Aperture vs Lightroom

MaddieBrad

macrumors regular
Original poster
Apr 8, 2007
188
0
New York City
Hello,
I am just getting into portraiture photography and was wondering if i could get some advice on whether to pick up Aperture, or Lightroom for post processing. I have played with trial versions of both... but don't really know enough yet to make an educated decision. I have heard that Aperture is "clunky" as described by some friends. Thanks in advance.

B
 

swiftaw

macrumors 603
Jan 31, 2005
6,309
20
Omaha, NE, USA
Search the forums, there have been many threads on this. Also search the web, there have been a couple of decent comparison reviews.

Basically though, they a roughly the same, so it comes down to which one you feel more comfortable using. Although from all reports, Aperture taxes the system resources a little more than Lightroom.
 

OreoCookie

macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2001
2,681
69
Sendai, Japan
Do a search, you'll probably find that there are three kinds of people: (i) people who love and use Aperture, (ii) people who love and use Lightroom, (iii) people who use neither ;)

I'm an Aperture guy and love the flexibility, I find it the opposite of clunky, IMHO it's the best Apple app since iTunes.
 

iJawn108

macrumors 65816
Apr 15, 2006
1,197
0
I have used both and have stuck with aperture. They are basically the same thing, I believe lightroom is cheaper but not by an amount that really matters. Also they have slightly different effects on hues when editing and such. both have trials give them a shot.

I just like the aperture environment more than i did lightroom.
 

Aperture

macrumors 68000
Mar 19, 2006
1,877
0
PA
Something to consider is your hardware. If you have relatively low end hardware, don't use Aperture. I started using Aperture on my Macbook and it runs *ok*. (I have an external screen, too) Full Screen isn't fun, but I don't use that often anyhow. I've considered switching to LR for its ability to run on standard hardware but I can't seem to leave Aperture. (& I am yet to find a way to get my photos from Aperture to LR while preserving my folder structure, etc)

Either way, I find the Aperture interface a bit more intuitive. I love having the folder structure panel on the left, nice & big.
 

Digital Skunk

macrumors 604
Dec 23, 2006
7,834
408
In my imagination
Been There Done That

There have been tons of posts about this topic, a search will probably get you your answers faster, but the general comments about the two are:

Aperture
- If you have the hardware to run it, i.e. 2GB of RAM, MacBook Pro, 20" or 24" iMac, MacPro.
- More tools than Lightroom
- More compatibility with Apple applications and Mac OS X
- Slow as hell when single library gets too big, so just reference the images
- Slow when generating hi rez previews
- Not as easy to use since it is completely open and customizable
- Build your own workflow
- Much better file handling, image handling, and organization.
Lightroom
- If you don't have the hardware to run it, i.e. anything else
- Less tools than Aperture
- More compatibility with Photoshop
- Slow as hell when generating previews
- Seems unfinished compared to the rest of the Adobe Apps
- Easy to use since it locks you into its module workflow
- Follow someone else's example of a workflow

I use Aperture since it was a finished product when I bought it. I have used Lightroom and tried switching programs for a few weeks but turned back when I found half of the tool and features missing or severely limiting in Lightroom.

But I would probably use Lightroom a lot more if it were out at the same time as Aperture. I didn't have much of a workflow set up, Aperture works for you around your workflow, while Lightroom makes the workflow for you.
 

MaddieBrad

macrumors regular
Original poster
Apr 8, 2007
188
0
New York City
Thanks for the replies guys. I did do a search... but i wanted a fresh look at it. I know there have been updates to both programs so I was just curious what people would do if they had used neither, and had to choose. I do appreciate the help.

B
 

Digital Skunk

macrumors 604
Dec 23, 2006
7,834
408
In my imagination
Thanks for the replies guys. I did do a search... but i wanted a fresh look at it. I know there have been updates to both programs so I was just curious what people would do if they had used neither, and had to choose. I do appreciate the help.

B
I do understand that 'fresh look' thing. Why rehash a conversation that was done almost a month or longer ago, and why post your own question in a thread that already has a hundred or more posts and that has probably denigrated itself into a 'You're a looser, you're stupid" bash-fest. And the searches do kinda suck. I went to the Graphics forum looking for help in Flash and did a search, and came back with a hundred threads that weren't even related.

