Do you like Lightroom’s new import screen? That’s what I thought. It turns out that in addition to the import being over simplified for some and too complicated for others, it is the slowest (by far) from the competing photo management applications out there.
How much slower? Jim Harmer of improve photography took Lightroom for a spin of import, comparing it to 3 other popular image management suites: Capture One, Photo Mechanic and Apple’s Photos App. Each contestant would have to import and generate full previews for 97 random files. The results absolutely blew me away. Never using anything else other than Lightroom I thought that the import and preview generation time was inherent to the process but Jim’s test shows results up to 20 times faster with other programs.
Here are Jim’s final test results:
- Lightroom- 190 seconds just to bring in the photos, 685 seconds to bring in all photos and build full previews
- Capture One – 27 seconds to bring in photos, 114 seconds to bring in all photos and build full previews
- Photo Mechanic – 12 seconds to bring in photos and allow for lightning fast full-screen browsing
- Photos App – 9 seconds to bring in all photos and allow for lightning fast full-screen browsing
I am not even sure how to respond to this one. But I think that Adobe had better put import speed as a top priority for their next release.
I know that it’s nice that Lightroom plays nicely with Photoshop, and that it is nice that it’s included in the $30 CC license, but if you are a heavy user, you may want to consider the alternatives: Capture One Pro is selling for 229 EUR, and Photo Mechanic is selling for $150, both offer a free trial.
P.S. if you are really in for some lulz jump to 1:10 where Lightroom just crashes in the background.