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I have been trying Lightroom Mobile on and off but there was always something missing (either in the product or my understanding). However, I think it is complete and useable today.

 

The FAQ answers more questions than I cover here https://helpx.adobe.com/mobile-apps/help/lightroom-mobile-faq.html but it seems to be out of date with the current version of the software. For example it says:

 

Lightroom for mobile does not support direct raw file import using the Camera Connection Kit or Wi-Fi.

Not sure what they mean by "direct". I am only dealing with DNG files.

 

You can start sorting, flagging and editing your DNGs on an iPad and carry on where you left off when you get to your laptop or desktop.

 

What you need:

  1. An iPad (there is an android version)
  2. An Apple camera connection kit
  3. A Leica camera with SD card or USB socket
  4. An Adobe Creative Cloud subscription
  5. Lightroom Mobile app on the iPad
  6. Lightroom on a laptop or desktop

 

I use the latest releases of the software, IOS 8.4, OS X 10.10.4, Lightroom CC 2015.1, Adobe Lightroom for iPad 9 July 2015.

My Creative Cloud subscription comes as part of the Creative Cloud Photography Plan about 12€ per month.

Note that if you let your subscription lapse then you have read-only access to your pictures (if they are already synced to your desktop); you don't loose them.

 

What you do:

  1. Go out and enjoy yourself taking photographs (I shoot DNG only) with your iPad and camera connection kit in your bag.
  2. Stop for a break.
  3. In Lightroom Mobile (LRM) create a new collection and set it to automatically add from camera roll.
  4. Plug the camera or SD card into the camera connection kit.
  5. Import the pictures into Photos.
  6. Wait. The loading process is quite slow.
  7. What you will have in Photos is a bunch of pictures marked RAW at thumbnail quality only.
  8. Open the LRM app, it will start importing the pictures from Photos. Also slow.
  9. What you will have in LRM are your pictures in high quality. You can delete them, flag them, grade them, crop them, adjust them, apply presets, make them available on a web site.
  10. When you get home, your pictures will be available in Lightroom on your desktop or laptop - if you had network connectivity. Otherwise they will start to synchronise when the iPad and computer are on the net.

 

What you get in Lightroom library module:

  1. There will be a collection under "From Lr Mobile" with your pictures. Any that you remove from LRM will be removed from this collection.
  2. Under Catalog there will be a container "All Synced Photographs" with your pictures (including any that you "removed" from LRM; they are not removed from this set).
  3. These are synced two-way with the versions on the iPad - any changes made on either device will be reproduced on the other.
  4. The files are stored in an Adobe container in the file system called ~/Pictures/Lightroom/Mobile Downloads.lrdata (~ is your users home folder).  This is rather big as each DNG in it is about 30MB.
  5. If you prefer to keep all your photographs in one place (e.g. on an external hard disc) then you can simply drag and drop the pictures in Lightroom (either from the All Synced Photographs container, or the collection under "From Lr Mobile") to a folder in the Folders area. This will physically move the data from "Mobile Downloads.lrdata" to a separate file on your hard disc. This new file remains synchronised with your iPad.

 

Tidying your iPad:

  1. After the pictures have been imported into LRM, you can delete them from Photos.
  2. After the pictures appear on your desktop, you can delete them from LRM but these are "Smart Previews" of about 2MB so aren't taking up much space.
  3. It's not clear what path the DNG files take to get from Photos to a file on your desktop so there may be a time where you can't tidy the iPad.

 

​Note you can only sync mobile with one Lightroom catalogue, so you have to choose which if you use a desktop and a laptop. If you switch sync from desktop to laptop (or change catalogues) then the existing mobile versions are lost so be sure to move them to separate files before switching (it may only be necessary to wait until they are synced).

 

Finally, here is a picture processed on the iPad using the Creative preset called Split Tone. No other processing has been done so don't fall out of your seat if you see dust spots!

 

I think this is a feasible and pleasant way to work on short holidays or days out; certainly beats carrying a laptop.

