Thursday, February 11, 2010

Aperture 3: Initial Impressions

Putting On A Show
After using Aperture 3 for a few days, I've got a few comments that I'd like to make about it so far. The Application itself seem far more snappy overall, from uploads to exporting, and that may have something to do with making Aperture 3 a 64bit application. I've also noticed that unlike Aperture 2, the new version is less of a RAM hog, which is a very welcome change! Since I've not run the application in 32bit mode, I'm not sure what it will be like for users who do not have 64bit Intel processors, but for those who do they should see a noticeable bump in speed.
At this point I have not even scratched the surface of some of the 200 new features in Aperture 3, but a few of them are right in front of you the first time you start the application. The ability to tag GPS data, is a neat feature, and although I don't have a GPS for my D300, I can just pinpoint where I took the photo on the map in Aperture and GPS data will be added to the photo. I've also played around with the faces feature, but I may end up turning it off, as it seems to be more of a hassle than anything else. If you take pictures with a lot of people in them the face detection will pickup a lot of them, and really slow down your upload process. Those two items are some of the headline features of Aperture 3, but what about other features?

I love the changes that have been made to the meta data tab, including the ability to see where you focus point was in the photo. I know that feature is included in most of the camera manufacture's software for some time, so it is a nice to see that added in Aperture. I also like the skin tone brush, which really helps to smooth out details on a persons face. In the picture I posted today, the details on the singers face were almost too sharp, so I used the skin tone brush to soften it up, and it made a big difference. Those are the major features that stand out to me right now.

One thing to watch out for is your plug-ins, they are all currently 32bit, which means if you want to use them you'll have to restart Aperture 3 in 32bit mode. With some of the changes made, I've not found a need to use my plug-ins yet, but I'm sure I will at some point. That being said, I'm sure the plug-in makers will update the software soon to make it compatible with the 64bit version of Aperture.

That's about all I have to say about Aperture 3 for now. I like the changes enough that I ordered the upgrade version yesterday, and should have it by the end of this week or the beginning of next week. I'll post a full review, in a month or so.