As for now I always cycle through all specializations. Is this necessary to save the optimized gear sets? Or are they updated as soon as I import the string from the website?
You don’t need to cycle through them all – whenever you Export to the addon, it will re-run best in bags for all specs to give you the most up to date optimization for all specs.
But are the gear sets from the blizzard ui automatically updated? I do not use AMR to change my specs.
Oh you mean the in-game equipment manager sets that we create.
Yes, you do need to cycle to each spec unfortunately… that is a limitation of the blizzard addon API – unless you actually have the entire set of gear equipped on your character, it won’t let us save/update the equipment manager gear set with that gear.
I maintain gear sets manually (I want to have separate ST and AoE sets for the same spec), and skip the weapon slots when saving sets; this way I can equip a gear set for another spec, make changes to it and save without actually changing to that spec. I also skip the shirt and tabard slots in those sets.