What have I missed? What is your opinion?

 

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Thanks to mustafasoleiman for insisting that this works, that encouraged me try it all out again.

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Thanks to mustafasoleiman for insisting that this works, that encouraged me try it all out again.

I too, was sceptical that it would work.  I'm going to try this out once I get home.

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I too, was sceptical that it would work.  I'm going to try this out once I get home.

 

Thanks to mustafasoleiman for insisting that this works, that encouraged me try it all out again.

Yaeee!!

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Thanks for this. It works a treat with my M240 DNGs but not, unfortunately, with D-Lux 109 files. Maybe it needs an update to LR Mobile.

 

Martin

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The main issue is that importing 24mpx files takes a long time, as you say. 

 

I have compromised on the MacBook Pro 13" and find that a more productive solution: less downtime, more shooting time.  You could try the new MacBook or the likes of the Dell 13" (although that specific model screws with your screen so is not a good solution for viewing pics).

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If the camera is set to save DNG and JPEG fine, then LRM only imports the JPEG.

 

When the LRM is synchronised with the desktop, the ~/Pictures/Lightroom/Mobile Downloads.lrdata folder doesn't increase in size and you only get the JPEG version. Lightroom desktop says that the downloads folder is where the picture is, but the file size doesn't corroborate that. My test JPEG was 8MB after I dragged it to another folder in Lightroom, the Mobile Downloads folder is 41 bytes.

 

Some aspects of this tool are still mysterious, and it is slow. However, there are circumstances under which it is useful - you don't need to carry a laptop, you can process a few pictures while out, and the work you do will not be lost and can be completed when you get home. (If your camera is set to DNG ONLY).

Edited by Exodies

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I timed an import today using a WiFi connection.

 

5 seconds per DNG to enter Photos on an iPad

22 seconds/DNG to go from Photos to Lightroom Mobile on an iPad

Don't know when the DNGs had reached the cloud

 

Later, on the desktop:

16 seconds/DNG in Lightroom to download from the cloud

 

Not too long. When you plug the SD card into the computer, Lightroom import knows which ones it already has from the cloud. So you can comfortably process a few images on the mobile.

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Thanks for the amazing information folks! I'm quite new to the M-System (and to the forum!), and have hit this roadblock with traveling light on a mobile workflow.

 

After digesting through the info, and taking into consideration the current maturity (or lack thereof) of the present Apps available, I've come to the conclusion that just shooting DNG+JPEG is the least painful and pragmatic solution.

 

It meets all my needs for a 2 week travel workflow:

  • Lightweight: Check (just the M240, 50mm lux, and iPad)
  • Viewing on a larger screen: Check (Importing select JPEGs to the iPad camera roll)
  • Sharing: Check (Uploading a few select JPEGs to the cloud to be shared with family and friends)
  • Storage: Check (Buying a few extra SD cards is far more cheaper and lighter than buying/lugging a snazzy 12" laptop)

 

The only "gap" is to figure out an efficient way to rate the photos for shortlisting as development candidates on the iPad. So for now, I will still need to devote a full weekend after returning from the trip to do the usual development workflow on the Macbook Pro. Not really a big deal really, but something I'm hoping to optimise over time.

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I have been trying Lightroom Mobile on and off but there was always something missing (either in the product or my understanding). However, I think it is complete and useable today.

 

The FAQ answers more questions than I cover here https://helpx.adobe.com/mobile-apps/help/lightroom-mobile-faq.html but it seems to be out of date with the current version of the software. For example it says:

 

Lightroom for mobile does not support direct raw file import using the Camera Connection Kit or Wi-Fi.

Not sure what they mean by "direct". I am only dealing with DNG files.

 

You can start sorting, flagging and editing your DNGs on an iPad and carry on where you left off when you get to your laptop or desktop.

