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Working with Canon CR2 Files on Mobile?

GingeraMan

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Anyone know of any way to handle Canon CR2 files on a mobile? It captures and handles DNG fine, so I'm wondering if something can happen here, even if offloaded via the cloud....

Be nice if there was some CR2 to DNG converter for mobile or something although I know this is pushing even a modern phone or tablet quite far.
 
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What happens when you try to import the CR2 files? That functionality has been in LRmobile on iOS for quite a while, and I must admit I thought it was also possible on LRm for Android. On the iOS version, you first have to import the raw files into the device's camera roll and from there you can either manually or automatically import (and edit) them in LRm.
 
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I do this quite frequently when travelling, in one of two ways:

1. If I have my laptop with me (and good WiFi ...), i copy the .CR2 (and .JPG) files to the laptop from the camera's SD card. Then I open Lightroom on the Web and just drag the files from WIndows explorer into collections in the browser (I use Chrome). A little later, they will be sync'ed to my Android tablet or Android phone and I can work with them there. Of course I can also use Lightroom Web on the laptop.

2. If I only have my tablet (or phone), I use a little SD card reader and OTG cable to transfer the .CR2 files to the tablet (actually the micro-SD card which LIghtroom Mobile is set to use). I ususally put them in a sub-folder, named for the camera, of the DCIM folder. Then Lightroom Mobile imports them and you can work on them while they sync to Lightroom Web.

Another way to do this (if your camera has WiFi) would be to use Canon's Camera Connect app to transfer the files but I have not gotten round to using that properly.

Either method has the advantage of backup to the cloud which is potentially a big advantage when travelling. (Actually I store them in a Microsoft OneDrive folder on my laptop so I get yet another backup there too.)

When I get home I start Lightroom on my desktop and give it time to download everything before importing any further files from my camera SD cards. I'm not sure if this is necessary to avoid duplicates.
Once all the .CR2 files are safely on the PC using Lr desktop, you should remember to recover space on the tablet/phone by deleting the .CR2 files in the DCIM folder (Lrm does not need them).
 

GingeraMan

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Excellent... I'll try importing via the camera roll, and I had no idea Lightroom Web even existed... So that can handle the CR2 files? Wow, if so, just wow... Of course if it would be advisable to use wifi if taking this route... I now have a hefty cellular data plan but this would eat any plan up quickly... Great option though, especially while travelling! I have never looked at Lightroom Web... But wouldn't that require some sort of cloud storage subscription? I just have the photographers subscription...

I am using a USB cable to connect to the camera and will get a card reader too... I gave up on Canon WiFi.. It's really that bad..

Control via USB Host from my Samsung S8 works perfectly though...

Thanks I'll give both these options a go!
 
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I have never looked at Lightroom Web... But wouldn't that require some sort of cloud storage subscription? I just have the photographers subscription...

If you have the photographer's subscription, you're all set. It includes the Lightroom cloud space.

Lightroom mobile should be able to handle your CR2's too, so yes, try via the camera roll and import into LRM from there.
 

GingeraMan

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I'm trying to work out how to add via the camera roll... So Android LRM supports CR2 then.

Boy this will be good... Samsung photography quality screens combined with mobile RAW support.. Brilliant..

Would be nice if Canon et al just used DNG but oh well.

Yes I have the Photographer's Subscription... I notice it syncs happily with LRM but I'm not sure how that effects the paltry storage quota we get. Or last time I checked it was paltry anyway. So I never used it and want for Dropbox instead...

I'll take another look at what the cloud side can do.
 
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Yes I have the Photographer's Subscription... I notice it syncs happily with LRM but I'm not sure how that effects the paltry storage quota we get. Or last time I checked it was paltry anyway. So I never used it and want for Dropbox instead...

There are two aspects to the issue of the storage quota that comes with the Photography subscription plan: there's a small amount of general file storage space (2gb, IIRC) which can be used to store any files and share with others.....then there's the storage space that's specifically used for syncing photos via the LRmobile "ecosystem", the limits of which have changed a couple of times (initially it was 30,000 images, then that went to 60,000), but now I'm not sure what that limit is, though I suspect it's more. I've currently got around 200gb of images synced.
 

