In the spirt of full disclosure, I use Aperture if not daily than nearly so. I run it on a first generation Intel (1.1) MacPro. I paid some attention to Lightroom when it was first released but generally I despise Adobe’s upgrade policy (which just gets worse and worse.) That said, it is worth noting that Lightroom is an outlier in the Adobe ecosystem. It looks different than any other Adobe app and cost way less than any other Adobe app. The upgrades are even reasonable.
Also, I shoot at low ISO – ISO 800 is a ceiling for me even on my very capable at ISO 1600 Fuji X100. I’ve pixel peeped enough to know that the basic RAW development in Aperture versus that of Lightroom at low ISO’s is one only a dog can hear.
So it is with great interest that I read (via Duncan Davidson) the two opposing views of the current state of Aperature vs Lightroom.
From Scott Bourne:
I assumed we’d hear something about Aperture 4.0 by now. I was really confident in fact that there would be an Aperture 4.0 by now. I wrote an article not long back linking the timeline to releases and thought surely we’d have an answer by now. After all, Lightroom 4 is shipping and in every way it needed to, Adobe caught Aperture and in some cases passed it. But from Apple – not a peep.
I’ve used Aperture for more than five years for the simple reason that I thought it was the better product. As of the Lightroom 4.0.release, I no longer believe that’s accurate.
From El Aura:
In regard to Aperture, nothing much is new. It is just the same trend that has been there all along with LR receiving more frequent major updates and having an edge regarding image adjustments and Aperture an edge regarding organisation. It is just that the gap that has been growing slowly but steadily (in regard to image quality but also to some extent speed and reliability) has become now big enough to being noticed more easily.
The meta point, I suppose, is the perception that Apple has left the Pro market for lower ground. To date, I do not share this opinion. Apple is, well has been for several years, a company that,, pursued both mobile via iOS and traditional computing via OS X. Uniquely, Apple controls the entire platform for both. Final Cut Pro X was and is a paradigm shift and big changes make for grumpy people. That said, Apple has rolled out increasingly capable versions of FCP X and, not suprisingly, people have become less grumpy even though the core shift in the way that video editing works in FCP X has not changed.
I have no special insight into the future of Aperture but I just don’t see Apple leaving something as fundamental as Pro level RAW development and image management to the Adobe. Digital still imaging has become a very big thing.