Please improve Lightroom performance. It's really BAD!

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I've owned Lightroom 6 for a little under a year and am extremely unhappy with the performance (which actually seems to be even decreasing at a very slow rate).
You would think an expensive specialized program would be technically well made slash optimized to process large amounts of data quickly and effectively, but no. It feels like it's the exact opposite.

I have a relatively high end PC: Core i7 3770K running at 4,5GHz, 16GB RAM, and AMD Radeon Rx 480 graphic card with a SSD drive.
I am (still) absolutely shocked how unresponsive and laggy Lightroom runs on such hardware (regardless of GPU acceleration being enabled or disabled by the way, it's the same). Everything loads so slowly I almost suspect the whole thing is not optimized for more than one CPU core.

Switching between photos takes enormous amounts of time. Don't tell me switching between  20-30MB files that are already loaded should take up to two seconds. When I zoom in to 100% and then switch to the next photo in line, it takes up to astonishing three seconds, with a jerky transition from 100% to fit/fill zoom, switching to next photo, another transition to 100% in blurry way and THEN finally seeing the end result.
This is absolutely UNACCEPTABLE.

In all honesty, if I was able to get a refund, I would go for it and look for an alternative solution, even if it had half the features and more awkward controls.


Please, do something about this. I believe lots of people don't care for new features being added all the time when THE CORE OF THE PROGRAM IS BAD. Perhaps it's time to stop thinking about new stuff and start refining the very basics.
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Jan Hříbal

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Posted 2 years ago

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Alan Harper

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Somebody (not me) should compare some Mac and Windows machines and see if there is a pattern to these repeated (but vague) reports of poor performance in Lightroom. Or if this has been done, please post a link here.

I have a relatively new and high-end iMac, and while I wish Lightroom were snappier, it seems pretty darn responsive. And it will max out at about 600% of a core (4 cores x 2 threads/core means a limit of 800%) when generating previews.

My advice to Jan would be to buy a Mac, but given people's preformed opinions, that might not be the most politic thing to say.

A
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Beverly Parks

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Alan, I know you didn't say that.  But since Macs are supposedly better computers for graphics artists (and presumably photographers), I would possibly switch to a Mac -IF- I had some indication that Lightroom was somehow better on a Mac. 

I have a friend who runs Lightroom on an iMac and he does have fewer problems with Lightroom than I do on my PC, but my PC is five years old now so maybe age (older components) is more a factor than the simple fact that it's a PC.

The subject of one core or multiple cores was brought up in this thread, too.  When I buy a new computer, it will likely have 8 or more cores.  If that causes Lightroom problems, it would be nice to know before spending the big bucks.
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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In eBook/blog posts, you'll find a section on what hardware helps most, and where.
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Beverly Parks

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Thanks, Victoria.  Much appreciated.
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Alan Harper

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Hi Beverly. I know nothing about Windows. The rumors are that in general you can get better hardware using Windows (Apple is not updating its computers that often), but that you also get more incompatibilities because of the wide variety in hardware. I very much doubt the operating system makes a difference.

When I purchased my last Mac, I got an iMac (not available with 8 cores) because I had read that for images, Lightroom and Adobe were not significantly faster, and MacPros are quite expensive. I have read that MacPros are only worth the investment if you are doing video.

In any event, I don't see the problems mentioned here (for both Mac and Windows) on a new iMac with 32 GB of RAM. And trust me, I seem to attract problems on my computer.

While I have read (almost) everything Victoria has written, and love her insights, I still think that someone (talented, with time on their hands), really needs to look into these reports of slow responses and figure out what is going on. In my experience, Adobe addresses specific, clearly described and repeatable bug reports, but ignores most or all reports of general frustration. And, to my own frustration, they also ignore requests for additional functionality that would be greatly appreciated by me!

Good luck with your new computer.
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Beverly Parks

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I was considering a Mac Pro, but my husband has extensive background in PC service/repair (though outdated now because he's been retired for nine years).  He would prefer I stick with PC because it's what he knows.  He said he wouldn't be much help to me if I got a Mac.  LOL, but true.  I'm considering now buying a custom system from Digital Storm.

