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Lightroom CC 2015.7 / 6.7

The Lightroom CC 2015.7 / 6.7 update was released on September 19. As usual, there are camera/lens/tethering updates and bug fixes, and of course, macOS Sierra support, but the big news in this update was the new Smart Preview performance checkbox.

As usual, my Lightroom CC/6 book is already updated in the Members Area for these changes.

macOS Sierra

The Sierra operating system has now been available for about 3 weeks and it's looking pretty good.

Lightroom CC and Lightroom 6 users are not reporting any significant issues with the latest 2015.7/6.7 update, other than Edit in Photoshop isn't working properly unless Photoshop is already open.

Users of Lightroom 5 and earlier are seeing some known issues, including the Import panels going missing and tethering doesn't work.

I'm keeping my Sierra compatibility blog post updated with all of the confirmed issues and any workarounds as they're reported.

There are also a few Photoshop incompatibilities to be aware of, most notably, a crash while printing to specific printers.

If you're still on OS X Mavericks 10.9, note that 2015.7/6.7 is no longer supported, and the next update probably won't install at all, so you'll need to update your operating system to stay up to date.

Smart Previews for Performance

At 2560px, Smart Previews are smaller than most raw files and they’re already partially processed, so they improve Develop loading times and interactive performance. The latest Lightroom update makes it easy to utilize them without requiring workarounds.

To benefit, you need to build the Smart Previews in advance, but this can be done overnight, or at another time that you're not using the computer. You can either check the Build Smart Previews checkbox in the Import dialog > File Handling panel, or select the existing photos in the Grid view and go to Library menu > Previews > Build Smart Previews.

Then, in Preferences > Performance, check the Use Smart Previews instead of Originals for image editing checkbox. Better still, when you zoom in to 1:1 view, Lightroom automatically loads the original file to provide the most accurate preview for judging noise reduction and sharpening.

Smart Previews are stored in the Lightroom Catalog Smart Previews.lrdata folder/file next to the catalog, so they do take up extra hard drive space (approx. 1MB per photo). If you have space available, they're worth keeping, as they also allow you to edit the photos when the originals are offline. If you need to delete them because you're short of hard drive space, select the photos in Grid view and go to Library menu > Previews > Discard Smart Previews.

Don't forget to check out last week's blog post and then optimize your Lightroom Previews & Cache settings.

Lightroom Performance Series Continues

The Lightroom Performance series of blog posts is proving popular. In case you've missed any, here's the index of posts:

A number of people have emailed to ask about a printable copy, so good news... I will be compiling them into a free PDF eBook for newsletter subscribers, and I'll include the download link in the next newsletter.

iOS Updates

iOS 10 was also released a few weeks ago, so Lightroom mobile 2.5 for iOS was also released with compatibility fixes. At the same time, Adobe improved Lightroom's camera, adding the ability to store photos as raw DNG files on recent iPhones/iPads. In a 2.5.1 update that followed shortly thereafter, they also added dual camera support for the iPhone 7+. 

Lightroom Won't Update

Some users are reporting that Lightroom 6 says it's up to date, even when you know that's not true. I always include the direct links to the patches at the end of my What's New blog posts, so you could simply download and install the patch manually. For a longer term fix, an uninstall/reinstall usually does the trick.

When trying to update, some perpetual and CC users are also seeing an error message, such as Update Failed.

  • If you're a CC subscriber, you can do this from the CC app. Click the cog next to Lightroom's Open button to access the uninstaller, then when it's finished, click the Install button to reinstall.
  • If you're a perpetual license user, you'll need to uninstall Lightroom using the uninstaller, and then install 6.0 (download links on this page) followed by Help menu > Updates to install the 6.7 update (or manually install the patch from the same page).
  • If you continue to have issues for either the CC or perpetual version, run the CC Cleaner Tool between uninstalling and reinstalling. This removes the damaged installation records and other leftover files, and although it's labelled for CC, it works for Lightroom 6 too.
A straight uninstall/reinstall doesn't remove your catalog, images or preferences/presets, but the CC Cleaner Tool may remove preferences/presets. Either way, it's worth checking your backups to be on the safe side. 

If you continue to have issues, post a description on Adobe's Bug Report forum, so the engineers can figure out the cause as well as the solution.

Tip - Overlap Spot Healing

If you're trying to do a complex retouch using Lightroom's Spot Healing tool, it works best when you break it up into multiple spots. When you try to overlap spots however, the previous spots can get in the way. The trick is to disable the tool overlays temporarily. See it in action in Ben Warde's latest Lightroom Coffee Break video.

Talk again soon!