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Lightroom Vs. Aperture

kdawson posted more than 7 years ago | from the snapshootout dept.

Software 192

Nonu writes "Adobe has officially released its Aperture killer, Lightroom, and the reviews are starting to come in. Ars looks at Lightroom and concludes that it's a better choice for those without bleeding-edge hardware. 'Aperture's main drawback is still performance as it was designed for bleeding-edge machines. On a quad Core 2 Duo Xeon, it is very usable but Lightroom just feels faster for everything regardless of hardware. Since Aperture relies on Core Image and a fast video card to do its adjustments (RAW decoding is done by the CPU), it's limited to what the single 3-D card can do. Lightroom does everything with the CPU and so it is likely to gain more speed as multicore systems get faster.'"

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sounds about right.... (4, Funny)

User 956 (568564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094048)

'Aperture's main drawback is still performance as it was designed for bleeding-edge machines.

Bleeding edge, literally. As in, they require removal of an arm and a leg.

Lightroom and Aperture cost the same (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 7 years ago | (#18097310)

Lightroom and Aperture are both $300 (Lightroom is on a discount until the end of April).

However Aperture has quite a few more features than Lightroom today, including an export API actively being developed for and real multiple monitor support with a number of options for making use of a second display.

Lightroom also suffers the problem of extension. Neither Lightroom nor Aperture are really meant to be standalone entities, you still need some editor like Photoshop from time to time. But Photoshop CS3 Bridge comes with all of the editing capability of Lightroom, meaning that you are paying $300 for a program for basically everything else but the editing abilities. The question is how many people are going to find Lightroom's features beyond the fairly nice editing abilities worth $300? It may be that enough people buy Lightroom and some cheaper standalone editor that Lightroom will still do really well, but for someone purchasing Photoshop already it seems like a difficult choice to pay $300 more.

Aperture is more complementary to Photoshop since there are so many non-editing features that are well-rounded, like the book creation, album management, and smart albums.

poor video drivers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094056)

This sounds like a driver problem. Any signal processing that can be implemented sensibly against a 3D API ought to be able to run on the GPU or CPU depending on what is fastest for the CPU and GPU combination. Something written only for the CPU cannot easily migrate to the GPU, but the opposite should be easy. It is like having an "intrinsics" library... in fact, the work ought to be able to be spread across both CPUs and GPUs in one of these complex multi-core configurations that everyone is talking about for the future.

Hardware woes (3, Insightful)

zeropointburn (975618) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094064)

This is something useful... Real photographers often don't have the cash to shell out for a top-of-the-line graphics processing server. Something like this should make it easier for smaller photography businesses to get into digital tech. Less actual film, less darkroom time/space/supplies, faster turnaround... all good for the little guy.

Re:Hardware woes (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094172)

With the money saved from darkroom supplies they can put that into the "New faster computer" piggy bank no?

Alternatively they can dump the brand name razors and clothes and save more. I recommend breaking yourself free from the "brand's" rip off and then you can afford more things you actually need and want.

Re:Hardware woes (3, Informative)

gaspyy (514539) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094438)

Not only that, but I usually take my laptop for on-location shots and start processing the RAWs right away. No matter how you put it, you just can't expect a 15" laptop to pack all the power of a server.

My laptop is a HP Turion with 1Gb RAM and LR works fine on it.

Video card limited (1, Interesting)

XaXXon (202882) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094102)

I haven't used either program, but I read most of the review, especially the part about performance.. but their test hardware was a macbook pro and a g5. Neither one of those can have a particularly stellar video card. They don't specify the g5's video card, but I'm guessing it's as out of date as the machine. and the x1600 in the macbook pro isn't a screamer.

I'd be interested to see what a system with a 7950 or (if/when they're supported) an 8800 would do with aperture. All this talk about how fast video cards are these days at doing things other than playing games intrigues me. I think aperture may have gotten it right. Those if Lightroom supports multi-core well, then it'll probably do ok going forward, as well.

Re:Video card limited (2, Insightful)

Txiasaeia (581598) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094200)

I haven't used either program, but I read most of the review, especially the part about performance.. but their test hardware was a macbook pro and a g5. Neither one of those can have a particularly stellar video card. They don't specify the g5's video card, but I'm guessing it's as out of date as the machine. and the x1600 in the macbook pro isn't a screamer.

Isn't that the point? Not all of us have screaming fast computers or even top-of-the-line video cards, but I, for one, have a C2D iMac with a x1600 video card. Photographers, as a post above me pointed out, like to shell out the big bucks for important items like cameras, lenses, filters, and tripods; processing equipment doesn't need to be top of the line. The point is that Aperture is pretty painful on a slower system, but Lightroom looks to work well on mid-range systems, which is what people (like me) are excited about.

Re:Video card limited (5, Informative)

Alligator427 (1054168) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095814)

While I don't doubt that there are many great photographers on slashdot, I'd be surprised if there was a single regular poster (or lurker) here who depends upon photography on a professional level, as his/her only source of income.

As someone who has spent much time working with pro photographers in my past life as an art director, I guarantee you that any *PRO* photographer will not think twice about plunking down some serious dough for a the latest and greatest mac, chock full of ram and sporting the best video card it will support. Computer hardware is among the *least* expensive financial commitment that a pro photographer will make:

Take a look at how much some decent digital backs for a hasselblaad will run you.
Add to that the many lenses that you need to have on hand as a pro. (Hint: this is the expensive part).
Add a bunch of fast, high-capacity memory cards.
Add a nice DSLR (or more likely, a few) and lenses for that/those camera(s) as well.
Add lighting equipment of various types to that.
Add a large studio space to that, in addition to mobile facilities.
Add makeup artists and assistants.

The costs involved in professional photography are high. A fast mac, chock full of ram with an excellent video card and a 30" cinema display costs *peanuts* in the grand scheme of things when it comes to the operating costs of a professional photographer. Aperture is a pro app, and that's why it makes the assumptions that it does about hardware. Lightroom is more accomodating for tinkerers and semi-professionals, the two occupy different segments of the market.

Re:Video card limited (1)

catwh0re (540371) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094404)

The point really here is that Apple know in the future their products will ship with better video cards. Apple like selling new hardware, and often price down software to do so.

