How To Slow Down Lightroom

category: Lightroom • 2 min read

Lightroom can either be as slow as molasses or it can fly. It mostly depends on how you work. So let see some of the ways you can grind Lightroom to a halt.

  1. Add and delete photos, videos… What do you mean? Adding photos will slow down the Lightroom. Yes! A catalog with 0 photo, that’s a zero, is blindingly fast. Not useful but… Since the catalog with all its different types of data is stored in a single file. Having “things” spread around slow down Lightroom a lot. You should Optimize The Catalog. Especially after adding or deleting photos or videos.
  2. In the Grid view, displaying the EXIF data. For one image, no problem, it’s instantaneous. Selecting 50 photos or 1,000 photos will send Lightroom using 100% of the CPU. Not only Lightroom reads the EXIF, but it tries to match them between each exposure against all the other photos… If they match, Lightroom will display the value, if not it will display <mixed>. Use the Default in the metadata, unless you need something else, then return back to the Default.
  3. When importing your photos in Lightroom, using the File HandlingRendering Preview setting to Standard or Minimal. This will significantly speedup the import. With Minimal, Lightroom is almost instantaneous. But Lightroom need those previews. The problem is that Lightroom will generate the different previews, the standard and the full 1:1 as you page up and down and move between photos. It’s very sluggish. Generating the preview is Lightroom’s slowest operation.

All of these operations applies to all the versions or Lightroom, LR1, LR2, LR3, LR4, LR5 and LR6/CC.