GingeraMan

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Oh right well I have a loooong way to go before I even approach that limit then...

Well I pulled a CR2 off Dropbox and Lightroom recognised it so that's something.

But then on realised when doing this, I may have challenges keeping it in sync... So I add the CR2 RAW via LRM, what happens then.. With edits and so on.
 
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The whole point of the sync "ecosystem" is that you can process (edit) a synced image on any of the synced devices (LR for Desktop, LR Web, iDevices such as phones and tablets) and the changes will sync to all the others. The upload of changes happens automatically whenever the device that you're working on is connected to the central sync servers (and sync is not paused), and ditto for the download to the other devices.
 

GingeraMan

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Well I tried taking a a picture today with DSLRController and wondered what would happen if I moved the CR2 to the DCIM folder on the phone and sure enough it appeared... So that's a good start! LRM picked it up just fine and I could do basic processing.

Now I'm just curious what happens with sync - I get the core purpose - thanks - I'm just wondering how this will work technically. So LRM imported the CR2 just fine, I wonder if that will now appear on Lightroom Desktop or if I need to import it there again or what.. And I assume processing will be in sync.. Or if it syncs / imports to LR Desktop the CR2 file when I get home over wifi, or over any wifi in the field...

RAW files are quite large so basically I am curious how the file itself is imported in to LR Desktop once I've imported it to LR Mobile. Same with DNG files I take from the phone camera itself, or even from LR Mobile itself. I don't imagine Lightroom caching large stacks of RAW files in the cloud for downloading later to the LR Desktop (or does it).

And then what happens when I plug the SD card in to the PC back at home, I presume LR Desktop will recognise the duplicates (pre-imported via LR Mobile) and untick for import.

So ideally, I could do some LRM basic processing in the field, and hand off to the PC at home for more detailed processing. Much of what I do could be handled by LRM on it's own though I think - saturation, colour, noise, lens correction etc...

Quite impressive. Now I can see I will soon need a 128GB SD card for the S8 phone I'm using, and the S2 tablet.

I can see this coming together now... very exciting...
 
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Now I'm just curious what happens with sync - I get the core purpose - thanks - I'm just wondering how this will work technically. So LRM imported the CR2 just fine, I wonder if that will now appear on Lightroom Desktop or if I need to import it there again or what.. And I assume processing will be in sync.. Or if it syncs / imports to LR Desktop the CR2 file when I get home over wifi, or over any wifi in the field...

Provided that you use the same Adobe ID that your subscription is registered to when you:
a) login to LRm on the iDevice
b) ensure Sync with Lightroom mobile is started in LR Desktop (check in the Activity Centre that this function is started)
c) login to LR Web

then syncing should happen automatically. Specifically if you import raw files into LRm, they (the original files) will be uploaded to the Adobe sync servers, and ditto if you import directly into LRWeb via drag and drop. Original files imported into LR Desktop and set to sync will not be uploaded, instead LR uploads Smart Previews.
So, import a raw into LRm, wait for it to finish uploading, then you will see the same file download automatically into LR Desktop (and you'll see it in LR Web when you login). If you added the file to a collection in LRm then the same collection will appear in LRD, but if not you'll see it in the special All Synced Photographs collection in the Catalog Panel. Note also that when the original downloads into LRD it will be written into the folder structure that you can specify in the Lightroom mobile tab in LRD preferences, i.e. you can if you choose have them download into the same folder hierarchy as you use when importing directly into LRD.
 
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Well I tried taking a a picture today with DSLRController and wondered what would happen if I moved the CR2 to the DCIM folder on the phone and sure enough it appeared... So that's a good start! LRM picked it up just fine and I could do basic processing.

Thank you for being my guinea pig! ;) I may have a couple more questions for you, if you don't mind. I have an 18 week series of blog posts on the ins and outs of LR mobile starting in just over a week, and an Android travel type workflow is the one bit I can't test.
 