Adobe on the other hand, like selling software and they do that on many platforms.. There is no hardware bundling incentive and they have to make a good portion of their code portable to the array of windows machines out there. This means it's CPU dependent software. We all know the future trend in computing is the "GPU", particularly with nvidia's announcement this week which further expands on processing that can be handled in the "GPU".

The review is good, however a real "pro" (i.e the camera is already $15k+) is wise enough(and cashed up enough) to understand that a core-image dependant program requires an exceptional video card.

Those of you with amafessional cameras (priced around $1500 AUD) are not the target market for Aperature and probably don't need anything more than a recent copy of photoshop and a generic image manager such as iPhoto (which too supports RAW).

In short, if you're an amafessional who likes what RAW can do for your business then pickup a copy of lightroom. If you're a heavy pro user who will spend all day in this program.. then buy a copy of Aperature. Both do a good job and both are made from companies who regularly update their software regardless of competition. Neither will disappoint in the long term. This isn't a market which is easy to monopolise, and as such the programs will compete on their merits for a good long while. Plus if you're running Windows(the land of zillions of software titles).. then you already have only one choice anyway.

Re:Video card limited (2, Insightful)

jedrek (79264) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094778)

a real "pro" (i.e the camera is already $15k+)

except that if the real pro is shooting sports, then the best camera + system for them would be the 1D MkII N - that's only $3k. and to really have to go $15k+, you need to move into MF camera + digital back territory. the truth is that most of the $15k+ camera pros don't do their own post processing, but work with a specialist, and those specialists know about video cards and raw processing and so on.

and i can pretty much guarantee that the number of pros working with $3k cameras exceeds the rest of them 10 fold.

Re:Video card limited (4, Insightful)

drgonzo59 (747139) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094960)

1D MkII N - that's only $3k

You have obviously never bought lenses, my friend.

Re:Video card limited (2, Insightful)

Vidar Leathershod (41663) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095044)

I would agree with most of what you are saying. However, I am seeing more and more pro-photographers doing the post processing themselves. Several that I work with have bought Aperture, a newer high-end Mac (MacBook Pros, mostly) and easily paid for it by not having to hire a tech to do the grunt work (grunt work which costs a lot of money). Those who do fashion/"on location" stuff have really shaved a lot off of their budget. Hiring a good tech was costing them thousands per day on the shoot. Now, they do a lot of the post processing themselves, and they are very happy with *both* Aperture *and* Lightroom.

Now that Lightroom is a fully-fledged commercial product (as opposed to a Beta downloadable for free) I have a feeling they will drop the ducats to get it. $200 is nothing when you are billing $5000-$7000/day. Even if you are just shooting sports, the time savings and saving the use of a tech or lab makes it almost instantly pay for itself.

Re:Video card limited (1)

AngryNick (891056) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095956)

What are you shooting that pays $5000/day? I want in on that gig. With that kind of bill rate I could buy really, really big lenses [nikonusa.com] to compensate for my ...err... standard issue 18-70.

Video card limited... (1)

Katchina'404 (85738) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094548)

Well I do use Aperture on a 15 months-old dualcore PowerMac G5 (2.3 Ghz) with 2.5 GB RAM and a 7800 GTX (512 MB) and it's still quite slow. This is not cutting edge anymore, but I wouldn't call it "out of date" either. It probably packs more power than the current Apple lineup except for MacPros with X1900 or better video options.

Note that the OpenGL drivers under OSX/PPC are known to be quite bad performance-wise.

Despite my config, I'm looking into Lightroom because of this performance issue.

Re:Video card limited (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095208)

I'm sitting in front of a G5 here that has an nVidia Quadro fx4500. Would you call that a "particularly stellar video card"?

Clueless fucktard.

Re:Video card limited (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095472)

Nothing. A system with a 7950 would perform pretty much the same. The video card is not the bottleneck in these applications -- processor speed, drive speed, and memory are the issue. It's not like aperture is rendering 3d scenes.

Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (5, Informative)

tcdk (173945) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094106)

I've been using LightRoom since the beta's and 1.0 since it came out (link to my walk-through in the sig).

It's a really nice program. As a developer, the structure of the program it self, gives me a warm fussy feeling. More programs should be written like this - it's clear that Adobe has given a lot of though to responsiveness and threading. They haven't perfected it, but most of the time, the program responds very quickly, by starting on something that shows you that it's working on what you wanted it to do - like you can see the details in your thumbs-images get better and better and suddenly it's there. But the important thing is - the interface is still responsive, if you can click on a thumb and have that image load, even if the thumb is only halfway loaded (note: some people do have issue with LR performance, but it seems to be a specific issue for them).

As a photographer - well. As a work-flow program it does everything I want. As a "darkroom" it does most of what it should, but there's still some most have functions that are just not good enough (Noise Reduction/Sharpen/Clone).

Oh, and I badly miss dual monitor support!

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094294)

Just to make this more interesting for the Linux zealots out there, could you tell me what is the "equivalent" for this application in Linux? I am sure there is some half baked program (mabye Kdarkroom or Gimagoo o something).

Sorry for the little flame, but I am just curious =o)

p.s. posting anonymously because I *know* this will be modded down

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (2, Informative)

Jeppe Salvesen (101622) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094530)

http://ufraw.sourceforge.net/ [sourceforge.net]

You can use it with the Gimp.

But last I checked it was not very good. And it's just a plain RAW converter, not a full-fledged RAW workflow tool.

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (1)

drgonzo59 (747139) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094894)

Don't even mention GIMP to photographers who process raw files. It's lack of 16bit color support is embarrassing. And I've heard there is nothing planed at least until 3.0. Cinepaint branch might be an alternative but it is too out of date and geared towards the motion pictures not photography. I do use GIMP for fixing family and vacation photos but when my wife has to have her prints processed for an art show we use Photoshop - period.

As a small side-note, I wish they would change the name from Gimp to something else. Telling someone that you use _Gimp_ or that _Gimp_ has this nice scripting interface and so on, just does not sound very professional. Imagine a group of photographers discussing thier favorite software, there is: Photoshop, Aperture, Lightroom and then there is ...Gimp. It just sounds childish and silly.

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (1)

TheBig1 (966884) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095266)

The UFRaw plugin actually does all manipulations in 16 bits, which is nice. Of course, once loaded into the Gimp, it takes it back down.

