Apple announced today that it will no longer add features to its professional imaging application Aperture. Apple will continue to update camera formats for the foreseeable future. Apple is folding iPhoto and Aperture into its new release of the Photos app included in the recently announced Mac OSX Yosemite operating system coming this fall.

The announcement quoted below from The Loop’s Jim Dalrymple says in part that “With the introduction of the new Photos app and iCloud Photo Library, enabling you to safely store all of your photos in iCloud and access them from anywhere, there will be no new development of Aperture,” said Apple in a statement provided to The Loop. “When Photos for OS X ships next year, users will be able to migrate their existing Aperture libraries to Photos for OS.”

With Aperture receiving no more feature updates it is a great time to take advantage of Adobe’s $9.99 per month subscription bundle of Lightroom and Photoshop CC. Adobe has a blog to help Aperture users make a smooth transition to Lightroom.

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Join the conversation! 28 Comments

  1. I have no intention on switching to Lightroom. There are other options. I am saddened that Apple is killing Aperture. I would like to think that Steve Jobs wouldn’t have done this.

    • Yes… makes me sad too. I wrote an edition of the offical Apple book to Aperture. Used it for a long time and it was fundamental to my workflow. Unfortunately, you’ll have to switch to something. I have found lightroom to be a solid tool with better image processing. But relearning is hard.

    • Same here. What othere options are you considering.

      • I use Aperture everyday and really can’t see a difference in output between it and Lightroom. I don’t need noise reduction or lens compensation with the camera and lens combo that I use. I prefer the gamma vignette that Aperture uses over the LR one. I still prefer the adjustment brushes in Aperture over LR. The list gos on and on for me. When the time comes that there is something better out there and I need it I will switch. Aperture is still a very good program and in the long run if you don’t need the extra things that LR offers then I don’t see the point of switching.
        I have and use photo ninja at times. It is great for those times that the highlights are blown out. I have looked at both Capture one pro and DXO. At this point I prefer Capture One pro over Dxo, but that could always change. Also who knows what the future holds for the upcoming Photos App.

  2. The Oracle (Scott) called this along time ago so it’s not surprising. Anyone not considering Lightroom at this time is befuddling and probably has brand issues.
    Lightroom isn’t perfect but I’d be miserable without it. For the photographer there just isn’t a single product out there that does all it does and does it so well.

  3. This “Letting Go” of Aperture has been happening for about 2 years.I migrated to Lightroom 5
    When it came out frustrated by Apple’s apparent lack of upgrade activity.
    It’s been a sharp learning curve!
    On that note ,when I first got Aperture in 2005, your video tutorials,were very helpful
    Thanks Richard

  4. Just saw this…glad I jumped. It was a good product though.

  5. I’m going to continue to use Aperture as long as I can. LR can’t touch Apertures management and when you want to find something it’s pretty darn easy. We shoot and edit raw so if we need to switch to LR I’ll just export jpegs and store/ manage in Aperture. Looking forward to Photo app. As we all know apple doesn’t mind change. They do there best the make it as easy as they can, it takes time. Anyone remember the os9 to osX conversion. One thing I do hope is that the new photo app will allow separate library’s like aperture. I’d hate to have a library with over 100,000 images in it. I’m signed up for the beta which I hope is released soon so I can find out.

  6. Capture One is looking awesomer.

  7. Sad but apparently inevitable? I love Aperture’s file management vs LR but I bit the bullet a few months ago and made the switch to Creative Cloud as the writing on the wall became more apparent, and the Adobe suite is certainly the real deal. I am too invested in the Apple universe to head for the hills (yet) but it does give cause for a pause to consider the future. Thank you, Adobe, for your continued support and innovation. Time to do the Aperture migration and free up some disk space . . . . . .

  8. This is disappointing and sad news. Looks as though I’ll be changing over to Adobe CC pretty soon.

  9. I’ve used Aperture since version 2. I love it and am very sad to see it go. The problem I see is not that things are changing but that Apple has just dumped this information on every one. Apple should have at least released information about Photos.app. Now pros are running scared to figure out what to do because Apple hasn’t really released any future plans other than their happy go lucky cloud stuff. Things would have gone over a lot better if Apple would have released a detailed plan to move from Aperture to Photos.app for pros. Now were all pretty pissed and looking for options. No better way to lose customers than to tell them were going to cut you out. If these things aren’t in the photos.app I’m pretty sure all pros will move on.
    Change meta data
    Adjust time and date
    Create different library’s(something I don’t see LR able to do)
    Be able to move library’s easily by just dragging to another drive(impossible with LR, at least the way Aperture does it)
    Originized tree file structure (LR is horrible at this)
    Third party plugins like Nik and OnOne (after most Aperture users move to LR with these companies see a value in creating plugins?)

    • Jerry… while I del your pain in moving. You are slightly wrong.

