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Thread: Lightroom made me feel heavy headed.

  1. #1
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Lightroom made me feel heavy headed.

    So I finally took a punt and installed LR3 beta2 version on my PC last night(or maybe the night before..I can't really remember.

    From that point, I've placed myself on an intravenously administered paracetamol regime.. taking tablets was wearing out my throat!

    Found an image that may have had some merit in posting, but not being overly happy with it, it never made it beyond the rating stage(very lowly) and has subsequently been sitting on my PC taking up precious space.

    Feel free to comment on the image, but keep the comments specifically related to processing ideas and tips if you can.

    First up, I have to admit I'm basically a CaptureNX2 'fan boy'. I say that with the trepidation of inverted commas, because it's both one of the most brilliant pieces of software for editing images(mainly Nikon NEF files), but has some of the most infuriating features(or lack thereof).

    Eg. saving an image(mainly jpgs) to a specific file size in Kb's(or Mb even). Some 25Meg NEF fill can be saved at 120kb using my default 70% quality setting, and then the next image in the series could end up at 360Kb's!! So if you want to upload directly to AP(as an example_ you have to go back and resave at .... guess!! 65% quality.. maybe 60% quality??? .. who knows!!?? that's the point.. you just have to guess at what may be a good quality setting without going too low and get jpg compression issues in the image(blockiness, lack of detail sharpness.. etc) So you have to guess at a quality setting, and 99 times out of 100 you guess very close to perfectly apart from having 2-3kb's too much fat.. which AP doesn't allow you to upload!
    (not an AP issue, as no matter what the file size limit is, I'll invariably guess at 2-3kb's over the limit! )
    So simple things, that are very easily and efficiently achieved in free software is missing in my fave image editor(which is CaptureNX2).

    There are a myriad of other niggles, but never has user interface or intuitive workflow ever been an issue for me.
    I found PS and now LR(again) as well as a few others over the years(Bibble recently) PSP7, 8 or 9?? many years ago.. I found all those others a right royal pain in the bum to use.

    As much as I can't stand point and click cameras, I love point and click software for editing my images.. that is photos! Not vector graphics or png's or whatever else PS or PSP can do. I hate graphics, never liked it when I had a quick dabble in it many moons ago, and all I want is an easy to use photo editor that manipulates my photos(more specifically NEF's).

    So LR3-B2 has a few niggles that can be issues with the Beta-ness of the software, but one problem that I think is more hardware stress related is the dual screen, and having the secondary monitor view zoomed in at 100%. LR3-B2 hyperventilates and refuses to work.. basically hanging, and Win7 is gracious enough to wait it out and not fall into the black hole of repetitive endless loop of CPU cycles that LR3-B2 is creating. close down the secondary screen, or minimise the view to less than 100%(if you can catch it quickly enough), and things went well-ish, in a sedate, non fussed, no stress, plenty of time to make another cuppa or three fashion. Slow is not a word I'd use to describe it as it currently works on my old system specs.. frozen is a better way to describe most of its ability for now. Could be the beta thing.. but I currently have an alpha version of PhotoMe running perfectly and I think LR just doesnt; like old PC systems(which I currently have) and CaptureNX has been derided on many occasions for being slow, but as I currently find it, CNX is unfathomably faster in some aspects, like saving the NEF to jpg(5secs or so, whereas LR3-B2 took my PC the time I sat for a moment or two waiting, getting up to boil the kettle, kettled now boiled and poured into the waiting coffee granules.. etc, etc. ie. at elast 5-10mins!! just to save the edited NEF into a less than 250kb jpg.. now that's "workflow for 'ya!"
    I should have converted to jpg and then edited in LR3-B2

    not a concern as I'm sure the release version will improve the speediness in which it operates basic editing/converting, etc.

    And workflow. I won't even start to describe the cursing that involved opening an image. Took me at least 5 mins to 'remember' a comment made by another member here over a year ago I reckon.. where opening an image is not!.. It's importing an image. I already imported the dang thing from my CF card.. I don't want to import anything. I don't need a personal manager or finance director.. nor a bookmark consultant and neither a director of creative corporate cataloging corpulence!! Just open a damned file so that I can edit it.

    .. I suppose to save the edited image I need to export it too!

    What is it with these morons!?

    then my favourite part is that it basically forces you to change the batteries in your wireless keyboard, for no apparent reason other than to make sure you've been paying attention to your PC's maintenance routine.
    Took me lots of headscratching, battery changing and then a Eureka moment to research the fact that Ctrl + does not make sense any more to zoom in(whereas Crtl - still does make sense to use a a quick access zoom out!).
    If you use a program designed by people that think this way, you really need to get grip of reality! These people are morons! They make the least amount of sense with the most fundamentally intuitive patterns + zoom in - zoom out. How the hell does it make sense to use = as the zoom in tool 'all of a sudden'?
    The reason I had that Eureka moment was not because I figured this pattern out for myself. I'm sometimes considered to do the most incompetent things, but I know I'm not that incompetent. No! The Eureka moment came when I changed the batteries twice in my k/b but then the revelation came that Crtl - was working!! so.. there's nothing wrong with the k/b.. there's something wrong somewhere else!.. Moronic Adobe programmers! that's where.

