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Thu, Sep 13, 2012 2:44 AM

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How to change jpeg quality when using an external editor in LR 4.1?

How to change jpeg quality when using an external editor in LR 4.1?

I'm using LR4.1 on Windows 7 64-bit and I'm running into something quite annoying; When I open a jpeg image in an external editor (in my case Nik Software Editors) and I choose to " Edit a copy with Lightroom Adjustments" and JPEG file format I end up with a much smaller size, lower quality file before it's even saved by the external editor. I can't seem to find any settings for the jpeg quality and I'm starting wonder if I'm missing something big here... any help would be appreciated.

I have dug through the forums and google searches with no luck. I do prefer to work with RAW but some of the cameras I use only output JPEG and I don't want to make unecessary conversions to TIFF.

Looks like all the pixels are there but I find the file size to be shocking and the image appears to be slightly different. For example:

Original (as shot): 3648 x 2736 4,316 KB

(image was cropped in LR)

Create by "Edit in...": 3614 x 2711 668 KB

Created by Export at 100 Quality: 3614 x 2711 4,705 KB

At the very least I expected the file size to be the same. Even a completely untouched image appears to be different when created as the result of Edit In:

(Vertical composition)

Original (as shot): 3648 x 2736 4,170 KB

Edit in... (jpeg): 2736 x 3648 753 KB

After some experimentation with exporting files as jpeg and then comparing them to the file created as a result of "Edit in..." it seems that it would take a quality setting of 60 in LR Export to create a file of the same size that's created by Edit In. That's lower than what I thought was the LR default of 75 and definitely produces visible degradation.

So I'm still digging into this a bit and that (approx) .6 quality magic number seems to be in the "Lightroom 4 Preferences.agprefs" file under:

AgExport_jpeg_quality = 0.605,

AgPublish_jpeg_quality = 0.6,

But changing them to 1 does not seem to have an impact.
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