      Lightroom can have multiple catalogs.
      You also can easily organize your folders at the folder level and tell them to leave them in place when you import. This is how I easily moved my Lightroom catalog over.
      Alos Nik and OnOne definitely have Lightroom plugins

      • Richard, Yes I know Nik OnOne have plugins for LR. When using Aperture as managed library’s you can drag and drop that library any where you want, another hard drive, cf card, usb thumb drive and pretty much any device that holds data and the library’s can be opened with any relinking or reconnecting any files. Everything in Aperture as I’m sure you know is a package so all the file infor goes where the library goes unlike LR according to the teaching videos I’ve been watching the past two days. Since we shoot boudoir, family portraits, weddings, models and personal work I find it 100% necessary to have a library for each and for each year. I have downloaded and tried (even purchased LR2) every version of LR as a tril and continuer to find the interface a pain to use com paired to Aperture. I just find it to be more like a Windows app than a Mac app. On a positive not (so I’m not all doom and gloom lol) LR does have better editing features than Aperture. We shoot raw and then after all editing is complete we convert everything to JPEG and import those into our yearly library for each. Genre we shot.

        As of now (since our plugins all work in LR) is to learn LR then export finished work as Jpegs and save into aperture for file management and backup. Aperture should work fine as a file management tool for a few more years or if the photos.app does prove to be worth switching to I can easily transfer to. That from Aperture. Either way my main point it that Apple has left the pro community with little info and little hope since photos.app seems to be more about IOS than OSX.

        • Yes… having seen what’s been done to iWork and FCPX, it often seems to be about removing and streamlining. Apple seems to try ad get parity by limiting the desktop to match mobile (which is just odd).

          The concept of a package is a Mac only thing. LR approaches catalogs as cross platform. The solution though isn’t that hard. Simply put your stuff in a folder and make a catalog for that folder. Tell things to stay in place when you import. Peter Krogh has a very good multi catalog workflow – http://thedambook.com/multi-catalog-workflow-with-lightroom-5/

  10. Oh and Aperture works great from a NAS as well, able to access from any computer on the network that has Aperture installed and all edits show up. I pretty darn sure LR can do that.

    • Jerry… this isn’t a pissing contest.

      Neither Aperture or Lightroom are designed to be multiuser products… but in both cases you can put your library or catalog on a server and set your app to use that location. Both work the same way. This isn’t a competition.

      • I know it’s not a contest. Question, my wife and I work together. If I create an aperture library on a shared drive or network drive can LR do this? Can I open a library on that drive on one computer and do all the selection and basic edits like color correction, the she on a different computer open that file (when I’m done) on a networked or shared drive and have the selections and basic editing show up I her LR? As far as I know from what I’ve seen LR can’t do this because it is not package based. The pissing comes into play when choosing what works best for a certain company/person. I am not trying to have a contest, just trying to figure out the best path if photos.app doesn’t turn out to improve for pros like final cut did. From the videos I have been able to see I don’t see LR being able to do the file structure I need. Derrick Story has even said as many others the management of Aperture is better than LR and to be honest it fits my way of thinking, just like a Mac does. I’m not trying to create and argument for either or, I’m just trying to fine an alternative to Aperture if I need one. As of now like I said I’ll use LR to edit and Aperture to manage until I see what photos.app is like. I’ll be watching Scott Kelby’s Aperture to LR video tomorrow night to see how things go. BTW, I have your Aperture training manual and it was a big help in my training for using Aperture.

  11. Sorry for the errors, dropped my iPad and cracked the screen all to heck and I’m on vacation. Uggggggg!!!!!!!!!

  12. Reblogged this on Jesse Gross Photography and commented:
    For those out there that use Aperture and have not yet heard the news.

  13. There is a ton of complaining and angry posts directed at Apple because of this. What nobody has seen is what the Photos app for OS X will look like. Everyone is basing their anger at a preview of an app that runs on iOS – phones and tablets. Admittedly there are folks taking advantage of peoples’ chicken little mentality (all the “how to switch to LR posts/webinars”). But Aperture still works on your machine. There is nothing stopping anyone from using Aperture right now. Waiting until the OS X Photos app comes out is the rational thing to do. Or at least until Aperture is no longer supported on the hardware you need. Of course this is the internet, so rational behavior is not common, expected, or appreciated. I’ll shut up now and go make some photographs.

    • Two questions for you Paul. Do you think that the new photos.app will even come close to Aperture for pros when released? All of the complaining and running to other options are because Apple just dumped this and didn’t feel the need to provide what the future is and ask us to hang in there until the new app is released. Do you think Apple could have at least inform us that there is something better coming? Change and advancement is wonderful for the most part but Apple just didn’t provide enough info for the future and that is entirely their fault.

