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Apple Aperture v Adobe Photoshop CS2


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#1 ralphy

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 12:34 AM

I am familiar with CS2 as have been running it on my pc's.

However, I have now taken the plunge :) and gone over to Apple, both MacBook and iMac.

Initially I was going to run CS2 on my new machines, but then saw Aperture on the Apple website. Their demos make the product look really great & I am taken with the idea of Apple hardware/softwarte as I have just LOVED the 'user-friendliness' of Macs so far.

So, now I am undecided and would welcome comments from from my fellow wetpixellers, please?

Thanks in advance!

R

Edited by ralphy, 13 November 2006 - 12:34 AM.


#2 davephdv

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 12:39 AM

I use the two together. I really like Aperture for browsing large numbers of files. I like the raw images I open with Aperture better than those I open with camera raw.
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#3 ralphy

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 12:45 AM

I use the two together. I really like Aperture for browsing large numbers of files. I like the raw images I open with Aperture better than those I open with camera raw.


Dave
One of the attractions for me on the demo was the speed with which Aperture opened & displayed RAW thumbnails - it looked very impressive!
R

#4 loftus

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 06:35 AM

I have been using Aperture for about 6 months now; and I love this program. I run a MacBook Pro on trips, and at home I have a new Xeon tower which just flies. Version 1.5 of Aperture is a great improvement over the original. Specifically for those people with large databases in different locations, Aperture now allows access to these different databaes without having to keep them all in one aperture Library. (Not an issue for me)
A few weeks ago I was on tthe Shark Shootout trip with Stephen Frink, and everyday we came back after diving and had to download all our images, choose 10 or so favorites, do some limited editing as needed and then present these to the group. Pics were downloaded and then backed up separately to an Epson 2400. Aperture was just awesome; the stack and sort features are the best I have seen for initial sorting and choice of images. Basic editing, including color balance, backscatter spotting, cropping and curve adjustment where excellent. Further editing in Photoshop is seamless, and all edited versions are kept organized in Aperture. The program really shines in the way it keeps all your different versions in a nice neat stack, such as cropped versions, photoshop version, black and white version etc, all together with the master version untouched for comparison.
Exporting quickly with jpeg conversion was a one step process, unlike Photomechanic, for the photos then to be given to Steve to present on his computer.
I still use photoshop for more sophisticated editing, but much of it is because I am still learning Aperture and I find that I am doing less and less in Photoshop as I get more comfortable with the raw editing features of Aperture.
When I got home I simply exported my Shark Shootout project to my desktop, and imported it into my desktop Aperture library where it is backed up to a vault.
I then quickly created a web gallery in Aperture (10 minutes) and exported it to .Mac as seen in the gallery on this site
http://homepage.mac......hootout 2006/
I think as I become familiar with Aperture editing features, I will probably use Photoshop less, though it is likely I will always keep Photoshop for more sophisticated editing, preprint work etc.
I would like to see more versatility in future versions with regard to creating websites, though Aperture easily exports to iWeb etc. Though I have not yet used the book printing feature, it looks great, and I have some ideas for this in the near future.
Overall I think it is an amazing program, but it does need more recent, faster hardware to run well, and specifically faster video cards and lots of RAM. Particularly all the stack and sort features are obviously very intensive with regard to the graphic card. With the right hardware I think it is way better than Lightroom, and better than Photomechanic which I have used until I started using Aperture.

Dave
One of the attractions for me on the demo was the speed with which Aperture opened & displayed RAW thumbnails - it looked very impressive!
R