All things considered, UFRaw is a decent tool, in combination with the Gimp. It may not be the best for professionals, but I have done a great deal of semi-professional work with it (I have sold some, but due to lack of time have not had the chance to pursue this as much as I would have liked), and it worked very well for me. Of course, YMMV.

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (1)

drgonzo59 (747139) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095504)

Well, the manipulation is the key though. Some of those manipulations could use the additional color ranges.

I really like GIMP, especially the scripting (Since I program in Python for living) but it just really needs 16 bit colors to be accepted by photographers (my wife belongs for ex.... I am just the lab assistant ;-).

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (1)

Ed Avis (5917) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095444)

It always used to be 'The GIMP' which sounds even better.

There is No Linux Equivilant (1)

asv108 (141455) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096250)

I purchased a Nikon d80 about 5 months ago, and as a long time Desktop Linux user, I started looking for RAW workflow options on Linux. The closest thing that came close being a reasonable level of functionality was Bibble PRO, [bibblelabs.com] but a lot of features didn't work on Linux. Just basic features, like Printing and selecting various papers can be a real process on Linux.

I found myself spending way too much time in VMware, so I ended up replacing my Thinkpad with a new Macbook. I still run Linux as my workstation at home and work, but I have my Powerbook wherever I go. Bottom Line, if your semi-serious about Photography, Linux is not there yet.

Re:Lightroom is ... nice. Really nice. (1)

Speare (84249) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096132)

As a developer, the structure of the program it self, gives me a warm fussy feeling.

You must be a MacOS developer. :)

Riding along with video card performance is smart (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094118)

Apple obviously noticed that graphics card performance increases like CPU performance does, or even better. Aperture will have better performance in the long run since it uses both the CPU and video card. In my MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo with 2GB RAM, Aperture runs well. I've only got 128MB video card RAM too.

Re:Riding along with video card performance is sma (2, Insightful)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094706)

In one sense, you are right, it seems as if a new major generation of video chips are released every year. In another sense, it's expensive to get a good video chip in a Mac, and expensive to get a machine that can get one. Lightroom would probably work far better on a regular MacBook than Aperture can.

Re:Riding along with video card performance is sma (1)

Villageidiot9390 (640068) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094794)

That makes sense though. The MacBook Pro is a professional grade machine, whereas the MacBooks in theory are just your average, everyday user kind of machines. So wouldn't a professional photographer be using a professional/workstation grade machine?

Re:Riding along with video card performance is sma (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095130)

The MacBook Pro may be marketed as pro-grade, but the MacBook isn't necessarily junk. Outside the graphics chip, the chips in both of them are nearly identical. If a photographer can save $800 (assuming light room costs the same) and get a program that's designed to work well with his/her copy of Photoshop, I don't see why that would be a more compelling option. Established pros can easily pay more, but may not necessarily want to if they don't have to, and the up-and-coming are where the market shifts come from. Very often, they will stay with the software that they learned to use unless there is a significant reason to change.

What's Aperture (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094130)

Adobe has officially released its Aperture killer, Lightroom,

Kill it?! I don't even know what it is!

Re:What's Aperture (2, Insightful)

megastructure (1014587) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094252)

Why is this flamebait?
I've never heard of either program.

Some background for people who aren't on the prow of graphical processing would be appreciated.

Re:What's Aperture (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18097068)

The old generation of photo editors - Photoshop, PaintShop, The GIMP - use a bit editing model, where you directly alter the bits, and once you do, you save the new bits, and the original info is lost. This was fine for working with scans.

The new generation of photo editors - Lightroom, Aperture - do not act directly on the bits. They layer non-destructive correction instructions on top of the original bits, and don't actually change the original bits. This is called nondestructive editing. When you want a JPEG, it exports a copy with the changes, still leaving the original intact. The changes are stored in a central SQL database, or in metadata files that travel with the originals. These new editors also place an emphasis on volume processing, because of the much larger volumes of photos generated by digital cameras. If you shot 200 photos in a consistent environment, it's going to be much faster to use Lightroom or Aperture to 1) cull that 200 down to the 100 keepers and 2) apply the same set of initial corrections to the 100 keepers. You simply copy the same metadata to the other 99 images and you are done in seconds. Much, much faster than if you tried to use Photoshop or GIMP to construct some macro to do it through pixel alteration. You can then fine-tune each image individually. When you're done with all your corrections, you then export files of altered pixels.

These programs do not make Photoshop or GIMP obsolete. While Lightroom has some cloning and healing tools and some excellent selective correction tools, some problems can only be solved by direct bit editing, masking, painting, etc. In the future, the old and new apps must and will coexist, or be combined.

Re:What's Aperture (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18097290)

Sorry, I forgot one more thing in the parent post. Lightroom and Aperture also specialize in the development of raw sensor data from digital cameras. This is a fundamentally different operation than the channel-based editing done in Photoshop, GIMP, or other paint/photo editors. The old editors cannot edit Raw files without an external module (such as Adobe Camera Raw).

Better summaries please (3, Insightful)

Bazman (4849) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094154)

Any chance slashdot editors could actually do some editing? So that summaries aren't just the spiel of the poster but also tell us *what* Lightbox and Aperture are? There's no mention. I had to guess it was something to do with graphics and maybe something to do with pictures....

Re:Better summaries please (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094224)

They're software aimed squarely at professional photographers (as in, those earning money with photography). If you're a pro photographer, it's pretty unlikely that you've never heard of either of them. In practice though, most installs will probably be pirated versions, just like Photoshop...

Re:Better summaries please (3, Insightful)

nietsch (112711) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094510)

So you mean that if you have not heard of it you don't need to know? What about posting the next item about some french software in french? If yo can't read it you don't need to know that either.
Both are pretty annoying.

Re:Better summaries please (1)

Jeppe Salvesen (101622) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094608)

No. Software priced at 200-300 bucks is not aimed squarely at professional photographers. It's aimed at hobbyists trying to get the most out of their DSLR.

Re:Better summaries please (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094638)

Quality and target market has nothing to do with price. Anyone who has tried windows or seen alternative revenue models should know that.

Re:Better summaries please (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094776)

Any chance slashdot editors could actually do some editing?
You bought that low UID on eBay, right?

