Which Photo Editing Software

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by High Desert, Nov 27, 2015.

  1. High Desert macrumors regular

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    Nov 26, 2015
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    Powell Butte, Or.
    #1
    Here I am, new to the forum and new to Apple products. I just purchased a 13" Macbook pro laptop, after going through all the pros / cons apple vs. pc and decided that the macbook pro was the right thing to get. So, now have been looking at photo editing software and not too sure what would be the better choice. I am shooting with a Nikon D7100 camera and use raw, sometimes jpeg, depending. I was using / playing with the Nikon supplied app, VNX2, but want something better. I have red a lot about Pixlemator, downloaded the 30 day trial, and unless I am missing something, find it to be cumbersome and not very intuitive, which Apple and software are supposedly known for. I am considering Photoshop Elements 14 as I can get the for $39 right now, but want something that does allow good to great editing. I am not excited about signing up for the Photoshop monthly subscription, as that goes way beyond what I need as an amateur. So, here is an opportunity to express your viewpoints, opinions, suggestions the the new guy. Thanks,
     
  2. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #2
    Everybody has different tastes when it comes to layout of a photo editing software. I am sorry that Pixelmator didn't seem to fit your tastes/needs as it is probably the best bang for the buck application on the OSX side of photo editing.

    As for Lightroom, its a known quantity among many serious photographers and perhaps you should rethink your desire for subscription service (though I too hate the idea with a passion). There is or was a very discounted "sale" going on that offered Lightroom and Photoshop at a few dollars a month - might be worth investigating.

    There are other applications you may want to investigate - DXO and Capture One Pro come to mind but they are at a premium as they too are stand alone apps. You may want to explore the Internet for Nikon related forums, photo forums et all and see what others are using and why.

    In my case, I use Capture One Pro for photos I take and Photoshop CS6 for work I do for others (photo restoration). Rarely do I venture into Photoshop for my own work as I don't like to alter images I take but merely correct/balance them. If Lightroom did a better job with my RAW files, I would have used it instead of Capture One Pro (Fuji RAW is quite a bit different than other RAW files like NEF from Nikon).
     
  3. cr2 macrumors regular

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    Feb 19, 2011
    #3
    I agree with Phrehdd -- I use lightroom multiple times in a month and photoshop for less half a dozen times a year (and only for a few photos)

    Look for educational discount on these softwares.
     
  4. High Desert thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    Thanks for your input phrehdd. You make some valid points. My frustration with Pixlemator is I don't see and good documentation on how to use it and the effort seems to be more on effects than anything else. I am not really looking to "alter" photos as you see so much in digital work today - only to clean up photos for a more natural look. I personally think a lot of people misuse digital photography and do things unnatural to scenes / people. I am an old film and kodachrome guy moving to digital trying to get the old effect in the new. Don't know if this makes a difference or not in what software a person uses today.
     
  5. High Desert thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    Does Lightroom and Element 14 pair together well? Suppose I could get elements then pick up Lightroom later?? Or should both be used jointly? I read where Lightroom seems to be more organizational for photo libraries with some editing capability?
     
  6. r.harris1 macrumors 6502a

    r.harris1

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    Denver, Colorado, USA
    #6
    It really depends on what you define as editing and you'll find a lot of opinions on this forum :). The usual candidates that allow both digital asset management (key-wording, culling, rating, etc) and various degrees of editing are tools like Lightroom & Capture One. Heavy editing tools (layers, masking, pixel level stuff) include Photoshop (and to some degree PS Elements), Pixelmator, Affinity Photo - all of these will take getting used to. Associated with all of these are applications that work either as standalone or plugins to the aforementioned tools like the excellent Nik collection (now owned by Google), MacPhun (ex Nik employees), OnOne, Topaz Labs and a handful of others. These tools allow for great B&W conversions, retouch, filters, noise reduction effects and other similar "development" items.

    Personally, I use Photo Mechanic for rating, culling, keywording, renaming, backup and ingest and have used Aperture (now discontinued) or Capture One for RAW processing. Lately I've been using Photos for RAW processing and using the extensions from MacPhun, Pixelmator and Affinity Photo to test how that will be for my workflow. I'm a bit of a RAW processing aficionado and have different ones I use if I have a particularly tough image (DxO, Iridient make great ones).

    Check out Lightroom (you can still by it separately) and Capture One. In particular, Lightroom has a lot of plugin capabilities for all of the tools I mentioned above (Nik, OnOne, MacPhun, etc) and is what a lot of people use.
     
  7. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #7
    By chance, I noticed on Amazon that Lightroom 6 (I believe the stand alone version) is available for disc and download.

    An odd alternative (as there will be no DAM) is to use something like the OnOne collection of software or other 3rd party plug ins that also can be used without Lightroom or Photoshop.

    A nice combo investment might be Lightroom 6 plus a tutorial from Lynda.com or consider OnOne and its often free tutorials or other 3rd party offerings (NIK, Alienware etc.)
     
