Aperture 3: library on a separate SSD drive?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by HHarm, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. HHarm macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2009
    Just made a switch from LR to Aperture 3.

    I have 2 x X-25M SSD raid0 for booting and apps. I also have a 1TB 7200 RPM drive.

    Which would give me better performance?

    a) keep the RAW files on the 1TB drive and have an "empty" Aperture library on the SSD
    b) put everything inside the Aperture library on the 1TB

    Also forgetting the SSD advantage, is there a performance benefit in placing the files inside the library instead of having them stay in their current place.

    Is there something else I should take into consideration here? Whatever setup I'm planning on exporting the edited photos to jpeg on my NAS.

    EDIT: request sent to move the topic to the right area!
  2. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
    Isn't a) and b) the same, except that in one scenario just the library file is on the SSD?

    As the content of the library is on the HDD, you will not see any speed increase working with your pictures, only Aperture (the application located) on the SSD starts faster.

  3. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
  4. HHarm thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2009
    Thanks for the link and info.

    Certainly working on a single photo should be just as fast. I was just wondering how managing the library and or a large bunch of photos in a project would be affected by having the library on a faster drive. I don't know what exactly is in the "empty" library file but looking at the library size it's certainly more that picture and project metadata, faces, places etc.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    If you want performance the #1 thing to do is click that little "speedy" icon that turns on the yellow borders on the images. The #2 thing is to set the size of the preview images down smaller. This will greatly reduce the amount of data to be read from disk. then #3 install as much RAM as will fit in the computer.

    I think you might care more about reliableity then squeezing the last bit of performance out of your system. If so, keep the images INSIDE the library. Doing so prevents the #1 cause of library corruption - operator error. Let Aperture manauge the files.

    Make sure you have a good, redundent backup system that keep copys of the data off site. Aperture's "vault" system is great and easy to use. But you need to let the file be in the library to use it. But three good size external drives set them up as vaults and rotate them to a safe off site location. Do that and Time machne too
  6. HHarm thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2009
    I have a separate 1TB drive for time machine so which ever way I should be covered.

    I must say, having everything inside the library and not as visible files does seem kinda weird.

    About memory.... I have 6 gigs (on a 2.66 quad MP'09). I have a Canon 5D Mark II so the images I edit are large. I'm possibly getting more memory when I get round to editing my HDV library and 5D mk II videos.

    I'm quite certain extra memory will help there but will it help with Aperture? From my first experiences Aperture 3 only used half of the memory. Is there some setting that would bring more memory to use? Certainly using brushes could be much snappier and maybe browsing from full size image to the next could use a small speedup as well.
  7. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    I would put as much on your SSD as possible. However, if you just don't have enough SSD storage for your entire photo collection, consider a hybrid scenario.

    For example, here's what I do... Periodically, (once a month or once a week depending on how much shooting I do) I will create a DMG disk image of my camera's SD card using Disk Utility. This multi GB file of RAW images goes on my 1TB drive. In a sense, this is an archive of my Camera's storage.

    I also use Aperture to import all my images into it's own database on my SSD's. If you're like me, only about 1 in 10 shots is good, and probably half are absolute trash. Thus, after importing, rating, and combing through all my images, I can delete about half of them. Of course I still have them all on my 1TB drive in a DMG above, if I ever want to import them again.

    This way, you keep your Aperture library to a minimum with usable shots, but it's all self contained in a single file (which is attractive to me) and you have all your RAW images available on your slower drive should you need them... again organized nicely in DMG files based on event or date.

    Of course, in my case, all is backed up to my TC as well.
  8. CrackedButter macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2003
    51st State of America
    I've just bought an SSD for Aperture, it should be here tomorrow and will do some testing with it.

    The SSD is a OCZ 60GB, it's fast enough to saturate the SATA 1 bus on my MacBook unlike the HD, i'll let everyone know tomorrow or Wednesday how its worked out.

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