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Images, Graphic Design, and Digital Photography Discussion of all things graphics.

iPhoto replacement - Aperture vs. Lightroom


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smb

 
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Despite the capabilities of the new Mac Pro, I think Apple has given up on the pro and serious amateur photographers. I suspect Apple has already lost many of the die hard Aperture users to LR (etc). For Apple the money is in the quick turnover, quick share market of iPhones and casual photographers. Lack of camera updates and RAW file support will kill Aperture in short order.
As an Aperture user since 2007 I will really miss the intuitive filing system, something LR has never come close to competing with. The photo editing part will not be much of a change.
I may just keep my 4TB of files on Aperture and start fresh on LR, as the thought of migrating all those images is mind blowing, plus ones looses all the editing (I think).
Very sad and a little maddening that Apple chose to string Aperture users along for the past few years.
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Let's not jump the gun too early -- according to the article in Macworld on the forthcoming Photos, it sounds like Apple simply intends to consolidate Aperture and iPhoto into one, more elegant, program.

I don't know if that's true, but I do know for a fact that the Aperture guys are now working on Photos, so let's wait and see. There's no need to rush to judgement.
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I got to agree with chas_m as somewhere I read that the new version was going to have more options over iPhoto and appeared to be borrowed from Aperture so time will tell.
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smb

 
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Quote:
I got to agree with chas_m as somewhere I read that the new version was going to have more options over iPhoto and appeared to be borrowed from Aperture so time will tell

And that is my concern. A strong update for Aperture would leave the casual iPhoto editors behind, but it is what the more serious users have been crying for. Apple will play to the middle for sure leaving the long time users like myself not wanting to wait a year or two and still not have the high end program but thousands more images committed to a dead end system.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osxx View Post
I got to agree with chas_m as somewhere I read that the new version was going to have more options over iPhoto and appeared to be borrowed from Aperture so time will tell.
And that would of all been hear say, because Apple hasn't yet let out a official statement saying ANYTHING about the new Photos App. They have only let out 1 Screenshot of the Ap, and yes it looks like the Aperture Side panel when in Adjustments, but no-one knows whats going to be in it.
Im in agreeance that we will be quite surprised what will be in it, and if iPhoto for iOS and even Photo App now in iOS 8 is pretty good, then i think we will get something special

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About Lr file structure..

It only puts the files in the place you want, it only places them in there the way you want.
You have full and complete control over every aspect of how Lightroom handles files. If you are not happy with the way it stores them, then simply change it I'm the Import Module. You have full control over File Handling, File Renaming, Destination and complete control over how it organizes them under Destination (where, when and how)..

I know everyone has their preference. I just can not see how having options to change something the way you see fit is a bad thing..


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Lightroom, Photoshop video tutorials and more...
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Bobmcfish

 
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I've been using Aperture for a few years and I must say I don't like it. It is clunky and slow, but then my Mac is old. I used iPhoto but found it frustrating because I would notice photos were missing and when I drilled down to the folder I expected them to be in they would be there. I would re-add them to iphoto and then they would appear in there twice. Aperture behaves similarly
I have just switched to Lightroom and it seems to be far superior. To be fair to Aperture, its image manipulation capabilities are good but its organisational capabilities leave a lot to be desired. I also found the Archive annoying. When I do a backup I want to be able to check that it has been successful. Aperture's archive does not make it easy to do this. It also scares me when I do ask to update the archive and it says "Are you sure? This will replace your existing archive" and I think NO I don't want you to do that, I want you to add to it!
I have always found Aperture to be a bit unstable but despite that, I have bought it twice (v2 and v3) because I couldn't afford the alternative at the time I.E. Photoshop
I think that the best solution if you do choose Aperture is to keep the photo library referenced so you can share it with iPhoto which has much nicer organisational features
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etmarcr

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
. . . . . The way LR uses their files/folders is just down right BAD, and there is no continuity to it, no logical way of sorting, its a abomination . . .
I'm not sure what you mean by this. Can you explain what you mean by 'no logical way of sorting'? I think with Lightroom you can sort pretty much anyway you want.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by etmarcr View Post
I'm not sure what you mean by this. Can you explain what you mean by 'no logical way of sorting'? I think with Lightroom you can sort pretty much anyway you want.
To put it simply, Aperture is a Managed Library (or you can choose Referenced). But as a managed Library, all you Photos are in 1 place, in the aperture.lib . . . . Simple and effective.