  14. Scott Bourne called it.

    Sorry but this is the reality: Apple is primarily in the business of phone and tablet hardware. And why should they not be? realistically apple works for the shareholders, and while Apple was never able to really go anywhere in the PC industry outside of the niche markets of creative pros, it now finds itself in more favorable place in mobile running second to android. It is all about profit, and mac software just isn’t profitable (or as profitable) nor will any software put the mac sales to the level of their iOS devices, much less windows PC software numbers. There just isn’t any financial reason to continue pushing it. It is a distraction.

    Apple should, and has done what shareholders demand: instead of wasting money and resources on developing a tool for a minority market, for a minority share OS, they are focusing the energy on the iOS ecosystem which translates to hardware sales. Off course their long time traditional computing fans will not like this transition, but thankfully you have Adobe, a true cross platform company which goes where their customers are. And if you don’t like adobe, well, there are some other choices.

    I think this is a great move for Apple. Focus on what it does best: hardware.

    Off course the writing is on the wall: what future does OSX have in a world that doesn’t need it. Unlike windows, OSX doesn’t really have a business platform that relies on it to keep it around. The creative types are a minority market which I have to think Apple certainly looks at as a rounding error and which like Scott Bourne warned us aren’t really the market apple is going after.

    So maybe this is good news for everybody. By re-evaluating your choices today, you can spare your pain later. I’m glad I took Scott’s advise and left Apple as a non-mobile computing platform, meaning all I had to do in light of this news was send him a thank you note (which he’ll never read since he’s retired). I know windows and adobe will be around powering the business world (and creative pros) while apple chases google down the street like a bar brawler for the pocket and mobile market. And that’s ok. There is room for work and fun. I’m just saying windows/adobe is the one ecosystem that shows unwavering commitment to professionals. So there you’ll find me.

  15. I don’t understand the problem? Adobe is cross platform, they offer excellent support for windows and OSX if that is your thing. Plus Adobe stands to gain nothing from which OS you buy so you can ensure you’ll never have to do this again.

    In my opinion, picking a closed platform software is bad business decision. It doesn’t matter who makes it. This is why I choose Google, Microsoft, Adobe when it comes to business software because they target the broad spectrum of ecosystems, from android to windows to iOS. So when I move, they are already there.

    You wouldn’t put all your money and assets in a single stock. Why would you put all your business flows with a non cross platform company? Who exactly is to blame?

  16. Can’t really blame Apple here… the pro photographer market is very niche; look what happened to Flickr as an example. When you make the OS and hardware, you have to decide what software you’re going to support; something most people can use, or a professional tool with limited appeal? Heck, I’m not a pro so just about all my needs are met by Elements (and a few other tools I have); people like me are what Apple is looking at, and if I need a pro quality tool I can just rent Photoshop for a while. And run it on a Windows PC. OSX has been such a niche (premium, but niche) market for so long that gaining traction in a new (for Apple) potentially lucrative market like high performance gaming desktops would have no creditability in the target market. Then there’s the fact that traditional form factors like desktops and laptops are very much a commodity item now; I can see why that would spur them to try and make a gradual transition / abandonment of a market already being very well served by Adobe and some others.

    For my part, I left Apple a long time ago, when it was clear that Mr. Jobs had no intention of opening Apple up to the kinds of hardware iterations that would be needed to keep up with the PC gaming industry. I got tired of waiting 2 to 3 years for crappy ports of popular PC games that by the time they came out on the Mac no one was playing any more. So, to do things I wanted to do on a desktop, I had to move to Windows. Later on, as Windows became “just good enough”, I stayed with Microsoft because Apple wasn’t going to do the things I wanted to do in the time frames I wanted to do them. Media professionals are going through that same transitional stage that PC gaming went through years ago; if you haven’t made the switch in platforms, you really should seriously be thinking and planning for it now.

  17. Stepan, sometimes a closed system is best. You know like the one that runs a space shuttle, NSA, your bank. Yes Apple is kind of closed and it appears more closed to those who don’t know you can either right click on a image (or a song in iTunes) and choose show in finder and get right to what it is your looking for. Also Aperture has great export features so images can move forward to the future.
    The file management of Aperture creamed LR’s system and as far as I can tell from the last 3 days looking into LR Aperture interface is way better.

    And to Robert, Mr. Jobs didn’t open Apple up to other hardware because he prefered his products work…


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About Kevin Ames

Photography is life. Kevin Ames is living it to the fullest. His career encompasses commercial photography, authoring books on Photoshop, Lightroom, as well as on photographing women, two magazine columns (Digital Photographer’s Notebook) in Photoshop User, (Lighting Photographer’s Handbook) in Light It! and speaking engagements in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Asia at Photoshop World, WPPI and Photo Plus Expo. Through it all he maintains his studio in Atlanta, Georgia working with clients including A.T.&T., Westin Hotels and Honda Power Equipment. His work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Time, Atlanta Sports and Fitness and exhibited at Atlanta’s High Museum of Art and on corporate websites, brochures and catalogs. Kevin is a Sigma Pro and Dynalite VIP. Read his blogs on: www.kevinamesphotography.com and www.blog.sigmaphoto.com.


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