    My concern here is that they do things their way to try to 'set trends' in a trend setting kind of way. That is to be uber cool, so that people can say .. "hey look how cool Adobe Frarklespecking CFV4 image editor is, because I can do..."
    It's cool to be normal too!!
    I'm sure they made this into a configurable option to change too!

    So now that I finally learned how to drive the program.. that is start the engine! ... it surely gets easier from here. and well it was pretty much ok to drive, but once you get used to CNX's colour control points(which are available to PS users via Nik's plugin suite) any other method of editing images just feels like a Flintstones car... compared to a Jetsons car.

    Point, click drag and done. repeat with point, rightclick, and/or a mixture of this and a few other variations.. but it's simple intuitive and takes me between 2-3 minutes to edit an image in CNX with a few clicks of the mouse. Playing with the various tweaks on that Develop work pane was a pain(by comparison) but no different to Bibble a few months back, and I do vaguely remember some of this stuff.. years ago(before the invention of CaptureNX).
    Where CNX falls down is in speed, once you add any noise reduction(a faster PC system I suspect will help here, but images in CNX are faster by a order of magnitude that's immeasurable as of this current Beta release.
    BUT!! where LR wins by a similar order of magnitude is on NR! brilliant.

    I selected an image I captured at ISO6400 on the D300, and where I just couldn't get the chroma noise out(of a black area) using CNX2, the NR feature in Beta2(turned on by default.. and I suspect once the program reads the exif data and hence ISO level???) black became black and with uber uber detail.. Makes Neat Image redundant(mainly for me as I like to work on and stay in raw image mode right up until the very end.. that is I like to maintain the edit steps I'd made in an image easily(as CNX does with it's handling of NEF files).
    NR in CaptureNX used to be OK, and I only ever used Neat Image if I were in trouble so to speak, which was so rarely that it's not worth installing Neat Image on this PC yet(PC's about to go!).
    NR is the only reason I'd ever get a copy of LR3.. but they need to make a host of changes before I'd bother to install it, let alone pay for it(pay for LR3..no way.. not unless that allowed every single aspect of the program to be user configurable.. bloody Crtl = !!!! what braindead incompetent!!.....

    I think ATM the Nik software add-ins to Capture may be my only option for proper NR on raw images..I've read many user feedback experiences that it works well.

    So LR can edit an image 'easily' once you get around the idiosyncrasies(but then again LR uses are laughing at what CaptureNX users have to endure.. yeah! Like Open.. image! Save As... Ctrl +

    So I made three jpgs editing the exact same image with LR3B2, ViewNX and CaptuerNX2.

    ViewNX:


    LR3-B2:


    CNX2:


    My personal opinion is that CNX2 wins in the way it can edit the image.
    The sky probably looks a little more dramatic in the LR version, I did play with it a bit longer in LR, because i had to learn more about the way it operated/worked/flowed.. whereas I knew in an instant what I needed to do in CaptureNX.
    4 colour control points in the sky, set to about -20 brightness, and all I had to do was to accurately place them on the correct colour section(as CCP's work on colour within a defined edit radius). and then I had to redefine the radius on the top righthand CCP as it covered a wider area. That took less than 30 seconds.. which then gives me more time to have more cuppas, and chockies, and then bikkies and a cuppa tea again, and some cake.... as the image was edited to this point in a poofteenth of the time it took to edit the image in LR.
    (that is probably more my bad, as I'm not used to the way LR works. Not hard, just different and the same result required more editing and slider pulling in LR).

    To me speed is more important in 'understanding the workflow' involved when using your editor.

    PS never made sense to me, whereas (way back then) Nikon Capture(4.something) was easier to use, and then CaptureNX came out not long after I started using Nikon Capture, and there was no turning back.. point and click editing was now here

    With the images, the LR version may look kind of more dramatic, but it's less real as I remember the scene.
    Not a molecule of bias in that comment even tho I've already stated that my fave editor is and will always be CNX.. unless something else turns up with CNX's point and edit ability, with LR's noise reduction ability without any effort.

    if you want to see how well the noise reduction eliminates chroma noise, look up DPReview's quick write-up on it recently and their point about a 1stop advantage in noise levels. That's what prompted me to install LR and try it.. but with too many other compromises, I can't ever use it as an editor, or cataloging software or whatever.
    I need my software to just make sense as a priority, and when I eventually get around to keywording my images, it'll be through View or Capture, and hopefully saved in a format that is easily readable(which I assume is, in the XML tags).

    Poor ViewNX, just can;t compete with a proper editor, but even the image it produced is fairly good(to excellent) this image has totally blown out sky highlights, and in ViewNX required -1.3Ev exposure compensation. as it doesn't selectively edit parts of an image I had to add global edit steps using ViewNX, so it's not so much an editor as a quick browser, and if you got it perfect in camera a decent raw converter.

