Options for synced edits between computers with library in cloud?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by MBHockey, Dec 22, 2018.

  1. MBHockey macrumors 68040

    MBHockey

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #1
    Hi all,

    I am a pretty novice photographer and editor. It's just a hobby. But i have been stuck for the last several months with a backlog of photos from several trips to edit because I cannot figure out a good system for editing my photos.

    All I want is a program that I can use to have the same photo library between two Macs (iMac and MacBook Pro), edit on both computers, and have the same edits shared between the two computers with a robust editor.

    I shoot with a Sony Alpha-6500 mirrorless, and had been using Lightroom 6 standalone app (which i LOVED) but since they moved to the more mobile-friendly version of Lightroom, i don't like it nearly as much (I also acquired a MBP for editing in addition to my iMac, which presented itself with the issue of dealing with multiple libraries). That version has cloud syncing of edits, but i found the 'dumbed down' interface is awful.

    I tried Luminar, and while I like editing with it, the lack of a DAM until this week was a dealbreaker. Now that it's out, and it's filled with bugs and I'm unable to have 1 master library in the cloud syncing edits between them, I feel like I'm back at square 1.

    All I really wanted was Lightroom 6 (without CC) that could have a cloud-sync'd library.

    Is there something like that out there that i'm just not aware of? Should I just suck it up and stop holding out for something like this, and use Lightroom with its new UI?
     
  2. r.harris1 macrumors 6502a

    r.harris1

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2012
    Location:
    Denver, Colorado, USA
    #2
    One of the things that I believe bothers Lightroom users a lot is that when they try and move to something else, they don't find anything that's like what they're used to so they end up disappointed, especially since one of the things they like is LR's DAM philosophy. So you may just want to suck it up in this case:).

    That said, one possible option is Photos + Extensions (Luminar's are excellent) + Edit In (send it to LR, Photoshop, etc) + iCloud. My own digital asset management system is more file system + extensive key wording via Photo Mechanic. From there, I can build smart albums in Photos from the keywords and either simply use extensions (like Luminar, DXO, Pixelmator, Affinity) or edit in my raw engine of choice (currently Capture One) if I have raw edits that need a more in-depth treatment than what I get in Photos. There's some fiddly bits with the approach for sure, and the odd caveat, but if it is more important to you to have sync'd images, that's one non LR-CC way to do it.

    There are other options I've heard of people doing like using drop box and the like, but not something I do so will hold back on comments there.
     
  3. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #3
    I dunno when the last time you used Lr CC was but it has improved considerably lately. What exactly are you looking to do that you can't accomplish? That would also give us an idea about what to recommend.

    And multiple libraries? sounds like you've got organizational issues. You could still use Classic, and either use the export/import type workflow, or use smart preview synching and then do some edits in CC. But again it's hard to say without knowing about the workflow you wanna accomplish.

    Try Mylio though. It works on both and syncs really well. And it can import and use lots of the Lr edits and adjustments. Much more control than say Photos, which is nice but has an all-or-nothing approach to synching that can be a pain in some workflows.
     
  4. F-Train, Dec 22, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2018

    F-Train macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #4
    The most straightforward solution is the Adobe Photography Plan. This costs about UD$11 per month for 20GB of storage and goes up significantly if you need more. With 100GB of storage, it's $33 per month.

    You can get just Lightroom CC (i.e. the non-Classic version) with 1TB of storage, but the issue is that you will not get Lightroom Classic CC. For some people, myself among them, that makes the Photography Plan the only realistic option. For me, there are just too many things missing from Lightroom CC.

    It may be possible to stay within 20GB by creating a current catalogue and an archived catalogue. I haven't thought this idea through, let alone tried it.

    In your case, I think that the simplest approach, if you don't want to pay for storage, is to have either Lightroom 6 or the Adobe Photography Plan on both computers, have your catalogue on a single drive (backed up, of course), and transfer the drive between computers as needed. In other words, keep Adobe Cloud out of the equation altogether. I think that drives like the Samsung T5 drives make it very easy to do this. You can fit one in a shirt pocket, it will weigh next to nothing and it is quite fast enough to edit on.

    Obviously, this simple approach can be adapted to just about any photo editing software you want to use. Indeed, it's how people with two computers worked for a long time, and I expect how many still work.

    Personally, I use one computer - and more importantly, for me, one display - to edit photographs, and I pay for Adobe's Photography Plan, but I don't use Adobe's cloud storage/synchronisation.
     
  5. MBHockey thread starter macrumors 68040

    MBHockey

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #5
    I think i will either do as you said and use an external SSD (although, this negates the use of fast internal SSDs in the iMac and MBP) or use Lightroom Classic CC with a library and catalog that lives on iCloud Drive (I pay for the 2TB plan). The downside of the latter approach is that LR Classic was never meant to be used this way, and there can be problems if you aren't super careful about only having one instance of LR open and syncing to the cloud at a time.
     
  6. F-Train, Dec 23, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2018

    F-Train macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2015
    Location:
    NYC & Newfoundland
    #6
    Hi,

    This depends on what you decide is the purpose of the internal drive. I treat it as a workspace. It’s where I do the day's work, and I keep all other data on external drives. At the end of the workday, or sometimes at the end of a discrete project, the only things that are on my internal drive are applications and things like Safari data (favourites, history, etc.), Keychain data and Apple Mail e-mails. The latter are archived regularly.

    As I write this, my internal drive contains about 18GB of applications and 10GB of "documents". So why do I have a 512GB internal drive? Frankly, it's more than I need, but it does come in handy when I'm using Final Cut, Motion, Logic, iZotope, Lightroom, Photoshop, etc. to work on a 4K video.

    That said, I realise that most people like to use their internal drive for storage. In this case, maybe there's something to be said for making an exception for photographs. For me, not being a professional photographer, what would be odd is the idea of keeping all my photographs, in duplicate, on the internal drives of two different, expensive computers :)

    As you say, the iCloud Drive route is also interesting, and perhaps a perfectly good option if you're careful about how it is managed.

    Cheers
     

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5 December 22, 2018