To expand on this, the organisation of setting a Project and then having a defending file structure Project>Folder>Album . . . And as I said above, being a Managed Library its all in one place, making it easier to look for a image through Finder.
As well :
  • When it comes to storing your original image files (RAW, JPG, TIFF,), Aperture offers two options: referenced and managed. Referenced is similar to Lightroom, where your images live in folders on the hard drive, and the library/catalog simply references their paths. With this approach, you always have direct access to the image files and can browse the folder structure using the Finder.

    Managed, on the other hand, moves your original images into the Aperture library so you don’t have to maintain separate folders. While both approaches have benefits, I prefer the Managed option, which is unique to Aperture. It shields me from doing any file management and the cognitive load of folders cluttering up my hard drive. All I see in the Finder is a single “.aplibrary” file. That “file” (technically a package) contains everything Aperture needs — my original files, edited versions, metadata, post-processing edits, keywords etc. There are no XMP “sidecar” files, versioned JPGs, TIFFs or anything anywhere else on my Mac, which helps keep things simple. It also makes backing up relatively straightforward because there’s only one “file” to worry about.
    .
  • The contents of your Aperture library can be browsed when you’re browsing for photos in any Mac app.
    .
  • This file system integration is automatic and just works. You can directly use your photos in any app (Apple or 3rd party) without exporting them out of Aperture first
    .
  • You can access your photos from the Desktop and Screen Saver System Preferences
    (With Lightroom, you first have to export photos out as JPEGs, and store them into some temporary folder before using them in other apps. This creates clutter and requires file management, which I would rather avoid.)
    .
  • iTunes can automatically sync your Aperture library with an iPad and iPhone. You can either sync the entire library, or selected projects, albums and even smart (dynamic) albums. There are no intermediate steps required.
    (iTunes also does some intelligent RAW to JPG conversion so that a couple hundred gigs of my Aperture library (over 5,500 photos) somehow magically fits comfortably on my 32 GB iPad)
    .
  • I can easily watch any of my images on my TV via Apple TV and Airplay straight from the Photos Widget and is great when your showing a client (They love to see there images on a 55" LED HDTV) or you have the family around for a get together.

All in all, as posted above, I would love the Aperture File system and the LR Develop Module and that would be a perfect App for me. But it says it all in the top most item in the list . . . Managed Library

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Last edited by TattooedMac; 07-05-2014 at 12:38 AM.
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Thank you much for the in-depth explanation, as I've never used Aperture so all this was new information to me.
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Pete E

 
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Both programmes run at the same speed. It depends on how you want to process your pictures. I prefer Aperture. I take lots of photos but make very few basic adjustments. If you are really into playing around and altering pictures then Lightroom is a more advanced programme, which is of course easy when you get used to it.

Last edited by Pete E; 07-05-2014 at 12:32 PM. Reason: bad grammer
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akaJules

 
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kliles,

I too struggled with iPhoto and have recently moved over to Lightroom, with no regrets. Here is my process, I hope it helps you to make an informed decision. I'm a hobbyist photographer, and take the organization of my photo memories very seriously.

Research: I watched lots of free YouTube videos on Lightroom photo importing and organization, BEFORE downloading the program. My favorites are:
Lightroom vs. iPhoto: I think LR is far superior to iPhoto, just in photo organization. Add in all of LR's additional features, and it was a smart move for me.

Importing 70,000 Images: I had over 65,000 images I had organized in a Windows-only program, and have wanted to get away from using any Windows-only programs if I can help it. I exported my images from that program, and keywords were kept intact. Yay! I had also accumulated over 6,000 images from using iPhoto less than a year. I have now imported all of my images into LR, and it was easy work. I downloaded LR's trial just two weeks ago and am grinding away at sorting through my images, deleting duplicates or unwanted photos, adding/changing keywords, etc. I'm a hobbyist photographer, and my photos mean everything to me.

Download Free 30-Day Trial: Download LR for free, and try it out! Make sure it's going to work for you!