The only two programs I have running constantly are Firefox and Lightroom, yet as so many others have complained, Lightroom performance degrades until finally a restart is the only thing to do about it.  To be fair, Firefox also gets bogged down frequently, but I'm a tab-aholic.  I now limit my number of open tabs to 50.  :-)
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Victoria Bampton - Lightroom Queen, Champion

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In some cases, Lightroom's settings simply aren't optimized properly. I've written a free eBook on the subject, or the individual blog posts are on the blog page. That might be a good place to start working out whether it's something specific to your machine or a wider issue.

We won't get into a Mac vs. PC debate here. Often there are hardware/software/driver interactions on Windows that can cause problems which are harder to track down or identify, whereas macOS runs on a relatively limited range of hardware. Graphics drivers on Windows are particularly often at the center of performance complaints, even if the GPU acceleration is disabled in preferences.
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Alan Harper

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Exactly my point, but better stated.
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Art M.

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Totally agree with the post. I have a maxed out 2015 Macbook Pro 13" and once an image has some edits on it, further editing slows to a crawl. I do suspect thet are only using one core. Anyway something is truly wrong with Lightroom performance. I have heard that Photoshop and Capture One are much better.
(Edited)
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Peter Vogel

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One thing I really don't understand and that is starting to make me really mad ist, that we, the users, seem to be the ones that have to figure out a hell of a lot of problems, that exist and persist with LR! If LR 6 was an Alpha version, I would shut up about this, but we are talking about a program, that has already reached version .8!!!

I mean, come on Adobe, do your God damn homework!
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mic warmington

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I posted this on another forum thread but it applies here toop -
i have just had a thought to maybe take into the new year - and adobe i hope you're listening...
isn't it possible that adobe are trying to do too much ?
rather than a seemingly endless cycle of release-bug-fix-update-rerelease-bug-fix-update...you get the idea...couldn't we just take a pause and reconsider and thoroughly evaluate the whole lightroom system to make it unbreakably robust ?
no new features , no nothing , until such time as the system can take it...
lightroom is such a fantastic resource , an amazing tool , it's a pity that it sometimes seems to be creaking at the seams...
could it be that there are too many people out there who are continually wanting this that or the other extra gizmo that really we dont need ? i mean who really needs face recognition, for example ? dont most faces belong to family or friends who you already know, or clients whose names you should know ? or isn't this done in camera anyway ? i'm sorry to be picking on you face-recognition fans, it's just an example of extra algorithmic tinkering that may lead to weaknesses...
lightroom is an amazingly powerful tool - let's keep it that way - i believe in it so am happy to pay the subscription...just dont let yourself down..
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Chris Parker

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People need to have a look at their systems to examine what stuff is running concurrently that could be degrading the performance of their machines which gives the impression that Lightroom is the culprit.  Applications like Anti-virus suites, CPU intensive memory resident programs will all take a slice of the CPU's time leaving less for the foreground Application.
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Chris Parker

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Good for you Jan.  The number of people complaining about the performance of Lightroom is insignificant compared to the user base so what does that say about your system?
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Jan Hříbal

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It basically says I run into a smartass troll. I'm not going to waste anymore time talking to you.
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Chris Parker

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Lets see how long that remark stays visible.  I was in no way abusive to you but you've chosen to be abusive to me.
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Peter Vogel

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Ok, Chris, so you know the statistics at Adobe as far as LR problems and complaints are concerned? Or are you just putting out some fictional numbers, that fit your opinion?

There are a lot of tools within LR, that are slow and very annoying and many people have been complaining about this. Face recognition is a total disaster as far as speed or function is concerned. LR itself has tons of little bugs that people have to deal with in different hard and software combinations. And I don't know anybody who says that LR is a snappy well working program.

I get more mails from this forum than I get junk mails in my account and most of these mails are complaints about LR, about laggy behaviour, freezes, speed problems, etc..

