by Julieanne Kost

 Comments (10)


June 2, 2011

There are certain times when you might want to change the capture time for an image. For example  you change time zones when traveling and forget to reset the time on the camera, or maybe multiple cameras are used to photographed an event, only one camera was incorrectly set (making the Sort by Capture Time difficult as the images appear out of order due to the incorrect time stamp on that camera’s images). In order to correct the time, select the images from that camera (don’t forget you can easily  filter on the metadata/serial number of the camera to quickly find all of the images), and choose  Metadata > Edit Capture Time. Choose to adjust to a specific time (for example, if the time needs to be set 8 minutes forward) enter the correct time and all of the images will be shifted appropriately. If you changed time zones, then choose to Shift by a Set Number of Hours.

In addition, there is a preference that goes along with it that many photographers aren’t aware of. If you choose Catalog Settings > Metadata you can choose to Write date or time changes into proprietary raw files. This is the only occasion when Lightroom will actually write changes to the proprietary file (.nef or .crw for example).



  • By mona - 2:49 AM on February 6, 2012  

    I am about to edit a set of wedding images where I used 2 different cameras. One’s time was 2 hours out so I have selected those images, edited capture time and adjusted by minus 2 hours to all, then saved changes to metadata. The problem now is that I have tried to sort by capture time, i.e. the correct adjusted capture time in grid view but the images don’t get sorted, they stay in exactly the same order, i.e. camera 1’s image first and camera 2’s images next so all are still out of order, even though I’ve changed and checked the capture times are now right.
    Please advise!!! Thanks Mona

    • By Julieanne Kost - 7:47 PM on February 6, 2012  

      Hi Mona, I’m sorry but I don’t know why they wouldn’t be sorting correctly if you changed the time. Are they all in a single folder or collection? I’m going to be traveling the next several days so the best place for help on this would probably be here:


  • By Tobias - 12:59 AM on May 12, 2012  

    I set the camera’s date incorrectly to 2010 instead of 2011, so I have a bunch of .NEF files that I need to change.

    I changed the Catalog Settings > Metadata settings as you recommended, thank you.

    But it seems the .NEF doesn’t get updated automatically, only after I hit CTRL+S, which also creates a XMP sidecar file, which is not what I want.

    Also, when I look at the EXIF data using another application it seems Lightroom has created a duplicate entry for “Date/Time Original” so now I have two of those entries, one with the old incorrect date, and one with the new one.

    Still haven’t been able to figure out a solution to this.

    Thanks for tip about the settings!

    • By Julieanne Kost - 11:42 AM on May 17, 2012  

      We don’t make changes to the propriatary camera raw files, only to the LR database and/or to the sidecar file that we write holding the information about the file.

      • By Chris Alleyne-Chin - 10:42 PM on January 15, 2013  

        I don’t get it. This post is about how you can get Lightroom to edit the Capture time in the original RAW/CRW file. But then in your reply you say that it doesn’t. Am I misinterpreting you?

  • By Alex - 11:42 AM on June 14, 2012  

    I set the camera for 2010 instead of 2012. I cannot figure outy how to change for that in LIGHTROOM 3.6.
    Any suggestions other than using another program and re-importing into Lightroom?


    • By Julieanne Kost - 7:49 AM on June 15, 2012  

      You can change the capture time under the Metadata > Edit Capture Time.

  • By Meg - 5:18 PM on February 16, 2013  

    I use a canon 5D. Edit capture time changes the date time original but it does not change the folder date, the time digitized or the date time.
    how can I do that?

    • By Julieanne Kost - 12:35 PM on February 20, 2013  

      Does it help if you go to the Catalog settings and under the Metadata area, check the box for Write Date or time changes into proprietary raw files? This might help if finding files based on filtering, but it’s not going to move the files from one folder to another after you’ve imported them.