Lightroom has become the industry standard for editing images quickly but when it comes to viewing and culling images, it's still incredibly slow. On1 has recently launched Perfect Browse 9.5 as the fastest way to burn through hundreds or thousands of raw files and then import your favorites into Lightroom for editing. Oh, and did I mention, it's totally free for Fstoppers readers right now.
As a wedding photographer, I tend to shoot thousands of images at a time. Before I can edit anything, I need to go through each image one by one, delete the bad ones, and figure out which images are actually worth editing/delivering. Lightroom is notoriously slow at loading raw files and therefore, culling thousands of images can take hours. Even if each image takes just 1 second to load, that extra time could add an hour to your workflow. In some cases with slower computers and larger files, each image can take longer than 5 seconds to load which in turn can add hours to your editing process.
I recently downloaded On1's Perfect Browse 9.5 and installed it on my computer. I moved 233 D810 raw files (around 70MB each and 16.2GB total) into a folder on my SSD C: drive and then opened the software. The software itself took about 3 seconds to load. I then imported the photos and the software seemed to hang for about 5 seconds and then BOOM, every raw file thumbnail instantly appeared. I double clicked on an image and it became full screen without any hesitation. I tapped the right arrow key on the keyboard and the next image appeared instantly. I then held the right arrow key down and I saw hundreds of raw files flying across my screen without any sort of lag. Zooming in 100% on any image (something that I almost never do while culling) is the only thing that took any time at all at around 4-6 seconds. I opened up my task manager (yes I use Windows) and I kept an eye on the Ram usage of Perfect Browse and it appeared to be using right around 3GB of RAM to keep all 233 images ready at a moments notice.
In case you were wondering, the star rating system in Perfect Browse carries over to Lightroom making complex categorizing extremely quick as well. Obviously we all wish that Lightroom was capable of shuttling through raw files at these kinds of speeds but until that day comes, Perfect Browse 9.5 is the fastest and most simple way to view and cull large amounts of raw files that I've ever used.
Luckily you don't have to take my word for it. We've teamed up with On1 to allow every Fstoppers reader to have this $60 software for free. This offer will not be around forever so if you are interested, jump on this now. Download it here for free, give it a try, and let us know how you like it in the comments below.