Aperture vs Lightroom

As far as advanced RAW image editing is concerned, both Apple Aperture and Adobe Lightroom are big names. Both these editors have been used for years by professional as well as enthusiast photographers alike, and both have had huge success at what they do.

However, with Apple’s announcement back in 2014 that it would stop development for its much loved image editor, many people were dismayed. The software was a massive hit amongst users of Apple’s mac OS, and the thought of having to use something completely new was not a good one.

But when the time came, many users found out that Lightroom was pretty much the best replacement editor for Aperture, and that moving from the latter to the former was not as complicated as it may have seemed at first. However, many people are still wondering whether Lightroom makes for a good replacement for Aperture, and for those people we have this short comparison of the two, as far as image editing tools are concerned.

Apple’s Aperture

Aperture, just like many RAW photo editors, provided users with all the main adjustments front and center. It was quick and easy to change how the image’s colors, highlights, shadows, overall exposure and sharpness looked. The intensity of each of these could be adjusted with a brush as well, allowing you to either add in more strength or take some out as needed. Other than these basic adjustments, Aperture also provided presets for some quick editing.

Arguably one of the most powerful tools Aperture users will miss is the White Balance adjustment. There were three different modes which users could choose from, each specializing in different kinds of photos. One of these focused on skin tones, another of landscapes, and the final one for manual fine tuning.

Adobe’s Lightroom

When you open your image in Lightroom, you have some handy tools to help make adjustments based on the camera model you’ve used. However, it is in the ‘Develop’ tab where the editing prowess of Lightroom’s comes forth. Here, you have easy to use sliders for exposure, contrast, saturation, highlights, shadows, blacks, and whites. There is also a white balance adjustment tool that gives both presets and fine controls to tune your image to your liking. Lightroom also has presets like Aperture, but the third-party ones you can get are far more in number comparatively.

One great advantage that you’ll get with Lightroom is the ability to export your images as PSD files that can be opened as layers. Because of this, you can seamlessly edit your photos with all the power Adobe Photoshop brings.

Another great thing Lightroom users will find is the collection of excellent lens correction controls. While Aperture does have tools to fix lens-related issues like vignetting, Lightroom offers lens profiles that fix images automatically based on what lens you have used for your photo. You can also make use of the Gradient and Radial filters to make these fixes only to certain portions of the photo rather than affecting the whole image.

So as you can see, Adobe Lightroom proves to be a very worthy alternative to the discontinued Aperture. Yes, the move from one editor to another one is difficult, but in this case we do believe it’ll be well worth it.