Lightroom Classic: Support for HEIC file format (Windows)

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  • (Edited)
Support for HEIC file format was included in Lightroom CC but still is needed in Lightroom Classic.  When will it be added?

[HEIC image support was added to LR 7.4 (for Mac OS 10.13 or later) and LR 7.5 (Windows 10).  (We're now at LR 8.2.1.) See https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom-cc/kb/heic-files-support.html.  

- John Ellis]
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Robert MacWilliam

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  • Frustrated. Why create file format support in LR CC on launch but not update LR Classic at the same time.

Posted 2 years ago

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Butch_M

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"Licensing may be a part of the problem here"

How could licensing be the issue? ... if it were, then why wasn't 'licensing' an issue for implementation in LrCC?

The length some folks will go to to protect Adobe is incredulous.

It's one thing that Adobe treats their subscribers as pay-to-play beta testers, it's quite another to rationalize and falsely speculate the problem for HEIC support lies elsewhere. This shouldn't be some critical trade secret. Adobe could squash any and all myths generated in this thread in a heart beat if they wanted ... they simply choose not to.

It's just one more indication that they prefer to widen the chasm between themselves and their customers rather than close that gap.
(Edited)
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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"if it were, then why wasn't 'licensing' an issue for implementation in LrCC"

LR CC doesn't implement HEVC: 
https://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/support-for-heic-file-format-was-included-in-...
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Butch_M

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Adobe's words, not mine:

"Support for High Efficiency Image File (HEIF) file import"

No offense John, but semantics aside that is still no excuse. The problem being is I can't point Lightroom Classic to an HEIC file and import it into Lightroom Classic.

Both Apple and Adobe employ the top engineers AND the top attorneys in their fields of expertise. Why the default file format in the most popular camera in the world still isn't supported is the bottom line.

Good grief, it took years and years of begging and pleading just to get support for PNG files ... this shouldn't be the problem they have made it out to be.

As usual, it is Adobe's choice to be silent on this issue creating even more inaccurate speculation, all the while losing valuable good will from their customers because of their failure to communicate.

Hopefully one day, they will consider their customers as valuable as their stockholders ... we'd all be better off.
(Edited)
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Jay Stallard

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 TWEET to @AdobeCare and make this Public!!!!
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Jay Stallard

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Jay Stallard

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If you want to support this in a forum outside of ADOBE, consider this: https://www.facebook.com/groups/255453151688912/
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Luca Di Giacomantonio

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled HEVC and HEIF support.

Lightroom classic cc 7.3.1 
I can not import HEVC and HEIF files from my iPhone X.
When will I be able to do it?

thank you
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Dmitry

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When Adobe starts to respect their customers. It means never.
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Dmitry

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Adobe is too busy to collect our money, so they are not going to spend their time to our problems.
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Dmitry

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By the way, they are the only IT company that doesn't have customer support. That fact tells everything about them. Don't expect anything from them except what you already have.
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TheBatman

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347.
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Element101

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I quit.

Moved everything to Apple Photos for organization and using Luminar for editing.

It was a really difficult decision as I've been using Lightroom pre-beta 1.0...   :-(
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Butch_M

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"Please don't play innocent, Butch. You personalised the discussion, while I simply rolled your first jibe back to you and - unlike you - didn't continue making personalised comments."

Hence my comment about perfection ... Apparently you have mastered the trait while I should really learn to know my place and be silent. Then all will be right in the world.

Though, I don't ever recall expressing an opinion on JPEG2000, FLOG of 4k export, ever. Somehow I must have messed those topics up as well.
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john beardsworth

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I have neither said nor implied that you should be silent or "know your place", Butch, those are your words, your imagination. Other than throwing your first ad hominem jibe back to you,  I have simply given a view that happens to be contrary to yours.
(Edited)
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Butch_M

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I completely understood your analogy. I was merely pointing out I never expressed an opinion on any of those items ... ever ... and questioned the relevance of same to this specific conversation. 

If an entity similar to Apple would have employed JPEG2000 as default, in a flagship device that had been used by a similar number of users around the world capturing a comparative number of images ... then ... after 18 years of availability, virtually no one was using the format ... then your comparison would hold water.

Unfortunately for JPEG2000, relatively few camera makers ever offered the ability to save images in that format. Certainly not in the numbers near the amount of iPhones in current use that are capable of saving in HEIC format.

I can recall only receiving a handful of JPEG2000 from customers over the years, yet the lab receives requests from customers wishing to submit HEIC almost daily.

