Photo Taco – Lightroom Smart Previews

In Photo Taco Podcast by Jeff Harmon2 Comments

Jeff Harmon explains the Smart Previews feature that Adobe put into Lightroom 5 in 2013 and how it can be used to make your culling go 4x faster even if you don't use an external hard drive.

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Jeff Harmon

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The hobbyist editor here at IT Professional by day, passionate hobbyist photographer ever other second possible. Living in Herriman, Utah. Loves trying to capture the beauty around every day and family portraits occasionally. Be sure to check out my portfolio at


  1. I’ve found when you’re importing into Lightroom it’s much faster to import without the Smart Previews and then build them afterwards. Once the import has finished, select the images you just imported in the Library module and choose Library > Previews > Build Smart Previews. It ends up being faster because you can use Lightroom and start editing and culling the images while the Smart Previews are still being built in the background.

    Hope that helps!

  2. Great tip re culling.

    A bit of a techie question from a decidedly non-techie!

    Understand why you temporarily rename the RAW Images folder to prevent the program from opening the RAW images when culling

    But where are the Smart Previews located on my Mac if not in that folder?

    Have fallen in like with your Photo Taco podcasts…really appreciate all the hard work you put into this project!


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