Re:Better summaries please (1)

coast215 (992333) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094976)

Maybe it is just because I already know what Aperture and Lightbox do, but for me the giveaway was the mention of RAW in the summary. 99.99% of the people who are going to find these products usefull have at least heard of RAW. If you haven't, chances are you are not going to find these programs very usefull.

Do they know anything about Aperture? (4, Interesting)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094218)

The article mentions that Aperture uses the graphics card rather than the CPU -- in fact, CoreImage choses the fastest code path it can, so if you're graphics card is going to do something slower than the CPU, it will use the CPU. Secondly, they mention that it doesn't have a plug in architecture -- with Aperture the plug in architecture is much lower level, you can write plugins for CoreImage, making them available system wide, rather than just in Aperture.

Re:Do they know anything about Aperture? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095172)

How, then, does one expose the functionality of a Core Image plugin to the Aperture interface? Hmm?

Re:Do they know anything about Aperture? (1)

_|()|\| (159991) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095246)

CoreImage choses the fastest code path it can, so if you're graphics card is going to do something slower than the CPU, it will use the CPU.

I don't think it works exactly like that. My understanding is that Core Image uses the video card if it supports pixel shaders (i.e., the ARB_fragment_program extension). For the specific case of the GeForce FX 5200 it defaults to the CPU [apple.com] , but I don't think that it would otherwise detect that using the video card is suboptimal.

Re:Do they know anything about Aperture? (1)

Lars T. (470328) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096322)

Exactly:

http://developer.apple.com/macosx/coreimage.html [apple.com]

Parallel Execution While it is easy to think of the per-pixel operations that an Image Unit performs as happening one-by-one in a linear fashion, Core Image executes these operations, whenever possible, using either the Velocity Engine in the PowerPC G4 or G5 CPUs or the high performance GPUs on the latest video cards. These SIMD (Single Instruction, Multiple Data) hardware solutions allow the same code to be executed on multiple data sets in parallel.

This use of parallelism is a perfect match for manipulating images where the same operation is performed over and over on hundreds or thousands of pixels.

How Professional are You? (1, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094236)

I'm a little uncomfortable with the ways these programs are being marketed. First of all, why isn't this program the latest version of Photoshop? I've seen this happen in music products as well. They'll say X is the product to use if you're professional. Then a year later, a new program costing twice as much comes out, doing the same thing only better and they'll say but this is the program to use if you're really, really professional.

If you've been selling your customers a flagship product for editing digital photographs for years, why come out with a different product for editing digital photographs except to prevent your customers from expecting an upgrade version?

The capabilities of Lightroom should be part of the latest version of Photoshop. If it's a better interface, then that should be the new interface of Photoshop.

Re:How Professional are You? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094278)

Lightroom doesn't do the same thing as Photoshop (although there is a fair amount of overlap). Photoshop is primarily editing photos with a tiny bit of management on the side, whereas Lightroom is the other way round; primarily for managing your photo collection with a bit of touching up on the side. Of course, if you want to manage a library of 10,000+ RAW photo's with Photoshop, thats up to you!

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

bhima (46039) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094288)

Lightroom & Aperture do different things than Photoshop.

I'll very, very few people use either Lightroom or Aperture and don't use Photoshop.

Re:How Professional are You? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094302)

Well Adobe really like doing that kind of thing. Look at Premiere and After Effects. They should really be the same package.

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

kamapuaa (555446) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094330)

What do you mean it "should"??? Adobe customers have some kind of fundamental right to all future products Adobe releases?

Lightshop isn't a replacement for Photoshop. It's an alternate interface for working with photos. Without doubt, Adobe will continue to develop Photoshop, and many photographers will continue to use it - it's still the best tool for most. Adobe also released a seperate tool you have the option of buying - or not.

The story write-up is a mystery. Aperature is not a market leader, it isn't available for PCs, it hasn't even been out all that long.

Re:How Professional are You? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094568)

Simple. Premiere is lacking features that are in After Effects. Features that really should be in Premiere, meaning you have to shuttle footage back and forth between the packages. Not only that, but it can be a pain to shuttle footage between the two packages at times.

After Effects is great, but because Adobe would rather sell 2 packages and not 1, they delibratly leave key features out of Premiere or give it crippled features compared to After Effects. Not just crippled, but actually broken.

It should either just be one package or they should share more resources between the 2. I know people who end up using After Effects not for the advanced features, but for the basics that really should be in Premiere.

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

Jeppe Salvesen (101622) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094590)

The story write-up is a mystery. Aperature is not a market leader, it isn't available for PCs, it hasn't even been out all that long.


Aperture is a reasonably-priced piece of software for managing your photography library and doing lightroom-style adjustments. I don't don't think there's much competition within the given price range.

Lightroom is the new kid on the block, and I've been using it throughout the beta cycle. I guess I'll have to pay up, because I quite like it. It certainly beats iPhoto, and Aperture too. (Played a bit with Aperture, but Lightroom feels better. The adjustment utilities are better)

Re:How Professional are You? (2, Informative)

larkost (79011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095258)

Not being available on PCs is not a disqualifier for professional photography software. Windows has no effective system-wide color management, so color correction will always be a hit-and-miss proposition. Apple has had ColorSync in place since the MacOS 8 days, and it is a very effective system. If you are doing professional photography on a PC then you are wasting your time, that sounds harsh but it is the way things are.

I the hobbyist space this is not such an issue because you are not going to spend the money for a printer that con reproduce color reliably, and you are not going to buy the color matching hardware to make sure your output everywhere is consistent across the full spectrum.

I spent some time supporting graphic artists and working on ColorSynced workflows, so I do have experience in this area.

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

Control Group (105494) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096518)

Windows vs. OSX isn't anywhere near the issue your monitor is, and neither is your printer selection. I'm only aware of one monitor series (Eizo's ColorEdge) that can present the full gamut of Adobe RGB. There may be more I don't know about, but the majority of monitors can't even cover all of CMYK, much less Adobe RGB. And if your monitor can't cover Adobe RGB, then you're not going to get end-to-end consistency from camera to printer unless you limit your work to sRGB.

