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Old Jun 2nd, 2010, 01:48 AM   #1
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Aperture

Hi Friends
Having thrown my lot in with Aperture (as opposed to LightRoom), I have experienced much which makes me think I've chosen the wrong horse.

(Thankfully, there's an Aperture Feedback window in the Aperture application, which has allowed me to rant several times at some, poor, undeserving Apple employee, instead of tossing my computer across the room. )

I know that there is no such thing as perfect software, and I have never used LightRoom, so I can't compare these two programs.

I'm starting this thread to hopefully begin a discussion of the merits, and problems, and comparisons of Apple's Aperture and Adobe's LightRoom.

I will post my experiences and frustrations with Aperture, and maybe Aperture and LightRoom users will chime in here with their experiences for comparison.

Maybe this thread will help someone who is choosing between Aperture and LightRoom.

Here's what I've reported to Apple recently, about my experience with Aperture;

1. Although I have selected several photos in the browser, when I click the rotate button, only one photo rotates. I must rotate each photo individually, although multiple photos are clearly selected.
Even iPhoto can do this simple function all at once, with as many photos selected as I like.
When many photos were shot in portrait mode, this is a very time-consuming inconvenience in Aperture.

2. I have completed editing a photo. I press the arrow key to move my selection to the next photo. Nothing happens. I check and see that there are many more photos to the left and right of my choice in the photo browser, and I repeatedly and firmly press the arrow key. But Aperture seems to have chosen to ignore my attempts to move to the next photo.

3. I am cropping a photo. I select "Do Not Constrain" in the crop control box. Each time I go back to try a different crop of the same photo in the same session, instead of the control box remembering my chosen preference, I must go back into the control box and reselect "Do Not Constrain".


Each of these issues on their own might seem small, if somewhat surprising, but added together, and with seemingly a new Aperture flaw discovered every time I use it, I find Aperture's little bugs to be significant time-wasters.

To me, these bugs also point to a lack of attention to basics on the part of the software's designers.

Performance:
I have read LightRoom users comment on how fast LightRoom is.

Aperture is definitely not fast.

I run Aperture 3 on my 15" MBP 2.5, with 4 gigs of RAM, and an external FW drive holding my Aperture Library.
Aperture chugs along fairly slowly. There's a lot of waiting for the program to catch up to my selections and edits.

I feel that Aperture needs a code-slimming re-write, the same way Leopard was trimmed down into Snow Leopard.

I am seriously wondering whether I'm throwing good money after bad, by continuing to purchase Aperture upgrades.

A friend who runs LightRoom on his older MBP will be visiting later this Summer.
I look forward to a comparison then.


In the meantime, do you have any comments or observations?
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Old Jun 2nd, 2010, 02:37 AM   #2
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I absolutely love my current version of Lightroom (2.7). I tried the Aperture Demo when it was first released as well as the LR Demo and chose Lightroom. I'd suggest trying the current LR Demo before you give up on Aperture just to be sure it's a fit for you.

LR2 is very fast on my old G5 2.0GHz tower, but it just screams on my new i7 MBP.

There's a program out there called Photo Mechanic that some pros use to speed things up even further when importing large numbers of images for culling, rotating, etc. Then they import only the keepers into LR or Aperture. They say the imports with PhotoMechanic are instantaneous and when you're dealing with thousands of images from a wedding, saving those minutes adds up over a year. For most of us, however, LR and even Aperture may suffice.

For me Lightroom is all I need for most image processing from import to final output. Photoshop enters the workflow only for serious image retouching, filter effects and when layers or text are needed. When you send from LR to PS, there are several options including for your photoshop image to be added to LR.

Lightroom 'Presets' are another feature I find extremely useful along with camera calibration and the Graduated Filter which allows multiple LR adjustments to be applied as a customizable gradient over the image.

There's also a larger LR community than Aperture community and consequently there are tonnes of resources and free goodies to be had.

