Previous 1 2 3 Next 36 Replies Latest reply: Jun 6, 2014 7:25 PM by GolfNStufff9
Larry McJunkin Level 1 (30 points)

I have used iPhoto for years and am quite happy with it as a storage solution and realize the storage features of Aperture are the same.  However, I'm getting a lot more serious about photography and would like more editing features that iPhoto offers.  Are the editing features of Aperture sufficient for a hobbyist...or would I be better served with PSE v11?  If necessary, I'll purchase both Aperture and PSE, but not unless someone thinks that is necessary.  I guess my basic question is whether to use iPhoto and PSE or just use Aperture alone?  I know this is an Aperture forum...not PSE...but was hoping someone here uses both and could make a suggestion.

MacBook Air, OS X Mountain Lion, + 24-inch LED Cinema Display
  • the0pticnerve Level 2 (240 points)

    PsE is strictly an image editor. It does not have a library, so there is no organizing. Aperture has pretty deep oganizing tools, crazy metadata editing and great image editing capabilities.


    That being said, you can't create layers or do compositing like you can in PsE.


    They can be used together (so can iPhoto and PsE). You can set up PsE as an external editor in Aperture. Meaning, you can launch the image into PsE, edit, and save it directly back into Aperture.


    Aperture is built to handle larger image files and more of them than iPhoto.


    I work with a lot of big images. I use Aperture and Ps CS5 together.


    Hope this helps.

  • Frank Caggiano Level 7 (25,722 points)

    Actually iPhoto and Aperture's storage features are not the same. While with the current release of each application they share a common library structure Aperture gives you a much richer set of features to manage your collection. This especially comes into play on a large library. Aperture is clearly better at managing the library.


    Aperture's image adjustment and development tools are far superior to iPhoto's especially if you shoot RAW.


    Aperture isn't an editor in the sense of a PS. Aperture is a digital image developer, it develops the digital images much like a darkroom develops film negatives. Aperture doesn't do the type of cutting and pasting that a program like PS does. What it does do is give you the tools you need to take an image from the camera to the final print.


    Many users of Aperture also make use of an editor like PS or GIMP from time to time in their workflow. Aperture gives you the ability to hook one of these programs into your workflow so that an image can be worked on in Aperture sent to PS and then returned to Aperture for further development and storage.



  • the0pticnerve Level 2 (240 points)

    One thing worth mentioning. If you want Elements, consider buying a Wacom Bamboo. It comes with Elements and it's only, like $20 more. Then you get a sweet drawing surface too.


  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 (12,510 points)

    Good recommendation.


    When I purchased my Wacom Intuos4 I picked up PSCS5 for much less than half the price (I don't remember and don't want to mislead with a guess).

  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 (12,510 points)

    Frank -- this is very well put.  I have tried dozens of times to express what Aperture is, simply, and now I know how to say it.  Thanks.  .

  • Larry McJunkin Level 1 (30 points)

    @frank: Replying on an iPad mini and really meant to mark your great reply as the solution but hit the wrong link and couldn't see how to change it...sorry.


    I don't shoot raw but I still think (from your comments) that Aperture will not only give me sufficient extra editing tools over iPhoto but also provide enhanced organizational features. I guess if I need more editing tools I can always add PSE later.


    Thanks for all other responses here as we'll.

  • Frank Caggiano Level 7 (25,722 points)

    Kirby, that will be 5 bucks please

  • Frank Caggiano Level 7 (25,722 points)



    Not to worry, given the software here it's amazing you were able to even reply from an iPad.


    Good luck and post back as you get into Aperture. Remember the biggest boost to learning this is to not be worried about making a mistake and loosing your photos. Keep good backups and the rest will come easy.



  • Larry McJunkin Level 1 (30 points)

    Time Machine plus continual backup to Dropbox. Probably paranoid but lost everything about 15 years ago and learned my lesson.

  • léonie Level 10 (90,886 points)

    Frank -- this is very well put.  I have tried dozens of times to express what Aperture is, simply, and now I know how to say it.

    Yes, isn't? Kirby, your previous answer are terrific too - since an answer is always to be judged in relation to the question asked

    Frank and Kirby, how about another User Tip about the differences between Aperture and iPhoto, and  between image development and compositing please?

    That is another FAQ where a User Tip would help a lot.



  • Larry McJunkin Level 1 (30 points)

    @Frank: I went up to the Mac App Store to purchase Aperture and before doing so, I read all the reviews on the "current" version (3.4.3).  I'm afraid to buy it now!  There are too many people reporting the same bugginess, constant crashes, and pathetic noise reduction capabilities.  The latter is the one editing feature I really need it to do better than iPhoto.  Your thoughts?

  • Frank Caggiano Level 7 (25,722 points)



    All I can say from personal experience is that I have had no real troubles with the latest version of Aperture on Mountain Lion, works fine for me. 


    As for the noise reduction, I've never used iPhoto's noise reduction and I tend not to use noise reduction in Aperture all that much so I can't comment on this directly, I will say that I have seen reports on Aperture's noise reduction capabilities and they  seem to be mixed. Some folk are satisfied, some feel it's not as good as what is out there. That's all I can honestly say on that.


    Remember that there are a lot of Aperture users out there and the overwhelming majority seem to be satisfied. Are there users having problems, sure, any program with as many users as Aperture has will have its share of problems. Is it a show stopper, for me it's not. Only you can answer that for yourself.


    Unfortunately Apple stopped the Aperture trial, that would have been the best thing for you to have done. If there is an Apple store somewhere near you you should be able to load up some of your more troublesome images onto a flash stick and give Aperture a try at the store.



  • Larry McJunkin Level 1 (30 points)

    I went back and re-read the negative comments and most were from people shooting RAW...I rarely do.  I'm confident enough with my equipment that I'd rather shoot JPEG. And the noise reduction really isn't that big of a deal the more I think about it


    However, thanks for the suggestion about the Apple store. There is one near me and I'll be there on Thursday so I can test a couple of images.

  • imlearning03 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks - this was very helpful!

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