Aperture Finally Delivers Pro Photo Tool from Apple

by Derrick Story

Steve Jobs isn't really the photo dude at Apple, but Rob Schoeben is (VP of Applications Marketing), and he announced "Aperture" today at the Apple press event in NYC. This is the professional post production image app from Apple that we've been waiting for.

In a nutshell, Aperture is designed to make your Raw workflow as painless as managing Jpegs. The engineering team has spent almost two years researching how photographers like to work and what's most important to them in post production. The design team took what they learned, combined it with the power of Tiger, and created Aperture.

This isn't iPhoto. It will cost you $499. For pros, it's justifiable because at $100 an hour in time savings, you get your money back quickly. To really appreciate this app, you have to see it operating on two side-by-side 30" displays. (Today's hardware announcements are in concert with Aperture and Final Cut Studio.) This is particularly helpful when you're culling images -- placing them side by side at 100 percent -- trying to quickly determine which are the best.

I'll certainly cover more about this app in the near future. But for now, I'll leave you with this... If you're a Raw shooter who is trying to figure out the least painful workflow for managing these files, you're going to want to check out Aperture before making a final decision.


2005-10-19 11:43:46
Aperture's position
Derrick, where do you think Aperture is positioned relative to Photoshop and Photoshop Elements? Or is that a false analogy because it's workflow-oriented and not document-oriented?
2005-10-19 12:19:04
Apeture Express ?
Here's hoping that Apple do what they did with FinalCut and release a version of Apeture that's aimed at the Prosumer market. I'm a keen amateur photographer, but I can't justify (and don't need) Apeture, yet feel that iPhoto is too limiting.
2005-10-19 12:47:22
RE: Aperture's position
Yeah, I think you have it framed correctly. This is primarily a workflow environment that has editing capability. You'll still want your favorite image editor in addition to Aperture or iPhoto... or whatever you prefer.

The thing about Aperture is that it's really competing with Adobe Bridge rather than Photoshop.

2005-10-19 12:50:18
RE: Apeture Express ?
I agree there seems to be a wide gulf between iPhoto 5 and Aperture 1. But remember, Macworld SF will be here in January, and who knows what Apple has planned for the iLife suite. iPhoto might move up a few notches.
2005-10-19 15:13:51
And Apple includes support for Adobe's Digital Negative files which makes me very happy -- and it makes Adobe happy. I like converting my Canon's Raw files into DNG so that I have a (hopefully) more stable format and because I save significant disk space without losing data.
2005-10-19 15:52:18
Looks like a great C1 competitor.
I don't see this so much a photoshop competitor. But I do se it as a C1 competitor.

My only complaint is the $499 price.

On the plus side the stacking and non-destructive editing is very cool. I hope the image quality is as good or better than CS2.

The other thing, being a developer, I hope there is a plugin SDK, unlike the hacking and discovering for iPhoto plugins.

2005-10-20 09:59:10
PS Elements + Aperture = better than PS CS2?
The more I digest this and think about it, Aperture is very good news for photographers.

Why plunk down $600 for PS CS2, which is a general purpose bitmap editing program with a bunch of photography features thrown in?

For that same $600 you can have an absolutely stunning Aperture program for your raw workflow, and PS Elements which has layers and selections and most of what photographers need in an image editing program.

This could be a very sly move on Apple's part. Wean people away from PS CS2 without them really knowing it. ;-)