It was good of you to point out my inferior comprehension skills and your superior intellect once more.
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john beardsworth

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It's amazing that stating a contrary view provokes such a spasm of forelock (check spelling twice) tugging....
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Butch_M

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Indeed
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Fresh Mike

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Photo/video management has become a joke since I now have to store the HEVC videos and portrait HEIC pictures (in order not to lose the depth information on portrait photos) in separate folders while I integrate JPEG files in Lightroom (converted from the HEIC files for non-portrait photos). It's a hassle and a shame.
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Jay Stallard

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I could not agree more.  Skylum's Luminar deals with the HEIC format but does not keep the master images in a operate location from the catalog - or so I was told by Skylum's support.  The is a real challenge if you use a laptop in the field and then come home and connect to a RAID to store the images permanently.  Two things you can do 1) Vote at the top of the page (important) 2)Consider joining this FB group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/255453151688912/requests/
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Fresh Mike

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I already did subscribe to the group :)
The master files *have* to be kept, else it’s a fake support.
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Fruit-fly

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Pretty frustrating and disappointing by Adobe. I only just discovered that all my photos I was importing and carefully storing in LR were imported with a lossful conversion and that there is still no support for HEIC format. :-( I am seriously starting to consider stopping my subscription and moving to an alternative tool.  
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Travisimo

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Cancelling my Adobe Photography subscription because of this blatant oversight in Lightroom Classic.  For now, using ACDSee Photo Studio for Mac, which is actually pretty decent for viewing and managing photos.  Will probably use Luminar when they add the asset management feature.  Lightroom hasn't worked well for me for a long time anyway with lots of bugs and lag, and on a high end iMac.
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Fresh Mike

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Alright, I have just stopped using Lightroom for the management of all my new photos, as handling separate folders in parallel for HEIC and HEVC doesn't cut it. I will be using Apple Photos from now on, despite its weakness in editing because I can't spend three hours every time I want to empty my phone.
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Dmitry

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I've never thought about not using Lightroom and Photoshop. But I think I'm ready to cancel my subscription. It's shameful to use a product of the company that bluntly hates their customers and hates you.
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TheBatman

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Strange - I got an email alert that Sunil posted announcing HEIC support in LR 7.4, but can't find his post on here. If correct, thank goodness and thank you Adobe (still not sure why the massive secrecy on when it was happening). If it got pulled due to some bug, please please don't make us wait until another major dot release to push the update for this.
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Viktor Franzen

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Whaaaaa! I just installed the latest version... with HEIC support. (It says so, haven't tried the pudding yet)
(Edited)
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Viktor Franzen

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Booooooooom!

It took them a little while ;-)



(Haven't got the time to test it right now, but I just installed 'm).
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Fresh Mike

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Better late than never — though it's not available for me yet — however we were right to complain that they left us in the dark for a long time.
Is there support for HEVC videos? (useful for the short videos generated by Live Photos on iPhone)
(Edited)
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Fresh Mike

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OK the update appeared. No HEVC support. Still not practical enough for iPhone users.
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Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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Support for HEIF was added for 10.13.x in Lightroom Classic CC 7.4 released earlier today. 
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Dmitry

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Please fix the bug in Photoshop that prevents mac from sleeping when Photoshop is open. Why do you ignore such serious issues for years?
(Edited)
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Ryan DeCorby

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Can it be clarified, does it just support HEIF by bringing it in as a JPG, or was it supposed to be able to bring it in as an HEIF format? If so, that is not working as outlined. Since Lightroom CC supports HEIF, no reason I can understand why Lightroom CC Classic will not import in HEIF format and defaults to JPG.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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I just verified that my LR 7.4 on MacOS 10.13.5 is able to import HEIC files from my iPhone 7 without problem.

I also verified that the new LR CC Mobile 3.3 will sync camera roll photos in HEIC format to LR CC, and those will sync into LR 7.4 in HEIC format.  But make sure this iPhone setting is checked:

Camera > Formats > High Efficiency
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Ryan DeCorby

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I missed that one in the chain. To simplify, Classic is able to import HEIC, but it will be in JPG format whereas Mobile can import in HEIC format then readable in Classic after a sync. 
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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No, the HEIC format will be preserved in LR Classic 7.4, whether via direct import or via sync with LR CC.
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Dmitry

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Does it support import of portrait photos and editing portrait photos?
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Fresh Mike

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I'm betting that it doesn't.
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Butch_M

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And likely never will ... after all, format support for the untouched HEIC file is one thing, but the 'edited' portrait renderings are a result of special proprietary adjustments made by Apple software in iOS. 