Moreover, you can select software tools for Windows (Photoshop being the obvious example) that will utilize your color calibrated monitor correctly - while you can't be as sure in the Windows world that color management will work, you can be sure once you've selected the correct tools. And once you've designed your workflow around the tools, it doesn't matter if other tools aren't reliable. In my mind, it's roughly analogous to your lenses. You have to do the work up front to buy into a lens line that will do what you want, but once you're invested and working with the glass, the state of the lens marketplace means almost nothing to you.

None of this, of course, invalidates your initial point, that not being available for PCs isn't a major hindrance for professional photography software, just that you certainly can design a professional workflow around Windows software.

Re:How Professional are You? (4, Informative)

bartron (772079) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094484)

Because this isn't the latest Photoshop. If anything this is Bridge on steroids (in fact, if you use the CS3 beta, Bridge has inherited a lot of the features found in Lightroom). Lightroom is a digital equavelent of the darkroom (geddit?...ha). You 'develop' your raw file...adjust things, take out spots. When you want to be cloning things, merging things, changing the colour of aunties hair....then you use Photoshop. I can't understand how people can't see this distinction...it's black and white.

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

man2525 (600111) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095838)

Lightroom 1.0 includes cloning, healing, and red-eye reduction tools. As a hobbyist, it will be a one-stop shop for most of my photos.

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

Serengeti (48438) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096106)

Actually Lightroom is pretty effective at manipulating individual colour groups independently of the rest of the image, so you can pretty easily change auntie's red hair to purple or green.

You know, to make it look better.

Re:How Professional are You? (2, Interesting)

sgant (178166) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095170)

I look at it this way...and it's the way I've been using it in beta. Lightroom is just the replacement for Bridge. It's can't produce a finished photo (for me at least as it's noise reduction and sharpening are laughable), but it processes the RAW data, then pipes it to Photoshop to finish up and output.

So it's basically (again, for me) just a $200 Bridge upgrade.

It's called market segmentation (1)

Scott7477 (785439) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096290)

My impression of Photoshop is that it has been a general purpose product aimed at the mass market (meaning everyone from your grandma who just wants to get rid of some red-eye to people who want to put horns and a beard on photos of George W. Bush). Professional photographers apparently have been using different software targeted directly at them or businesses that serve pro photogs. As the Ars article states, "Professional digital photography has been a reality for a while now but the big-name developers have been slow to catch up."

Wikipedia has a good definition of market segmentation [wikipedia.org] as "the process in marketing of dividing a market into distinct subsets (segments) that behave in the same way or have similar needs. Because each segment is fairly homogeneous in their needs and attitudes, they are likely to respond similarly to a given marketing strategy. That is, they are likely to have similar feelings and ideas about a marketing mix comprised of a given product or service, sold at a given price, distributed in a certain way, and promoted in a certain way." So your home Photoshopper and sports photographers are two different sets of potential customers, and what they are willing to pay for/expect out of software are two entirely different things.

My point is that Adobe and others have realized that "professional digital photography" has become a significant market, and therefore it makes financial sense to come up with products specifically targeted to this group of people whose needs and expectations regarding photo processing software are much higher than the mass of casual photographers (and are willing to pay a much higher price for a software package if it meets their expectations).

Re:How Professional are You? (1)

Control Group (105494) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096846)

Lightroom does not perform the same functions as Photoshop. Some Photoshop functionality exists in Lightroom, but if you want to do per-picture editing, you need Photoshop. Lightroom is a workflow app, which is focused on handling large numbers of photographs.

Look at it this way: if you've got a CF card full of a 100 shots taken at one event, Lightroom is where you can take care of the fact that your camera's fluorescent setting left you with a white balance that isn't what you want. You fix all the shots at once. It's also where you catalog, tag, organize, and select the photos you want to take to final processing.

On the other hand, if one of those selected pictures from the event has a tree growing out of someone's head, you fix it in Photoshop.

They're two different functions, so they're two different software packages.

Do... (2, Insightful)

cosmocain (1060326) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094312)

...Apple and Adobe have some kind of contract with the camera manufacturers, so that ist's sure that Aperture and Lightroom will support the next-gen, encrypted and proprietary RAW-format? othewrwise the software could be rendered useless when buying a new cam...

Re:Do... (1)

GeekDork (194851) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094684)

[Do] Apple and Adobe have some kind of contract with the camera manufacturers, so that ist's sure that Aperture and Lightroom will support the next-gen, encrypted and proprietary RAW-format? othewrwise the software could be rendered useless when buying a new cam...

You're new to the wacky RAW world, aren't you? RAW formats are pretty much always closed. The SDKs come with NDAs the size of Roseanne.

Of course, companies like Adobe or Apple have some kind of leverage and the resources (==legal teams) to get at that stuff, so chances are that you won't be left hanging quite as much as with niche products like RawShooter (bought by Adobe to implement some of its goodies in a worse form in Lightroom, but hell... That means I get Lightroom for under 60 EUR...). Every vendor is also peddling its own converter/processing package, so there's some kind of conflict as well. The "native" packages are likely to have some neat features using undisclosed parts of the nonstandard raw format.

Re:Do... (1)

kf6zql (1066814) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095346)

Adobe gets around this problem by offering to convert your random RAW files to DNG (Digital Negative) which it's also pushing on camera manufacturers to adopt. That way in 5 years I won't have Canon, Nikon and Minolta RAW files, all I have are DNG's which is Adobe's RAW format.

Re:Do... (1)

GeekDork (194851) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096078)

But you probably still won't be able to import pictures from your new Nijitson S-D900D with the HyperCMOS-sensor, because it uses an octagonal color pattern with an IR channel in the gaps. The issue here is that the program needs to understand the physical characteristics of the sensor, and EXIF data only tells you a part of the story.

Re:Do... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18096860)

DNG has been designed to support a wide variety of sensor configurations, from various Bayer filter patterns to sensors like the Foveon. I highly doubt the sort of sensor you suggest will come to pass, as I just don't see the benefit for recording normal photographic images (which is what 99.9% of the camera market wants), so it's likely Adobe will have plenty of time to extend the DNG format if a technology develops that requires a new physical format specification. And since DNG is basically just a bag of bytes with some metadata describing how that bag maps to the original camera sensor, adding such an extension should be easy. It's by no means just limited to what EXIF can provide.

