Do I really need the Lightroom Previews?

lrPreviews_headerGood morning! 🙂

Have you noticed, that when you import the images into Lightroom, it gives you an option for Previews?

It appears in the File Handling panel as a drop-down menu. When you shoot raw, the camera registers raw data, and then the software “translates” the raw data to generate the image preview. That’s when this drop-down menu comes in very useful. The screenshot here shows the Previews option within the Import dialog box (Lightroom 3).preview

When you start, Lightroom displays the embedded Jpeg previews from the camera, and after a moment it generates the previews. What previews it generates depends on your settings, there are four options to choose from and I have covered it before in one of the posts. Here’s a link for you:

Differences between Previews in Lightroom?

Basically, make sure you think it through and decide what previews you want to generate. This decision will affect how you work in Lightroom, and time it takes to get your 100% previews of the images. I usually go for Standard, as I don’t work with all the images on 100% view, so I don’t mind waiting for a second or two, when I want to zoom in to 100% view.

I’m not going to cover the differences between the previews as you will find it in the post I added a link to above. My goal here is to remind you how important this option is.

The common question I get about the previews (in addition to the one about which option I should use) is:

” What if I want to recreate a different kind of previews? Would I need to re-import them?”

No, of course not. You can tell Lightroom to render any size previews later on if you decide you want to use a higher setting as an example. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Select all the images in Grid view.
  2. Choose Library > Previews > Render Standard Size previews or 1:1 previews.

Enjoy! 😉

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