Hey folks! Here’s another Q&A day for ya. Keep the questions coming, I’ve been getting a lot of good ones lately.

Q. Can you go into more depth on what tablet you are using and how Lightroom deals with tablets?
A. Sure. I use the Wacom Intuos 4 medium sized tablet. I have a small size that I travel with but the medium sized one is what sits on my desk. I’ve used tablets ever since I can remember and, in my opinion, there is no other tablet that even holds a candle to the Wacom tablets. I will be honest and say I kinda strayed from using a tablet for a while but the Intuos 4 and all the cool stuff you can do with it got me back into it. When it comes to Lightroom, the tablets will only come into play when using various brush-related tools (Adjustment Brush, Spot Removal, Red Eye). The main one is the Adjustment Brush though. It uses pressure sensitivity to increase or decrease the brush harshness when you paint so you can get a little more fine-tuned control around the edges. Plus you can use your other settings on the tablet to quickly increase or decrease the size of the brush.

Q. Can I filter by focal length? So if I want to know all photos shot at 24mm how would I do that?

A. There is a Focal Length field in the EXIF data but, unfortunately, you can’t search/filter by it in Lightroom (nope, I don’t know why). You could however go to View > Filter Bar. Click the “Text” option and choose Searchable EXIF and type the exact focal length that you want to find.

Q. When using presets, is there a way to layer presets with out effecting the previous preset layer?
A. Well, kinda of. First off, Lightroom doesn’t have layers so you can’t add preset “layers”. Let’s say you add PRESET #1. It was built to change white balance, vibrance, and vignetting. Then lets say you add PRESET #2. It was built to change the white balance and exposure settings. In the end, you’ll have the white balance and exposure setting from PRESET #2 (because that was what was added last), and the vibrance and vignetting setting from PRESET #1.

Q. If I backup to a second external hard drive during import, is that second drive linked to LR automatically?
A. Nope. The backup is literally just a backup of your photos. Lightroom has no idea it even exists. If your primary drive ever fails, then you can right click on a folder in Lightroom and choose “Find Missing Folder”. Then point to the secondary external drive to link Lightroom (and all of its changes to your photos) to those backup photos on the drive.

Q. In my haste to get the camera profiles into LR I didn’t realize I already had them as part of LR 2.3. So I now have both beta and non beta versions. Is there any way to get rid of the beta profiles?
A. There sure is. I covered it a while back here on the blog. Here’s the link on how to remove them.

Q. My camera doesn’t shoot in Raw mode. How can I work with JPEGs in Lightroom? (this also applies to you if you can shoot in raw mode but just prefer JPG for sports or other reasons).
A. No sweat. That’s what is cool about Lightroom – it doesn’t care. Raw, DNG, JPG, TIFF, PSD… they all work the same in Lightroom. For the most part, the only tiny thing you’ll really miss if you’re not shooting Raw or DNG are the camera profiles (I covered them in a previous video if you want to see what it’s all about).

That’s it for this round of Q&A’s. Thanks!