I guess my only beef with LR would be that it needs to re-launch itself when opening another catalog. Other than that, it's a great full featured image importer, cataloger, editor and batch processor.
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Old Jun 2nd, 2010, 05:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoyMac View Post
Hi Friends
Having thrown my lot in with Aperture (as opposed to LightRoom), I have experienced much which makes me think I've chosen the wrong horse.

(Thankfully, there's an Aperture Feedback window in the Aperture application, which has allowed me to rant several times at some, poor, undeserving Apple employee, instead of tossing my computer across the room. )

I know that there is no such thing as perfect software, and I have never used LightRoom, so I can't compare these two programs.

I'm starting this thread to hopefully begin a discussion of the merits, and problems, and comparisons of Apple's Aperture and Adobe's LightRoom.

I will post my experiences and frustrations with Aperture, and maybe Aperture and LightRoom users will chime in here with their experiences for comparison.

Maybe this thread will help someone who is choosing between Aperture and LightRoom.

Here's what I've reported to Apple recently, about my experience with Aperture;

1. Although I have selected several photos in the browser, when I click the rotate button, only one photo rotates. I must rotate each photo individually, although multiple photos are clearly selected.
Even iPhoto can do this simple function all at once, with as many photos selected as I like.
When many photos were shot in portrait mode, this is a very time-consuming inconvenience in Aperture.

2. I have completed editing a photo. I press the arrow key to move my selection to the next photo. Nothing happens. I check and see that there are many more photos to the left and right of my choice in the photo browser, and I repeatedly and firmly press the arrow key. But Aperture seems to have chosen to ignore my attempts to move to the next photo.

3. I am cropping a photo. I select "Do Not Constrain" in the crop control box. Each time I go back to try a different crop of the same photo in the same session, instead of the control box remembering my chosen preference, I must go back into the control box and reselect "Do Not Constrain".


Each of these issues on their own might seem small, if somewhat surprising, but added together, and with seemingly a new Aperture flaw discovered every time I use it, I find Aperture's little bugs to be significant time-wasters.

To me, these bugs also point to a lack of attention to basics on the part of the software's designers.

Performance:
I have read LightRoom users comment on how fast LightRoom is.

Aperture is definitely not fast.

I run Aperture 3 on my 15" MBP 2.5, with 4 gigs of RAM, and an external FW drive holding my Aperture Library.
Aperture chugs along fairly slowly. There's a lot of waiting for the program to catch up to my selections and edits.

I feel that Aperture needs a code-slimming re-write, the same way Leopard was trimmed down into Snow Leopard.

I am seriously wondering whether I'm throwing good money after bad, by continuing to purchase Aperture upgrades.

A friend who runs LightRoom on his older MBP will be visiting later this Summer.
I look forward to a comparison then.


In the meantime, do you have any comments or observations?
Number 1 and 2 in your list of complaints actually work fine for me, I use Aperture 3 and all photos rotate for me, and also the arrow keys definitely work for me as well. So you definitely have issues with your Aperture.

I will agree Aperture is not as snappy with Aperture 3 but I have so much invested with it and am so comfortable with it. I have my Wacom Intuos 4 all set up with it as well that I have gotten used to. All the hot keys and my workflow would all have to be re taught. I was considering Lightroom but I don't want to relearn everything.
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Old Jun 3rd, 2010, 06:38 PM   #4
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Yeesh.

Today, I started processing a bunch of shots from last night.
I find Aperture's Vignette tool to be less than useful, so I found a guide online explaining how to make my own vignette using the Burn tool in Aperture.
I don't think I should have to re-purpose one Aperture tool to do the job of another, but, oh well, here goes ...

Aperture's Burn tool has sensitivity and softness settings, but even with these tweaked, I was unhappy with the results I was getting - either too much or not enough, I couldn't get it to give me a pleasing compromise for a natural-looking gradient.

