. Please!
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McKenzie McGehee

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This feature would be so helpful!
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Bob Weder

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Yes, please add. The fact it isn't possible seems like a random decision.
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Robert Petruzzelli

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I agree.  I have installed Lightroom Mobile, but I don't use it because of the limitation of not using Smart Collections.  It means an extra step for me to add my selected photos to my collections.  I'd like to be able to have a keyword like "Lightroom Mobile" and have any image with this keyword or a combination of that and another one populate a collection so I can easily maintain my sync'd collections by simply adding or removing the keyword while working on images in my catalog.  Seems like a flaw in the designer's thinking to not have this, and to not express why it isn't included for some technical (?) reason.
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Steven Smith

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Synched Smart Collections would make my life so much easier.
If there is a technical difficulty then please explain it to us. And if it is feasible please tell us when we will see it happen.
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Mike Auer

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This feature request is so very fundamental to the workflow of Lightroom.

By not syncing smart collections, LR Mobile is a cart without a horse. The mobile app is useless because I don't know which photos to be editing until I have access to the smart collections that house the photos that need to be edited.
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Peter Appleton

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I concur on this. Also, my tablet is neither iOS or Android. It is a Surface 3. So I would like to be able to sync two catalogues under full-function Lightroom CC: one on a desktop system and one on the Surface 3.
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Russ Dodds

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Not  much that I can add other than this would be an extremely valuable capability.  It is perplexing that is not available.
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Johan Elzenga, Champion

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There are a number of technical problems to syncing smart collections. For example: right now you can add an image to a collection in Lightroom Mobile. It will then sync to the corresponding collection in Lightroom Desktop. But if the collection in Lightroom Desktop is a smart collection, you can't manually add images to it; images are added based on criteria. So syncing a smart collection from Lightroom Desktop would require a change in the collections in Lightroom Mobile too: those collections would have to become 'read only' so you can't add or remove images from them.

Another problem could be if you change some aspect of an image in Lightroom Mobile (like the rating), causing the image to no longer fit the criteria of the smart collection in Lightroom Desktop. What would/should happen in this case? Should the image disappear from the LrM collection immediately? That would require a search capability in LrM (making the collection smart in LrM too) that isn't present right now. In case of a 'read only' collection, the image would remain until sync is done (which can be a long time if one of the two is offline), and then it would suddenly disappear after all. And don't forget: a 'read only' collection does not stop you from changing the rating of an image, because an image can be in more than one collection. You could change the rating of an image in another (normal) collection, only to find that it has mysteriously disappeared from the synched smart collection after some time.

So yes, I would like to see this too, but I do understand that the implementation is not as easy as it may sound.
(Edited)
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Tom Petaccia

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Add my vote .. yes please!
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GEGJr

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While I certainly understand the possible issues with syncing smart catalogues I take exception to the scenario where an images changes on mobile so gets removed from the smart collection on CC. My answer is so what? Perhaps a warning could be presented that making changes to an image smart collection criteria "might cause the image to be removed from the collection". Doesn't the same thing happen in CC? without warning?
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Kevan Barton

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Has there been any current movement in Adobe to allow syncing Smart Collections to Lightroom mobile?   I'm stunned that this have been hanging for 3 years and has not been added.   I keep getting the "would you recommend Lightroom to a friend......?"  survey.   My once full positive moves one start to the left overtime I see it now.   Adobe should get off its duff and get moving on Lightroom as other options are quickly coming available.

Anyway, add my "yes" to the vote tally.   And I agree with Geg Jr.  The scenarios are ridiculous - if you manage your smart collections on your desk top or lap top, and the criteria for being included in a smart collection changes, then it should be removed across the networks.   Goodness, let people manage themselves.
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RandyT65

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Add my YES vote!  I can't believe it doesn't already do this!
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Hans Keegstra

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For me it is a must have as well. If we can have it for the desktop version only, it would be OK for me. For instance if I want to filter on what is not in an Album to find some lost photos; it is simply not possible. I need it to organize my photos and I can do that when I have my desktop available. It is not required for iPad. Apple Photos has it. For Lr should be better than this, otherwise what is the point of having the app?
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Laura Hoffman Pitstick

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Add my YES vote!!  Please.  Just doesn't make sense otherwise!
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RandyT65

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I’m paying extra for SmugMug right now because they allow this. Shouldn’t have to do that!
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Terje Drejer Sætervik

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Add my vote
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Per Ankarås

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I agree, this is the feature searched when I started to use the mobile app, please it's close to Xmas
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Mark Reeves

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Totally agree... this would be a really useful update.
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m0jit0

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Adobe hit a big foul ball on this one.  It's is like a telephone that doesn't let you dial the last digit - so close but without it, the whole thing is just plain useless.  Like Randy, I'm also paying for SmugMug to get a solution that should be Adobe > Adobe. 

