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Thread: Recommended Mac Software

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    Recommended Mac Software

    I've started getting into photography more seriously recently. I was playing around with Lightroom and the trial period is now over. I've noticed that people seem to use a variety of software here that I'm not familiar with. Do you have recommendations for any other software I should try before picking something? Right now my camera is a GRD2, mainly B&W photos. I've been looking at getting a dSLR. My most likely choice right now is an Olympus.

    Thanks!
    Charles

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    Senior Member Per Ofverbeck's Avatar
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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Quote Originally Posted by cjlacz View Post
    ...I was playing around with Lightroom and the trial period is now over.... Do you have recommendations for any other software I should try before picking something?...
    Well, Lightroom is my personal favourite; it can do the major part of my photo work. It is very easy to set up, and maintain, a well-ordered image library where you can find what you need; also, making adjustments (quick or careful; they´re all nondestructive and undoable) and variations.

    The main contender is Apple´s own Aperture (there should be a free trial version) that´s similar, and similarly priced. I tried it, but preferred Lightroom.

    A simpler (and cheaper) alternative is Apple´s iPhoto; for me, it lacks too much of the capabilities of the former two.

    If you need more editing power, you might want to add Photoshop or Elements to your arsenal, but I suggest you start with one of the above and learn it; you´ll soon know if you need more (Photoshop is EXPENSIVE).

    Of course, there are several others out there that I know very little about; others will comment on them.

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    Senior Member simonclivehughes's Avatar
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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Charles,

    Your choices will be determined by your proposed usage. For example, if you intend on having a very large number of images and need to maintain them in a proper DAM (Digital Asset Management) environment, then either Aperture or Lightroom are going to be necessary. If you don't expect huge numbers of images, then iPhoto is quite a capable program. If you envision going beyond image adjustments and see having to do any amount of image manipulation, then one of the versions of Photoshop (or similar software) will be necessary.

    While I have Aperture, I find I don't use it, relying on iPhoto for image storage and my interface to iWeb. I use Photoshop CS3 for all my processing. Also, don't discount Adobe Bridge (part of Photoshop) as an image management tool.

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    I've been using iPhoto, Photoshop and LightZone, myself.

    iPhoto is especially good with my D-Lux 3's RAW files.

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Capture One is also worth a look; personally I find the user interface pretty bad - I certainly wouldn't want to manage a large number of images in at, as you can with LR or Aperture, but it does give color rendition that a lot of people swear by. Certainly, in my view, just using default settings, Capture One has the best rendition. You can match or exceed that with either LR or Aperture, but it takes more work with presets and sliders.

    Sandy

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Thanks for all the helpful replies!

    I've been using iPhoto for years with my old canon and I like it, I just wanted to have some more things to tweak and learn. I have thousands of pictures in it right now. I've mainly been shooting RAW on the GRD2 and iPhoto didn't seem like the best program to deal with it. Maggie, what is it you like about iPhoto, the way it I guess develops the pictures?

    I'm an Apple fan and I'd love to pick up Aperture. I downloaded the trial a long time back and didn't use it much and now it won't let me try it again. Apple just hasn't seemed really keen on keeping it updated. I don't really like the different modes of Lightroom which keep me thinking about getting Aperture just to try it out.

    I'll take a look at LightZone and Capture One. It sounds like they don't handle a lot of images well, but that may be ok. My hard drive can't hold many before I have to burn them anyway. Hmm, I notice Capture One seems to have several different versions available. Which one should I be looking at?

    I was kind of staying away from Photoshop since I don't really edit my images (at least yet). Seemed like a large investment that would be better down the road if/when I decided I need it.

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Quote Originally Posted by cjlacz View Post
    Hmm, I notice Capture One seems to have several different versions available. Which one should I be looking at?
    I'd suggest initially looking at V4 - it's new and a bit buggy, but has some significant upgrades relative to the previous versions.

    Sandy

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Capture One produces absolutely stunning photos from my M8's DNG files, but it doesn't do RAW from my D-Lux 3. Until the last update, iPhoto was pretty underwhelming, but with this last update, iPhoto has really turned around with its RAW developing, at least with my D-Lux 3 files. iPhoto uses the same engine as Aperture, so it's kind of "Aperture LE."

    If Capture One can process files from a GR-D II, then I'd definitely go with it. (Man, I'm just know I'm eventually going to wind up with that damn Ricoh!)

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    LightRoom .......

    http://learn.adobe.com/wiki/display/LR/Home

    This sight is an awesome resource .....

    I have been using SilkyPix and Light Room ..I am completely new to digital and raw so this makes a huge difference in my choice of software ..If you are more experienced I can see how SilkyPix might be a better choice ....I find myself using Light Room for the simple fact that with all the information and resources in support of Light Room it makes it all that much easier to learn ..... in fact I really enjoy using Light Room ; )

    As for Aperture and Capture one ...I Don't think the GRD 2 .Dng file is supported

    I have the newest version of Aperture and tried the "edit plist " work around with no luck .
    I also tried Capture one 4 trial ..... it would let me make adjustments to the file just not process them .... program crashed

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Thanks I'll check out the Adobe link. From what I'm gathering is that I should pick what works for me now and expect to change as I or the equipment I use evolve. I'm not sure about Capture One, but from what I've read you are right about Aperture. I'd had a lot of experience modifying plist list files for other things so I think I can get it working. You need to be very exact in your changes. Apple's slowness in getting updates out isn't impressing anyone though.