And then I moved to Burning another part of the photo, and the Burn tool wouldn't work at all - No matter that I set the effect at full, and clicked it over and over - no effect on some parts of the photo!

Seriously, when I find something in Aperture that I'm really pleased with, I'll report it here. But so far ...

Anyway, if you're thinking of taking the Aperture route for processing your photos, I strongly advise you to try the demo first.
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Old Jun 3rd, 2010, 06:46 PM   #5
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Okay, one sort-of-positive;

I've noticed lately that when cropping a photo, "Do Not Constrain" remains selected in the crop control box, so I don't have to go back and re-select that every time I try a new crop.

Maybe this was fixed with an Aperture 3 update that I downloaded this week.

I'm calling it a "sort-of-positive", because although it seems now to be working properly, I think it's a bug that should not have been there in the first place.

But, at least it's better than not being fixed.
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Old Jun 10th, 2010, 02:24 PM   #6
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I have a RAW image open that I'm trying to edit.

I select the Quick Brushes drop-down. All the selections there are greyed out and cannot be selected.

There is no error message telling me why these selections are greyed out, or how to make Quick Brushes useable again.

Another waste of my time in Aperture.

This is supposed to be a Professional application?

(I'll be closely following the LightRoom thread ...)
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Old Jun 10th, 2010, 03:29 PM   #7
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I figured out the problem with Quick Brushes;

After fiddling around, restarting Aperture, re-booting the computer, looking around, (more wasted, valuable time ) I find a note that said "This image was processed with a previous version of Aperture. Would you like to reprocess?"

When I clicked "reprocess", the image would now accept Quick Brushes (no longer greyed out).

Explanation;
I bought Aperture as a bundle with Nik Effects software.
When I want to apply Nik Effects now, Aperture must restart in 32 bit mode.
It appears that Quick Brushes doesn't work in 32 bit mode.

That's acceptable. Apple can't keep up with third-party plug-in requirements.

What's not acceptable, is having a feature not work, and no message telling the user why.
A simple note in the greyed out drop-down, telling why Quick Brushes wasn't available, and that rebooting Aperture in 64 bit mode was necessary, would have saved me much time and aggravation.
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Old Jun 12th, 2010, 12:07 AM   #8
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Thanks Soymac...
Your pain is our gain if we ever run into these same issues.
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Old Jun 12th, 2010, 12:19 AM   #9
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Thanks Soymac...
Your pain is our gain if we ever run into these same issues.
Yeah, I'm posting in this thread with Four intentions;

1. To help anyone who might run into these problems while running Aperture themselves.

2. To help anyone who might be trying to decide between Aperture and LightRoom. Because I've never tried LightRoom, I'm not pushing LightRoom over Aperture. But I certainly want to show anyone who's interested, what I've experienced with Aperture. I hope other Aperture users, and also LightRoom users, will post here when they feel they can comment. Maybe LightRoom is worse - I don't know.

3. I have a fantasy that Apple actually reads these threads and learns from our posts.

4. Selfish: Sometimes I just need to rant to relieve my frustration.
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Old Jun 12th, 2010, 03:12 AM   #10
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Not much help, I've just never been able to wrap my mind around how Aperture works. Lightroom has worked amazingly well for me and now with version 3 the new improvements to noise reduction and the default processing of the RAW file have me impressed. I have found Lightroom 3 to be more slow than Lightroom 2 whose only limitation was how fast the hard drive could give it the file.

Lightroom's approach is very much broken down into different sections/modules. You have your Library module for organization but you switch to your Develop module (d key) to actually do your edits on a photo. There are other modules for more advanced exports and printing (Slideshow, Print, Web) but I know for myself I only ever use Library and Develop.

Quote:
3. I have a fantasy that Apple actually reads these threads and learns from our posts.
Sadly they don't. But they do read the feedback submitted and definitely read bugs reported at http://bugreport.apple.com
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