If a problem like speed is not addressed or solved by Adobe, the majority of the users will just get on with it the way it is and live with it! I would say, that probably only the die hard professionals will keep on complaining about an issue, because time is money! The majority of LR users are certainly not professional photographers and thus don't really care, if it takes them a couple of minutes more to do something in LR.
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Jerry Syder

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@ Peter, true say!
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Alastair Monk

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Hi Jan,
Can't say I see this myself on my relatively modest Core i5 laptop with the LR database on an external USB2 drive. Initial load (approx 20,000 images, latterly ~20Mb Canon RAW files) takes a few seconds and switching between images is near enough instant to not need timing. The lags you mention suggest some sort of performance bottleneck.
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Alastair Monk

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Also note the comments in this thread:

https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/lightroom-clone-and-brush-tool-can-not-stress-the-cpu-is-slow-only-on-cpu-with-xeon-architectures-can-confirm

It appears that users are getting major slow-downs on systems with processors with more than 6 cores. Your Core i7 is probably the same.
(Edited)
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Jan Hříbal

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Sure, four cores Core i7 and a six(+) cores Xeon are pretty much the same thing.
Really?...
P.S. I do not use any of the features mentioned in that discussion.
(Edited)
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NWB

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Hi Alastair, I agree. The danger of blindly shouting "It is too slow" about any product is the difficulty in quantifying performance of any computer hardware and the software that is installed. Certainly on a windows machine, a single incorrect driver can cause even the fastest machine to slow to a crawl, as can an incorrectly configured anti-virus application. Macs are a little different as the hardware and primary drivers are standardised. However a drive that is nearly full or a slow external drive for images can also have substantial effect.

The key to understanding whether this is a problem with software or an individual machine is to look at forums such as this and see how many other people are complaining on performance of the software. In this case there seem to be a very small number of complaints.
(Edited)
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Jan Hříbal

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Has it ever crosses your mind that vast majority of users don't ever leave any feedback anywhere, positive or negative?
What if the program really is unreasonably and unnecessarily sluggish, but most people don't have anything to compare it against and thus believe it's normal, for example?

I'd like to see a few real world examples of single bad driver turning a PC into a snail.
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Jerry Syder

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@NWB I don't really have much comment regarding systems but just on that last line, that there is a small number of complaints, that's not entirely correct. I get notifications almost everyday in my inbox regarding performance. Also, as Jan stated, the vast majority of users stay put and put up with it but there is in fact quite a lot of frustration on here regarding the subject.
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Art M.

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I bought Capture One to use for tethering because Lightroon is slow and unreliable for tetthering. I will have to switch to C One for editing due to editing speed. I have studied all the advice available for speeding up Lightroom. Reviewing in Library mode speeds up with 1-1 previews but D mode bogs down severely once I do a few edits. There seems to be no solution. I despair everybtime they add features because they are not getting the basics (edit speed) right.
(Edited)
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Jan Hříbal

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I recorded a short video showing one of the most painful things about Lightroom. I was simply switching between two fully loaded files in 100% zoom.
This is completely ridiculous.
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Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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Do you have your GPU check box checked in Preferences>Performance? If so how does it perform when  you uncheck it?
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Jan Hříbal

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Good question.
It's exactly the same.
I disabled it pretty quickly after buying Lightroom because in addition to not giving me any performance boost it also brough various problems in.
(Edited)
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Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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Tell us about your system: OS, Hard Drive configuration, Monitor(s) size/resolution. Video card specs.
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Jan Hříbal

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Core i7 3770K, AMD Radeon Rx 480, SSD Samsung 850 Pro, 24" 1920x1200 monitor.
Running Windows 7 64bit.

But all of that is irrelevant. This is purely about extremely poor coding and even worse multithreaded optimization.
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Jerry Syder

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You know what, with all due respect, I'm tired of seeing comments about enabling or disabling GPU. It's meant to be there to increase performance but it has too many caveats around it. When to use it, when not to. What it affects, what it doesn't(why incorporate a hardware that affects a software partially and release it to the public?). Who should use it, who shouldn't. There's a constant stream of cover-ups for a software that should work fluid but doesn't. There are loads of posts about how to optimise and loads of people that have tried it all and it still lags. The numbers(of people that have performance issues) are too great and we keep going around in circles, till we just stay silent.  With Love 
(Edited)
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Skyfinder84

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ABSOLUTELY AGREE, i follow Lightroom since 4.0 version... 3 PC in the road, untill this ONE... 2 SSD, 32GB RAM 3200MHz, i7 4.0 GHZ...and open a Photo at 100%  is a CHILDBIRTH...i the previous version and older PC, it was faster...after switch off all the useless modules -.-