That said, you buy the camera to use it. If you somehow end up buying a camera that doesn't work with your existing software, or only with the manufacturer's proprietary software, then I suggest you return it. I doubt Apple or Adobe will be shut out of the RAW formats (Nikon's NEF is already encrypted), and even if they were, such a camera would be a colossal failure, at least in the professional space where the prestige and high margins are. (On the consumer side, most cameras don't even support RAW, so clearly most consumers don't care if they can't get access to RAW data.)

Digital SLRs are quickly approaching the point where they're matching or exceeding the capabilities of 35mm SLRs. They're also fairly long-lived items, assuming you don't run on an upgrade treadmill where you just have to buy a new one every year, and adding a downgrade like proprietary encryption/obfuscation of the file format would require a firmware upgrade on the camera. I anticipate at some point that DSLRs will soon reach a plateau of development, and they'll be as mature as old film camera technology was. Incremental improvements, but not astonishing leaps of capability that obsolete the existing equipment.

Please, make it stop! (4, Insightful)

ksdd (634242) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094324)

Can we please stop assigning the "killer" label to abso-freaking-lutely EVERYTHING? iPod killer, Flash killer, Aperture killer, ad nauseam. Have any of these so-called "killers" actually killed the product they were supposedly released to kill?

I guess the word "competitor" doesn't make for sensational copy.

Re:Please, make it stop! (1)

coast215 (992333) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095078)

Last I heard. The brown Zune was server 15-20 for attempted murder of the iPod.

Re:Please, make it stop! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095906)

So you're saying that you don't think "competitor" will be the "killer" killer?

Torrents :) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094328)

http://www.mininova.org/get/591697 [mininova.org]

Enjoy the TRIAL before you BUY.

Re:Torrents :) (1)

bartron (772079) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094574)

Or....horror of horrors, download the exact same file [adobe.com] legally from Adobe. (registration required but the download is faster than a torrent with 0 seeds and 2 leechers)
You even get a working serial key. All you have to do is send Adobe US $199
If you don't like Adobe and their 30 day trial, try Apple's [apple.com]

Re:Torrents :) (1)

Frumious Wombat (845680) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095636)

If you are (or can imitate) a student, you can get it for half that. You can then sleep soundly knowing that Adobe won't release a bugfix that also puts a boot on copies with illegal serial numbers.

You should really use Aperture, though. Lightroom just doesn't use enough resources for you to convince the SO that you need that Quad-Core MacPro + $1600 video card.

Re:Torrents :) (1)

jagdish (981925) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096696)

Better yet download it here [softpedia.com] without the need to register.

whats the deal with this killer thing (1)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094402)

have there been any killers that killed yet? i take it with all the seriousness that comes on a 3rd grade playground.

bleeding-edge... you know, i bet i have an easier time reading english from the 1700s than people 100 years from now will have reading our interesting version here.

yeah yeah, guilty, i do it too. i guess when i read something that's as horrible sounding as something i wrote myself, i cringe.

Re:whats the deal with this killer thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095294)

i bet i have an easier time reading english from the 1700s than people 100 years from now will have reading our interesting version here.
yeah they'll be wondering why we spell teh t-h-e instead of the normal spelling that they use.

Compared to photoshop? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094458)

As previously pointed out, 'LR' is the marketing people's idea to shift more copies (for more money) of what is, essentially, the new version of Photoshop. But how does it compare to Adobe's previous 'flagship' photo editing suit?

As an amateur photographer, I use Photoshop sometimes for this and that, but on the whole I have always thought that it could use some serious improvement (especially with the interface). Given that I'll probably consider switching to LR, what do those that have used both think of the differences?

Re:Compared to photoshop? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094472)

Photoshop is old, they are now targeting these SKU's of Photoshop for specific markets such as Elements, LightRoom etc etc

Sure you can have the same power using Assembly but why when you can use C# or Java or Lisp etc? Same principle, Photoshop for the nitty gritty or if you want targetted solutions then use Lightroom etc, this way you get it catering for your "domain" specifically rather than a generic one size fits all product such as Photoshop.

Re:Compared to photoshop? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094598)

Takes a bit of getting used to but lightroom is the way to go.

IMO the best feature is the ability to copy all or some of the transformations that you've applied to a particular pic and then run them on others in the library.

The fact that all the editing is non destructive is another boon.

Also, it watches folders and auto imports from them to a predetermined shoot - godsend.

FailzorsQ?! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094498)

bben many, not the -there are some

Yuo 74il it (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094600)

ops or any of the shall we? OK! is part of the its readers and another charnel result of a quarrel Trouble. It Polite to bring to fight what has guests. Some people its corpse turned in any way related of an admittedly never heeded we get there with Start a holy war with THOUSANDS of slings are limited, ~280MB MPEG oof of

Single-monitor workflow is a deal breaker (5, Informative)

AdrianZ (29135) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094718)

I really can't believe it wasn't mentioned as a serious Con for Lightroom with so many video cards (especially those of photographers as well as Mac owners) being dual headed. Thumbnails and controls on one monitor and large full-screen views on the second for adjustments is a wonderful way to work. Viewing the Lightroom forums makes it clear that it is important to users.

I love Lightroom's "develop" controls but the productivity aspect is much more important. Simply allowing the Manage and Develop tabs to used as separate windows would have done the trick (not well, but "good enough").

slow, annoying UI (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18094928)

the UI is still sluggish in the released version. alt tabbing back into lightroom you can watch everything redraw wheras every other app i own is instantaneous. I think the UI is written in flash/flex which is why its so damn slow. I just found a post on customizing the web templates (http://blogs.adobe.com/jnack/2006/07/nextgen_web_ galleries.html#more) and there are some mx: entries in the files, thats flex isn't it? btw my machine is a sony laptop i bought in december, core 2 duo 1.83 ghz, geforce go 7600, with 2gb ram. hardly underpowered.

also adobe likes to waste your screen real estate. on my 1400x900 screen in develop mode the collapsed headings down the right hand side take up about 1/4-1/3 of the vertical height of the page. thats before removing the black borders at the edges of the screen and the giant "Sync" and "Reset" buttons which seem to be designed to be read from the other side of the room. icons too large, too much padding. i want to get as much info into my screen as possible without sodding about with the scroll bar.

other gripes: the previews look blurred when they are small-medium in grid mode on my canon raw files. the method for selecting photos for print or web export is different. the scroll wheel doesnt use the system scroll speed, it defaults to about 10 pixels so its basically useless on the grid vie when your thumbnails are large. different from bridge.