 

What you need:

  1. An iPad (there is an android version)
  2. An Apple camera connection kit
  3. A Leica camera with SD card or USB socket
  4. An Adobe Creative Cloud subscription
  5. Lightroom Mobile app on the iPad
  6. Lightroom on a laptop or desktop

 

I use the latest releases of the software, IOS 8.4, OS X 10.10.4, Lightroom CC 2015.1, Adobe Lightroom for iPad 9 July 2015.

My Creative Cloud subscription comes as part of the Creative Cloud Photography Plan about 12€ per month.

Note that if you let your subscription lapse then you have read-only access to your pictures (if they are already synced to your desktop); you don't loose them.

 

What you do:

  1. Go out and enjoy yourself taking photographs (I shoot DNG only) with your iPad and camera connection kit in your bag.
  2. Stop for a break.
  3. In Lightroom Mobile (LRM) create a new collection and set it to automatically add from camera roll.
  4. Plug the camera or SD card into the camera connection kit.
  5. Import the pictures into Photos.
  6. Wait. The loading process is quite slow.
  7. What you will have in Photos is a bunch of pictures marked RAW at thumbnail quality only.
  8. Open the LRM app, it will start importing the pictures from Photos. Also slow.
  9. What you will have in LRM are your pictures in high quality. You can delete them, flag them, grade them, crop them, adjust them, apply presets, make them available on a web site.
  10. When you get home, your pictures will be available in Lightroom on your desktop or laptop - if you had network connectivity. Otherwise they will start to synchronise when the iPad and computer are on the net.

 

What you get in Lightroom library module:

  1. There will be a collection under "From Lr Mobile" with your pictures. Any that you remove from LRM will be removed from this collection.
  2. Under Catalog there will be a container "All Synced Photographs" with your pictures (including any that you "removed" from LRM; they are not removed from this set).
  3. These are synced two-way with the versions on the iPad - any changes made on either device will be reproduced on the other.
  4. The files are stored in an Adobe container in the file system called ~/Pictures/Lightroom/Mobile Downloads.lrdata (~ is your users home folder).  This is rather big as each DNG in it is about 30MB.
  5. If you prefer to keep all your photographs in one place (e.g. on an external hard disc) then you can simply drag and drop the pictures in Lightroom (either from the All Synced Photographs container, or the collection under "From Lr Mobile") to a folder in the Folders area. This will physically move the data from "Mobile Downloads.lrdata" to a separate file on your hard disc. This new file remains synchronised with your iPad.

 

Tidying your iPad:

  1. After the pictures have been imported into LRM, you can delete them from Photos.
  2. After the pictures appear on your desktop, you can delete them from LRM but these are "Smart Previews" of about 2MB so aren't taking up much space.
  3. It's not clear what path the DNG files take to get from Photos to a file on your desktop so there may be a time where you can't tidy the iPad.

 

​Note you can only sync mobile with one Lightroom catalogue, so you have to choose which if you use a desktop and a laptop. If you switch sync from desktop to laptop (or change catalogues) then the existing mobile versions are lost so be sure to move them to separate files before switching (it may only be necessary to wait until they are synced).

 

Finally, here is a picture processed on the iPad using the Creative preset called Split Tone. No other processing has been done so don't fall out of your seat if you see dust spots!

LRM-1.jpg

 

I think this is a feasible and pleasant way to work on short holidays or days out; certainly beats carrying a laptop.

What have I missed? What is your opinion?

 

Thank you for the concise description of the process. Unfortunately for me it did not work (without knowing your description I used the identical workflow, also dng only). Which ipad are you using? I have an ipad 3, and LR managed to load just 1-2 photos on the ipad into LR mobile over the course of one night! A reason could be a slow internet connection (being in an Argentinian hotel in a small town at that time). But the loading stopped after about 20 dng without any reason. There was still plenty of space on the ipad at that time. I also noticed that LR on the ipad gained massively in size, like it is copying the dngs. So I was unable to view any dngs and still search for a solution.

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My iPad is a 128GB iPad mini, the first one with a retina screen. My internet connection is faster than wifi, 200mb/s.

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