Exif data is important information for us photographers, it lets use know what camera, lens and pictures settings was at the time of taking the photo. Before digital, photographers had to write down this information in notepad for future references. Today when you take a picture with any digital camera, this information is automatically wrote to the Jpeg/RAW file.
What happens if you are using a manual non-cpu lens? What if you are using an adapter to accommodate a different lens mount? What if for some strange reason your camera or Lightroom thinks there was a different lens attached than what you were actually using? How can you add or change this information Lightroom? Well, you can’t nativity (yet) but you can download a plugin called LensTagger and it’s for Mac/PC and free, did I mention free?
Make sure you following the installation instructions at the link I shared above.
Now I’m using this software a little different than what it was intended for. I’m using it to rename a lens, the Tamron SP AF 28-75mm F2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical IF Macro A09N, yeah…sounds like a handful right? Well it does to me anyways, maybe it’s my OCD but I’m not sure what Tamron was thinking when they wrote that to the len’s CPU chip.
I simply want to rename to the regular Nikon lens naming scheme Lightroom seems to read, 28.0-75.0 mm f/2.8 is much shorter and easier for my locate in Lightroom when using the library filter.
The name of the lens is longer than the column! Okay maybe I’m a little dyslexic too, I don’t know.
When I edit photos I have exif data overlay on which quickly tells me what pictures settings are as seen below.
Just look how long that is! When I’m editing photos taken with that lens, I have to hide that data because it covers about half of the photo and I’m using a fairly high resolution monitor.
So how do we fix this? It’s actually pretty easy and this same method applies to adding exif data to manual non-cpu lenses.
The first thing you’ll want to do is select the group of photos of that particular lens is Right Click > Metadata > Save Metadata to Files – This is important. Make sure you do it each time you run the LensTagger plugin.
Next, go to File > Plug-in Extras > LensTagger and this will bring up the LensTagger window.
Since I’m not adding any Exif data, only renaming the lens, so I left the Focal Length, Focal Length in 35mm, F-Stop and Exposure Time fields blank so LensTagger doesn’t rewrite them. The important field for me is Lens Name and the Max Aperture (though, I think can leave this blank but I filled it in anyways).
Enter the lens name that you want, I went for the “traditional” Nikon lens naming scheme but you could name it however you want. All I ask is that you please don’t fool people by renaming your 18-55 kit lens so it says 24-70 2.8 because that is just being a douche and it’s going confuse not only yourself but if you were to share it online, it will confuse people research that particular lens on photo sharing sites.
The next is adding a max aperture, now I’m unsure if you need this to be filled in for it to work but it can’t hurt to add it anyways.
Thirdly, you will want click the Edit check box and click Update Command and then uncheck it and you’ll will want to make sure you save this as a preset if you have multiple lenses that applying the new metadata to that way you can easily choose.
Last but not least, click Run Command. On the bottom it will say running command and after it will say command successful. You can now click Close.
You will notice the exif data hasn’t changed yet. Don’t worry! Just right click on the group of photos and choose Metadata > Read Metadata from Files and voila! You have successfully renamed a lens inside of Lightroom using LensTagger.
It should now look like this.
Absolutely a fantastic and very powerful plugin that will come in extremely handy. You can now rename those lenses that say 0.0 mm f/0.0 so you actually know what lens it is. If you shoot mirrorless and use an adapter for vintage lenses, you can finally add this information.
If you shoot film, you can use the Analog Film Options tab to add information such as camera make, scanner make and models, film type, paper type, you name it. Very cool stuff.