    LR is a mix of the two, being more detailed as an editor, but clunky compared to CaptureNX.
    yeah it has a lot of much better tool implementation compared to CNX, but the compromises far outweigh those advantages, and I can get those advantages that LR has, by using other software very easily anyhow. it always comes back to those colour control points for me.

    Seriously!

    LR.. I hate(as much as Bibble now)

    ViewNX.. well it costs nothing and forces you to get it right in camera

    CaptureNX2.. still the king when it comes to NEF files, and editing them.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
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  2. #2
    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Thank you very much for a very informative Sunday morning 'educational' Arthur.

    Your description of lightroom reminds me of how European automotive makers can put together a very comfortable and functional car interior and send the vehicle down under where they work quite well in our driving conditions but then totally fail to see the need to complete the rhd conversion by leaving the windscreen wiper switch on the rh side of the steering column and the indicators on the left!!!!!

    I haven't tried lightroom and after that little read I don't have any burning desire to baffle myself further trying to become familiar with yet another piece of software. Having persevered with several versions and updates of NX, I think I will continue using it and enjoying the relatively simple style of editing that it provides with the occasional frequent hourly prayer to the software development gods to incorporate a simple accurate resizing tool that you so rightly highlight is missing. I also frequently think about offering copious animal sacrifices (you should be able to supply a chook or 10 for the cause) to the afore mentioned software development gods in return for an effective clone tool and surely a minor rework of the program to stop it consuming 1.8 gb of ram (typical) whilst editing nef files.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    Good luck with the paracetamol , and a most interesting read.

    I've recently trialled CaptureNX and LR, as well as having a go at Photoshop CS3 on someone else's computer. I use Photoshop Elements (V5) and ViewNX.

    Each of them fill different roles IMO:
    VNX - low-end image browser and low-end JPEG conversion
    CNX - low-end image browser, high-end JPEG conversion, mid-range image editor
    PSE - mid-range archive manager/image browser, mid-range image editor, mid-range JPEG conversion.
    LR - mid-range archive manager, tied to commercial workflow, mid- to upper-range JPEG conversion
    PS - high end image editor, mid- to upper-range JPEG conversion.

    ALL of them have major flaws. To start with, everyone at Adobe and Nik Software need to go to microsoft and get lessons in how to write a program for MS operating systems. All of them are resource hogs, and all have weirdo crash features. CaptureNX's approach (seemingly based around the MS .net architecture) is to grab every resource it can find and hog it. Adobe is not so bad, except it says "When I am doing something, everybody else must stop. Now. Pay Attention. Adobe Rules." I hate them both at a fundamental level.

    Having said that, I reckon the Nik RAW conversions are the best. CaptureNX and even ViewNX allow me to adjust exposure, WB and DLighting to produce a better image than ACR. It also handles the NEF correctly (due to Nikon's stupid secrecy - you'd think they make more money from selling CaptureNX than selling cameras).

    I like the concept of LR, but the implementation sucks. I couldn't do have half the archive management that I could with PSE. The develop section is powerful, but still doesn't beat CNX. The watermark is either customisable to content and font but stuck across the middle of the image or customisable to location but not size or font. There is this strange split between printing and production for the web, which I understand on one level and disagree with on another.

    OTOH, CNX's archive management is non-existent, but it's image manipulation covers almost all of my needs. Except no watermark is possible UNLESS you do a bulk JPEG conversion which means you can't do individual image tweaks easily (and makes for a strange workflow). Showing the jpeg output size would be a nice touch though. (Aside, it amazes me how many times the image is 2 or 3 kb above the Ausphotography limit - if Rick made the limit 263 kb, I reckon we'd never have a problem .)

    PSEs editor lacks the proper power of photoshop CS3 especially WRT layers, and will probably be the main cause of a purchase of CS4 in the future. However, the Photoshop approach still confuses me (PSE and PS have the same underlying concepts regarding selections, masks etc.) and is not intuitive. (CNX on the other hand is much easier to use.)

    My current trial workflow is:

    - Import into PSE
    - If exposure or WB is off, convert and tweak images in CNX/ViewNX
    Otherwise use PSE's editor. (And crop, sharpen)
    - Save to tiff
    - In PSE and add watermark, resize for web and save as JPEG

    If I convert in CNX, I have to reimport the new tiff and stack it with the original NEF. If I convert in PSE, it does it all seamlessly. There is NO good reason for PSE treating it differently.

    My ideal would be LR for workflow with PSE for archive, VNX as image viewer and CNX as it's main "developer" and "output" stages.

    Pass the paracetamol Arthur
    Last edited by farmer_rob; 28-03-2010 at 9:03am.
    Regards, Rob

    D600, AF-S 35mm f1.8G DX, AF-S 50mm f1.8G, AF-S 24-85mm f3.5-4.5G ED VR, AF-S 70-300mm F4.5-5.6G VR, Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM
    Photos: geeoverbar.smugmug.com Software: CS6, Lightroom 4

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    A nice rundown, it really is strange how we all have different likes and dislikes, i tried Bibble the other day for the very first time as i always thought it was just for Nikon, but i was really taken by it and find myself using it more than any of the others.
    Julie

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    l Canon 50mm f1.8 MK l l Canon 85mm f1.8 l Canon 100mm f2.8L Macro l Canon 24-70IS f4L l LR4/CS6



  5. #5
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    I remember Bibble(version 4 that I tried) was fast.

