Adobe Bridge Photolab 4 workflow

Hi all, I’m a PL newbie having just purchased PL4 and Nik collection.

Coming from ON1 Photo Raw, also own Photoshop CS6 and Topaz DeNoise.

Trying to figure out the best workflow for rating and exporting images.

I am saving Raw files like this:

2021-03-18 ¦ Subject
2021-03-19 ¦ Subject

Previously I culled and rated in ON1 and only created jpegs when I needed them and treated them as disposable. As far as I was concerned the process image in ON1 was the final step and colour coded green.

I feel that I need a different approach with PL4 as ratings and keywords created in PL4 are not visible outside PL4 and colour coding does not exist.

I have only been using Adobe Bridge for a few days and am quite impressed with it’s capabilities so I think I need to do all my rating, colour coding and keywording in Bridge (until DXO incorporates this functionality in PL4).

Seeking advice as to how others manage this combination.

1 Do you create a finalised Jpeg or Tiff and do you store it in the same folder as the Raw files or somewhere else.

2 How do you indicate finalised files

  1. If you use multiple Nik Collections, do you create a single or multiple TIFFs

Any suggestions or pointers to documentation or youtube videos would be appreciated.

Sounds good. PhotoLab can read metadata from .xmp sidecars and from within files, it cannot write back to .xmp sidecars though. I’d keep separated the DAM and development steps as you propose.

I use jpeg or tiff according to what I need. I usually don’t keep the files, they can be recreated in PhotoLab - using its database or .dop sidecar files.

I export finalised files to a dedicated folder and delete the finalised files after use.

I don’t use the multi-tiff option offered by the Nik apps. Note that PhotoLab will create a new file each time you want a file to open in Nik. This will get you lots of (large) files and that’s okay if you want to follow the non-destructive path strictly. You can always rework (destructively) a file exported by Nik by opening it in the Nik app of your choice.

Bildschirmfoto 2021-03-19 um 13.15.26

I don’t use jpeg as input to Nik, they don’t offer enough wiggle room.

1 Like

Thanks Platypus for your helpful reply.

All of your advice sounds good. Just one question.

Previously I used ON1 as my DAM so did not need to save jpegs as the processed raw file showed the final result.

If I use Adobe Bridge as the DAM and want to review the processed files based on keyword or star rating to select images, I would not see the final image in Bridge unless I had a jpeg or TIFF.

How do you deal searching for and reviewing processed images. Do you use Photo Lab for this rather than the DAM?

My main app is Lightroom Classic and I use PhotoLab mainly when a shot needs it.

DxO’s Lightroom workflow recommendation is to process in PhotoLab first and then do the rest in Lightroom. You might use this approach too and use DNG as the standard file format. Bridge will then be able to display the processed image. Caveat: DNGs exported from PhotoLab use a lot of drive space:

Thanks Platypus

I have Lightroom 6 but switched to ON1 when Adobe went to the subscription model.

Apart from lack of support for my cameras due Lightroom 6 age and my resistance to the subscription model, I much prefer not having to import photos as in Lightroom.

Perhaps someone who uses Adobe Bridge as a DAM with PL4 could add their thoughts.

I am using AcdSee, it can’t display raw developed by DPL so I export all raw I develop as jpeg. They get all keywords and rating I assign to the raw (usually I assign rating and keywords before developing photos). In this way when I search or review images I always have jpegs I can see directly from AcdSee.
I know that a photos is finalized when I see there is a jpeg with a name ending with _dxo (exported by DPL)

Thanks, that’s useful.

Do you use the default jpeg settings to export (quality 90).?

Do you use the jpeg as the source for output e.g. printing or sending to a camera club competition (1600 on long side) Or do you go back to the original processed raw file.

I imagine it makes sense to use the high quality jpeg as hopefully the quality would not be degraded too much as it is only ever processed one for each disposable output.

I prefer to export using a slighly higher quality (96) because then I use that jpeg as a source for resizing and uploading to the web.
DLP resize on export is missing a custom sharpening setting, for me bicubic resize is too soft while bicubic sharper is really too sharp with lots of aritfacts. For this reason I use AcdSee where I can use a customized sharpen.

1 Like

I ran my own tests using a 27.91 MB CR2 image in PL4.

Output as:
JPEG 5.60 MB
DNG 85.87 MB
TIFF created by PL4 133.83 MB
TIFF created by Silver Efex (normal) 133.83 MB
TIFF created by Sliver Efex (settings saved) 267.68 MB

I think my conclusion is once I have finished processing an image, I will save a high quality JPEG and delete any TIFFs created by PL4 or Nik.

Interesting, at 96 quality the jpeg becomes 10.30 MB compared to 5.60 MB for 90 quality.

"DLP resize on export … " what is DLP?

I’ll have to run some test to compare output quality!

Thanks for your help.

I had to write DPL (DXO Photolab), just a typo :grinning:

1 Like