Looking for help with slow and clunky workflow/storage

I have been using NLP and a fujixt3 with the 80mm macro lens to digitize my negatives for several months now. I am very happy with the results but the workflow feels a bit slow/clunky. I do believe that I must be missing something as I have searched but haven’t found too many others running into these issues. First off is the space required to store a large amount of RAW files AND the TIFF copies on my computer. At this point I am using a 1TB crucial x8 SSD to import my photos to and work from. Lightroom is starting to run very slow and sluggish, to the point where it takes about 10 minutes to convert 38 negatives. Is this normal? Does anyone have a solution for storage space? At this point I have digitized about 5500 negatives using this method.
I am primarily interested in the TIFF files so I can sync them to LR mobile and have access to them there, I suppose I could delete the original RAW files but that also seems a bit backwards to me. Any feedback would be appreciated.
My other main problem with NLP is making TIFF copies (which takes my Razer Blade 15 ages to go(last year’s model)) and then individually having to select them and drag them into a new TIFF only collection which I sync across my devices. Is there a way to speed up this process, either by having the copies stack together or go into a pre selected catalog?
I am quite new to Lightroom so forgive me if there are any basic things I am overlooking.
Thanks in advance!

Crucial’s x8 ssd is an external device afaik. In this case, speed penalties can have several reasons.

  • interface speed (I suppose you use usb-c)
  • used storage (how much is used/free)
  • trim support (management of free ssd space)

Maybe you can check your system specs and comment if your ssd is full, where the Lr catalog resides etc? This might give us more clues on what is going on.

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Maybe I’m misunderstanding your process, but for me Lightroom Mobile syncs raw files with no problem, so I don’t see why you also need the corresponding TIFFs if that’s the only reason you are making them. In my files, a TIFF image is always larger than the corresponding raw file, so ditching the TIFFs would cut your storage requirements by more than half.


I do use a USB-C to connect to the external. My internal storage is almost full (which is why I use the external HD. I have the catalog, and cache stored on the external as well.

LR mobile syncs raw files but once they have been converted with NLP I get an error message on my mobile device that reads: Missing Profile “to edit the image and keep NLP v2.0, please open and edit the photo on the device you originally edited this photo on.”

An almost full internal medium can slow things down considerably. I’ve seen that on an old Mac. What is your OS? Win? Mac? Does your machine swap (move data to and fro between RAM and HD/SSD)?

  • You could try to free some space (move things out to an external medium) and see if it makes a difference
  • Can you boot from the external SSD? If yes, does it make a difference?

I have lots of ideas about your workflow, but let me start with a question…why is it important for you to have access to TIFF renditions on Lightroom Mobile?

If you find Lightroom getting “sluggish”, check your catalog backup options.

Go to Lightroom Classic > Catalog Settings and change it to "Back up catalog: Once a day, when exiting Lightroom"

This not only backs up the catalog, but it also optimizes it for speed. I’ve seen a massive performance improvement (especially scrolling through large libraries) now that I have this set.


I like to make minor edits and tweaks on LR mobile which I am not able to do with the inverted RAW files as LR mobile does not support the NLP profile. If I could find a different workaround that would be phenomenal.

I run LR on Windows. Not sure what swapping is - how can I check for that?
I do boot from the external SSD. Going to try to free up some space on the internal drive and see if that helps.

Got it, thanks Nate.

When your PC needs more RAM that it’s got, things are copied from RAM to disk in order to free up some memory, and copied back from disk to RAM at a later moment. RAM is much faster than a disk drive which makes your PC run slower if many applications are used in parallel. Check your system monitor. I’m on Mac and someone on Win can probably provide better instructions on how you can see what goes on in this respect. How much RAM does your PC have? Which version of Windows does it use?

Is there a difference in reactivity between booting from the internal disk and booting from the external disk?

Got it. Generating huge TIFF files and syncing those smart previews to the cloud just so you can make minor edits and tweaks on an iPad or iPhone doesn’t seem worth it. Definitely not to me, and maybe not to you.

From a workflow perspective, I suggest you do all your editing on a real computer where you have a larger screen, faster processor, local storage, and better input devices than your fingers.

Then you can export high-quality JPEGs and sync those with a favorite cloud service for universal access, but I’m not aware of any workarounds to the convoluted steps you’ve already taken.