Big Speed Boost coming to Lightroom. Hopefully.
A couple of sites have been reporting over the last few days about the upcoming 7.2 release of Lightroom Classic. Adobe have decided to focus on performance for this next release, and as a testament as to how important they feel this is, they’ve sent beta copies to various photography websites and news organisations ahead of time to show how serious they are about it.
According to DP Review Adobe have stated in particular that they have addressed one of the longest running performance problems with Lightroom, that it has issues on multicore computers with a lot of RAW. Being one of those users, I can state that this is a definite issue. As I haven’t found a report from anyone who has had access to the beta testing this, I will withhold judgement until it is out in the field.
In their time with it, DP Review found performance increases of between 20% and 85% depending on the tasks. They do note though that this is on a new catalogue with only a few images in it. One of the other things that several people have noticed is that there is still a significant disparity between the Windows version and the Mac version. This isn’t just an issue with Lightroom, but a problem with a lot of Adobe software.
Some of this has been in the news a lot lately with the release of the iMac Pro, and some people have been using it to trash the new desktop, but it’s just bad programming, because the problem doesn’t exist on software from other developers. Even on the mac, there are huge speed issues with certain adobe applications. Premiere Pro for example is ridiculously slow compared to FCPX in some tastes. One video shooter that I follow on YouTube found that FCPX on one task was nearly 200% faster than Premiere Pro on the same machine. I think part of the problem is Adobe is only half heartedly embracing Apple’s underlying technologies such as metal.
Anyway, any speed improvement in Lightroom will be welcome. I have been very skeptical of Adobe’s promises in the past, especially since they announced several years ago (in 2015) that they acknowledged that there was a problem with detail rendering on Fuji files and said they were working on improving it, but never did anything since. One of the people testing the new software did note a speed increase when importing Fuji X-Trans files, so that’s something I suppose. While this may have come across a s bit of a rant, I do want to give the company the benefit of the doubt on this, and the people testing it have found it to be much faster in some areas, so I do look forward to it. It really does show the importance of competition in the market. With all the new software cropping up, and with older applications like Capture One undoubtedly taking market share, it’s good to see something finally make Adobe take notice of its user’s needs.
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