So do the searches before you post a new thread, but if you don't find what you are looking for, find too many unrelated threads that don't really touch on your topic, or find threads that are just too freaking old post a new thread.
 

OreoCookie

macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2001
2,681
69
Sendai, Japan
Aperture may be great, but it is a bear to learn.
Aperture and Lightroom are professional apps, on par with FCPro, so a learning curve is to be expected.

Personally, I found Aperture quite intuitive once I understood how it works. Finding out about details is a different story, though.
 

creator2456

macrumors 68000
Jul 10, 2007
1,649
2
Chicago
Aperture and Lightroom are professional apps, on par with FCPro, so a learning curve is to be expected.

Personally, I found Aperture quite intuitive once I understood how it works. Finding out about details is a different story, though.
I just started using Aperture and I have to agree. The learning curve is pretty on par with other pro apps. It allows you to get in and do some basic things right away, but to get anything productive out of it you will need to take your time and want to learn how to do the thing you're trying to do.
 

failsafe1

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2003
619
0
If you are looking for a post processing solution you might not need either. For complete post processing you need more than Lightroom or Aperture. I use Aperture for cataloging and such but have found Bridge to be quite useful with Photoshop.
 

OreoCookie

macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2001
2,681
69
Sendai, Japan
If you are looking for a post processing solution you might not need either. For complete post processing you need more than Lightroom or Aperture. I use Aperture for cataloging and such but have found Bridge to be quite useful with Photoshop.
… that's why both, Lightroom and Aperture, have a way to connect to Photoshop (or your image manipulation software of choice) built right in.

IMHO it's hopeless to be semi-serious about photography without some form of cataloging software. Aperture and Lightroom just bring it to the next level :)
 

failsafe1

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2003
619
0
… that's why both, Lightroom and Aperture, have a way to connect to Photoshop (or your image manipulation software of choice) built right in.

IMHO it's hopeless to be semi-serious about photography without some form of cataloging software. Aperture and Lightroom just bring it to the next level :)
The OP talks of needing a post processing solution not a cataloging solution. I mentioned I use Aperture for cataloging and PS for processing work. In doing so I have found Bridge quite helpful. I quite often suggest that folks getting into something new try a simpler solution. If someone needs post processing and has PS then Bridge is already built in and available. Starting with Aperture or Lightroom might not be the way to go for post processing. Now if someone is simply looking for a cataloging software with some added functionality then Lightroom or Aperture might make more sense. There are simpler ways to catalog if you need to start simple. I don't think it hopeless for someone starting something to start simple and work up to a more complicated solution. In my professional life as a photographer I use iPhoto to quickly look over stuff and iWeb to post photo shoots for my office to look at since we are spread out over several locations. I also use Aperture, Photoshop and Bridge to get the job done so whatever tool works is really the best solution.
 

OreoCookie

macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2001
2,681
69
Sendai, Japan
@failsafe
With dslrs/digital cameras, there is no way to work without a systematic way to sort your pictures -- whether you use iView Media Pro, iPhoto, Aperture or Lightroom for the job is irrelevant. I'm aware that the OP was asking for a post-processing solution and in most cases (in my case 90-95 %), the tools provided by Aperture and Lightroom suffice to do the job.

IMO Aperture and Lightroom mark the beginning of a new era of image processing -- to me, there is no difference between cataloging and post-processing anymore, it's one `motion' with Aperture. I can start doing one thing and then all of a sudden start doing the other. None of the other software I've used before offers the same possibilities (various versions of iPhoto, iView Media Pro 2.0-2.7).

