Specifying Preview Type

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Today’s Question: How can I specify that I want Standard Previews in Lightroom Classic CC?

Tim’s Quick Answer: There are two ways you can have Lightroom generate Standard previews (rather than 1:1 previews, for example). You can either select the Standard option from the Build Previews popup in the Import dialog at the time you import photos into Lightroom, or you can use a menu command to generate previews after import for selected photos.

More Detail: This question is a follow-up to a previous question that related to the use of the “Embedded & Sidecar” preview option. In short, I recommended using the Standard (or 1:1) preview option rather than the “Embedded & Sidecar” option.

You can specify the type of preview you want Lightroom to generate right at the time the images are being imported into your Lightroom catalog. From the Build Previews popup in the File Handling section of the right panel in the Import dialog, simply choose the desired option, such as “Standard” or “1:1”. As soon as the images have been imported, Lightroom will generate previews of all of the photos, storing those previews alongside the catalog file.

If you had been using a different preview option during some of your previous imports, or you otherwise need to re-generate previews for some images, you can most certainly perform that task at any time. Simply select the photos you want to generate previews for (such as all photos in a given folder) and then choose the desired preview option from the submenu at Library > Previews. For example, to generate Standard previews you could select Library > Previews > Build Standard-Sized Previews. Note that you do need to be in the Library module to be able to select this menu option.

Note that it is even possible to re-generate previews for all photos in your entire Lightroom catalog. To do so, you could first choose “All Photographs” from the Catalog section of the left panel in the Library module. Then choose Edit > Select All in order to select all photos in your catalog (making sure you don’t have any filters set first). Then choose the desired preview option from the Library > Previews submenu, and Lightroom will build updated previews as needed for all selected photos.