Digital Asset Management in PhotoLab

Agree, the voting system is flawed. The fact that DAM support got the most votes is irrelevant as it does not take into account all the people that have no desire for DXO’s limited resources to be spent in that way. After all we are not provided with a way of voting against enhancements only for them. Perhaps DXO is attempting to position Photolab as a more direct competitor to Lightroom. Lightroom’s DAM and the need to import into it was one of the main reasons I stopped using it. Additionally I found that DXO Photolab gave me better results in much less time. I certainly hope that DXO will not be using a significant amount of its development resources for DAM development on an ongoing basis. That would be very disappointing.

It is often mentioned that many of DXO’s competitors offer much more functionality for a much lower price. While on the surface this seems to be accurate, what you see is not always what you get.

With regard to PhotoLab’s cheaper full featured competition like ON1, it would be more problematic if their end results were actually better or at least equal to PhotoLabs. I have both the 2018 version of ON1 and the upcoming 2019 beta version. While ON1 certainly has lots of features that I would love to see implemented in DXO PhotoLab, the overall quality of the output and tool Implementation is far below what I can achieve in Photolab. DXO Photolab doesn’t have to be the best program out there for every situation, but it does need to continue to be the best solution for raw conversions.



Any voting system where you can only vote “for” is going to be skewed. That is an issue in all voting mechanisms where you either vote for or do not vote at all. How would you suggest this be improved - the ability to vote for or against?

Also, how many users actually bother to vote anyway. Is it not probable that those who do not take an interest/do not vote at all are the silent majority who are possibly happy to leave it all to the devs? How many users does DPL have and how many are members of this forum?


All valid questions. The only purpose this voting system serves is as a forum for suggestions for the development staff. I doubt any of the suggestions or votes has much of an impact on their development plans. I’m sure many of them are taking into account, but are just as quickly dismissed. The fact that they are not willing to share their development roadmap with us does not mean they don’t have one. Our feedback is useful but it would be unreasonable to expect that they will implement every thing we ask them to and in our order of preference. Realistically the feedback from a handful of passionate users does not drive their business.

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Well said, Mark !
(My emphasis)

John M


And here is, what a user says, who does not use DxO as his main tool: Viewing two separate images

Or here a user from my facebook group, who bough PL1:

“Hello, I do not see another group to post to and I have a question. I just bought PhotoLab and I love it. What I did not expect is the files are across the bottom. I find that this makes the workflow very slow. Are there any shortcuts that I am missing? Some folders have many files in them. Thank you.”

I can deliver many many other citations, most of them in german though, concerning topics, that have nothing to do with image processing as such. In the end, this discussion does not seem to make any sense, because we are running in circles.

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Viewing two separate images is very different from adding full DAM features to DxO PhotoLab. It would be tremendously useful to be able to see two different shots at the same time. Even this gets complicated though - what settings would be applied? Can both images have their settings changed in real time?

In that case, it’s really two instances of DxO at the same time.

When I think about how much trouble this feature would bring, I go back to John’s POV on this issue:

Note : It is possible, of course, to move back-and-forwards between 2 images in PL’s Full-Screen Viewer - - but that’s never fast enough on my environment for critical analysis of two images. For this purpose, I use a dedicated image-viewer application … such as Irfan (excellent & free) or Fast Raw Viewer (excellent but not free).

The time to choose between two images is before DxO Photo Lab.

I have added some additional notes on image comparison software on Mac at the related feature request. We should probably keep that part of the conversation over there.


I agree, using FastStone Image Viewer you can bring up to 4 images to compare (not edit). Its very us-full and an initial weed for out of focus, eyes shut or silly faces can soon be done then a rerun with 2 at a time to get the best remaining. As Alec said all done before RAW editing makes it so much faster than having the RAW program do its stuff on all of the images.


Alec and John,

you are perfectly right. At least I do it the same way. :slight_smile:

To first select the worthy images, I also use FastStone (the best and most convenient image viewer at all, IMHO). After that, only these images are developed from RAW.

Integrating that kind of functionality into a RAW developer like DxO appears like wasting time and ressources, while the result will never be as fast and handy as (i.e.) FastStone. This can be easily done with (widely available) existing tools. The same applies to image organization and catalogues. I fully agree to Alec that DxO should concentrate on their core features and do these best.

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that’s funny…

IMatch is far more then “just hierarchical keywords”. And ExifTool can be considered one of the safest methods to write metadata to image files. But you can use sidecars and even suppress writing to the RAW files. You can easily switch from/to IMatch while keeping your valuable metadata in sidecars or image files.

