ON1 Short Clip – Photo RAW’s Database

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Whitney (my wife) was kind enough to record this video for me. Thanks honey! :)

I want to talk about ON1 Photo RAW and how you don’t have to import your photos to work on them. What does that mean? What do we lose? When we first talked about the fast browsing capabilities in ON1 Photo RAW some users first thought there was no database (think catalog), which meant limited searching and file management capabilities. That’s not correct, so I’ll do my best to clear that part up.

In Photo RAW, you don’t have to go through an import dialog and wait for your photos to be cataloged before you can get to work like other RAW processors. You browse to the photos you want to work on and then get started. When you browse to a folder, Photo RAW finds all the files and (sub)folders, then it reads the metadata from the photos and adds them to a database. It then extracts a small thumbnail so you can see your photos. Even in folders with thousands of photos – this happens very quickly! You can start to use the filtering and searching feature right away. In the background higher-quality thumbnails are generated without you having to wait.

Once the metadata is in the database you can filter within the current folder or album you are browsing, or you can search across  your Indexed Folders (previously known as favorites) instantly. You can search common attributes like favorites, rejects, star ratings, or color labels. You can also search keywords, description, date range, or any metadata fields in EXIF, IPTC, or XMP core metadata. This includes camera settings, locations, you name it. You’ll even save searches as Smart Albums so you can access their results instantly.

The powerful database in ON1 Photo RAW does more than just facilitate searching. It powers the Photo Via sharing app for your iOS device. It stores all of your non-destructive edits, all your presets and styles, any metadata you add or change and a whole lot more.

– Dan

18 comments on “ON1 Short Clip – Photo RAW’s Database”

  1. On October 5, 2016 at 10:17 am Jason Young wrote:

    Great video. One of my questions with Photo Raw is about “collaboration” for lack of a better description. If files are stored on a NAS, or Server then it is easy to point multiple computers to use the same set of photos. I understand that with Photo RAW, that edits will be stored as sidecar files, meaning all users would have the same edits. That is great, but what about smart albums? Is it possible for an Album created on one pc to also be shared in the same way, so all users can easily have the same albums/smart albums? Or will those have to be created on each PC/Mac individually! Thanks, and I can’t wait to get my hands on the application to test it!

    1. On October 5, 2016 at 11:24 pm Petr Krenzelok replied:

      That might be tricky. I can imagine situation, when you want to share your settings, but I can also imagine a situation, when I want to keep my own settings. How to distinguish that?

      1. On October 6, 2016 at 9:51 am Jason Young replied:

        I agree it isn’t necessarily for everyone or even every album, but I could see all the albums being stored like sidecar files, and then each person can choose to use it or not. Granted this isn’t a feature for everyone, but if the option was there, I am sure many people/ firms with multiple computers would find it beneficial. If you didn’t want it shared at all, then perhaps a simple checkbox for “shareable” would work??

    2. On October 6, 2016 at 8:58 am Patrick Smith replied:

      Jason these are all great questions. For albums and smart albums there won’t initially be a way to share them across multiple machines. It is something we are figuring out and hope to have this functionality at some point. Thanks again for commenting.

  2. On October 5, 2016 at 3:08 pm Henry Richardson wrote:

    Will you have a Lightroom catalog conversion tool? I have used Lightroom for years and have about 100k photos in my catalog with keywords, star ratings, collections, etc. I also have about 40k developed photos that I have spent years working on. I realize that transferring the keywords, star ratings, etc. is probably not so difficult since ACDSee and others can do that, but the real issue is all the work I have done on the development. I read that Darktable is working on a conversion tool that can handle the develop settings also. I realize that converting the development settings is very difficult, but all of us Lightroom users feel locked in because of this. If you could convert the development settings too (or at least come close) then you would, I think, find it much easier to get new customers. Or if ACDSee, Corel, or some other company does it then they would benefit. Before you say it is too difficult or impossible please keep in mind this that I have had on my office wall for 30 years: “Man who says it can’t be done should not interrupt man who is doing it.” — Old Chinese proverb :-)

    1. On October 6, 2016 at 8:55 am Patrick Smith replied:

      We will have a FREE conversion tool for Lightroom users early next year. We also will have some preparation steps users can take before that time.

