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Sharpening: Aperture vs. DPP

515 Views 3 Replies Latest reply: May 5, 2013 7:35 PM by Kirby Krieger RSS
MarkPek Level 1 Level 1 (145 points)
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May 5, 2013 11:07 AM

Hi all,


I've been using Aperture for about 2.5 years, and I like it. 


I was going through some old photos, which I had processed with Canon's DPP software, and they were strikingly sharper and crisper than my current Aperture work.  Has anyone else had a similar experience or feeling?  I know about the various sharpening options in Aperture, and I don't really want to resurrect DPP, but maybe I will, just to test sharpening options.  Are there plug-ins for Aperture that sharpen better than Aperture's native tools?



MacBook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), Aperture 3.4.3, iPad 2, iPod Touch
  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 Level 6 (11,570 points)
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    May 5, 2013 11:43 AM (in response to MarkPek)

    Sharpening is, as far as I can tell, a complex topic.  There are three categories of sharpening that are best considered separately: Input sharpening, output sharpening, and aesthetic sharpening. Input sharpening refers to the sharpening needed to make a raw file rationally usable during development.  Output sharpening refers to the sharpening needed to make an image file with the highest acutance based on the developed image. Aesthetic sharpening is the sharpening used on the output image file for aesthetic reasons.


    Input sharpening is handled, if I remember correctly, by the raw fine-tuning brick.  Output sharpening can be handled by the sharpening brick, or when printing.  Aesthetic sharpening is usually done with the sharpening brush.


    I suggest checking the raw fine tuning settings, and your output settings, before drawing any conclusions about the comparative sharpening. Remember, too, at all the camera manufacturers stir in a little bit of secret sauce, whenever they can.





    (Sent from my miPhone.)

  • William Lloyd Level 6 Level 6 (19,220 points)
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    May 5, 2013 6:16 PM (in response to MarkPek)

    What kind of sharpening are you using?  Aperture's edge sharpning is pretty aggressive.  Note the other sharpening (non-edge) is purely legacy and isn't recommended per the manual.

  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 Level 6 (11,570 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 5, 2013 7:35 PM (in response to William Lloyd)

    Excellent! point.


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