    Don;t get me wrong about the archiving cataloging section of LR.. It's probably a great feature, but why do I have to import it into LR's 'library' when I probably don't really want too. It's most likely a major misunderstanding on my part as to what that really entails, but my thinking is that it's building some kind of database for itself on my PC(that I don't care for), and therefore placing various bits of info here and there cluttering up space and creating files in abstract locations that serve to confuse me when it's time to clear things up on the PC(such as when I uninstall this trial version of LR).

    LR's speed was sufficiently slow to officially crown CaptureNX2 speed demon of the week, and I CNX was at least 6 seconds a lap quicker than LR in every aspect of editing the image.. except in rendering the image. I used Task Manager to watch the CPU process cycles as opposed to just viewing the rendered image, and apart from NR in CNX2, which is atrociously slow on my old PC, CNX would stop processing but still take a little longer to render the process on my screens. That is I could make an edit using CNX, and the CPU would shoot up to 100% for a given amount of time(I used the grid squares on the performance tab as my guide). CNX would process for a small amount of time and then reprocess the image to render the change(if it wasn't immediate). There'd be a small spike in CPU cycles a lull ad then a small spike to display the image. what that means to me(and how it translates in the real world.. is that you can just keep on making various edit steps and CNX will eventually render the image and not crash. Not so with LR. While it looked like it made the edit with the illusion of a rendered image the CPU cylce time was always at 100% for much longer. I kept adding random edit steps and eventually (and easily) I got it to 'not responding'(as indicated by windows at the top of the toolbar). Easy fix was to go do the dishes and come back in 30mins, or make a coffee...etc painfully slow and then to convert the NEF to jpg took approx 5-10mins to complete.
    I prematurely opened the resultant jpg in both ViewNX and FastStone image viewer and they wouldn't display it(as LR was still rendering the jpg image after 5 mins at least).

    The other thing I haven't yet figured out in LR is how to undo/redo any edit steps I've made.
    On the LHS is the history list of edits. Can you enable/disable or add/remove any of the edits steps in the history list individually? The preview pane shows you the difference in the image as you hover the mouse over each step, but I prefer the CNX method of tick/untick to see how the image looks and then highlight a series of various combinations of edit steps to see which combinations look good together.

    I wished they'd put more effort into programming colour control points type image editing into the program rather than features like uploading to various websites and suchlike.

    Am still persevering with it every now and then, but I don't like it.. yet!

    BTW! PS!!!!.. that interface was even more atrocious to work with! A simple crop took me forever to figure out how to do. In CNX you crop to where you think you want the image and press [ENTER].. why can't it be so simple in PS? (I don't have PS anymore so it's not going to be an issue).

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    Thanks Arthur. I am a CNX2 user as well, and I have an as yet unopened file which is the trial version of LRB3. I am not sure if I am going to open it now. For me to change (and spend the money) it would have to offer a clear advantage - and that it seems not to do.

    I take it eitheryou haven't or can't throw a trial version of Color (sic) Efex Pro or Viveza into LR in order to effectively gain the control point functionality?

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    No idea on if you can use the colour control points plugin form Nik software in LR, but I suspect that you should be able too!
    I remember reading from someone on here that they should have bought the full version that installs to LR and PS, or something to that effect.
    That could be an option as well.. BUT!!! I just played with the crop tool, and while it works the correct way with the [Enter] key making the crop effective, the manner in which you control the edit box is backwards. It;s almost there I guess. There idea on how to move the crop window is not to move the crop window to fit into a position on the image, but the other way around, where you move the image over the crop window. So when you want to move the crop window a half a millimeter to the right to eliminate an obtrusion to the left of it, and you want to maintain the subject just to the right of the crop window edge, instead of moving the crop window to the right, you drag the image to 'underlay' it behind the crop window.. and to the left. So moving leftwards means having to move rightwards!!

    Easy in big steps, but fine millimeter perfect steps makes for annoying jerkiness. bad implementation unless it can be altered in a setting somewhere.

    ps. CNX isn't perfect either tho! One thing that I sometimes find annoying with the CNX crop tool is that if I change my mind and want to edit the crop I've made just a few mils here or there(larger) you can't edit the existing crop, you have to create a new one. That's stupid considering the info is written to the NEF in a non destructive manner.. so it should be easy to program that functionality into crop tool for CNX(it's not like you've lost image data.. all edits are undoable or editable if you edit an NEF.. except the crop tool!)
    Same with other edit tools such as selections like graduated selections and stuff like that. Once you create your graduated selection, you can't edit the graduation, which is also annoying. You have to delete the selection and start again if you want to do it properly.

