The Derrick and Scott Show

by Steve Simon

If you're an Aperture blogger on this site, you're either on a beautiful tropical island, or at the Mac paradise of MacWorld. I might choose the island if given a choice, but I'm happy to be one among the sea of Apple-obsessed here in San Francisco. It was my great fortune to sit in on the dynamic duo of Scott Bourne and Derrick Story as they gave out everything they knew about Aperture to the lucky crowd who soaked it all up in their two-day session.

Here are a just a few of many nuggets they provided:

Don't Think Like A Photoshopper:

The Photoshop mentality doesn't work with Aperture. It is a different and new way of doing things, and once you embrace the Aperture way, everything becomes easier. You can work in any order with Aperture, go ahead and sharpen first--Aperture will do everything in the right order come time to spit out that final version. No need to "Save As", Aperture is always saving for you and every version takes up about 24kb of space--huge storage savings. So go ahead and make as many versions as you want.

Get It Right In The Camera: Film photographers are used to getting it right, particularly with unforgiving slide film. Aperture provides incentive for us all to nail that exposure. If you get it right in the camera you get a reward in Aperture: drastically reduced post-processing times and fewer round trips to Photoshop. No more dealing with ten different versions of 50mg files either. Message: Do exposure right and you will tear through Aperture. Average post-processing time: one minute per image. Priceless.

Hardware Choices Dream Scenario:

Desktops: Unlike Photoshop, Aperture wants you for your Graphics Card more than anything; CPU speed: not so much. The boys say when buying a new desktop computer to get the baddest Graphics Card you can afford, usually one down from the maximum price model will make you very speedy and happy. Of course, as much Ram as you can and fast hard drives, 7200 rpm's is preferred.

Laptop:MacBook Pro's work a little faster than MacBooks with Aperture. In a perfect world we would all max out our Ram at 3GB , with 120GB or 160GB - 5400rpm drives. Maybe compromise on the processor speed, but not the Ram, graphics card and hard drive.


It was interesting to me to learn that both Derrick and Scott like managed libraries to take advantage of the security that Vaults offer in Aperture, and that they both have an archive made up of multiple libraries. I'm still working out my long term archiving strategies, but the idea of having many different libraries is in my future, I just need to figure out how to divide them up.

If you have several libraries, you can keep them all in one folder and just double-click on a specific library to launch that library in Aperture.


2007-01-12 04:38:08
I am thinking of upgrading my Dual G5 to better fit the Aperture needs, so the "Hardware Choice Dream Scenario" is very interesting for me.

What I do not understand is even though you state that the better the Graphics Card in a desktop the better, the difference between a Mac Book and a Mac Book Pro does not seem to be so big (according to your statement. Even though the most significant difference between the two is the Graphics Card?

Cheers from the island for all seasons,


2007-01-12 07:54:21
I'm using a MacBook Pro for the bulk of my Aperture work, and indeed there is a difference in its performance on my laptop and on a regular MacBook. Where I really notice the difference is in "quick" Raw decodes, such as when you drag the loupe over a thumbnail, and in image editing with the HUD. My advice for laptop users, go Pro and fill it up with RAM.
Allan White
2007-01-12 10:12:15
I'm looking at multiple libraries, too. I just imported all my old, 4MP images in (~15G) and am making a clean break with new stuff (10MP Canon images). So, two libraries for now. I could see doing one every year. That does make global searches impossible, though (across libraries). I liked iView Media Pro's approach to metadata - stamping it in the images, which makes searching much more powerful.
Mike Pierce
2007-01-13 22:32:21
The sessions were great. In fact all of sessions were a big let down. Derrick and Scott did a great job! Sign me up again.