  8. High Desert thread starter macrumors regular

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    #8
    Great...will take a look on amazon to see what it has for LR. Thanks for your comments and suggestions phrehdd and r.harris1. Nice to get reasonable response back on a forum.
     
  9. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Jul 9, 2012
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    Atlanta
    #9
    Go for Adobe CC subscription with LR and PS. Get the annual payment plan so that monthly reapprovals are no a problem if you are off the net in the field. Adobe is putting features into LR CC that are not available in LR 6.
     
  10. eyeseeyou macrumors 68000

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    Feb 4, 2011
    #10
    The industry standard is photoshop but look up affinity photo(?).

    Get the non subscription version of Adobe suite
     
  11. stillcrazyman macrumors 65816

    stillcrazyman

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    #11
    I use the stand alone version of Lightroom for my cataloging and file management, and surprisingly, most of my edits are done in it as well. I also have onOne Suite of apps for more involved processing.
     
  12. jojoba macrumors 68000

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    Dec 9, 2011
    #12
    Another vote for Lightroom. I use it both for organisation and editing and I'm very pleased with it. I'm using the standalone version at the moment but will probably switch to the CC version that includes Photoshop at some point next year.
     
  13. tgara macrumors 6502a

    tgara

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    #13
    I may be an outlier, but I'm using the DPP software that came with my Canons, and a simple Finder file system for organization. Besides being free, it's the best RAW processor for .CR2 files and handles all the parameters on the Canon images, especially Picture Styles. I use Pixelmator for more intense edits, if needed. Prior to this I was using Aperture. I don't care for any Adobe products. I think they are overpriced bloatware, and for my use do not do anything that I cannot do in my current workflow.
     
  14. matt9013 macrumors 6502

    matt9013

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    Oct 27, 2013
    #14
    I've been playing around with Pixlr and Fotor and am loving both of them. They are both free and has everything I want in a program. I also just started editing and don't want to pay for anything just yet. I recommend either one of these or both.

    https://pixlr.com/

    http://www.fotor.com/
     
  15. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    Perhaps things have changed in recent years but I would avoid Elements. While it's very capable, it's Adobe's offering for less professional use. When I used it (pre 9 versions): 1), Adobe discontinued the browser on one version, then put it back a few years later 2), it choked on folders with over 1,000 images 3), it's slow and uses a lot of resources 4), I revisited in with v12 but there was a known bug that refused to open PS at times. From an editing pov it's basically Lightroom via ACR. From a DAM pov, it will fill your drive with sidecars if you do metadata and use other photo apps.

    I use Lightroom.
     
  16. The Bad Guy macrumors 6502a

    The Bad Guy

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    #16
    You just can't beat Photoshop. A lot of folks will tell you otherwise...but they're mistaken.
     
  17. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    #17
    Hard to tell if you are being serious. For typical use, it is akin to taking a super turbo charged race car a block down to the local mini-mart and back. Most people are interested in "easy" as well as simple typical edits and balancing of their image files. This is more in the vein of Aperture, Lightroom, DXO, as well as Capture One. Lightroom as example, is furthered by some great 3rd party plugins with some that can be used stand alone.

    So why do I disagree with you - I am a Photoshop user and would never recommend it to anyone for typical stuff above. It is way too much and cumbersome. For me, it is ideal for what I do which is not about typical fixing up of photos related to crop, colour balance, some minor effects etc. However, maybe you are on to something if Adobe came out with a new Photoshop that included 3 buttons - Hobbyist, Advanced and Professional with respective screens to match. Until then, we'll continue to disagree on your statement.
     
  18. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

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    #18
    Agree with above. Not to mention there are now alternatives that are infinitely faster and simpler to use.
     
  19. High Desert thread starter macrumors regular

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    #19
    OK - so taking all of this into account, I discounted going with the subscription service. I really don't like to lease anything. Besides, which, once he hooks are in, rtes can go up and you end up committed to spend the additional funds. Just my opinion. I went ahead and got the Elements 14 that Costco had for $39. Cant hardly go wrong with that. If it turns out that I like the (Photoshop) approach to the editing offered, I may take the next step and move up to the CC suite. I am still looking at Serif Affinity, which seems to be real good on the mac. Gimp, even though just updated again, feels cumbersome to me, same as Pixlemator. But, to teach their own as each application has pros / cons and likes / dislikes of users. Really appreciate each of you taking the time to assist on this selection process I have been going through. Good info for future decisions.
     
  20. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #20
    Glad you feel you found a path that will fit your needs and agrees with your workflow desires. Keep us in the loop here please as you delve more into Elements and tell us what you like and dislike.
     
  21. Apple fanboy macrumors P6

    Apple fanboy

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  22. highdefjunkie macrumors 6502

    highdefjunkie

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    #22
    I use lightroom 95% of the time along with silver efex pro 2 plugin for B/W shots.
     
  23. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #23
    You can go to your local Best Buy and buy Photoshop and Lightroom CC as a bundle. It maybe $100 per year.
     

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