    The crop tool in LR is barely usable for my feeble mind. I like them easy to use like 99.9% of all other software(ie. non Adobe software) I've tried so far.

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    can you summarize it in dot points for easier reading

    going through essays in the morning, or any time of the day is quite daunting....

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    The biggest downside of LR for me is no layers! Other than that, I find it pretty useful...I like making virtual copies of images to compare different processing. As far as importing images, just make a folder that links directly to LR, then you have then benefit of making collections.
    There are Nik plug-ins for LR now.....unfortunately I don't have them.
    I have not used CNX2, my brain already hurts from learning what I already have. maybe down the track I'll give it a go....I guess you just get used to the idiosyncrasies of the programs you use regularly.

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    Re: Lightroom made me feel heavy headed.

    No layers?

    Of course it does - though you may find it called history - after making a series of adjustments you can remove each adjustment as required by deleting history

    I'm baffled with poor performance, lr3 performance is supposedly much better than lr2, and I have run lr2 quite happily on a very entry level laptop with no real problems

    I am aware of a link or two on lr2 performance tweaks though on nikon cafe if you'd like a link

    You may have realised by now I am a lr fanboy, but, I still use it with cS4 as a complete tool

    Intuitive is only a byproduct of familiarity with most software


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    OK...no layer masks, more specifically!
    And you can't delete history out of order as far as I'm aware? CS you can turn layers on and off.
    I still really like it tho...but similarly often will go to CS4 for particular tweaks.
    I downloaded LR3 beta 2 on Michael's PC and the biggest benefit were improved NR, more precise vignette tool and a facility for tethered shooting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JM Tran View Post
    can you summarize it in dot points for easier reading

    going through essays in the morning, or any time of the day is quite daunting....
    LOL!

    * LR is not as easy to use as CNX2



    As Lani said tho, once you've acclimatised yourself to a workflow a change in that workflow feels disruptive.

    The Ctrl + and - was a big issue for me(on my desktop PC!!) because I use the + and - keys on my Numerical keypad.. not the keys on next to the Backspace key. On a laptop without a Num keypad I can see the reasoning behind it now. Using the top row of keys has never entered my train of thought as it feels natural for me to use my (righthand) thumb on the Crtl key and little finger on the + or - key as I zoom in /out as required.

    Reason there's no point form summary is because this is only a quick preliminary play with LR.. not really an in depth review. I'm not fluent enough with many programs to be in a position to form a decisive conclusion if one is better over another.

    More of a laymans terms.. 'this is easy to use', 'that's ridiculous to use' kind of fun report.

    * I had a quick play with the spot healing/cloning tool in LR and I'm in love. It automagically defines an area to mimic similarly to the way the healing tool works in CNX2, but is easily configurable with the manner in which you can define where to clone/heal from. and the manner in how you resize the brush tool is uber cool(use the scroll wheel )

    The perfect world is where Nik take note of how cool/intuitive it is to edit using various tools in other programs, and copy them for each and every CNX update

    I think as hardware performance increases markedly over the coming years, speed is likely not to be a major issue as 8core processors will take care of that side of the equation.

    My main concerns start at the usability factor and how easy it is to make a few quick edits and save the file. CNX wins hands down for that for me.
    So (for Lani's purpose) learning Capture NX is not so much a learning curve for quick editing such as spot brightness and localised contrast adjustments. Use Colour Control points in the areas you need to edit and then duplicate them to various points in the image that also need touching up.

    Way back in 2006/2007 I did a very brief write up on how easy it is to use CNX(v1) but all the images got lost and I think the tute got deleted when the site was upgraded a while back. I still have the images(screen saves) but it relates to CNX1, and there have been a few handy new features implemented in CNX2. I'll endeavour to create a new tute using v2.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    No layers?

    Of course it does - though you may find it called history - after making a series of adjustments you can remove each adjustment as required by deleting history
    Yes, but can you alter the individual adjustments without undoing the ones on top?

    I'm baffled with poor performance, lr3 performance is supposedly much better than lr2, and I have run lr2 quite happily on a very entry level laptop with no real problems

    I am aware of a link or two on lr2 performance tweaks though on nikon cafe if you'd like a link

    You may have realised by now I am a lr fanboy, but, I still use it with cS4 as a complete tool
    CS4 completes LR, but I still think that Adobe haven't quite got the product set balanced yet.

    Intuitive is only a byproduct of familiarity with most software


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    No. Intuitive is the result of careful design and thought about the way people already do things and can do things. Apple do intuitive well. MS do intuitive OK, but put in heaps of "helpful" hints. Adobe say "stuff intuitive - it's my way or the highway". Familiarity works within a family of products to make new ones intuitive.

    (BTW, I do not think CNX is intuitive either - just simpler to learn.)

  14. #14
    A royal pain in the bum!
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    @ Kiwi.

    I still haven't figured out how to delete individual history edits. I can delete them all but not one in the middle of the pile. Of course Ctrl-Z(which funnily enough hasn't been tampered with ) deletes them by chronological order.

    Also when I use the term 'intuitive', I meant as a total noobie to image editing.

