LIGHTROOM: Problem with uncorrupted files showing as corrupted

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  • Updated 5 years ago
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I am having a problem with some pictures that I imported a while back.

First of, I know the RAW file is fine because I have previously used it and had a perfectly fine picture.

The problem that time was that I thought the file had become corrupt the very first time before I got it, so naturally I reimported it from the SD card and got a clean version. Normally that should be the end of the trouble but no.

Windows Preview shows the file as fine in thumbnail view. I imported the file into bridge and all as I did first and it was good.

However I recently switched to Lightroom for the obvious advantages, but now the problem returns on the very same file. It shows the file as corrupt, not only in preview in lightroom, but when i open bridge, the problem is there too.

So my question is this: How can a file that I know to be fine, be interpreted by bridge and lightroom (and consequently photoshop when i import it there) as corrupt all of a sudden? I haven't done anything since the first time this error happened and re-imported it then.

Included a screenshot from the original image and additional from Camera Raw, Bridge, and lightroom.
Anybody got a solution for this?

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Trond Gjeset

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Posted 5 years ago

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Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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Most likely,

When you see it and it is fine, it is the embedded JPEG preview. When you see it and it is not fine, it is the rendered version of the Raw file. That is why it only shows up in LR and in Bridge as corrupt.

Corruptions like this are most likely due to a hardware problem.

Card, Reader, Cable, Ram, Hard-drive could all be culprits. You will need to start testing each component.
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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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Windows Preview and LR Import Grid are showing the embedded preview which is near the beginning of the file. The raw data is further down in the file and is corrupted or truncated.

If you imported the same picture twice and see exactly the same corruption in exactly the same file, then the data on the card is probably bad, so either the camera or the card are having issues, and I'd suspect the card.

If you import the same photos and different photos are corrupted each time then something is likely wrong with the data as it is being transferred or where it is being transferred to, so the cable, reader, hard-drive, ram.

If you happened to open the card or battery door or pulled the card or battery while the camera was writing that image, then perhaps nothing is wrong with the camera or card and it is entirely user error, but otherwise, some hardware, somewhere, is iffy, and only swapping out components (new card, new cable, new reader) and having the corruption happen again or not, will give you an idea of where the problem lies.

My recommendation would be to not use that particular card and see if the corruption happens again. And maybe take more duplicate shots of your subjects in case the corruption does happen, again.

If you want to test the card, format it, low-level if your camera gives you that option, and fill it up completely with throw-away shots, and see if any of them are corrupted. There may be SD card testing programs you can run on it, too, that look for bad data, although sometimes the card just pretends it's being tested. An indication of this is that the test happens too quickly...faster than it would take to copy images off the card.
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Trond Gjeset

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The card in question I have used multiple times since then and not had the same issue. I wouldn't disagree exactly to it possibly being the laptop itself or the integrated reader (its not just me but my class of 15 all have the same laptop and we are all having problems that Dell isn't exactly accepting).

I have managed to extract a full resolution jpeg from it so I got that at least which is better than the low resolution that I had earlier, but I am going to check on another computer to see if it is the computer itself or really is the file.