Changing the Time Stamp

Nate’s question is: “How do I change the capture time by any amount (as in NOT just by exact hours…but any # of minutes I need) on a bunch of images at once?”

First, make sure you are in Grid mode.

Select the first image in the series, and note the time that this image should be set to.

Select all of the images that need the timestamp changed, keeping the first image as the most selected (lighter gray).

Go to Metadata menu > Edit Capture Time… and this dialog will appear.

Edit Capture Time

Choose the first option ‘Adjust to a specified date and time’ as this allows you to change by years, months, days, hours, minutes or seconds.

Now, in the Corrected Time section, adjust to the correct time for your FIRST image – the time you noted down earlier.  You can select each timestamp section (hours, minutes etc) individually, and either use the arrows or type the time of your choice.

And then hit Change All.  Whilst not entirely obvious, this will update all of the other selected images by the same time difference – it won’t set them all to the same date and time.

Exactly the same process can be used for matching up the timestamp when shooting with multiple cameras.

One point to note on changing times in Lightroom… this does not affect the original file.  Any files which are exported do carry the new timestamp.   The changes are stored in the catalog, and you can return to the original time stamp at any time by using Metadata menu > Revert Capture Time to Original.


6 Responses to Changing the Time Stamp

  1. gloria b says:

    You’re wonderful Victoria!! Thanks for the continued help. See you around DWF!

  2. That’s good to hear Gloria, really pleased to help! – VB

  3. Gloda says:

    Very helpful for synchronizing the timestamp of multiple cameras, thanks for clarifying that the modification applies to the time difference.

  4. Greg says:

    Wonderful! This is exactly what I needed to know.

  5. Brent says:

    Thanks for this; I wish I’d found your post a day ago – I discovered this functionality of LR accidentally after working with 3 or 4 different EXIF free/shareware modification programs to synchronize five different camera timestamps from a family vacation. It seemed like the “hourly” adjustment was all that was possible in LR; I wish they’d make it a bit more clear in the description of “set to exact time” – I just assumed they would set all photos selected to the exact same time, which would be pretty dumb!). It was pure hell until I discovered LR worked this way!

    [Yeah, there’s a few things like this that needs the rough edges smoothed yet. Should you ever get stuck on something like this, my FAQ book covers most of these kind of situations. – VB]

  6. Stu says:

    Marvellous! Thank-you very much. I normally sync my cameras, but forgot to on this occasion. My photos are now back in order.

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