Ted Leung on the air
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Mon, 17 Apr 2006
Aperture 1.1

I spent a decent portion of the weekend processing photos using Aperture 1.1, and I'm pretty happy.

The big thing that I was unhappy with in 1.0 was performance, but I was also running on the absolute minimum PowerBook configuration. I am running 1.1 on the lowest end MacBook configuration: 1.83 GHz processor, 5400RPM hard disk and 128MB of VRAM. On that configuration, I am perfectly happy with the performance, once Aperture has done the disk I/O to read the RAW files in to memory. I did notice some pauses when loading up RAW images, but they were within acceptable limits for me. There were also some pauses the first time that sections of the app are used, which looks related to paging in the relative functionality (and paging out the stuff that was previously in memory). But on the whole, compared to the old setup, I am pretty happy, I finished my backlog of 800+ RAW images and I did not feel impeded by the performance of Aperture itself. I spent more time eyeing images side by side and trying to make up my mind about picture quality, framing, and composition, which is how it ought to be.

Apple made a number of improvements to RAW Conversion, which I haven't explored in a lot of detail, but I was not seeing artifacts in the RAW conversions in 1.1. They did add a digital color meter, which makes looking at color values a bit easier. I know that some people wanted this feature as an assist to adjusting white balance. I want to try using a grey card to do those adjustments -- I've mostly been using the dropper against white areas in the picture, and the results are fine to my relatively uneducated eye.

I now have enough disk volumes to use the Vault feature, which has been pretty easy to use, and I definitely intend to use it to make sure that there are copies of all my photos.

The release has much expanded documentation, including a 140+ page manual that explains how all the adjustment controls work. I think that the lack of proper documentation was something that frustrated a lot of 1.0 users -- there was capability there that was hard to operate, and the documentation was incomplete. The new documentation seems to be much improved.

Aperture 1.1 arrived just as I as about to loose my patience and start using the Lightroom beta to start working on the photo backlog. I had gotten as far as importing all my RAWs into Lightroom, but I didn't find the workflow that easy to use. The adjusting tools looked to be better -- they look more impressive at least, but I'm trying to be a purist about adjusting. I've gone from not adjusting at all to do adjustments of exposure, simple color levels, white balance, and simple sharpening. Realizing that all film photos are somehow adjusted during developing kind of softened my stance on adjusting. But I am really trying to avoid adjusting, because I want to force myself to get it right in the camera.

[21:50] | [photography] | # | TB | F | G | 4 Comments | Other blogs commenting on this post

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Ted Leung FOAF Explorer

I work at the Open Source Applications Foundation (OSAF).
The opinions expressed here are entirely my own, not those of my employer.

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