    Intuitive as in open the program and begin to edit without the need to refer to the help file/manual.

    trying to do the same kind of localised(or spot) brightness adjustment as you get with CNX(or the use of Colour Control Points) is much harder with all other editing programs(not just LR or PS).

    I did forget to mention the use of the graduated filter tool I used in my image(with LR) where I created a graduated filter and darkened the sky a little, but it didn't affect the steeple roof of the church.. that was cool.

    At more than 50% zoom view though the LR version of that image has a green halo(approx 2-5 pixels in width) around the roof of the church where the darker roof meets the brighter clouds in the sky. Not present in either ViewNX or CNX versions.(so I don't know what I did wrong there in LR).

    Also about the intuitiveness of the program, they use terms that don't makes sense to me.. mainly as to what they're supposed to do.

    Clarity??? of what. The image already looks clear. do i want to make it 'more clear'? ... conversely is there any reason to make it less clear?

    First time I've ever heard of the use of that term in photo editing circles.

    The Crtl = issue would be a non event if it were not for the fact that they used Ctrl + in an earlier version of LR that I tried, which must have been v1 many years ago when I tried the trial version. Back then I hated the manner in which it rendered my images looking quite flat and ugly where the Nikon programs used the camera settings... Standard with all tweaks turned off. and then some of the NEF file handling was not good, such as not editing the NEF directly and not saving the edits made to the NEF(that's quite important to me for 'posterity').
    So I haven't tried it(LR) for a very long time now.. 2years.. and to see my edits on the NEF file are now remembered is good.

    It'd be interesting to hear from someone that's never tried CaptureNX, to see if the change in workflow is as severe as it is with going from CNX to LR.

    Speed may well be a beta thing running on old hardware.. slow ram, slowish hard drives.. etc.

    I have set cache to a separate drive as with all other image editing programs I've ever tried(and where that option is available too. That's a good speed boost for most programs.

    Andrew mentioned that CNX is a resource hog.. which it is, as my 25M NEF files will take up as much as 1.5Gig while editing them(via task manager.. CNX shows 1.5g of memory in use) and that's the heaviest editing with many multiple edit steps active and NR and all that.
    With simple edit steps, as I feel my way across the program, I see that LR uses 1.1Gig of memory(at the most so far) but that was whilst about 10 edits were made in the history sidebar, and then converting to jpg. The conversion to jpg had the cpu at 100% for longer than I've ever seen any other program(that hasn't crashed) using cpu cycles.

    FastStone is very quick VNX and CNX are quicker(at both TIFF and JPG conversions) Bibble was also quick at jpgs.. about the same as V/C NX's but much slower at TIFF conversions.
    The caveat here is enabling noise reduction in CNX.. that slows down conversion to jpg massively if the image hasn't been saved as a NEF already. That is: if you apply NR with CNX, if you save the NEF it takes forever to save. once the NEF is saved, the jpg then converts in less than 10seconds.. less than 5 in most cases(I suspect it's a matter of how much detail is in the image)

    Converting the NEF to jpg with LR3-B2 without any editing at all is far too long for my patience. beyond 5mins(counted) and I think about close to 10mins! CPU stays at 100% all the while.

  15. #15
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    So much text lol
    I've never tried NX2 but I'm personally very happy with LR2 because I have a workflow pattern stored up in my head. I suspect that if I tried other programs, despite their apparent ease to others, I might get frustrated because things aren't quite the same and I wouldn't be able to do things as quickly.

    The cataloguing is very useful for me in LR2 though.
    For instance, at weddings, there will be 2 , sometimes 3 of us shooting, often in different locations.
    Even if we edit our own images on different computers, all it takes is a selection of different folders, arranging RAWS by capture time and our images tell the chronological story of the day. Exporting in catalogues also keeps everything that you've done to the RAW file including presets that you've applied etc.

    ( i do use the clarity function alot too - I'm also not sure what exactly it refers to techinically, but essentially, its almost like a high pass filter in black when you increase it, a gaussian blur type effect when you reduce it)

    so much angst arthur! don't overdose on the panadol (or I might have to look after you in hospital and you don't want that :P) and if you're happy with what you're using, I'd stick with it lol.
    Call me Dylan! www.everlookphotography.com | www.everlookphotography.wordpress.com | www.flickr.com/photos/dmtoh
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    Post : Lightroom 3.6 catalogue -> Export as 16bit TIFF, Edited CS5 -> resized for web.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtoh View Post
    ....

    so much angst arthur! don't overdose on the panadol (or I might have to look after you in hospital and you don't want that :P) and if you're happy with what you're using, I'd stick with it lol.


    LOL! no anxieties on this side of the screen, just a (poor) attempt at humour maybe

    I suppose that's part of the issue there in your parting statement, I'm only 99.9% happy with Nikon's software system.
    A few small tweaks and I may be 100% happy in the future.

    The NoiseReduction issue could be easily fixed, and I don't know if Nik have a add-on/filter set that includes a proper clone tool(they'd probably do well to include one).