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#5 ralphy

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 01:02 PM

I have been using Aperture for about 6 months now; and I love this program. I run a MacBook Pro on trips, and at home I have a new Xeon tower which just flies. Version 1.5 of Aperture is a great improvement over the original. Specifically for those people with large databases in different locations, Aperture now allows access to these different databaes without having to keep them all in one aperture Library. (Not an issue for me)
A few weeks ago I was on tthe Shark Shootout trip with Stephen Frink, and everyday we came back after diving and had to download all our images, choose 10 or so favorites, do some limited editing as needed and then present these to the group. Pics were downloaded and then backed up separately to an Epson 2400. Aperture was just awesome; the stack and sort features are the best I have seen for initial sorting and choice of images. Basic editing, including color balance, backscatter spotting, cropping and curve adjustment where excellent. Further editing in Photoshop is seamless, and all edited versions are kept organized in Aperture. The program really shines in the way it keeps all your different versions in a nice neat stack, such as cropped versions, photoshop version, black and white version etc, all together with the master version untouched for comparison.
Exporting quickly with jpeg conversion was a one step process, unlike Photomechanic, for the photos then to be given to Steve to present on his computer.
I still use photoshop for more sophisticated editing, but much of it is because I am still learning Aperture and I find that I am doing less and less in Photoshop as I get more comfortable with the raw editing features of Aperture.
When I got home I simply exported my Shark Shootout project to my desktop, and imported it into my desktop Aperture library where it is backed up to a vault.
I then quickly created a web gallery in Aperture (10 minutes) and exported it to .Mac as seen in the gallery on this site
http://homepage.mac......hootout 2006/
I think as I become familiar with Aperture editing features, I will probably use Photoshop less, though it is likely I will always keep Photoshop for more sophisticated editing, preprint work etc.
I would like to see more versatility in future versions with regard to creating websites, though Aperture easily exports to iWeb etc. Though I have not yet used the book printing feature, it looks great, and I have some ideas for this in the near future.
Overall I think it is an amazing program, but it does need more recent, faster hardware to run well, and specifically faster video cards and lots of RAM. Particularly all the stack and sort features are obviously very intensive with regard to the graphic card. With the right hardware I think it is way better than Lightroom, and better than Photomechanic which I have used until I started using Aperture.


Well Loftus,
thanks for such a comprehensive reply; very useful!

As I am now exclusively shooting RAW I would like to get some feeling for how Aperture stacks up against CS2 in this aspect; does it have as much adjustment - and is it as easy/easier/harder to manage?

#6 loftus

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 02:00 PM

Aperture is really designed specifically as a RAW workflow program. It is designed to take you from download, through sorting and classifying, most routine editing, and output to print, email, books or web, and then organized storage and backup of images. If I were to have only one program for routine daily use, and loaded on my laptop, it would be Aperture.
Photoshop on the other hand is a much more powerful and sophisticated editing program. I think ultimately you would want both, though you could keep CS2 and run it on Windows on the Intel Mac until the new upgrade comes out next year.
If you find that you do extensive photo editing then Photoshop is more valuable. On the other hand if you can do most of your editing now in Camera Raw without having to do much in Photoshop, and you really want a great RAW workflow program, then Aperture gets my vote. If you get Aperture, I would recommend working through the tutorials on Apple's website, and working through a training manual like the Apple Pro Training Series by Orlando Luna. Becoming aquainted with the keyboard shortcuts and the versatilityof the interface makes the program more enjoyable and slick to use. Hope this helps.

Well Loftus,
thanks for such a comprehensive reply; very useful!

As I am now exclusively shooting RAW I would like to get some feeling for how Aperture stacks up against CS2 in this aspect; does it have as much adjustment - and is it as easy/easier/harder to manage?


Nikon D800, Nikon D7000, Nauticam, Inons, Subtronic Novas. Lens collection - 10-17, 15, 16, 16-35, 14-24, 24-70, 85, 18-200, 28-300, 70-200, 60 and 105, TC's. Macs with Aperture and Photoshop.

#7 imasleeper

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 02:15 PM

Hi Ralphy,

Welcome to the dark side of computing. Now that the Mac Virus has infected you there is no going back! The real comparison is not between CS2 and Aperture but rather between Lightroom Beta 4 and Aperture. Presently both these programs are available as free downloads, a 30 day trial from Apple and as Beta 4 from Adobe until the final version is shipped. Rather than tell you which one I like better I recommend you trial them both and see if either fit into your workflow, and satisfies your personal standards for RAW conversion. I don't think that Aperture can replace CS2 nor CS2 replace Aperture. They both do very different things with only some overlap in functionality.

