Some Previews Missing in Adobe Bridge


Today’s Question: For some time, I’ve had trouble viewing several thumbnails in the Bridge Preview. I get just the TIFF icon in the preview panel as shown in the attachment. I have tried purging the cache without any improvement. I would be most grateful for your help.

Tim’s Quick Answer: In this case the issue is that Adobe Bridge is not processing images above one gigabyte in size, so you aren’t seeing previews for those large images. You can correct this by increasing the threshold for processing large files in Preferences.

More Detail: By default, Adobe Bridge will not process image files larger than one gigabyte. The idea here is that those very large files will take considerable processing time, and they are likely to be the exception for most photographers. The files can still be opened in Photoshop, for example, by double-clicking on the icon for the image.

You can also increase the threshold for processing large images, so that Adobe Bridge will show you thumbnails and previews even for very large images. This is found in the Preferences dialog, which can be found by choosing Edit > Preferences from the menu on Windows or Adobe Bridge > Preferences on Macintosh. In the Preferences dialog go to the Thumbnails tab from the list on the left side of the dialog.

On the Thumbnails tab of the Preferences dialog, you’ll find the “Do Not Process Files Larger Than” field in the “Performance and File Handling” section. The default value is 1000 MB (1 GB), but you can update this value as needed to ensure thumbnails and previews will be generated even for your larger image files.

I should point out that this little issue isn’t necessarily all that obvious, but fortunately the photographer who asked today’s question included a screenshot showing the issue. While the pixel dimensions for the images would suggest the files would have only been under about 100 MB, clearly there had been some layers added to the image that caused the file size to grow significantly. The screenshot showed that one problem image, for example, was 1.35 GB in size.

Simply setting the threshold to a higher value, such as around 1500 MB in this particular example, will cause even those larger image files to be processed so you’ll see thumbnails and previews for them.