Need Update: Luminar is 27 times slower than Lightroom




  • Official comment
    Margaret Bright

    Hi Fleming,

    Usually, the performance of the app depends on the number of photos you have in your catalog, their format (it can take a bit more time to load RAW or TIFF files), your hardware configuration, and the place where you store your photos (it works faster when the photos are located on an internal drive).

    Nevertheless, we are constantly improving the speed of the app with each and every update in order to provide our artists with the best quality. In fact, it's one of our top priorities at the moment. 

    If you would like our team to investigate why does Luminar 4 perform so slowly on your computer, please reach out to our Support team via

    It would be helpful if you could include the following information to your request:

    1. What is the version of Luminar that you are using? You can check it this way: start Luminar > click Help if you are on WIndows or Luminar 4 if you are on Mac > About Luminar).

    2. How many images are there in your Library? Please send us the screenshot of your Catalog file structure as in the example: 

    3. Where are they located (on an internal or external drive)?

    4. Your hardware configuration:

    For MacOS:

    Click on Apple logo in the upper left corner of your screen, click About This Mac, and make a screenshot of the window that opens. Attach the screenshot to your request.

    For Windows:

    • Press the Windows logo key + R.
    • Type msinfo32 in the dialog box that opens and hit Enter on your keyboard.
    • In the window that opens, make sure you have System Summary highlighted on the left.
    • Click File > Export.
    • Type the name of the file and save it somewhere where you can easily find it and attach this text file to your requestю

    Hope to hear from you soon.

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    Fleming Thompson

    Happy Valentines Day!

    This post has not been answered. You addressed none of my questions.

    My machine is not the problem here, let's not change the subject.

    I am (we are) interested in Luminar's performance in general and the improvements Skylum is making to fix performance issues.

    Were talking serious architecture changes related to hardware utilization... Are they coming?

    Get technical
    Be specific

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    Wolfgang Jarcik

    Hallo Margaret,

    I have the latest version of Luminar4 4.1.1 again today. also the current version of macOs Catalina on my Macbook that meets (and even exceeds) the requirements for Luminar. As a test, I only have 11 photos on my internal SSD and my catalog, which has now been created several times, is also on the internal SSD. And despite the performance improvements announced by Skylum, everything is loading very, very slowly. It takes at least 15 seconds before I can start editing after starting Luminar. If I then switch to the next photo, another 15 seconds pass. When I finish editing and want to export my RAW file, it takes at least 30 seconds. I can't imagine how that will work with my usual number of photos to be edited. Unfortunately, the pre-made standard answers don't really help me either.

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    Fleming Thompson


    Are you ignoring us?

    This issue has not been answered.  We're not asking for technical support.  We want to when we can expect some major changes.

    This post has not been answered.  Please stop using canned responses.  

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  • Avatar
    Victoria Grace

    Hi all,

    Sorry for the delay. Thanks for all your feedback!

    Be sure our dev team are currently focused on optimizing the CPU usage and improving the overall speed and performance of Luminar 4. This is our main priority now and we're putting all our efforts to reach that with each update.

    Since the system configuration, image formats, library size differ from user to user, it explain the differences in speed while working in Luminar 4.

    However, I understand that this is not as excuse, and of course if you wish, you may always request a refund if it doesn't suit your workflow. In this case, please, reach us at and we'll gladly assist you with that.

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    Fleming Thompson

    "This is our main priority now and we're putting all our efforts to reach that with each update." - Victoria Grace

    Victoria you have been a Skylum member since December 2019... 2 months... No offense, despite your inability to conjugate subjects and verbs, I'm sure you're a nice lady.

    Maybe leadership within Skylum would have something to say? Maybe a timeline to offer?

    It is shocking to me that a company has zero idea when they might make progress toward their top priority.

    I don't want a refund! You can't afford to give me one! Your dev team needs the money to fix this problem.  Take my $80 and go pay for some overtime. 

    I'm starting to think your company may have deeper issues than just software development.  

    - FT

    PS - I built a 100% brand new PC with about $2k worth of parts for my test, including a Ryzen 3900x, 32GB of DDR4 3600 (running at 3600) and a PCIE 4.0 NVME drive.  I installed a fresh copy of Luminar and Lightroom and put the same 70 pictures in each library with zero other files.  It's pure apples to apples in an experiment where there hardware cannot possibly be the limiting factor.  The only reason for the difference in speed is your software's ability to leverage my hardware.  The better the hardware, the wider the performance gap between you and the competitor.  

    I have a decent amount of experience with computers and editing software and a little coding experience. I put a significant amount of energy and resources into trying to help you improve your product because I want your company to compete with Adobe.

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    Reinhard Temmel

    Hi there,

    I am using a brand new MacBook Pro 16", with 32GB DDR4 memory and the 5.0 GHz 8core i9 processor.

    In my recent Luminar 4.1.1. (5938) catalogue are 190 photos.

    Exporting of 1 (one!!!!) photo (Sony arw file with about 20-25 MB) with basic adjustments takes 8-10 seconds. The CPU temperature goes up to over 70º (Celsius!!!), this never happens with any other software.

    To export the same photo with the same adjustments with Affinity Photo takes less than 1 second (you can not even measure it).

    I tried the same with other apps (e.g. Photoscape), it is the same.

    So: this has nothing to do with setup of my machine or apples Catalina, it is  solely the problem of Luminar.

    I am using Luminar since L2018, then L3 and now L4 and I like the idea behind it, but I think it is time to get a proper product for my money.

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    Helga Rowles

    Hi Reinhard! At the moment, 8-10 second export is within normal limits for Luminar 4.
    That said, our tech team is working around the clock to improve the performance with each update and deliver the best editing experience to our artists. 

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    Reinhard Temmel

    Hi Helga,

    maybe 8-10 seconds for exporting one photo is the limit for Luminar, but it is not normal for a state of the art app.

    btw: what is with the promised DAM (keyords etc.)?

    It is frustrating if you need at least two different apps for an average workflow - one for management, one for development and maybe another one for export, printing etc. (maybe you can have a little look at Affinity Photos Export persona).

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