I’ve been busily adding new reviews to my Aperture 3 review roundup, and just integrated takes from About.com and ePhotoZine:
I spent a week using Aperture 3 and came away impressed with its capabilities. Its library management is second to none, and it gives you the choice of Aperture managing your master images within its own database, or you controlling where they will be stored on your Mac.
Along with the library, Aperture also provides a great deal of control over image importing, from a camera, a memory card, or one or more locations on your Mac. I felt like I had control over the import process from start to finish, unlike some other applications, where the import process seems more of a hold-your-breath-and-see-what-happens affair.
I expected Aperture 3 to meet my needs when it comes to editing photos. I didn’t expect a full-fledged image editing application like Photoshop, but something I can use to make basic adjustments to the RAW files (or JPEGs) from my camera. I wasn’t disappointed. Aperture 3 has all of the basic tools I need, and they are easy to use, either individually or as batch processes.
The big surprise was how well the new Brushes feature works. The brushes let me do complex editing that I normally reserve for Photoshop. Aperture is no replacement for Photoshop, but I can now do a lot more of my editing in Aperture and reduce the number of trips I need to make to Photoshop to complete a project.
This is a welcome update of Aperture, but I can’t help but think ‘about time Apple’. It’s a shame there is little in the way of real innovation here: we have seen the more amateur-targeted features (Face and Places) before in iPhoto, and the features that will appeal more to the professional and advanced enthusiast we’ve seen before in Adobe Lightroom. Lightroom has offered users adjustment brushes, presets and a sophisticated slideshow system since version 2. It’s a much faster program too, and new features are being added al the time as the version 3 beta progresses.
That said, there is much to like in this update of Aperture. It’s more creative than its rival and is a hugely intelligent approach to organizing your pictures.
Overall, Aperture 3 is receiving a pretty decent critical reaction. I’m not crazy about Faces and Places, and some features have been long overdue, but the fact is that Aperture 3 is now even better at the meat-and-potatoes stuff like organizing and basic edits.
Stay tuned for my full review!