Adobe has never offered direct rendering of such formats as offered by the camera makers. For many reasons it's simply a bridge too far.
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Dmitry

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But is it right that Photoshop already supports background editing on portrait photos imported from HEIF files?
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Butch_M

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Yes, Ps can utilize some depth info from HEIC shot on iPhone ... but, any background editing that is accomplished is done on a separate channel at a pixel editing level, not in RAW processing in ACR.

Since Lightroom only processes at the RAW image level ... and is not a pixel editor ... I doubt if we will see that capability in Lr.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Note that HEIC support was added to LR CC 1.4 and LR Classic 7.4 for Macos 10.13 (High Sierra).  For Windows, Adobe's help article says, "Adobe is working on providing the support."

(I changed the title of this feature request to say "Windows".)
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Jerry Syder

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I believe it's in photo settings on your iOS device. Go to Settings > Photos and scroll all the way down to the bottom under 'Transfer to Mac or PC'
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Ryan DeCorby

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That was exactly it, now it works. Much appreciated.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Interesting. In my configuration, photos sync to LR Classic retaining HEIC format regardless of whether Settings > Photos > Transfer To Mac or PC is set to Automatic or Keep Originals. (LR 7.4, LR Mobile 3.3. Macos 10.13.5, iOS 11.2.1).

I wonder what accounts for the difference in behavior.
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Ryan DeCorby

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Your phone most likely had the setting that Jerry stated above. My iPhone under Transfer to Mac or PC was set on Automatic and I changed to Keep Originals. 

That worked, but in Lightroom it cannot read the codec for the "Live Photos" mov files. Still some features to enhance, but at least it is some progress. 
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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As I stated above, my phone has these settings:

Settings > Photos > Transfer To Mac or PC > Automatic
Camera > Formats > High Efficiency

On my phone, it's not necessary to select Keep Originals for photos to sync as HEIC into LR 7.
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Charlie D, Official Rep

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Official Response
I’m glad the advice shared above (https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom-cc/kb/heic-files-support.html) seems to be helping.

On the iOS side, if anyone is still getting JPGs when trying to import HEIC, please be sure to update the LR Mobile app for iOS to version 3.3 – this latest version will import the HEIC originals from the device camera roll. Previous releases would convert HEIC to JPG during import, regardless of iOS settings.

Regarding HEVC video, the LR Mobile iOS app can import HEVC videos that are recorded in the iOS Camera’s video mode.  HEVC videos that LR Mobile for iOS can import will playback on the same mobile app, and at lightroom.adobe.com, but won’t playback on the desktop LR apps as others have mentioned.

Regarding the small videos that are part of Live Photos, the LR Mobile iOS app ignores these when importing Live Photos from the camera roll.  And if you use Mac Image Capture to transfer Live Photos to your desktop for import into LR, the LR desktop apps won’t import those small videos due to HEVC incompatibility.  There is a work-around:
- use Mac Image Capture to transfer Live Photos to your desktop
- sign into your LR account at lightroom.adobe.com
- select the small videos on your desktop that came from the Image Capture transfer, and drag them in the LR Web app to import them.
...I stopped doing this though for my personal collection, because the desktop clients can’t playback the HEVC videos.  I also dislike that these videos and their parent images look like duplicates to my eyes.  Really, I learned I don’t care about most Live Photo’s motion frames.  Still, I thought I would mention this work-around in case it’s useful to anyone.  The LR team does continue to talk about Live Photos and what we can do to better support our users in the future.
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Alexander S. Kunz

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I just had to set my iPhone 7+ to "most compatible" because LR CC Mobile syncs HEIC to my Windows computer (which runs LR Classic CC) now instead of JPEG - which is completely useless.

The syncing is really the main point for using LR CC, without it I might as well use Dropbox instead, and ditch LR Mobile altogether.

Is there a way to configure LR CC to NOT sync HEIC, but revert to JPEG like it used to?

Because I can't find that OPTION. An OPTION, Adobe. Give us an OPTION instead of leaving users out in the cold. AN OPTION! How hard can it be... :-/
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Alexander S. Kunz

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Thanks for the confirmation and yes, I had that set to "Automatic" already.

Apple could just provide a HEIC codec for Windows, of course... ;-)
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Charlie D, Official Rep

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Hi Alexander

I like options too.  Can you elaborate on why you'd want to capture as HEIC but import into LR as JPG, vs just capturing as JPG?  I am happy to take your suggestion to the team, but am curious to know more about your workflow needs.  Is it a matter of storage space on the device?
(Edited)
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Support for the HEIF container format is already in Windows preview releases:
https://venturebeat.com/2018/03/16/microsoft-releases-two-new-windows-10-previews-with-high-efficien...