    I suppose this diatribe of my thoughts was prompted more by Enduro's post about how cool he found the Colour Control Points with the Nik software add-on, where he said:

    Quote Originally Posted by enduro View Post
    .....

    Each of the programs have a great feature called Contol Points which enable you to target specific areas of the subject and apply a Mask.The mask is mostly self defining and very inteligent giving landscapers the abilty to just effect the sky and birders just the bill, head or whole body. Saves me a lot of magnetic lassoo work.

    ....
    in THIS thread.

    So you don't need CaptureNX at all.. just the Nik software.
    CaptureNX is really only good for Nikon NEF files, as they're rendered just a little bit nicer(with less effort). As a jpg or TIFF image editor it's probably very basic/not very good compared to how much power you have in other editors.

    I'm still playing with LR on and off, but I have no images to edit, as I've been both too busy and too lazy to capture any more recently, so I'm going through some recently acquired old stuff and seeing what can be done with what.

    Another issue(which may not be an issue I guess!) is that when saving!!!..OOOPS! I mean exporting a file in LR3, it doesn't save the edits in the file itself(I think??) but probably in a separate file that only LR seems to know about.
    (and I am talking raw file here.. not jpg)
    I edited another version of an image, that gave me grief in CNX with the use of the clone tool, and saved it first as a jpg and that converted image appears as I edited. And then I saved the NEF file as 'an original' according to the export dialogue, but only LR can see that image as I edited it using LR. All other image browsers see the original NEF file.. unedited!
    So I assume that the edit steps are probably proprietaryily held in a vault that only LR can access.
    Never had that issue with raw files edited via CNX or VNX, and Bibble doesn't save NEF files(that I found... maybe B5 can??).
    I'm originally thought that was a bad thing, in that if I wanted only the edited NEF, Adobe's file handling may ruin the NEF in some way, and I'd have to keep a separate copy of another NEF file. Space may well be cheap, but that's not a archival issue I want to deal with either. CNX and VNX make changes to the original raw file, but all changes can be undone at any time in the future, so it saves having to keep multiple copies of large raw files(25meg.. and getting bigger in the future).
    So in effect I'm indifferent to that problem, except that you need to have LR to view any edited raw files as you've edited them. What if you want to use a simple fast(and LR is slow!) image viewer like FastStone, or Fast PictureViewerPro(the free version doesn't open raw files) or whatever.. like Windows Explorer or the Mac equivalent.
    (caveat here is that I may have done something wrong in the preferences in the file handling department).

    Cataloging may be a useful feature for some people, but if they allowed you to turn it off, and just simply open an image for the purpose of editing the image.. well to me that'd just make more sense.
    It seems like a need to be different, just to be different.
    On that basis alone I'd never purchase this program. I catalog my image in my specific way. Both CNX and VNX are more than capable at embedding keywording that is easily searchable by other software, and as far as I've seen so far most of my rating labels appear to stay in tact when opened with any other image viewer(namely FastStone Image viewer and Fast Picture Viewer).

    There are soem very useful tools tho that work really well, and it seems that the Nik addon set is available for LR too.. so the workflow in editing an image is ultimately not an issue.

    Nikon's software isn't without it's problems too tho, and a simple and fundumental issue with ViewNX is that you cant' edit an NEF file and save it only as a jpg, without the requirement to save the NEF first! So if you batch process a load of raw files, and all you want is the jpgs and dont; care for the raw files, you have no option.. you;re forced to care about having raw files! It's silly It's not an issue... never been an issue for me, as the NEF is way more important.. but that still makes it an incompetent programming ideaology!

    using ViewNX on NEF's means that you make your edits(which is way easy as they're so basic, and can only be made to the image on a global basis.. no spot or localised editing like a dodge here and a burn there.. etc). You then have to save the NEF's what amount to a batch job.. that can take as long as 10 mins to save 30 or so raw files(that I've tried so far). once that save has been completed you can then save those images again as a conversion to either jpg or tiff(no other options with conversion). So it's a very basic but free, image software. The conversion of multiple images can take as 'little' as 5-10mins on my old box.
    LR on the other hand! saving the edited NEF as an NEF.. 1 nanosecond(if that, but my atomic stopwatch/clock doesn't have the accuracy to measure on a finer time scale
    Surprise me like hell, as I pressed the Export button and got up to make a coffee, and the CPU cycles pipped up and down in an instant!
    (of course I was curious and had to be sure). by comparison, exporting to jpg took over 10mins(I measured it this time!! ) only by the PC clock and not my atomic stopwatch ) but the button was pressed at 9:58 and the CPU cycles went on and on for just over 10mins 10:08.. and it doesn't matter how many seconds.. by that time it was academic)

    no idea on why? Cache is set to separate physical drive, images are stored on separate physical drives too. there is hardly any disk activity as this saving is going on tho.. it;s all CPU and RAM hungry(1.3Gigs of RAM are required).

    maybe it's got to do with bureaucratic import export laws and taxes and red tape or something!