So cataloging functionality is indispensable to me, PhotoShop for the most part has become superfluous after I started using Aperture. I think you are degrading Aperture and Lightroom and missing the point by describing them as `cataloging software with some added functionality' (remember that iView and iPhoto have some simple image manipulation tools, too). Since the OP is referring to Aperture and Lightroom specifically, I think he would have mentioned it if he wants to know whether they are a `replacement' for Photoshop or not. He wants to know which one he should buy (which indicates he doesn't only want an image manipulation software).
 

compuwar

macrumors 601
Oct 5, 2006
4,717
2
Northern/Central VA
Hello,
I am just getting into portraiture photography and was wondering if i could get some advice on whether to pick up Aperture, or Lightroom for post processing. I have played with trial versions of both... but don't really know enough yet to make an educated decision. I have heard that Aperture is "clunky" as described by some friends. Thanks in advance.

B
I've seen a posting on DPR in the last several weeks where a Lightroom user lost his Lightroom-processed images, and if he hadn't had backups he'd have been screwed. That alone would make me think twice before going with it.
 

failsafe1

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2003
619
0
IMO Aperture and Lightroom mark the beginning of a new era of image processing -- to me, there is no difference between cataloging and post-processing anymore, it's one `motion' with Aperture. I can start doing one thing and then all of a sudden start doing the other. None of the other software I've used before offers the same possibilities (various versions of iPhoto, iView Media Pro 2.0-2.7).
That is an interesting position I have not thought of with regards to cataloging and post-processing being one in the same. I certainly agree with the need for a catalog solution.
 

OreoCookie

macrumors 68030
Apr 14, 2001
2,681
69
Sendai, Japan
That is an interesting position I have not thought of with regards to cataloging and post-processing being one in the same. I certainly agree with the need for a catalog solution.
You have to read more carefully and not take things out of context: when you work, there is pretty much no distinction between post-processing and cataloging, it's one motion (if you wish to work that way). You don't think: 'Oh, I'm pre-processing prints now', or `I'm sorting pictures now.' You can -- while cataloging -- pre-process the images, if you like. The separation between the two actions in your workflow breaks down, they don't have to be separate and sequential steps anymore -- if you wish to work that way, that is. In Aperture (unlike Lightroom), there is no processing mode, no sorting mode, so while I work, I cannot distinguish the two anymore as I often do both simultaneously.
 

failsafe1

macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2003
619
0
You have to read more carefully and not take things out of context: when you work, there is pretty much no distinction between post-processing and cataloging, it's one motion (if you wish to work that way). You don't think: 'Oh, I'm pre-processing prints now', or `I'm sorting pictures now.' You can -- while cataloging -- pre-process the images, if you like. The separation between the two actions in your workflow breaks down, they don't have to be separate and sequential steps anymore -- if you wish to work that way, that is. In Aperture (unlike Lightroom), there is no processing mode, no sorting mode, so while I work, I cannot distinguish the two anymore as I often do both simultaneously.
Thanks for the input but I don't think I took the OP out of context. I don't consider post processing and cataloging to be one in the same. That is why I replied that is an interesting concept. I don't know if the OP considers this one in the same and I don't know if I ever will either. But if you do that is fine. I can certainly learn from what others think and like new ideas. If the OP had said they consider this one in the same that would a different story. It would be interesting to see if the one in the same becomes the new paradigm. It could and I could certainly see how that could happen.
 

redrabbit

macrumors 6502
Aug 8, 2006
320
0
Asking this here because I don't think it warrents a new thread, but two questions:

Is there any way to get rid of the weird looking filmstrip thing in the bottom of aperture in fullscreen mode?

and

I chose not to generate previews for my RAW images because I didn't feel I need them, but when I edit photos in full screen mode, I find the quality to be pretty bad...is that because I didn't generate previews?

thanks
 

recordprod

macrumors member
Jul 26, 2005
59
0
Interesting thread as I am trying both Lightroom and Aperture out at the moment. I use Final Cut and Photoshop so have a handle on how to use computers so to my surprise I have really taken to Lightroom. I hardly feel the need for PS as it seems to be able to do most of what I need, fixes vignetting, great for recovering poor lighting etc. I'm going with Lightroom as for me I can get more from it and I don't understand why people say it has less features.

As an aside, both Aperture and Lightroom are missing lens correction. DXO has amazing lens correction but in my view poor RAW processing and renders colour very strangely. Until you've tried that out you wouldn't believe how well it improves even the best L series lenses.

:)

Mike