My two cents worth.

Imasleeper

#8 RogerC

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 05:08 PM

A couple things:

You can turn your windows photoshop license into a mac one. Call them.

Aperture has a free demo now.

Don't overlook iPhoto. I used it for years, and found it to work well for managing smaller libraries. I'd make a library for each trip, and the 1-5 star system works great for selecting.

I tried many things to manage my master library. I wanted some things, like iptc, that iPhoto didn't do. But don't overlook simple stuff, like iPhoto and simple folders with good filenames and spotlight searches.

I like aperture better than other things I've tried, including iPhoto, for the fast raw support, the use of stacks for selecting from many similar images (I tend to shoot a lot of the same subject. Stacks are great, but there is a learning curve). I do very little editing other than cropping, so aperture's tools are fine for me.

I do still have to go over to photoshop for some things. There are some images that, for whatever reason (like a rare paper nautilus) that I need to do a lot of work on, with adjustment layers, interpolating for prints, fancy sharpening, and you just plain need photoshop.

That said, if I could only pick one, it would be aperture. I need it too badly to turn 100 pictures into the 4 good ones from a dive.

aperture's backups are great. So easy that I actually use it, and it saved me when a power problem on a liveaboard put my laptop in a coma.

I'd love to get rid of photoshop. Adobe seems to get worse and worse, at least on the mac. The interface just gets in my way more and more, I find it unusable for working on anything more than one photo at a time, all the add-ons they've plugged in just don't work for me. I have one machine on which photoshop will no longer update. I have another on which the help system won't run. When I re-installed, I ran out of licenses and had to call them. And even now, it has junk scattered over my hard drive (do I need this stock photo junk?) but I'm afraid to touch any of it because the program is so fragile. Dump some raw files on photoshop, and in ACR they show up in random order, it's impossible to make selects from a group on the same subject. Work in bridge and you're often looking at an old pixellated thumbnail. Without preview images, aperture could be slow, but at least you were always looking at the real image.

The point of that rant is, just as many people had trouble trusting their whole library to an aperture database, I have a problem trusting mine to adobe and lightroom.

That said, I'm really glad lightroom exists, it will make aperture better, it's already made it cheaper and probably created the free demo. THere are other things as well, like photo mechanic and extensis portfolio.

these library management tools have different features and different strengths. They do 3 things for me: help me select photos. Help me improve/edit photos. Help me manage my library. They all do different parts of that differently. We all do things different ways and have different needs. No one piece of software will solve all 3 problems for everyone. Nice to have choices.

Be aware that the more powerful the tool, the more of a learning curve there can be. If you do the free trials, give them a fair chance. Look at some of the online tutorials, too.

#9 echeng

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Posted 14 November 2006 - 01:03 AM

I've been evaluating Aperture and find that it often is a pleasure to use. Sometimes, however, it makes you feel like driving down to Apple campus and staging a protest.

If you are a computer person and wonder why Aperture sometimes slows down to unusable speeds even on something like a dual-Xenon Mac Pro (what I have at home), check out my friend Adam's post on it. It -- and its numerous comments -- has some insights into why it may happen:

When discussing Aperture’s speed, people have rightfully focused on the computer’s processing power, the video card, or the speed of the hard drive. We should also take a look at Apple’s decision to use SQLite...

When any process wants to write, it must lock the entire database file for the duration of its update. But that normally only takes a few milliseconds. Other processes just wait on the writer to finish then continue about their business....


Entire article is here:
http://www.tow.com/2...rture-slowdown/
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#10 loftus

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Posted 14 November 2006 - 04:15 AM

Ahhhh...now I understand. I got to about the 4th paragraph, and my head started looking like the spinning beachball. There is one advantage of being a two-finger, single tasking user, and lower on the evolutionary ladder, as I am. Computers have now reached a point where I rarely have to wait for them, they wait for me, and the only thing that can still make me wait is a dial up line. :)


I've been evaluating Aperture and find that it often is a pleasure to use. Sometimes, however, it makes you feel like driving down to Apple campus and staging a protest.

