Life After Aperture - What are you using now?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by VirtualRain, Feb 24, 2015.


What are you using now instead of Aperture?

  1. ACR and Photoshop

    2 vote(s)
  2. Photoshop Elements

    1 vote(s)
  3. Lightroom

    32 vote(s)
  4. Capture One Pro

    11 vote(s)
  5. DxO

    0 vote(s)
  6. Photos (Beta)

    6 vote(s)
  7. Software that came with my camera

    3 vote(s)
  8. Other (Not listed)

    6 vote(s)
  1. VirtualRain, Feb 24, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2015

    VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Regardless of when you left Aperture, what are you using now?

    And is there anything game changing, or great about it that has taken your photography to a new level? Or is it just another tool that does the same job for you?

    (If you're still on Aperture, feel free to chime in, but let's keep the poll for folks that have actually made the switch).

    Chime in!


    Naturally, if you know anything about me by now, it's that I've become a bit of a C1 fan-boy. I'm in the process of redoing my Paris photos in C1 and so far I'm amazed how much better they are... Without using NIK. And I thought I could live never live without NIK's plugins.

    Anyway, my story is all over the forum... What about the rest of you?
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I had flipped flopped between LR and Aperture years ago because in some ways I was concerned that Aperture was on its way out, due to a lack of updates. I returned to the fold, because I liked Aperture's DAM, pure and simple.

    When my gut feeling turned into reality, I took the opportunity to look at other products, instead of just deciding to back to Lightroom.

    I looked and was impressed with Capture One, I examined DXO but was left wanting since its mostly a RAW converter, no real DAM capabilities. I chose to avoid PS/Bridge just because the lack of non-destructive edits and my copy of PS was several versions old.

    Lightroom was my choice after a long period of anguishing and obsessing over this. I think C1's handling of RAW is better for my camera, but LR's DAM capability won out in the end. As a plus I like how LR can easily upload images to social sites, and while I can export images from C1 and then upload them - pushing a button is a lot simpler.

    Overall, I don't think there's a great product, each has its negatives and positives, for me LR's positives outweigh its negatives.
  3. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
  4. seadragon Contributor


    Mar 10, 2009
    I'm using Lightroom. I was an Aperture user for a number of years then switched to LR about 9 months ago after :apple: killed Aperture. I went with the subscription for LR and PS. I was hesitant to switch without knowing what Photos would be but my gut was telling me to jump ship. Now, I'm glad I did.

    I read a lot of complaints about the UI of LR, but for me it's great. It clicked with me almost instantly.

    I've also tried the trial version of C1 and while its good, I still prefer LR.
  5. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Most of the complaints I've seen are from those going from Aperture to LR, and while I'm not dismissing those arguments, I've not seen too many complaints on other sites from those who hadn't tried Aperture.

    I guess we kind of got spoiled with Aperture and needed to adjust to a different way of doing things. My transition to LR wasn't horrible, I'm used to the UI. I prefer LR's UI over C1's (though you can customize it) and definitely over DXO's which I really don't like at all.
  6. Attonine macrumors 6502a

    Feb 15, 2006
    Kent. UK
    Aperture user. I'm sticking with Aperture for the time being. Once Photos is out and I can see what it's about, along with LR6, I will make some preliminary investigations. I don't see any emergency just yet though.

    After the WWDC when Photos was announced, some attendees who also frequent macrumors made some posts about how much work had been done with API's and other dev stuff with regard to coreimage stuff, (sorry, not a techie). They said that there was a heck of a lot of work gone into this area and believed Photos will probably become a platform. I have time to wait it out and see what happens, whether plug ins will fill the gaps etc. If not, and Aperture becomes unfeasible, I will probably move to LR.
  7. r.harris1 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 20, 2012
    Denver, Colorado, USA
    My own workflow is Photomechanic for ingest, rating, culling, renaming, backup, keywords and the like. The speed is to me fantastic and it does what it says on the tin really, really well.

    Next up is RAW conversion. In the past, 80% of the time, I'd do that work in Aperture, using it as a base for further work. Depending on the image though, I might take a dive into ACR, C1, DXO, Iridient, PhotoNinja or RPP. Yes, I enjoy the RAW process :). These days, I am avoiding Aperture but I am exploring Photos beta, more out of interest than anything at this point. My base RAW converter now is C1.

    After RAW, I might shove things through PS, or increasingly, Pixelmator or Affinity Photo. I might also throw an image through Nik plugins, though I find myself relying on these less as time goes on.

    Then I'm either finished or will print, create a book or upload to Flickr/Zenfolio. I liked Aperture a great deal for this, but am starting to utilize LR a bit more, along with also looking at what Photos beta can do.

