I honestly haven’t noticed this in my heavy usage of Lightroom, but a software analyst named Lloyd Chambers has discovered that Adobe Lightroom doesn’t fully make use of all CPU cores during the photo exporting process.

Chambers found that if a photographer wants to produce JPEG or TIF images from the originals in the program, the fastest way is to divide the batch into thirds and export each third separately. Using a modern Mac Pro system, exporting a test set of photos took 351 seconds as one batch and 189 seconds divided into three batches running at the same time.

“The big disappointment is the sluggish performance importing and exporting files, which are tasks that are key to efficient workflow–tasks one has to do over and over. Most of the ‘juice’ of a Mac Pro goes untapped,” Chambers concluded. “You have to load it up with more than one job to force more of the available CPU cores to be used. Lightroom should do this automatically!”

Many, including myself, aren’t making too big of a deal about this since the speed overall and the reliability of Lightroom has never been a problem. However, I think it would be nice to have the option to utilize all CPU’s to their max capacity (even if it does mean that the rest of the computer becomes almost unusable during the exporting process). Anyway, I’m gonna try that rule of dividing batches into thirds when I do my next export. I want to see how fast it will get on my MBP.