Lightroom Mobile: How to Install Presets

This is the written Tutorial! If you want to watch a Video of the steps required please go to this blog post > LINK to the VIDEO of installing and using your own Lightroom presets in Lightroom Mobile 


For this tutorial you will need to have installed:

With Lightroom hitting our mobile devices, smartphones and tablets, I realised the immense power of being able to edit images on the go. Gone are the days when there isn’t enough detail in our smartphone images and we can now produce stunning results with an iphone7 or galaxy S7 camera. I set out to discover the capabilities of mobile lightroom on my own iphone6+ and find out exactly what it’s capable of. What I discovered was that the mobile version of Lightroom doesn’t have nearly the same depth and capability is our mac and PC versions, which was to be expected, but there is some room for play.

The develop settings are quite limited on the mobile version and it does come with a bunch of presets already installed from Adobe. I found these presets to be very standard and limiting. I suppose in the future we will be able to save presets within the Adobe Lightroom Mobile version but for now there are work arounds.

So after playing around and syncing my Mobile Lightroom with my MAC Lightroom  I’ve discovered that it is possible to use my 50 Lightroom presets on my iphone6+ Mobile Lightroom and Im going to show you how in the tutorial below.

The benefits of this process is great for everyone from wedding photographers who want to apply presets fast to the amateur wanting to show off to friends. I hope you appreciate and benefit from this as much as I did.

The Tutorial

STEP 1- Install your Preset Pack on your MAC or PC

Installing a preset pack on your computer is necessary for getting them on to your phone. It’s a fairly easy process and requires you to locate your preset folder on your computer. The easiest way to do it is to open up LR and go to preferences in the top menu. Then select the presets tab and then go down to the “show lightroom preset folder” button.

My 50 Best Preset pack comes with a 9-page PDF document explaining how to install them. 

STEP 2 – Install Lightroom Mobile on your Tablet or Smartphone Device

Lightroom Mobile for me was free because I pay Adobe $9.99/month as a part of their photography program which gives you Adobe Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5, but I think its just a few dollars for none subscribers.


STEP 3 – Sync your MAC or PC Lightroom with mobile device

To Sync your mobile device with your Lightroom catalog you need to sign into an adobe account. Simply hit the drop down menu on the top left next to the Lr sign and sign into your account.

IMPORTANT make sure Sync with Lightroom mobile is checked on. If you dont have an Adobe account you will need to create one which is simple enough.


STEP 4 – Create a NEW Collection

Your Lightroom will sync Collections over on to your Mobile Lightroom device automatically. Think of a collection as a folder as this is how they copy over to your mobile device.

You can also select and deselect which collections you want to sync, which is a cool feature. These options can be found just to the left of the name of each collection. To create a collection we do this by scrolling down the left hand side until you see the heading collections then click the + sign with the down arrow next to it. You will be able to select Create Collection from the menu. Name your collection and mark any of the settings you need.


STEP 5- Create “X amount” of images with all the presets applied

Add “X Amount” copies of the exact same image to this collection. If you have 10 presets, create 10 copies of the exact same image. You just need to create duplicates, explained below.

After you have created your collection add any 1 image to it you like. Try to make it a well exposed image with a good range of lights and darks in it so you can see how each preset will function under varying light.

You need to create 50 virtual copies of this image…

My preset pack has 50 presets! So this is why I create 50 virtual copies.

I did this by right clicking the image in the film strip and selecting create virtual copy. Now you have 2 copies ! select both of these together and right click and create virtual copy. Now you have 4. Do the same process…. select all 4 images and create virtual copy. 8 images… 16 images… 32…. At this stage you will want to make 18 more copies to make it a round 50 images. You can see in the image above how I have already created the 50 images all in a row in the film strip using the same image.

STEP 6 – Apply one preset to each of the 50 images

Go to the Develop Module on the top right hand side indicated with the red box. Select the first image in your film strip and now go down the left hand side and select one of the presets from your preset pack. In this example below I am using one of my HDR Presets “Breath taking moments”. Move on to the 2nd image and apply another preset… Do this for all the presets and you will have one example of each of  the presets ready to copy over to your mobile device.


STEP 7- Syncing Your Preset Collection to Your Mobile Device

The Next step should be straight forward since you already have the “Sync with Lightrom Mobile” checked on. All you need to do is plug in your mobile device into your computer and the sync will begin automatically.

If your collection does not sync automatically I suggest that you go down to your collections list in your Lightroom Library and check the option next to the name of the collection.


After Your Collection Syncs with your Mobile Device you should now see it pop up as seen below with 50 Photos in it.


Tapping on your Preset Collection you will now be able to see all 50 versions of the presets in your Adobe Lightroom Mobile version and next up I will teach you how to use them.


STEP 8 – How To Use Your Presets On Your Mobile Device

Since there is no option to just select and apply a prest to an image in Lightroom Mobile the trick is to use the “Previous” selection and I will show you how to below. First add some images to your Mobile Lightroom app by either creating a new collection on your PC and MAC or creating one directly on your mobile device.

  • If you create one on your PC and MAC with any of your photos from your DSLR or any other camera be sure to check that it is synced with your Mobile Device using the option button next to the collection name. Just like we did above.
  • If you create a new collection on your mobile device by using the + sign at the top right it’s easy to add any photos from your camera roll.

Below you can see I’ve created a collection on my iPhone 5 using the + sign and just added some images from my cameraroll


Now go into your Preset Collection Album by tapping it and scroll through the 50 presets until you find one you like and wish to use on your photo. Tap on that photo and the device will read the photo and its data. Its important that you go all the way into viewing the photo so that Lightroom Mobile reads the data from the RAW file like this below.


Next hit the back button in the top left twice until you are at your collections page agian. Now go into the collection that holds the photo you wish to edit, in this case it’s in my iPhone 5 collection and I open up that photo as seen below.

Tap the settings panel down the bottom and scroll right to the very end until you find the option PREVIOUS. Tap this option and you will be able to select “Everything from previous“. This will apply the settings from the RAW file in your presets collection to this photo !!! You can also see a preview in the thumbnail next to the text.


The Results from applying the preset to an image taken in Rushcutters Bay with my iphone 5 below…


and another one from Amsterdam also with an iPhone 5 …


This is a wonderful option to have for the photographer and enthusiast on the go! and with the evolution of smartphone cameras the ability to use full preset options from your Lightroom 6, CC, 5, & 4 on your mobile device is a big step forward in post-processing.

For now enjoy using my presets on your PC’s and Mobile Devices!

Thanks, I hope you found this helpful and would be grateful for any feedback below in the comments box… or if you just want to say thanks that would be wonderful.


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l lsavannah knightLuke ZemeCheryl Anne Heldjackie Recent comment authors
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Thanks! Google threw me here, and this is really useful. Wish that Adobe would handle presets the correct way.


Adobe are morons for making us use such workaround.
Thanks for this creative tutorial, though. Very useful!

Heri Yansah Caca
Heri Yansah Caca

Hi, i am Heri, your tutorialnya is interested, i ahve tried it but i am failed.
I use Android Kitkat mobile and i use PC for Lightroom desktop.
The problem is my device is not sync. In the desktop always written ” waiting for connection”
I have plug my mobile to desktop, i have logged in to Adobe.

Btw in my desktop there is no menu sync to mobile.

I really apreciated if you respon my comen, thanks


so everytime i have to open a reset photo and use the “previous” function apply it?

Cheryl Anne Held
Cheryl Anne Held

If i have only moblie version and the adobe pack like you have …is there any other way to open and use those presets in lightroom????

savannah knight
savannah knight

do the files have to be RAW for this to work?

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