    My vote was for C1 because if I were to move to one primary tool, that would be it, at least for now.
  8. JDDavis macrumors 65816


    Jan 16, 2009
    I'm still on Aperture and NIK as well. My plan has been, as yours, to stay the course a bit longer and see how things develop. Lately, it's been harder to stick to the plan though. Ever since I upgraded to the D750 I've been unhappy with how Aperture converts the RAWs. That made me try Capture NXD from Nikon and it does so much better (though it's terrible to use). I recently started a trial of Capture One and though I think the RAW conversions are a bit over saturated it's much better than Aperture's conversions and it's quite a bit better on basic adjustments (and harder stuff). I've used NIK to make up for Apertures shortcomings but like Virtual Rain I'm starting to wonder what I've been missing. With LR6 on the horizon as well it will be tempting to make the jump.

    Honestly, the only things I will miss from Aperture is it's speed (on a Mac), the DAM, and exporting directly to While it's not as smooth NIK will work with C1 just fine (and LR too). On my 2012 MBP Aperture still seems to be the fastest. I'm hoping that I grow to like C1 because the contrarian in me just doesn't want to jump on the Adobe wagon (though clearly, LR is the best all around solution at this point).
  9. Attonine macrumors 6502a

    Feb 15, 2006
    Kent. UK
    Aren't the RAW profiles in Camera RAW updates at OS level rather than app level?
  10. jms969, Feb 24, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2015

    jms969 macrumors 6502

    Feb 17, 2010
    True if you are using aperture/iphoto/photos...

    A 3rd party app such as lightroom uses its own raw converter :)

    Edit: Some 3rd party apps do use camera raw...
  11. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    My plan is to migrate my existing library to Photos so that I don't lose any edits, and I'm open to a new piece of software for anything after that. I have started testing C1, and I intend to use LR6 on a trial basis as well. There are other, less popular competitors which I may try, but it seems that those are the big two. I've also heard some people use Bridge instead of Lightroom, so I think I'll give that a spin, too. Whether Lightroom's user interface bugs is is something you have to try for yourself. So far, I don't like C1's defaults, but I am trying to customize it to my tastes now.

    Some third-party apps use Apple's built-in RAW converter, too, e. g. Pixelmator. It'd be nice if camera manufacturers and software companies which make RAW converters would allow us to use them as plugins (and soon also as Extensions), but I think hell will freeze over before we see CaNikon get their act together on software.
  12. Menel macrumors 603


    Aug 4, 2011
    Still works, why go through hours of work now. Don't have time for that silliness.
    Will let dust settle and re-evaluate later.
  13. jms969 macrumors 6502

    Feb 17, 2010
    Agreed 100%, there would be much more satisfaction is CaNik's products if they were to do so...

    CaNik certainly are not software companies ;)
  14. Indydenny macrumors 6502


    Jan 5, 2002

    I have been using the free trial for Lightroom and have not had problems with the UI. Downloaded and watched some helpful tutorials. So, I voted for LR in the poll above.

    However, I just learned that Capture One has a version for Sony cameras that is only $30. At that price, I just purchased it and am trying it out. Nice so far, but still too early to tell which way I'll go.
  15. WinstonRumfoord macrumors 6502

    Mar 27, 2014
    As luck would have it, I switched to LR from Aperture about a year before Apple axed it.

    The interface is still so weird/hard to use for me (mostly the organization/import parts) but the actual processing is leaps and bounds better IMO on my Canons.

    Excited for LR6!
  16. Cheese&Apple macrumors 68010


    Jun 5, 2012
    I'll stick with Aperture for now and let you kind people figure it all out because this just makes my head hurt. :)


    1. Keep working with Aperture, NIK and Pixelmator
    2. Sign-up for a CC subscription ($120/year sounds like a bargain to me) and learn Lightroom and PS when I have time
    3. Clean-up, clear-out and delete any crap I've been holding onto in Aperture
    4. Pick a date when I'm ready to switch to Adobe (later this year when the dust settles), migrate my cleaned-out iPhoto/Aperture library to Photos to preserve edits and then start-up from scratch with a new Lightroom and PS library
    I'll access old stuff using Photos and new stuff using Lightroom. If for some reason I had a need to completely re-edit an Aperture image or two I'll export them to Lightroom.

    ~ Peter
  17. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    I still use Aperture and will continue to use it, so long as it works.

    When it stops working, I'll look for something else.

    Not a pro here, or even a serious amateur.
    But.... if it "ain't broke yet", no compelling rush to "fix it".