C'mon guys, let's get this sorted out.
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Peter Heath

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Not having Smart Collections in LR CC is a huge step backwards. How on Earth did Adobe decide this functionality was not worthy of inclusion from day one of CC? Please ge this fixed as a priority!
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Fran Velasco

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Smart collections are far more useful than regular ones. I agree this should have been on Lr CC from day one.
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kurka

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Smart collections AND folders
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SJ Fotography

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yeah I also have lot of smart collections created, would love to see such a feature.
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SJ Fotography

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would love to see such a feature, I've lot of smart collections in my catalog :-/
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Tom Hogarty, Lightroom Product Manager

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Thanks everyone. This would absolutely be a good addition to Lightroom mobile. There are some complexities because of the dynamic nature of smart collections. If a smart collection includes pick flag as a criteria and you unflag an image on the ipad, would you want to be able to undo that choice and bring the image back to Lr mobile without returning to the desktop? If so, for how long?

Regards,
Tom
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William Grizard

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Well Tom, I think you got enough replies. I just enabled mobile and ONLY have smart collections so am having to make some dumb ones to try this out. My .02, if the filter criteria is changed from the mobile app then Undo should be available for 7 days.
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Mark Parson

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How about instead of trying to undo or review just have option of turning off certain mobile features based on collections or all collections. For example turning off the option to change flags or rating on a collection. I personally don't use the flag option on mobile as I do all that work on my PC, however I find I occasionally change the flag myself or showing someone photos on my mobile device they change the flags by accident too when flicking through photos.

Just an idea.

This would add so much value on the mobile app

Mark
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Aaron Kafton

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I think 30 mins is more than enough time to realize your mistake.
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Aaron Kafton

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A lock flagging option for a collection would be nice regardless just to prevent accidental flagging when thumbing through picks or letting a client browse
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Philip Decker

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I can see where that might be an issue with smart collections, I was wondering how about the option to have images put into collections as they are being imported or tethered to a computer that way they can be views on LR mobile on the iPad by a client or photo assist as you are shooting in the studio, this way, especially in the case of a client, they can like and reject images right then and there without having to walk all the way over to the computer.
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Justin Leonard

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I'm afraid I don't understand what could be taking so long to implement smart collections. With a large base of users begging for this feature for over 6 months, I would have thought Adobe would pull the trigger on it by now. This feature is so fundamental that I consider lightroom mobile to be useless, meaning that I also believe I've been wasting at least part of my monthly payments to Adobe. When oh when will this be fixed?!?!?
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Daniel Hui

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^ totally agree.
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remove_b4_flight

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It's enough with 'most recent undo'.
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Cédric Thual

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Lr user since first beta, i just discover Lr mobile, and first surprise (and disappointment) is that i can't syncronize a smart collection... Most recent undo would be enough, i agree. Thanks for the great work. :)
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Tom

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Looks like it's been a while since this was initially requested.  Any progress to report?
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Master

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Give the data that can be stored in a database, there is no reason why smart collections can't be sync'ed with LR Mobile. A simple introduction of a table storing actions would suffice. However, the ability to sync smart collections and the benefits it would bring (sorting/rating/flagging - on the move) far out-ways the inability to 'undo' an action on a desktop device.

I do find it limiting that Adobe have chosen not to implement the ability to sync a smart collection, and can see no sensible reason why not (I'm a DBA so used to working with database systems - and this would easily be achievable if Adobe 'wanted to').
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philcuddy

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Regarding the point made by Tom Hogarty, if a user amended the pick status and that amendment would remove the photo(s) from Lightroom mobile , surely a dialogue box informing the user would be sufficient?

/necromancy
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peter todd

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One approach would be that the mobile version of a smart collection is relatively dumb, only having its contents updated by the full desktop application. Admittedly, this would not cater to all use cases. Nonetheless, it seems to me that it would be pretty useful, and technically and conceptually clear.
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Bhanu Pentakota

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I want to use LR Mobile for not to Edit the pictures, but to quickly import the selected edited picture from LR Desktop.