How Lightroom Catalogs Work: Adobe Website
"A catalog is a database that stores a record for each of your photos. This record contains three key pieces of information about each photo:
A reference to where the photo is on your system
Instructions for how you want to process the photo
Metadata, such as ratings and keywords that you apply to photos to help you find or organize them"

Database: LR is simply a database that stores a record of your photo's location on your computer. Changes to photo locations, folder changes and creation, and locating duplicates is smooth and simple in LR. This makes the most sense to me. I don't like the way iPhoto put my photos in its own folder structure, which I found out when I went to locate them to move into LR.

I hope this is of some help to you, best of luck!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akaJules View Post
kliles,

Lightroom vs. iPhoto: I think LR is far superior to iPhoto, just in photo organization.
All well and good comparing iPhoto to LR, but the OP was asking for a alternative to iPhoto so you should be comparing LR to Aperture. And as it stands, Aperture and iPhoto, have the exact same way of organising images and thats the way of a Managed Library, keeping them all in one nice compact location.

Quote:
Originally Posted by akaJules View Post
How Lightroom Catalogs Work:
Instructions for how you want to process the photo
AND "Destructive". At least Aperture, when making adjustments, is non-destructive, keeping the original image as it is, and making a whole new 'adjustment image'


Quote:
Originally Posted by akaJules View Post
Database: LR is simply a database that stores a record of your photo's location on your computer.
And there lie's the problem I have with LR, thats all it is, just a "Database", Files and folders everywhere.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
All well and good comparing iPhoto to LR, but the OP was asking for a alternative to iPhoto so you should be comparing LR to Aperture.
As I have never used Aperture, I only offer my opinion on the software that I have used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
AND "Destructive". At least Aperture, when making adjustments, is non-destructive, keeping the original image as it is, and making a whole new 'adjustment image'
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is a nondestructive editor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
And there lie's the problem I have with LR, thats all it is, just a "Database", Files and folders everywhere.
The files and folders are wherever the user tells them to be, if "everywhere" is where the user wants them, then that is where they shall be.

I am offering my opinion, not yours, as to an option to the O/P, who mentioned LR and Aperture. As I've not used Aperture, I would not share an opinion on it. No need for you to direct me on what to share. Thanks though.
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Dunko27

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
Just to expand a little on what Tattooed Mac said:

1. As stated, those of you using Aperture don't have to panic anytime soon. It now becomes obvious why Aperture and iPhoto now use the same library format ... it's the format Photos is going to use.

2. Photos is likely to have a blend of consumer and semi-pro features, since the people working on Aperture are now being reallocated to it. Having said that, DON'T EXPECT MUCH FROM VERSION 1. We've all seen this movie before (Apple replaces/completely revamps something to restructure the foundation for various good reasons), and here's how it goes: Apple brings out replacement app. Old app STILL WORKS FINE, but people throw enormous hissy fits and generally set their own hair on fire because replacement app doesn't have EVERY feature and then some from old app, and because it changes their workflow and CHANGE IS BAD.

**Over time**, features get added, stuff gets polished, workflow becomes comfortable and before you know it, the new program is actually better than the old program both under and over the hood. The grumblers subside, people start to appreciate the program/changes, then it gets even better. Then Apple kills it. Lather, rinse, repeat.

3. Once Photos comes out, many will want to stay with iPhotos or Aperture for a while longer. Feel free to do so, but check back in with Photos every so often with a fresh perspective. I'll wager that by the time a year after release has rolled round, you'll be willing to make the switch if you haven't already.

4. And if Photos isn't going to meet a professional's or serious semi-pro's needs (and it probably won't), there's Lightroom, there's AfterShot Pro 2, or maybe the people who did Pixelmator will decide to do something else. Or others we're not familiar with now. The Mac universe abhors a vacuum for the most part.
i'm an Aperture devotee and was somewhat disappointed with Apple when I found out Aperture is to be discontinued. I agree that Apples' record for replacement software meeting existing users expectations has been poor. But I'm an optimist...perhaps the the Photos development team will build on what they had in the past with iPhoto and Aperture, and Photos will be brilliant from day one. I can only hope. Meanwhile I'll stay with Aperture as I am currently in the process of reorganising my library. I'm also hoping the new file management system will match what I have with Aperture. I don't intend to pay to store 54gb of images in iCloud as has been suggested will be the case.

KD
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