    When the time comes, I'll do what's necessary.
    Till then.....
  18. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    That's fine, but the only thing I'd recommend is be careful with OS X updates. You don't want Aperture to break at the most inopportune time, i.e., needing to use it and now it no longer works. I'm not saying that will occur tomorrow, next week, next month but just keep in mind the possible worst case scenario
  19. skaeight macrumors regular

    Jan 7, 2009
    Also, the longer you wait the more work you will lose when you inevitably do switch.
  20. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    I've had to use Sigma's RAW converter for my DP1, that piece of, ahem, software was a nightmare to work with. The image quality was up there, but just basic things like rotating images and not forgetting about it seemed like an impossibility. Why do the camera manufacturers think it's ok to produce software which is clearly illegal under the Geneva conventions? I haven't even tried Fuji's RAW converter for that reason.

    While all of these companies seem to insist that photographers should use their software, they seem to know very little how photographers actually work. I'd be more than happy if they gave us plugins or, gasp, actively worked with all the big players to get good RAW converters out the door. I don't think Adobe, Apple and all the others would mind if you worked with them to produce the best IQ in RAW conversions.
    Since the upgrade path is clear, we know that you will not lose any work (not the RAW conversions at least). But I agree you should not wait until you are forced to upgrade because your new computer is no longer compatible with Aperture.
  21. BJMRamage macrumors 68020


    Oct 2, 2007
    I'm sticking with Aperture. *for now*

    I used to use iPhoto but was never happy and mixed in Photoshop. I also tried simple folder and open/edit in PS. But I gave Aperture a try and loved it.
    I told my brother to upgrade his Aperture (his was pre-App Store era) but said to wait until Aperture 4 or ApertureX came along.

    Sure, it isn't the best to wait because if you HAVE to move to another manufacturer's program that is more to do at that point, but still holding tight with Aperture.

    I still believe Photos will have a decent Extension or in-app purchase piece to it when it is finally revealed in a more mature state. why Apple wouldn't have Aperture-style plugins to purchase is beyond me...though I might have said that about floppy disks, CD/DVD drives, etc. that Apple has decided against.

    I don't like Bridge and if that has a similar setup to LR, I don't want to go that route. so, just waiting for now.
  22. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    Though I put C1 as my choice, there are times I go directly into CS6 Photoshop. Perhaps the poll should have allowed for more than one answer.
  23. ZMacintosh macrumors 65816


    Nov 13, 2008
    AS for as losing edits in Photos, so far all my edits in Aperture are hard edits when migrated to Photos.
    its either revert to original or keep as is I believe, no fine tune or granular touches

    Which leads me to a question I have for anyone else, with all of your edits in Aperture, do you have a master copy and then the final edit when you import those libraries into Lightroom?
  24. skaeight macrumors regular

    Jan 7, 2009
    Maybe you work differently than me, but I don't necessarily do a RAW conversion. I do nondestructive edits against the RAW files in LR (formerly Aperture) only exporting to JPG when needed. Any intermediate conversions outside of non-destructive edits limit the capability of the RAW file (they bake in color balance and exposure, etc) and changes become lossy.

    If you use Aperture for non-destructive edits, these will be lost with any conversion to another DAM, leaving you with the original RAW files and the baked .jpg previews (if you choose to migrate these). So any further work that's done in Aperture at this point will be going into a black hole.


    Ok this expands on my last post - Oreocookie I didn't see you were going to Photos. ZMacintosh is right, the end effect is the same as if you were migrating to LR - you get baked jpg images with the option to start over. So if you're going down the Photos path you won't lose anything if you continue to work in Aperture.

    Regarding migrating to LR, you have the option to migrate the Aperture Preview files which are baked versions which include any edits you've made. You can stack these once they're migrated so they're grouped together with the original unedited. If you want to do this, I'd suggest regenerating your previews at full resolution / high quality prior to the migration. PM me if you want more details on how to do this for only your edited images.
  25. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    If you migrate your old library to Photos, then your old edits are preserved (even though at least some of them will be baked in). That's why (like Cheese&Apple) I intend to use Photos for at least with my existing library. I've read that certain edits are hard baked into the file, but these concern photos that I have edited to my liking already anyway, and it's not likely I want to change anything. Certainly I lose less than if I were to import this into, say, Lightroom or C1, both of which are based on different RAW converters. I'm aware that the solution I have in mind is not ideal, and not all of the things are preserved (e. g. stacks), but if you do this kind of migration, none of the solutions will be ideal and preserve all of the data.
    I'm not planning on going Photos-only, I'll use Photos for my existing library so that I don't have to re-develop unnecessarily (I assume that straight-up RAW conversions without localized edits will be imported as such, but I'll revisit that question once the time comes). I'm in the process of trying other apps (currently C1, later LR6) to see what I will use instead of Aperture. Migrating the existing library to Photos also has the added advantage, that my choice of DAM software does not depend on the existence of a reliable library import app.

    Nevertheless, don't forget that I was agreeing with you about waiting too long to upgrade.
    Good to know. Does that also include photos which are just straight-up RAW conversions?

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