    Actually, I did some searching on Google and Capture One 4 (available now) does support the GRD files (Adobe DNG). Version 3 did not. Can someone explain the differences between Capture One 4 and Capture One Pro (Also version 4 it looks like). I'd like to know what you get for an extra $370 dollars before I make any decisions. Their site doesn't seem to have any information comparing the software.

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    If you'd prefer a Macintosh application, you might want to try Iridient Digital's Raw Developer, which supports the GRD2 and costs US$125. The trial version is fully functional, with no time limit. However it does put a small watermark in the center of any exported image.

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    I've tried pretty much every converter available, and I always come back to Silkypix. I like the color rendition the best, and it produces the smoothest (I guess you could say "silkiest") low-noise images. I use it for all my M8, R-D1s and GRD 2 raw images. However, after processing, I always go into Photoshop for fine tuning and sharpening. IMHO, if you're serious about digital photography, you need to have PS.

    Bill

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    I've been messing with Capture One for a few hours the past couple days, and I think it might be more powerful then I need right now. It seems kind of complicated and I'm having a little trouble getting it to do what I want.

    Raw Developer seemed to get some good reviews and it's cheap. I'll take a look at it. Aperture 2.0 was announced today too. We'll probably see some reviews soon. I wonder if it will be worth it this time.

  14. #14
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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Apple just did a major upgrade to Aperature. Not that I have tried it, am strictly using PS CS3.

    http://www.apple.com/aperture/

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Quote Originally Posted by cjlacz View Post
    I've started getting into photography more seriously recently. I was playing around with Lightroom and the trial period is now over. I've noticed that people seem to use a variety of software here that I'm not familiar with. Do you have recommendations for any other software I should try before picking something? Right now my camera is a GRD2, mainly B&W photos. I've been looking at getting a dSLR. My most likely choice right now is an Olympus.

    Thanks!
    Charles
    iPhoto is a capable photo manager and editor. i suggest using this one to start off because i think it's best to keep things as simple as possible. otherwise, if you let things get complicated, you can become distracted and loose sight of your initial goal. that is to become more serious about photography and a better photographer.

    you don't want to allow yourself to become so overwhelmed by all the new toys and their latest and greatest features. for example, i have photoshop cs3, and the only features i've used frequently to edit my photos are the burning and dodging, sharpening, layers, masking, and sometimes enlarging and cropping tools. for me, sometimes i don't even used any of them. most photographers have limited themselves to these few tools because they took extra care to compose and meter before making the shot. let this always be your primary goal so that what ever photo manager-editor software you pick, you know that you're the master of your photos, and not the latest and greatest software.

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    Senior Member Daniel's Avatar
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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    by the way, Aperture version 2 is out

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Quote Originally Posted by thegrumpymonk View Post
    iPhoto is a capable photo manager and editor. i suggest using this one to start off because i think it's best to keep things as simple as possible. otherwise, if you let things get complicated, you can become distracted and loose sight of your initial goal. that is to become more serious about photography and a better photographer.

    you don't want to allow yourself to become so overwhelmed by all the new toys and their latest and greatest features. for example, i have photoshop cs3, and the only features i've used frequently to edit my photos are the burning and dodging, sharpening, layers, masking, and sometimes enlarging and cropping tools. for me, sometimes i don't even used any of them. most photographers have limited themselves to these few tools because they took extra care to compose and meter before making the shot. let this always be your primary goal so that what ever photo manager-editor software you pick, you know that you're the master of your photos, and not the latest and greatest software.
    TOUCHE'......Very Well Said Grumpymonk
    Couldn't Agree More
    Cheers! Helen

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Quote Originally Posted by helenhill View Post
    TOUCHE'......Very Well Said Grumpymonk
    Couldn't Agree More
    Cheers! Helen
    Seconded!

    Proud iPhoto user here!

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    Well, I picked up Aperture 2.0 and Lightzone. I caught the Valentines day sale on Lightzone right before it ended and bought it in a moment of weakness.

    Aperture I've been enjoying. It seems a little more complicated then Lightroom, at least not as straight forward. I haven't had the time to put in learning the keyboard shortcuts, but once I do things should get easier. I kind of miss not having an auto white balance though. Yeah, it's not great, but I'd often play with it in LR and tweak it from there. Still being new I find I have to play around with Aperture fix any problems. Taking pictures at high ISOs with the GRD2 make the eye dropper more a game of luck then anything else. I'm still learning Aperture's organizational tools, but it's been helpful going through and organizing years of photos and getting rid of a lot of bad ones.

    Mitchell's posts about Lightzone being useful for B&W is what pushed me over the edge on this purchase. It offers some features that I'd have to buy Photoshop for otherwise. I've had a couple chances to mess with it so far, but not having edited images in that past much I'm not really getting it. Does anyone have some suggested reading on how to work with it, especially on B&W images?

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    Re: Recommended Mac Software

    I found the lightzone tutorial videos on their site and that will be enough to keep me busy for a while. They make more sense then a few pages I found on the web earlier.

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