Couldn't find any news on when that might released, nor whether the release would contain an HEVC codec. 

Apple doesn't own the patents, so it's very unlikely they would release them for Windows.
(Edited)
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Alexander S. Kunz

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Charlie - yes, storage space. One photo where I compared was 800kb as HEIC, and 1.5MB as a JPG. On the phone, where storage space is limited and precious, that makes a big difference.

What format is used internally on the phone doesn't matter - as soon as it leaves the phone, it should result in a useful file though. Apple made sure of that, with the Export/Sync options. Dropbox has its own option on how to handle HEIC for Camera Uploads (keep or convert to JPEG). If my computer supported HEIC I'd turn that setting on the phone off.

I see no reason why Adobe stopped respecting Apple's setting on the phone with the latest LR CC update. How LR CC behaved in the past was completely logical. Now it's broken.
(Edited)
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Adam D

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Charlie, why don’t you guys just implement HEIC in the Windows version and all these debates would be meaningless? Now I have heic files in the cloud imported thru the iOS app but I can’t use them in Lightoom...
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Fresh Mike

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It's too late and the partial support is not enough. I've moved over to Photos for my daily photos, keeping only Lightroom for select shootings. It came too late, with a deafening silence while we had to wait, and a bad attitude from the fan boys in the forum, that asked why didn't have other needs than ours or wouldn't just accept their workarounds and keep it shut.
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andrewrbell

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I just upgraded from standlone lightroom classic to the new lightroom classic cc for the sole purpose of getting HEIC support for my iphones on my PC, but even after upgrading, it's not supported.  Time for a refund I guess.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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Right, LR 7 supports HEIC on Macos but not Windows.  Windows doesn't yet support HEIC, though Microsoft has been testing it in its "preview builds" for many months.  As soon as Windows supports it officially, I'd expect LR to support it soon after.
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andrewrbell

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I keep seeing people from Adobe saying windows doesn't support it by my vanilla windows 10 install movies & TV app plays the videos that lightroom can't recognize just fine.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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I just searched and it appears sometime between March, when Microsoft released a preview build targeted for final release in the fall, and now Microsoft has released free add-on codecs for HEIC images and HEVC video, which you need to download from the Microsoft Store:

https://www.windowscentral.com/how-open-heic-and-hevc-files-windows-10s-photos-app

I didn't see any article indicating that these codecs were built-in to Windows releases yet.  (I don't work for Adobe.)
(Edited)
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Adam D

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Yes these codecs are available, but to view HEIC files you need the HEVC codec as well and that sells for $0.99. With that paid, my Lightroom still refuses to work with HEIC. Microsoft did the homework and asks for a small fee, but Adobe still didn't manage to include this, although Windows now officially supports the formats.
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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A very minor correction: If you follow the links from the article posted above, the codecs are free, not $0.99.  
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Joe G

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Lightroom Classic is importing HEIC files that already exist in my catalog as jpg files.  The issue stems from the fact that iOS 12 converted my jpg's to HEIC before I realized this was happening and I had 20,000 photos converted on my phone to HEIC. They are all being imported to my hard drive. Since adobe will not acknowledge that this is an issue I don't know if they will offer an update to address. Nevertheless, my hard drive is full now from these double files. Can anyone recommend a plug-in that will find the HEIC duplicates of jpg files based on metadata? I am open to any suggestions on this.
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Jason Timmes

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Ah, I hadn’t figured out what was going on yet, but I believe I’m having the same issue. My wife keeps tons of photos on her phone, and I was puzzled last time I imported her phone into LR (which I do periodically), why it was re-downloading photos from years ago. This explains it. As a software engineer, I can understand why LR doesn’t realize these are duplicates, but I agree the end result is wasteful and annoying. +1 for any suggestions to solve this!
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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You might check out the plugins mentioned in this article: 
https://www.lightroomqueen.com/clean-duplicate-photos/ 
(Edited)
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mikeki

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After reading this entire thread, I believe as of 5/3/2019:
Windows Lightroom Classic does NOT support HEIC files.

Or is there answer somewhere in this thread that I missed?
(Edited)
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John R. Ellis, Champion

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HEIC image support was added to LR 7.4 (for Mac OS 10.13 or later) and LR 7.5 (Windows 10).  (We're now at LR 8.2.1.)

HEVC (H.265) video support was added to LR 8.0 (for Mac OS 10.13 or later).  LR 8 on Windows still doesn't support HEVC, though Adobe says they are "working on providing the support."

See https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom-cc/kb/heic-files-support.html.  I've updated the top post to reflect the current state.