Why you should be using Smart Previews

Lightroom is an amazing tool for photography and is constantly getting better with time. We read some articles recently that have called out Lightroom and Adobe to get their act in order and fix their speed issues. Their response? They already did in 2013 with the introduction of smart previews.

Smart Previews Snapshot

Lightroom is constantly referring to the file source and using those files to load preview data. Lightroom does its best to load images before you select them, but is very limited. As technology advances with cameras and sensor sizes, RAW files are becoming larger and harder to handle. When Lightroom tries to read and load a preview from a 30MB RAW file, it is going to slow down, especially if you are a wedding photographer working with hundreds, sometimes thousands of images.


So, what the heck are smart previews? Well according to Adobe, smart previews are “smaller stand-in files of your full-size images. Any adjustments or metadata additions you make to these files will automatically be applied to the originals.”

What does this mean for you? It means that you can significantly reduce the rendering time in Lightroom, which means faster loading. Creating smart previews allows you to edit for hours without overloading your system. It makes sense.


Maybe you’re wondering how do we use smart previews in the Post Partner studio? Well, we use them for most of the editing we do. When you’re trying to outsource your images, sending over hundreds or thousands of RAW images would take for…ever. And you would be pulling your hair out waiting for all the files to load. So unless we’re exporting to Jpeg for you, we always say send smart previews. If you’re not sure yet, check out this blog wrote a couple years ago showing just how easy smart previews are to create!

What are you waiting for?! Probably your images to load into Lightroom if you haven’t started using smart previews yet!

As always, if you have any questions, let us know at hello@postpartner.com.

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