How many developers do you think “Photo Supreme” has? They don’t even provide an address or phone number on their web site.


But I needed just hierarchical keywords and their import/export to XMP, a common thing in most RAW developers. If this functionality was in PhotoLab on that time, I would never have started to look on other tools. I would even pay around 70€ for a DAM extension for photolab, if it would allow me to work in a way comparable to Lightroom’s and would integrate itself like Filmpack or Viewpoint. I have again two posts on my facebook group from people complaining that they are urged to use Lightroom 6 with DNG converter or Acdsee as DAM, because PhotoLab does not cover the full workflow from SD card import to JPEG export. Here a comment google translated from german:


I have a problem since I want to move away from Lightroom I bought ACDSee for photo management there I add my RAW files to keywords. ACDSee generates XML files for this when I open this RAW’S now in DXO Photolab 2 I can not search for these keywords what am I doing wrong?

Greeting Stefan"

Why do you want to move from LR (as a DAM)?

You can continue to use most of the DAM functions even if your subscription expired.

About “what am I doing wrong?”:

This poster mixed up DAM and RAW processor. The DAM shall be used to search the file and hand it to DxO then. That’s the key function of a DAM, so I’m somewhat confused about the question.

What is your guess on how many people, that use Lightroom, On1 or CaptureOne use an additional DAM tool, because the embedded DAM parts of the tools are not sufficient for them? I would guess not more than 10%.

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are you speaking to me?
I don’t understand your point.

Why not opt for Bridge then? It’s free.

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Because bridge is file based, not database based. Too slow searches, because no index. I have evaluated it also.

I am just an amateur and it works just fine on my Mac. I also tried NeoFinder but prefer Adobe. I think I will probably rejoin the subscription.

I also tried NeoFinder but prefer Adobe. I think I will probably rejoin the subscription.

Hi, may I ask what is your experience with Neofinder ?
I started using it few months ago and I am building up my catalogue again.

@markinho, my mileage is limited mainly because when I first loaded the trial it had performance issues with Mac Mojave. These have now been corrected and it runs pretty swiftly on my 2017 iMac. What drew me to it was its functionality in the direction of metadata and geo tagging plus it is able to display thumbnails from Affinity Photo project files. Also displays Luminar project files, not that I am into that piece of software. It was always going to be between NeoFinder and XnView; the latter is free the former is of course Mac architecture.

DPL now building a DAM has rather muddied the water. Do I wait for that? How long will it be? Will it be good enough? Or do I just pick a stand alone and go with it. Then Adobe have picked the pace up. I still think LR is a difficult act to follow (certainly DAM-wise) and I am quite taken by LR CC and its cloud offering - it is a shame that as yet it does not support plugins and one can only hand off to Photoshop which does accept plugins of course.

To really dirty the water - Apple Photos as a DAM is not too bad imo. It has all the basics, is fast, works across all devices, has excellent plugin support and is free. Downside is you can only hand off jpegs to the plugins and that has obvious consequences.

So my question is where now or just stick with Adobe and that in turn is influenced by should I keep my raws and final tiffs/jpegs separate. I do keep them separate at the moment with the finals in LRCC.

A flow I had been considering was made up of DPL, NeoFInder and Affinity Photo but it is how to integrate that with the cloud. At the end of the day LR CC on mobile is very good. There is not a DPL equiv.



I see, thanks for your reply.

I am amateur too and I am very tired of all those little garded gardens and marketing promises.
I decided to use several powerful tools that DO IT RIGHT instead of one sluggish software that always need improvement.
My iMac is my main station to organize and store.
This fact do not prevent me to do some part of the work on my laptop and then move the files over since I know exactly how each file get together. Even the Neofinder database is easy to move around (when keeping the same folder structure).

I can not wait forever so I jumped with Neofinder.
But I use Exiftool to create the XMP files and probably for much more in the future since this is THE tool for metadata.
If you are interested we can open a new thread to talk about tools and workflows…

NeoFInder is ok, no doubt. I suspect XNView is more powerful but not as nicely integrated into the Mac ecosystem. I find that the Exif management capabilities in NeoFinder, XNView, Bridge and LR are all more than satisfactory for my needs. I have never felt the need to use or even try Exif Tools and do not see that changing.

BUT, I am sort of sold on the cloud and I really like the way LRCC works with it and across all devices. I probably see DxOPL as my raw converter but whether I need to use it all the time is open to debate. LR and ACR does a pretty good job, especially on those ordinary “snap shots”. I just wish I knew what the DxO road map is and I also wish they would adopt Fuji X as that is a direction I am likely to go at some point.