GingeraMan

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Provided that you use the same Adobe ID that your subscription is registered to when you:
a) login to LRm on the iDevice
b) ensure Sync with Lightroom mobile is started in LR Desktop (check in the Activity Centre that this function is started)
c) login to LR Web

then syncing should happen automatically. Specifically if you import raw files into LRm, they (the original files) will be uploaded to the Adobe sync servers, and ditto if you import directly into LRWeb via drag and drop. Original files imported into LR Desktop and set to sync will not be uploaded, instead LR uploads Smart Previews.
So, import a raw into LRm, wait for it to finish uploading, then you will see the same file download automatically into LR Desktop (and you'll see it in LR Web when you login). If you added the file to a collection in LRm then the same collection will appear in LRD, but if not you'll see it in the special All Synced Photographs collection in the Catalog Panel. Note also that when the original downloads into LRD it will be written into the folder structure that you can specify in the Lightroom mobile tab in LRD preferences, i.e. you can if you choose have them download into the same folder hierarchy as you use when importing directly into LRD.
Thanks Jim! Works just as you describe! Looks like I'm on a roll now! I can't wait to try this with bulb mode and Astrophotography....

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
 

GingeraMan

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Thank you for being my guinea pig! ;) I may have a couple more questions for you, if you don't mind. I have an 18 week series of blog posts on the ins and outs of LR mobile starting in just over a week, and an Android travel type workflow is the one bit I can't test.
Shoot! No pun intended...

Happy to help!

I'm possibly ideally set up with Samsung top end devices and a Canon DSLR...

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
 
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Thank you! The bit of the process I'm not 100% clear on is how you get the photos from the memory card onto the device, so that LRM can pick them up from there. I'm just not that familiar with the Android OS.

I'm assuming it's along the lines of:

1. insert memory card into OTG card reader and attach to device
2. does something pop up at this point? or how do you actually copy the files? and where to?
3. then you can add them to LRM just as if they were shot with the device, right?
 

GingeraMan

Amateur Photographer ~ 4 years experience
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What I did was take the pictures with DSLR Controller (a paid Android app) using USB tethering with a cable, transferred the file to the device using the app, and then opened a file manager on the device (Samsung S8) and manually copied the CR2 file to the DCIM directory where the it was then found by Lightroom.

So basically I had to manually move the file to where it could be found by LRM.

Canon WiFi is a disaster, I strongly recommend avoiding ever using it, and instead use a USB cable. The phone or tablet needs to support USB Host (USB OTG) for this to work though.

DSLR Controller provides complete control over the camera and live view also.

A card reader could also be used however I just transferred directly from the camera after capture with the same app I use to control the camera.

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
 
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Thanks GingeraMan
 

Wernfried

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... and then opened a file manager on the device (Samsung S8) and manually copied the CR2 file to the DCIM directory where the it was then found by Lightroom.

So basically I had to manually move the file to where it could be found by LRM.

That is one of the main reason why I am not using LR mobile so far. Why does LR mobile has no option to set sources for import (like LR desktop has)?
 
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That is one of the main reason why I am not using LR mobile so far. Why does LR mobile has no option to set sources for import (like LR desktop has)?
It does on iOS, i.e. you can setup auto-import from the Camera Roll.
 

GingeraMan

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Yep it's silly... I wondered the same thing however now I know what to do it's ok, it's not that much effort... Just annoying.

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
 
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Well I tried taking a a picture today with DSLRController and wondered what would happen if I moved the CR2 to the DCIM folder on the phone and sure enough it appeared... So that's a good start! LRM picked it up just fine and I could do basic processing.

Now I'm just curious what happens with sync - I get the core purpose - thanks - I'm just wondering how this will work technically. So LRM imported the CR2 just fine, I wonder if that will now appear on Lightroom Desktop or if I need to import it there again or what.. And I assume processing will be in sync.. Or if it syncs / imports to LR Desktop the CR2 file when I get home over wifi, or over any wifi in the field...

RAW files are quite large so basically I am curious how the file itself is imported in to LR Desktop once I've imported it to LR Mobile. Same with DNG files I take from the phone camera itself, or even from LR Mobile itself. I don't imagine Lightroom caching large stacks of RAW files in the cloud for downloading later to the LR Desktop (or does it).

