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Aperture vs. Lightroom

Stephen Hackett has a history of Apple’s photo management application Aperture.

No doubt the program struggled to shake its early reputation. The performance woes and underwhelming feature set in the first version tainted people’s opinions in a way that was hard for Apple to shake.

I have no doubt that this is the case. But I also know that by the time version 3 rolled around, Aperture felt fast in use. Once the import and preview generation cycle had completed, the triage of a large run of shots was invariably snappy. Picking selects, discarding the remainder, tweaking RAW processing and filing images into destination folders was plain fast.

Fast to the point where I need to spend some quality time with Lightroom on my work iMac, trying to work out why its Library mode feels so darn clunky even though I’m running it on vastly superior hardware. It’s partly the weird semi-skeuomorphic display which wants to mimic 35mm slides, complete with their massive surrounds, and hence shows me bizarrely few images even on a 5K display. But it’s also the lag in flicking from one image to the next, which wasn’t a problem I had with Aperture. Even worse is scrolling through the library. How come my phone can handle scrolling through 20,000 images smoothly, but Lightroom can’t?

Perhaps I need to investigate Lightroom CC again. Is it possible to stop the newer app from uploading everything to Adobe’s cloud, yet? Because apart from ‘not being able to justify the inherent data security risk’, that seemed to have promise.

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Image

Grey, layering to the horizon

San Francisco by David Yu on 500px.com

San Francisco by David Yu, on 500px. Click through for the full-size version.

Not one of mine, obviously, though I wish it was. This is immediately one of my favourite photographs — I’ve been a sucker for layered greys heading out to the horizon for at least thirty years, so this makes me go a bit weak at the knees, frankly.

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Distressed

Image008_9

Harbourfront shop, Plymouth, August 2006. I love the oversharpened harshness of this.

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Lenses

Interesting article about favouring a 50mm prime lens over short ‘standard’ zooms. I’ve wondered about doing this for a while — DSLR resolutions are high enough that a little post-production crop will barely be noticed, and the depth-of-field advantages of fast lenses are joyous.

I think my plan would be a 10-20 extreme wide zoom (probably Sigma’s, though the handling on low-end Nikons is less than ideal in my hands), a fast 30 or 50, and later a longish zoom or (maybe maybe) macro.

Ah, it’s nice to dream.