As we can't sync Smart Albums to LRM, It is unusable to me. So, I am using Flickr services where we can publish smart albums. 

If something changed (like unflag), It gives a popup as "These pics will be removed from Album". I have no issues with that.
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John Brodeur

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I find myself doing what Bhanu does.  My Flickr Pro account is what I use and will use until Adobe allows Smart collections to sync with LR mobile.  With in excess of 50000 photos in Lightroom, I obviously don't want to sync all of them.  However, after post editing following a shoot, it would be really nice for the chosen edited photos to sync automatically with LR mobile.  I find it disappointing that we can't do this yet as the combination of smart collections and sync with mobile were the primary reason for me purchasing LR CC.  I understand that there are a few complications, but I would think that Adobe has access to the best of the best database technicians and they could certainly and easily figure out a way to make this work seamlessly.
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Brian McGreer

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How about just a warning that the file will be removed from the collection if that change is applied? Then if I say yes, it's what I meant to do and I can live with it.
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Bo Rasmussen

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Any change in the source should be reflected in the sync result. 
(no warning needed).
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GEGJr

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If the image is in the collection by virtue of a flag then if the flag is removed the image no longer fits the criteria so thus, it must be removed. Seems simple to me. Doesn't CC remove an image from a smart collection if the image no longer fits the criteria? Am I missing something here?
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danorstmint

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Hey Tom ,

Will this feature ever be added?
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Edgar Sanchez

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Doubt it
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Peter Wells

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Strongly believe that this functionality is critical and should have been part of first release.
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Josh Owen

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C'mon Tom let's get this added!
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Doug Witsken

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Tom, thank you for replying on this so quickly. When I realized smart collections were not included in this release of LR mobile, I assumed the reason must be due to the dynamic nature of the smart collection and the selection criteria used. In my opinion, for those of us that use smart collections, we know what selection criteria we used to create the collection. If we change the "flag" or other item which caused an image to appear in a smart collection in desktop LR, it immediately disappears from our smart collection which relied on a specific criteria. In LR mobile, I don't think it should be any different. If we change a pick flag in LR mobile and that was the criteria that we used as part of our smart collection, it should disappear from the collection in LR mobile near immediately just like it does on desktop LR. If we realize this as a mistake, we can always go back to LR desktop to re-pick an image if need be.
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SJ Fotography

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Another option would be to give an update option for smart collection in mobile. Which means even though we change some parameters those affect the smart collection condition they won't change automatically until the user exclusively click update. This can cover situations where user changed any of such property by mistake.

It would be good to keep such option than immediately updating coz users might mainly use the mobile app when they are away from the desktop.
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Geoffrey Roth

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Hi Tom,

Thanks for your reply. I'm basically with Doug on this. Changing a pick flag on a smart collection image and causing it to disappear from LR Mobile is not substantively different from deleting an image from a static collection. The net result is one less image in a collection with no way to add it back on Mobile.

A potential solution to this issue is to simply include a mobile-only folder or collection of the n most recently removed images. This folder would allow users to view and re-add any images that were deleted /removed by mistake.
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Brad Balfour

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Right. I'm with Geoffry and Doug. Don't let edge cases like the pick flag being used in the smart collection query prevent you from doing the 80% that is really useful to most people.

I really just want to be able to sync the smart collection to mobile so I can refine the photos. Most of the smart collections don't depend on criteria involving things like pick flags.
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jovapo

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Why not just have a pop-up warning when the user tries to do something that would remove the photo from the collection? If they hit ok remove the photo, if they hit cancel don't make the change. It could be one of those don't show again warnings so it wouldn't be too annoying?

Also I was wondering why there isn't an option to just sync my whole library? Maybe this is planned for a future release. If this was possible it would be another way to fix the sync issues with smart collections as you could also go find the photo in the library.
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Evan Robinson

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I don't know about you but my whole library is far too large for a mobile device.

As for a pop-up warning, I agree with a previous comment that it would be exceptionally annoying, but if it can be turned off that's a reasonable compromise.
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Aaron Kafton

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If you know of a 4TB Ipad. Let me know
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William Lum

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There are alternatives to actually synching the entire smart collect if the collection is really large... as long as you are on Wifi you could cache small thumbs for the grid view and pull down larger versions for loupe view or editing. There are usually creative ways to handle things we just have to take things less literally.
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Jan Thomassen

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I agree with what has been said in favor of smart collection syncing. I would also add the suggestion to have the ability to undo changes. So, if a photo disappears from the collection due to a pick flag being changed, one could "undo last change" and the photo would reappear.
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Frode Evensen

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I think syncing smart collections is a must, and was very dissapointed when this was not included. Currently I have 2 normal collections and 75 smart collections.