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    "Another issue(which may not be an issue I guess!) is that when saving!!!..OOOPS! I mean exporting a file in LR3, it doesn't save the edits in the file itself(I think??) but probably in a separate file that only LR seems to know about.
    (and I am talking raw file here.. not jpg)"

    You can't, as far as I know, export a NEF file. You can open the NEF file (with the LR adjustments you have made, or not as you prefer) in CS3 or CS4 or also another editor (if you configure it and if it allows this). Exports are always JPEG's

    Come on AK, join the world and love LR, lol

  18. #18
    A royal pain in the bum!
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    ....

    You can't, as far as I know, export a NEF file. You can open the NEF file (with the LR adjustments you have made, or not as you prefer) in CS3 or CS4 or also another editor (if you configure it and if it allows this). Exports are always JPEG's

    Come on AK, join the world and love LR, lol


    Now I'm having visions of this long chain of hippies dressed in iClothes holding hands and swaying as they sing.. "all we are saying.. is give LR a chance"

    The option was to export to 'original' and it saved with the .nef file extension(as opposed to the uppercase .NEF file extension used by Nikon).

    I've joined the world in accepting that it exists as an image editor.. but I'm afraid that's as far as I'll take this relationship for now .. marriage is a long way off!
    The fact that it's lasted on my PC since about Friday night(3days) is a testament to the fact that it has a lot of potential as an photo editor.

    it's not as bad as you may have read in my little diatribe(I won't use the word review, because it's not a review as such).

    I'm hoping for a new version of CNX(to version 3) where they can add a few simple tools like:
    Save to specified file size limit(would be nice, but I can use free external editors for that(FastStone is good).
    Better clone tool.
    Better historical editability of the selection/graduated selection tools, after the edit has been made and no longer active.
    Anything else I think of when the moment strikes me.

    Too many features to add to a wish list for ViewNX that are available in other free software, but it's the best free software for converting NEFs.

    LR is not that bad, and in some ways quite good to a lot better when compared to some other software I use and have tried, so I can see how and why people swear by it.
    The cataloging feature comes up a lot, and if I wanted that, I'd use Nikon Transfer(as I once remember Andrew(I@M) doing after a shoot. Add keywords notes and ratings etc, before the images reach the PC, send to a specified folder, etc, etc.

    The way it runs in dual screen mode on my PC makes it not an option at the moment, and that could be a beta thing, so hopefully once it's in release mode it'll run more acceptably on high end old PC hardware.
    I really prefer the ability to edit an original raw file, and not have to keep multiple copies of the image in a high quality format, but I like all the edits I've made to be visible, editable and undoable for posterity too.

    I've gone back to some of my earliest D70s NEF's with CNX and made a better mess of the image, using superior software(which CaptureNX is over Nikon Capture4). So for me future proofing is quite important.
    If the file handling of raw files by LR is as I described it and they keep a separate edit list file somewhere on your PC, you have to be sure it's backed up in future(and now we're talking many many years from now) as you don't want to lose the edits you've done to the raw file.. if you've done a good job of it that is. I forget that kind of stuff, but I suspect there's an option in LR to back up the catalog and all the file data that goes along with it.
    It just seems easier to keep each individual raw image's edit list closer to the actual file.

    There's also the possibility that having read a lot of hype about how good it is, I expected more(compared to other software) and all I saw was more different(or more accurately!.. too different/vastly different, as in the geekspeek/terminology/workflow)

    ps. not being an proficient and well seasoned pro photographer, my summary should be taken into context, yeah!? Average Enthusiast Joe, with standard and simple editing ability. Not having grown up with PS at my fingertips from age 1, I need to keep things simple.

    ps. just to confound me, my keyboard stopped working as I was typing up my last reply(to Dylan) I went to press the backspace key, and nothing! I checked batteries, conection(wireless!), durability testing(a few fists to the private parts to make sure it wasn't sleeping)... I even tried Ctrl = !! .. nup, nothing! It ceased to work. And then came good again for no reason I can blame LR3-B2 for that too? .. bloody damn stupid!!... Ctrl =

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    You know, I tried to get my head around PSP, CNX, VNX, Bibble, Photo Mechanic, DXO, CS3 last year or so, and thought, this is just stupid. NO one tool is going to get me there. But with my small brain and tolereance levels I have to choose one thing. I cant get around so many tools.

    So, I drew a deep breath and just went with a sheep like choice - LR. You're right it's not perfect by any means, and i still have to on occasion use CS4, but to me one big factor is how relatively new it is, and how much R&D and internet support by both pro and amateur users there are. It's like the iPhone of photo software I think. Damned useless as a phone, but does everything pretty well

  20. #20
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    you guys are still no doing it right... You need to get a Mac and use Aperture as well, put your hair out, try to get your head around yet another post-processing paradigm, THEN say... "I should have just stuck with NX2."

    Regards,
    Calx
    Calxoddity
    Concert Pianist, Test Pilot, Pathological Liar


    Nikon D40, Sigma 17-70 F2.8-4.5 HSM, Nikkor AF-D 50mm f1.8
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