If you are a computer person and wonder why Aperture sometimes slows down to unusable speeds even on something like a dual-Xenon Mac Pro (what I have at home), check out my friend Adam's post on it. It -- and its numerous comments -- has some insights into why it may happen:
Entire article is here:
http://www.tow.com/2...rture-slowdown/


Nikon D800, Nikon D7000, Nauticam, Inons, Subtronic Novas. Lens collection - 10-17, 15, 16, 16-35, 14-24, 24-70, 85, 18-200, 28-300, 70-200, 60 and 105, TC's. Macs with Aperture and Photoshop.

#11 CeeDave

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Posted 14 November 2006 - 05:26 PM

I run Aperture on my iMac at home, and just use iPhoto on my slower old PowerBook when traveling. Grabbing photos from the iPhoto Library is not too bad, though they could make Aperture<-> iPhoto connectivity a lot better (I'd hoped for more in the latest releases).

I think Aperture combines the best useability features of Bridge and PS, and adds much better previewing and multiimage capabilities. I use it for all my sorting (stacking, rating and filtered views are VERY good -- still working on using keywords smoothly and effectively) and probably 95% of my image prep. Still must go to PS from time to time, but as my images get better and I get lazier, it's less and less often. Printing, e-mailing, and web exports are also dead easy, and the vault is great.

I'll work all in Aperure once I get a Macbook Pro, and only use iPhoto as a slideshow program.

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#12 RogerC

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Posted 14 November 2006 - 10:20 PM

I'll work all in Aperure once I get a Macbook Pro, and only use iPhoto as a slideshow program.


have you tried aperture's slideshows? I'm curious to know what you prefer in iphoto.

I really like the ability to have a bunch of preset slideshow styles in aperture. I really like the 4-up fast, it's a great way to get through a big slideshow in reasonable time but still give people time with each image.

#13 CeeDave

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 05:34 PM

ROger,

Honestly, my preference for iPhoto for slideshows is probably just naivete:
1) I know more people that have iPhoto, and have it on all my machines (don't ask how many machines I have)
2) It's so easy and the Ken Burns effect can really add a lot, and I haven't figgered out how to do that in Aperture yet.

All the best,
Chris
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#14 RogerC

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Posted 15 November 2006 - 07:11 PM

Thanks. I completely understand, I relied heavily on iPhoto for many years.

#15 ralphy

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 03:25 AM

Thanks for all the above, I have made the decision & ordered Aperture this morning.

Meanwhile, I've downloaded the 30 day CS2 trial - which should keep me going until Aperture arrives!!!!!

#16 RogerC

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 04:44 AM

Thanks for all the above, I have made the decision & ordered Aperture this morning.

Meanwhile, I've downloaded the 30 day CS2 trial - which should keep me going until Aperture arrives!!!!!



you said you were running it on your pc's... if you have a windows license, adobe will trade it into a mac licesnce for you.

#17 ralphy

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 10:16 AM

you said you were running it on your pc's... if you have a windows license, adobe will trade it into a mac licesnce for you.


Yes, but I think theres a cost to it - and I didn't see the point as I've gone the Aperture route. Plus, I've still got my pc - but loathe using it as it is SOOOOOOOOOO 'clunky' compared to the Mac platform!

#18 Craig Ruaux

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 10:34 AM

Yes, but I think theres a cost to it



Unless things have changed in the last couple of years, the only cost is a phone call... you give them a valid serial number for a Windows version of the software and they then give you an activation key for the mac version of the software. You aren't allowed to run the windows software anymore, but that's not that great a loss :guiness:
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#19 loftus

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Posted 16 November 2006 - 10:40 AM

Sure warms my heart to see a PC to Mac convert who sees the difference. :guiness:
Enjoy Aperture; I will be interested to hear how you like it once you have played with it a while.
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#20 RogerC

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Posted 17 November 2006 - 10:21 PM

Acutally, I think there is a nominal cost ($10? $20?) for the CD with mac software.

You should do it. You'll still want to jump over to photoshop for some things, and aperture and photoshop play well together.