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Using iMac as a secondary monitor

MargieGJ

New Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2016
Messages
6
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Version
Lightroom Classic release 9.2
Operating System
macOS 10.14 Mojave
I’ve been using LR on my laptop. Photos are all on an external drive and my catalog is on the laptop. I also own an iMac and it seems a shame for it to sit idle. I’ve progressed to the point that I would like to edit photos on the 27” iMac screen. I’ve been thinking that there might be a way to connect my laptop to the iMac while keeping my single catalog on the laptop and all the photos on the external drive which will remain attached to the laptop. My reason for maintaining the laptop as the primary system is that I need it to be portable. Does this make sense? If yes, what do I need to make it happen. Are there other options that would accomplish the same thing (a single catalog and all photos on the external drive)?
Thank you!
 
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
16,825
Location
Houston, TX USA
Lightroom Experience
Power User
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Cloud Service
I am afraid the iMac does not operate as a standalone monitor. You can open the iMac on the same local network as the MBP and share the MBP disk. Then Open Lightroom on the iMac pointing it to the catalog file on the network. Lightroom won't like the location since network located catalogs are not permitted. You can copy the catalog file (and the containing folder from the MBP to the iMac and open the copy of the catalog as a local file leaving the master images on the MBP. If you do this, you will need to move the catalog folder back to the MBP to keep it on the portable computer.

I use an iMac as my primary (master) catalog. and Lightroom Cloudy on my mobile machines (I used to use an MBP but I replaced that with a iPadPro) I have sync's my most important Lightroom Classic images to the cloud and use Lightroom cloudy on my mobile platform to import into Classic on the iMac . Images or proxy images are available in the mobile platform and all of my master images end up in my master catalog on the iMac.
 

Woodbutcher

Active Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2015
Messages
173
Location
Austin, TX
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Intermediate
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Depending on what year the iMac is, it can work as a targeted display, but from what I've found, it is only on the pre-Retina display iMacs. And they might have to be on High Sierra version of OS X or older. So if your iMac has a Retina display then you can't.
 

MargieGJ

New Member
Joined
Dec 18, 2016
Messages
6
Lightroom Experience
Intermediate
Lightroom Version
Thanks for your responses. You’ve both given me things to check out.
Another option I’ve considered- is it possible to move my catalogue to the external hard drive with all the photos? My thinking is that I could then use the external drive on both the MacBookPro and the iMac.
 

Gnits

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 21, 2015
Messages
1,241
Location
Dublin, Ireland.
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Power User
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Do some research on the fastest drive that can work with both machines. I am installing an external drive for my laptop, which has the latest Thunderbolt 3 spec , with transfer speeds of 40gb/s. Be careful of performance of early usb drives, cables, etc. I know someone with expensive Thunderbolt 2 external drives who is also disappointed with performance arising.
 
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