another thing, when i scroll to a separate section of the grid view, the icons are all pixelated, like from a 50x50 image. then then resolve into the better preview. thats annoying. and different from bridge.

thing is for me is it better than bridge/photoshop which is more UI responsive, but makes you jump through a few hoops to do stuff, or use lightroom which UI annoys the sh1t out of me but is quicker to do other things. i dont know, time will tell.

oh and one other thing, i work on my photos locally on the laptop and back them up to an external drive, my laptop looking like a subset of the external drive. i may work on the local versions for a while, then need to push them back to the hard drive, so sometimes they exist in two places at once. dont know how to approach this with the 'library' system in LR

I prefer Aperture (4, Interesting)

tji (74570) | more than 7 years ago | (#18094996)

After recently picking up a Digital SLR camera, I started looking around at the photo processing/management options. I tried both Aperture and Lightroom on my MacBook Pro (Core2 Duo, 2.13GHz, 2GB RAM). Everybody says the performance of Aperture is bad, but I found it to be fine on my machine. Maybe I'm not pushing as much data around as a professional photographer, but it handled my 10 MegaPixel RAW files fine. Of course, the app could be whittled down a bit, it has a huge memory footprint, and obviously doesn't fare well on older hardware.

But, probably the main thing that I like about Aperture is the full-screen editing/viewing mode. iPhoto 6 also has this, and when you're working in the smaller real estate of a 15" laptop display, it makes a huge difference. Maybe if I had a 20-30" external display it wouldn't be such a big deal. But, for laptop users, full screen mode is a must-have.

Also, iPhoto 6 doesn't have all the capabilities for workflow stuff. But, it's a pretty good alternative for non=professionals.

Re:I prefer Aperture (1)

Serengeti (48438) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096894)

20" iMac here, with Lightroom, and there's nothing I love more than working in full screen mode and "dimmed lights". The more the better, and I imagine that, though probably a trivial difference, perhaps the good performance you're experiencing is partly due to lower screen resolution. It could, as well, be due to the resolution of the files you're importing, though you didn't mention what camera you're using.

Also: iPhoto is horrible. It's just horrible. It does the basics, but no more before becoming a workflow nightmare or performance inhibited. By comparison, I really really miss Picasa for the PC. Too bad I don't miss the PC.

What is a... (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095032)

What is a quad Core 2 Duo Xeon? :P

Re:What is a... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18096150)

My next computer. ;)

About Apple (1)

Piroca (900659) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095064)


Apple gets a lot of things right, but it shows pure arrogance when it comes to fix its mistakes. It's obvious the approach of using GPUs to perform some computations is flawed in the long run, but you can bet Apple will *never* move into another direction, even if it's a dead end. They have been stubborn about poor and stupid decisions for a long time, yet fanboys keep transforming pain into features.

Re:About Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095254)

You mean like how they never introduced a two-button mouse? Or how they never moved away from PowerPC (or Motorola) processors? Or how they never introduced a flash-based iPod?

Oh, wait...

Re:About Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18095356)


Why MacBooks to this day don't have 2 buttons (or at least sense right and left clicks)? Why Mac OSX is so radical in making every operation dependent on mouse clicks? Why does font "smoothing" suck so bad in Mac OSX? Why use an outdated framework based on a weird language as the basis for all development on Mac OSX? The list goes on and on...

Re:About Apple (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18096270)

Are you joking, or do you just not know about the fact that by putting two fingers on the track pad and clicking, you are right-clicking on a MacBook. You can also scroll by using two fingers on the track pad.

Have you tried these computers, or are you just out to bash them?

Re:About Apple (3, Informative)

larkost (79011) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095328)

Do you care to explain how using a specialized processor that has the ability to do certain calculations orders of magnitude faster than a generalized CPU is a mistake? Especially when the same system decides on-the-fly which computation resource would best perform the calculation?

To give you a hint: Apple's current system already is setup to do what you say they will never do. If your CPU would better do the job, then your CPU will do the job. If it would better be put to your SIMD unit (Ativec or MMX/SSE2/SSE3/SSE4) then it will go to that unit. And if the graphics card is sitting idle and can better do the job... well...

I still prefer the Darkroom (2, Informative)

DrDitto (962751) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095082)

After spending all day in front of the computer, I just love going into my darkroom to make some real silver halide prints instead of staring at Photoshop. With today's bargain prices for analog photography, I encourage people to jump in! I got an enlarger for $75 at a garage sale. With 4x5" negatives from my large-format camera, the prints are stunning. (a 4x5" negative gives about 200+ megapixels of resolution).

Re:I still prefer the Darkroom (1)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095584)

I'm studying Photography at the moment and I walked into the course with 2 digital cameras. I've since sold the better one and kept the other for research purposes. I now have 3 film cameras (so I have gone back in effect to film) and its great, I agree with what you said, it is better than sitting in front of a computer all day.

Re:I still prefer the Darkroom (2, Interesting)

Frumious Wombat (845680) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095594)

Providing that your film-holders are all in spec, putting the sheet at the same plane as your ground-glass, that the guides are holding it flat, and that you aren't one of those wierdo's who's stashed a freezer full of Super-XX from the 70s(nice tones, but hardly sharp) or shooting Efke 25 (for any LF stopped down for depth of field, exposures long enough that rocks get bored and start to fidget) You might actually get sharper pictures from a decent medium-format, just due to film-flatness issues. Calumet roll backs, Pentax67, or RB 67s are pretty cheap, and have the same aspect ratio (roughly) as 4x5. Plus you can afford color film for those.

Besides, 4x5 is generally too small to contact print. You really need to try FP4+ in 8x10.

If you got an enlarger big enough for 4x5 for $75, I'm impressed. Btw, just yanking your chain. I have a couple boxes of Agfapan 100 in 4x5 stashed away for a trip when I'm inspired and on my game.

Re:I still prefer the Darkroom (1)

DrDitto (962751) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096244)

Providing that your film-holders are all in spec, putting the sheet at the same plane as your ground-glass, that the guides are holding it flat, and that you aren't one of those wierdo's who's stashed a freezer full of Super-XX from the 70s(nice tones, but hardly sharp) or shooting Efke 25 (for any LF stopped down for depth of field, exposures long enough that rocks get bored and start to fidget) You might actually get sharper pictures from a decent medium-format, just due to film-flatness issues. Calumet roll backs, Pentax67, or RB 67s are pretty cheap, and have the same aspect ratio (roughly) as 4x5. Plus you can afford color film for those.