Regarding the editing of photos that results in photo being removed, I would really like to see an undo button (or shake to undo as is default on iOs). I don't think that there should be a time limit, but undo could be limited to 10 undos, and only for the current program session.
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SJ Fotography

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Probably we can have a separate section to show photos being removed from the smart collection as a result of changes the user made and keep it there until the user confirms or clears.

The way I work should not cause me trouble even when it's immediately removed, since I create smart collection based on a collection, so if a photo is removed I can still find it in my collection.

Another work around would be to create a collection with all our photographs and flag it back if we accidentally unflagged them which removed it from smart collection. This way you do not have to go back to the desktop to add the picture back to smart collection.

Basically I would say, enable this feature for us, we will find work around how to make use of it :)
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Noel Hanigan

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Hi I would really like to see mobile lightroom sync with smart collections please.
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Doug P

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom Mobile: Sync to Smart Collections, or auto Sync new photos..


Feature Request for Lightroom Mobile: Sync to Smart Collections, or auto Sync new photos.

What would be great is if when I add photos to Lightroom, they can automatically be added to LR Mobile. Since LR Mobile will not sync a Smart Collection, there is no way to auto upload photos right to LR Mobile without some manual intervention.

In my case I want to shoot wirelessly from my camera to LR, using Auto-Import. Then have those photos go right to LR Mobile for review.
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Daniel Haddick

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
Lightroom Mobile should work with Smart Collections.


Lightroom Mobile allows the iPad version of Lightroom to sync with your desktop collections. However, the collections that can be synced are only static collections that you must manually create. Lightroom needs to be able to sync a Smart Collection with the iPad.
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Eugene Master

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I define my smart collections with keywords, not with simple flags or color codes. So a flag change on the iPad makes no difference to me. Likewise, should I add/delete keywords on iPad, I would want those changes to sync back to my computer. Best of all, it would be awesome if the photo would add itself to the proper collection based on keyword rules while still on the iPad. I use flags only to keep or discard photos, so I would absolutely want those to sync back and change.
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ryos

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My ideal workflow for Lightroom Mobile will be to come back from a full day of shooting, start importing on my desktop, then just have iPad in my hand and start reviewing images in "Previous Import" auto collection or "Today's Image" type smart collection. I usually review images promptly, so I don't really care if the contents of smart collection changes day to day and iPad's synced images change on day-to-day basis.

I also don't use flag. I use keywords and star rating for image categorization.
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Rebecca Winning

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Oh my gosh! This would be so awesome. I'm actually surprised that it isn't something that is already implemented. It's great to see that you guys are actually looking into this.
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catalpa34

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Agreed that smart collections are essential. i was really looking forward to this, but so far i think Mosaic still has the better paradigm, where it syncs everything by folder and allows you to browse by folder, and then then adds the collections as well so you can browse by collections.
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Colin Haycock

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I too was disappointed when I found that smart collections couldn't be synched to the cloud.
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Jeff Fitzsimmons

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I agree with Doug. I use pick flags and star ratings in almost all of my smart collections (and I only use smart collections).

I don't really agree with jovapo's comment "Why not just have a pop-up warning when the user tries to do something that would remove the photo from the collection? " because the point of me using pick flags and star ratings is to determine whether the image should be in this collection or graduate to another based on my selection. A 'confirm?' waring every time would be MUCH more annoying than the 1 in 100 times that I change a pick flag and want to get it back.

I think a single level of undo would solve this. I have never accidentally eliminated an image from a smart collection and then wanted it back 10 minutes later. For me, It is always an immediate "oops!" Undo solves that.
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Scott

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Smart Collections are an integral part of my Lightroom workflow. I use Smart Collections to identify what stage an image in my workflow.

Pretty please with a cherry on top support Smart Collections
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Mitch Crockett

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Smart collection sync would shorten the workflow for me! Just rate my new imports and they'll be on the iPad.
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Colin Haycock

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It occurred to me that if you were concerned about images becoming unavailable because they unflagged it then it would be a simple enough thing to have another smart collection which had unflagged photos in it. Yes you'd need to plan ahead and set up the smart collections and have them synched, bit but it might be a way to get round some of these problems.