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Old Dec 14, 2008, 10:14 PM   #1
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My Dell desktop computer, after 6 years of faithful service, is dying a slow death, so it's time to buy a new computer. Despite using very good anti-virus software, I've had several problems with the computer becoming infected, and I've heard nightmare stories about Vista, so I've pretty much decided my next computer will be a Mac. While shopping over the weekend, a sales rep said that iPhoto is even better than Photoshop. When I questioned that assertion, he said it's a very bold statement, but it's true. He then tried to show me all the wonderful things iPhoto can do, but quickly got in over his head and admited that he really didn't know iPhoto all that well.

So, what do you folks think? Is iPhoto really as good as Photoshop? And since I'm leaning toward a Mac, what do people think about Aperture? Is that a worthwhile alternative to Photoshop?

By the way, I should say that I have not used Photoshop regularly in the past. My regular photo editing software is Photoshop Elements 6, but I've been thinking that before long I should graduate to the full blown Photoshop. (If PSE had actions and a history pallette, I'd probably be perfectly happy with Elements, but alas, Adobe won't include those features in $99 software.)
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Old Dec 15, 2008, 10:21 PM   #2
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I switched from PC to Mac about a month or two ago. iPhoto isn't even close to Photoshop, though it does do quite a bit more than I had expected it to do for "free" software. The one time I played with it a bit, I thought it was rather heavy-handed with adjustments, but that could be more my lack of experience with the program. I also wasn't too sure I liked the way it goes about organizing things, but then, I was trying to sort out all new software (and Mac's go about some things differently, took some getting used to). Also, I wasn't crazy about how it resizes pictures (but then, I wasn't real crazy about how Lightroom2 does it either.

I thought about Aperture, but it's more expensive than Lightroom, so I used the new computer as an excuse to upgrade to LR2. From what I've read, Aperture is a better program for organizing your photos, while Lightroom is better as a raw converter. Neither Aperture or Lightroom does all the things you can do in Photoshop. Hopefully someone who really knows Aperture will step in, but it seemed to me that Aperture would do everything iPhoto would do, and do it much better, but since I've never actually used the program, I don't know that for a fact.

If you are really undecided, get the Mac and use iPhoto for a bit, to see if you like it or not. Then go from there as far as whether you think you need anything else.
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Old Dec 16, 2008, 8:45 PM   #3
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Thanks Mtngal. I thought it was an outrageous claim for the sales guy to make. I have to admit, I was thinking if iPhoto would suffice, that would go a long way toward narrowing the gap between the price of a Mac and a PC. But even though I was hoping for a pleasant surprise, I was pretty sure I'd be told that iPhoto doesn't come cclose to Photoshop.
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Old Dec 16, 2008, 10:31 PM   #4
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I'm completely happy with the switch to Mac, though it did take some getting used to. Now I don't miss Windows at all! I ended up buying a book that I'm still reading and probably know more about the Mac now than I ever did about Windows XP (but that's not exactly saying much). And think of it this way - you won't have to spend all that extra on anti-virus, and anti-spyware etc. For the most part, adding and deleting programs is simpler. My old PC laptop could add an external monitor but it didn't allow a true dual monitor mode. My MacBook Pro does - I love it!

Reading that book also caused me to spend more money than I had originally planned on - while idling reading about iTunes (wasn't interested in an iPod, don't listen to music that much), I discovered that audiobooks downloaded are cheaper than buying them on disk, and the selection is a lot broader. I now own an iPod and 10 new audiobooks.

In some ways I wish I had tried Aperture - I'd like to see it for myself. But I've been using Lightroom since almost the beginning and am very comfortable with it, so the fact its cheaper made it an easy decision.

If you have a connection with a school (kids who are students, etc.), both Apple and Adobe offer educational discounts. You do have to qualify for it.
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Old Dec 27, 2008, 9:49 PM   #5
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Hi Harriet... I've had a Mac for a couple of years now and have been using iPhoto to organize and do mild post-processing on my photos - which were all jpg's prior to my purchase of the Pentax K200D a few months ago.

Right now, I'm at the point where taking the next step in post-processing is beginning to make sense. But there's no way I'm going to spring for the full Photoshop experience (which I probably don't need anyway). So I'm looking at Lightroom and Aperture. So far, I haven't been able to get enough information and/or feedback from current users to feel comfortable about pulling the trigger on a purchase.

So all you Lightroom and Aperture users out there... come on... which is better in terms of functionality and results - on both RAW and jpg files?

And mtnman... while it's true iPhoto isn't going to come close to Photoshop, it has served me well for a couple of years in terms of basic tweaking of jpgs. You can alter colors, brightness, exposure, contrast and sharpness, add some mild effects, retouch, fix red eye, crop, straighten distortions and create slideshows (that you can copy to DVD). If you think that would cover you for a while, I say go for the Mac. But it's not a RAW converter.

Here are a couple of online iPhoto demonstrations:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6jES-t8Juc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vhrX5dLMDI

Steve


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Old Jan 11, 2009, 12:18 AM   #6
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I've used both iPhoto and Photoshop to a limited degree.

iPhoto is a very nice application for doing basic cropping and correction. The fact that you can easily create a slideshow with that "Ken Burns Effect" and then burn a slideshow to DVD is a bonus!

Photoshop is a very complicated program that can handle both photos and general graphics work.

Photoshop is probably overkill unless you really want to spend the time learning how to use layers, edit curves and really understand the extreme technical details of photo editing.

I haven't used Aperture but my guess is it's a step up from iPhoto without all the graphics features available in Photoshop. It's also quite a bit cheaper than photoshop.

Another option is the "open source" program called "GIMP". GIMP does most of what photoshop does at a fraction of the price (it's free). Although serious photogs and professionals might choose Aperture or Photoshop over GIMP, you can probably learn most of the technical details of editing photos using GIMP.

I run UBUNTU linux distribution on my PC (dual boot configuration) and run GIMP under UBUNTU. GIMP running under UBUNTU absolutely flies, yet you need as little as 512MB of memory and maybe a 2 ghz processor to run it, so any old PC or laptop will "fly" running GIMP and UBUNTU.

So no need to upgrade your machine, just go to the UBUNTU site and load up a 10mb partition with UBUNTU in it and try GIMP. Your machine will feel like liquid lighting running under UBUNTU!

Wish I could give you more info about Aperture, I should probably download a free 30 day trial!

-- Terry
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