I also shoot with a Mamiya C220. And I have a Calumet C2 roll back. The problems you mention might happen if you shoot with garbage equipment. Film holders, even older used ones, are usually fine. I've checked many with a caliber.

Re:I still prefer the Darkroom (3, Insightful)

bruce_garrett (657963) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095834)

I've been a camera bug since I was a teenager back in the late 1960s and I still love to work with my film cameras. And yes, it's really great that since so many folks are trading in their film equipment for digital you can get some very fine deals. I bought the Hasselblad I've always wanted a couple years ago...second hand, but in cherry condition. I have almost all the great lenses for my Canon F-1s now that I just couldn't afford back when I was a kid. I love it.

But my darkroom is only for developing film now. I bought a Nikon Coolscan 9000 ED last Christmas, and I'm working on scanning in my entire library of negatives and slides. I'm using Aperture for its cataloging capabilities as much as for its great image adjustment tools. I use Photoshop mostly for dust speck removal (I have other non-photographic uses I put Photoshop to otherwise...I'm a cartoonist too). It's great not to have to deal with paper contact sheets. I can just scan my film in and have metadata linked to each image so I don't have to rummage through hundreds of contacts to find the shots I'm looking for. And now I can protect my images by storing backups offsite. I've always been afraid for my negatives and slides.

I never had the money or the time to invest in a full blown color darkroom, and nowadays I can produce great results, absolutely great results, with the Hasselblad, some rolls of Fuji Velvia, the Coolscan, Aperture and my Epson Stylus Photo R1800. And I can tell you for a fact that touching out dust specks in Photoshop beats doing it with a brush on the final print hands down.

Once you get the image into the computer endless possibilities open up. Yes, I still love film photography. I don't think I'll ever give it up. And, yes, I agree that large format black and white silver prints still beat what you can produce with even the best digital cameras and inkjet printers at the moment. They're absolutely lovely. If I wanted to I could probably still produce really fine black and white silver prints in my own darkroom. On the other hand, Kodak has stopped making black and white photographic paper.

Re:I still prefer the Darkroom (1)

Control Group (105494) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096730)

Your last point really sums it up. In the 35mm space, I can't see any objective* reason to use chemical darkroom techniques for color printing - or, frankly, for developing. Having done both, I've switched entirely to digital for all my color photography (I am, at best, a 'prosumer'; I haven't made the jump into medium- or large-format photography, where digital still can't keep up). The advantages of digital - varying film speeds from shot to shot; no worries over screwing up the film in the tank; the essentially infinite and perfect reproducibility of digital "negatives"; the flexibility and undo-ability of film processing analogs; lack of bulk to carry (I do a lot of hiking); even the cost of film, insofar as it means I'm far more willing to bracket exposures, shoot in bursts, etc. - are so significant that I can't deny them.

But that's only true for color photography. B&W film printed on B&W paper just can't be touched by any digital B&W process I've seen (much less been able to replicate). I'm not even certain where the difference is (though my guess is that it's a contrast issue having to do with the color masks sitting over the sensor in the camera), but it's an obvious one when looking at final prints. Desaturating a color shot just isn't as good as taking an honest-to-bob silver halide shot, even if you do the desaturation in Photoshop after engaging in a bunch of color tweaks.

Y'all can have my B&W darkroom when you pry it from cold, dead, stop-bath-smelling hands.

*There are, of course, subjective reasons. For example, noise is not equivalent to film grain: for my money, traditional graininess detracts less from the image than does noise, particularly chroma noise. But that's a matter of taste.

Aperture 1.5 is much improved (1)

jocknerd (29758) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095100)

I played with Aperture 1.1 but its performance was horrible. Aperture 1.5's performance is much better. I haven't messed with Lightroom so I can't say much about it. But I'm very happy with Aperture. It runs pretty well on my Dual G5 2.0ghz PowerMac. And thats only got an ATI 9600 card in it. I'd love to try it out on a new MacPro.

Aperture still gets my vote (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 7 years ago | (#18095764)

I've used both applications, and found that Aperture does the job without getting in my way. It's typical Apple - really powerful yet deceptively simple user interface. As of version 1.5 Aperture really rocks.

For those who don't know, both of these applications are RAW-image-based, non-destructive photo editing and workflow tools. They are targeted at both pro and serious amateur digital photographers. They are not meant to replace Photoshop (although for digital photo management and editing parts of my job I find I no longer need Photoshop) - they are meant to fill a need that isn't currently being filled. And, both do it quite well.

Aperture is Mac-only, while Lightroom is both Mac and Windows. For the amateur with money, that right there probably decides it. But for the pro, being Mac-only is likely not a big negative for Aperture.

Bleeding Edge Workstation (1)

asv108 (141455) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096144)

I have a month old 15in Macbook PRO with all the bells and whistles, and Aperture 1.5 runs at a snails pace. I tried a Lightroom 1.0 demo yesterday and the performance level ran circles around Aperture. Aperture brings my whole system to its knees, even when doing relatively minor tasks, like getting a print dialog.

I'm quite surprised Apple would release such a poorly implemented software product, especially considering its price and the 1.5 version number. After playing around with both products, I will be purchasing Lightroom.

killer must die (1)

Bastian (66383) | more than 7 years ago | (#18096886)

There needs to be a version of Godwin's Law for referring to anything that competes with an Apple product as an "insert product name here" killer. This is getting stupid. A few days ago we had an "iPhone killer" when the iPhone hasn't even come out on the market yet, and now we have an "Aperture killer" when Aperture, being a Mac-only program, is decidedly _not_ the dominant software in its market niche.

Hence, I propose Bastian's Law to fill the gap:

Anyone who refers to a product as an Apple product killer rather than describing what it actually does will be drug out into the street, severely beaten, and left to be crapped on by pigeons and crows. Repeat offenders, such as tech columnists who have gone so far as to delete the term "mp3 player" from their vocabulary in favor of "iPod killer" will also have their computers destroyed in an effort to prevent future offenses.
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