      1. On October 6, 2016 at 2:43 pm Henry Richardson replied:

        Thank you. What will the free conversion tool convert? Will it also convert the Lightroom develop settings? That is the key question.

      2. On October 7, 2016 at 8:01 pm Henry Richardson replied:

        If doing a full Lightroom catalog conversion including the all important development settings is too difficult then what about if we have Lightroom write everything out to an XMP file for each photo? That should be easier for you since you wouldn’t even need to look at the Lightroom catalog file. The XMP file has the development settings, star ratings, keywords, etc.

      3. On October 27, 2016 at 10:28 am Hans Habereder replied:

        Thats the first i heard of a conversion program. You should be spreading the word, it will be interesting for folks like me who want to get away from loghtroom but find it very difficult right now. Look forward to hearing more about this

    2. On October 16, 2016 at 2:39 pm Henry Richardson replied:

      Capture One can do a pretty good job of Lightroom catalog conversion, including a lot of the development settings:


      And this:


      “Also note that I was going to include the version of the crane photo that I was presented with in Capture One after importing my Final Selects folder using a Lightroom Catalog and Include Existing Adjustments, as opposed to simply importing the file, but it actually looks so similar to the original Lightroom version there isn’t much point. What this means is that you can migrate your work to Capture One and maintain the look of your images as they appeared in Lightroom, to a certain degree.”

      I hope you are going to include conversion of the Lightroom developments settings also.

    1. On October 6, 2016 at 6:32 am HL Arledge replied:

      Nope. It’s still vaporware for now. They said we’d get a beta in Summer with the production release in Fall. Winter will be here soon.

      1. On October 6, 2016 at 8:53 am Patrick Smith replied:

        The release will be around the 2nd or 3rd week in November. Those who have pre-ordered and Plus Pro Members will get a prerelease. No public beta at this point.

  3. On October 6, 2016 at 1:47 am Petr Krenzelok wrote:

    I hope automatic (background) indexing of Favorites (watched folders) is well optimised in Photo RAW, as even with 10.5.1, when the app starts to crawl, it influences the usage of the software.

    I would also like to see one functionality, which is available in LR – folders remembering/saving its filters. In terms of our studio, when we work on particular customer shoots, we use star ratings to limit amount of photos (usually ****) means final client selection. It would be cool, if returning to that folder, would turn-on last filter.

    I also don’t think, that Smart Albums is the answer to save a filter. Albums are great of course, but imo for a bit different purpose ….

  4. On October 6, 2016 at 2:26 pm jean jannon wrote:

    I never liked the indexed folders as they – as Petr is mentioning – tend to grind too much on the drives. Nevertheless – I would like to see an old plain “favorite” bookmark, just a shortcut to get an easy and fast access to your favorite folders in the directory tree. Any hope?

  5. On October 7, 2016 at 5:33 am marc labro wrote:

    can we import from a cf or sd card into photoraw directly or do we need to import with viewnx2+nikon transfer2… or with lightroom ?
    how do you explain you can catalog and display very fast while people like adobe can’t do that in lightroom ??? what does LR do more than you when it is in library mode on grid view ? i have never understood why in grid mode when you go to next page of grid it computes thumbnials and when you come back one page before it computes again. never understood why thumbnails were not stored somewhere for an fast access like photomechanic,… displaying the embedded jpg thumbnail.

    in case you do a b&w conversion, does it display in grid view in photoraw ?

    best regards

  6. On October 10, 2016 at 8:20 pm David Dwight wrote:

    Are you planning to have an Apple Aperture conversion tool or instruction set? Lots of dedicated Aperture users have been waiting for a better non-destructive RAW photo editor. Moving to LR means losing adjustments or just moving devloped JPEGs. (Not to mention that pesky business model of Adobe) Even if you couldn’t bring over all the adjustments it would be nice to have some simple ones like crop and exposure translate and then put the non-translatable ones in notes in the EXIF or something.

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