I am using Lightroom for all my Digital Asset Management (DAM). Its open architecture and SQLite database make a very solid platform that is also very flexible and extensible. Even in v1.1 it is reliable enough to manage your entire image collection, and it will only get more robust in future versions.For a long while I really was only using Lightroom for raw processing. Prior to using Lightrooom for DAM, I had primarily used iView – for several years and upwards of 20,000 images – and Portfolio before that. I’ve also used ACDSee on Windows. Compared to those other (more mature) products Lightroom really holds its own.
There are possible benefits of using multiple Lightroom databases. This is a very personal part of the workflow; most people do different things here. It’s largely up to the individual to choose a particular approach but you will most likely improve it later. This is a natural part of the iterative nature of any kind of photographic workflow, especially with digital capture.
I saw a demo by Peter Krogh at PhotoPlus Expo in November 2006. Peter is the author of the definitive book on DAM. He is “generally” recommending Lightroom for DAM now. (He was using iView before.) His methods are easy to learn and adopt into your own workflow.
So Lightroom is truly the all-in-one DAM solution, but how you choose to implement it is a personal choice. If you have a huge image library, it will take some time to properly import everything into Lightroom.
(I haven’t seen one, but a tool for converting iView catalogs into Lightroom libraries may show up. Any software developers here want to take a stab at this? Would be very useful….)
Check out George Jardine’s Lightroom podcasts on iTunes – very interesting stuff. (Search for Adobe Lightroom podcasts in iTunes.)
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