And then what happens when I plug the SD card in to the PC back at home, I presume LR Desktop will recognise the duplicates (pre-imported via LR Mobile) and untick for import.

So ideally, I could do some LRM basic processing in the field, and hand off to the PC at home for more detailed processing. Much of what I do could be handled by LRM on it's own though I think - saturation, colour, noise, lens correction etc...

Quite impressive. Now I can see I will soon need a 128GB SD card for the S8 phone I'm using, and the S2 tablet.

I can see this coming together now... very exciting...

I thought I said it in my previous post but perhaps I was not explicit enough. All of this really works! The RAW files can be uploaded through LRM on an Android tablet or drag-and-dropped into Lightroom Web and they will eventually sync, in their full size and everything, to your Lightroom Desktop. And I have now tested that, if you try to import from the original camera SD card to LRD, it will recognise them as already imported and not import duplicates. This is nice when you have a few images taken on the last day of your trip that you didn't import through the tablet, for example. The only concern may be to wait long enough for the RAW files to upload and download. Logically, Adobe could delete them from their servers once they are dowloaded to LRD. It would be interesting to know if they do that or not.
{Victoria, I am updating my profile here with my real name since we discussed another subject my email recently.]
 
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Thank you! The bit of the process I'm not 100% clear on is how you get the photos from the memory card onto the device, so that LRM can pick them up from there. I'm just not that familiar with the Android OS.

I'm assuming it's along the lines of:

1. insert memory card into OTG card reader and attach to device
2. does something pop up at this point? or how do you actually copy the files? and where to?
3. then you can add them to LRM just as if they were shot with the device, right?

Hello Victoria,
When I connect the OTG cable with the SD card reader and camera card to my Samsung tablet, the Samsung file manager app opens up on the SD card.

In my case (which is probably typical for an Android tablet), it shows 3 storage locations:
(1) the internal Device Storage,
(2) an extension SD Card installed in the tablet's own slot, and
(3) the external camera card in the OTG reader. (By the way, I have Lightroom Mobile set to store all its files on the additional SD card which acts as an extension to the tablet's internal storage - and is essential in my case.)

Then I can select files (or a whole folder) from the card and copy them to the DCIM folder either in the tablet's internal memory or it's extension. I find it good practice to make a folder named for each of my cameras inside there (eg, to distinguish them from photos taken with the device camera which are in a folder called "Camera" and others).

At this point, it seems to be necessary to unmount the camera SD card using the Settings/Storage on the tablet. I have found that LRM might get confused if you don't.

Then you can open LRM and it will normally import the files from the DCIM folder on the extension SD card automatically.

I have made a collection showing some screenshots from my tablet during the above process and one of the RAW files used that you can see here

LRM RAW file demo (there are captions to explain the steps)

Once everything is uploaded, I can delete the copies of the images in the DCIM folder.

On other brands of tablet, or with other file manager apps, I imagine that the process is similar.
John
 
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Logically, Adobe could delete them from their servers once they are dowloaded to LRD. It would be interesting to know if they do that or not.

No, they don't delete them from the cloud servers once downloaded to LRD. They couldn't really sell the service as "your pictures are available wherever you are" if they did that (and LRWeb wouldn't work). So they'll stay up there (and be backed up) until the user decides to delete them.
 
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No, they don't delete them from the cloud servers once downloaded to LRD. They couldn't really sell the service as "your pictures are available wherever you are" if they did that (and LRWeb wouldn't work). So they'll stay up there (and be backed up) until the user decides to delete them.

I thought that they might replace them with Smart Previews rather than the full .CR2 (or similar) files. Then they would be like any other photos uploaded from .CR2 files via Lightroom Desktop.
 
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No, it keeps the originals (uploaded either from LRm or LRWeb) and also creates Smart Previews. In LRm you then have the choice to use either the SP or the original. Only LRD does not upload originals, instead only SPs would be created and uploaded.

LRWeb also gives you the option to download either the original or a Jpeg preview.
 
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