I wasn't happy with the sharpness of my D800 images in Lightroom. The D4 images looked fine, but just about all of my D800 images were soft when viewed at 1:1. I spent quite a bit of time using a Lens Align to make sure my lenses were adjusted to compensate for front focusing or back focusing.
I spoke with my Nikon dealer who is in love with his D800 and then visited his shop to view some of his images on his computer. He doesn't use Lightroom, but uses View NX2 instead. I talked him into copying a few of his D800 images onto a CD. When I got home, I loaded them into LR and they looked soft. I loaded View NX2 and looked at his images and they looked much sharper.
That's also when I noticed View NX2 will render the image for the screen much faster than LR, especially on the 35 mpx 14 bit images.
At the time I made the first post, I was bringing the images into a folder on the hard drive using Lightroom. That created the XMP sidecar files. In LR, I have the option to link the sidecars to the NEF file, so if I delete it, the XMP files gets deleted with it. When I was culling images in View NX2, it didn't delete the sister XMP files and I ended up with a long list of remanant files in the folder.
Since the original post, I changed the initial workflow and like it much better. I do a copy from the USB3 flash card reader into a dedicated folder on the internal C drive. That goes fast. Then I open View NX2 and point to that folder where I give the culls a 1 label. I delete the culls in one command, leaving me with only a few keepers, usually 5%-10% of the original shots. Then I open Lightroom and import the keepers into the New Shoot folder, changing the file name and adding the appropriate keywords either on import or afterwards.
This is all much faster for me than the way I was doing it, mainly because it was taking LR a long time to render a preview image of a 35mpx file. With this workflow, I don't get a XMP file until I am in LR, and I know now that I need to do a little sharpening to bring it up to standards. The data is there, but LR is not showing it on import.
I have been using LR for way too long to switch to anything new now. The D800 threw a wrench into things, however.