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Summary:

I feel like I’m drowning in photo applications lately – anyone else feeling the pressure on their chest also? There’s been Aperture (though I haven’t sprung for that one just yet) in recent weeks/months, Adobe’s new Lightroom beta, iPhoto ’06, and now I’ve got a copy […]

I feel like I’m drowning in photo applications lately – anyone else feeling the pressure on their chest also? aperture

There’s been Aperture (though I haven’t sprung for that one just yet) in recent weeks/months, Adobe’s new Lightroom beta, iPhoto ’06, and now I’ve got a copy of iView Media Pro 3 that I’m starting a review on. These, added to the couple RAW editing apps that I was already using – Adobe’s Camera Raw and occasionally, Canon’s Digital Photo Professional – have me feeling like a chicken with its head cut-off.

I guess there are worse things to be complaining about. I’m having fun with all the new stuff, it’s just taking that much more time to cut through the noise and get to the cool features of each app.

iPhoto ’06 is looking pretty svelte these days. That unified UI, full screen editing, and added speed sure bump it up quite a bit from it’s ’05 sibling. Will it make believers out of the many past critics? I really can’t say. (I unfortunately had just recently archived my 14 months’ worth of photos – around 6k – to an external drive, so I’ve only got around 200 in the Library at the moment. So testing any new speed will require me to do some major re-copying over…) In my opinion, it’s definitely earned itself a stay of execution on my PowerBook for the time being.

Lightroom has some potential also. The file size is pretty tiny for all that it does, it makes editing of RAW images pretty simple, and the interface it pretty elegant to boot. I just downloaded the 1.1 upgrade tonight, but have yet to put it through any paces. At least in the 1.0 version, it was taxing the poo out of my 1.5ghz G4 processor. (talking in the neighborhood of 70%+) That had me quitting it pretty fast after getting a feel for it’s capabilities. There’s no excuse for that kind of constant thrashing of my system. Hopefully the 1.1 version is a little more stable in that respect.

Now – iView Media Pro 3. Ooooooooh yeahhhhh. I’m still only scratching the surface with this app, but holy deuce I’m loving every bit of it. A thorough review is forthcoming, so hang onto your seats for that.

Like I said, it’s a pretty good problem to have here. But the chore will ultimately be how to pare down the apps I’ll use in my regular digital photography work flow. I’ve a feeling that Lightroom and iPhoto may be falling somewhat by the way-side, but I haven’t made any real decisions just yet.

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  1. “I unfortunately had just recently archived my 14 months’ worth of photos – around 6k – to an external drive, so I’ve only got around 200 in the Library at the moment. So testing any new speed will require me to do some major re-copying over…”

    Go to Advanced in the Prefences and turn off Copy Files to iPhoto Library, then you can keep those photos on your external drive.

  2. And we’re still awaiting Picasa for the mac.

  3. “I unfortunately had just recently archived my 14 months’ worth of photos – around 6k – to an external drive, so I’ve only got around 200 in the Library at the moment. So testing any new speed will require me to do some major re-copying over…”

    And with this paragraph you highlight the fatal flaw in iPhoto – its requirement that photos be imported before they can be viewed or used with the application – an unacceptably slow, tedious, and pointless process.

    Until iPhoto (and for that matter also Aperture) adds a BROWSE mode allowing viewing and manipulation of images in their existing locations and folder hierarchies, these applications will remain useless for anyone who wants to retain control, flexibility, and platform independence over their image collections.

  4. Hmm, just read superG’s comments… I hadn’t realized that iPhoto 6 lets you opt out of copying files to the iPhoto Library. This is a huge and underreported improvement. Finally we can use iPhoto with images stored where and how WE want to store them.

    The central flaw still exists though. iPhoto doesn’t have a true Finder/browser, and you still have to import images before you can view and work on them. And while this unnecessary process takes place, you are forced to wait for long periods of time because the program remains inoperative and import is not done as a background process. So much for multithreaded applications…

    What is so hard about adding a browse mode? They don’t need to give up their way of doing things – just add a little flexibility for all of us who prefer to work otherwise.

  5. Sorry, one more thing…

    iPhoto will import your image folders and create a roll for each folder, bearing the same name as the original source folder. Now why aren’t rolls displayed in the Source pane???

    If you want to browse through rolls, you can only do so in the main window. All you have in the Source pane is a list of yearly calendar views. Inconsistent, inefficient, and unintuitive.

  6. superg – you’re right. I saw that option and didn’t put 2 and 2 together. I’ll have to run that through and see how it goes.

    on the plus side for the new iphoto – it’s finally moved to a filing hierarchy that’s logical – by year, then by roll. No more of that 2005415… crap.

  7. theappleblog: Photo App Overload » I Like Cameras Friday, January 20, 2006

    [...] Johnson

    Fellow 9rules member theappleblog.com has an article titled “Photo App Overload“, where he talks about some of the more popular photo apps fo [...]

  8. I’m with you that this is a silly thing to complain about. Since when do people complain that there are too many options, too many cameras, too many cars, etc to choose from? Choice is good. The more choice the better. Whenever there are no choices or very few choices, then its time to complain. The cool thing about choice is that you are also free to change your mind, so even if you make one choice today, you can make another choice tomorrow. So Have fun and enjoy your choices!

  9. If you want to preview your images before importing them in iPhoto 06 simply plug in your camera and click the “full screen” editor mode icon in the bottom left of iPhoto. You can now see all your images on your camera before importing anything.

  10. “If you want to preview your images before importing them in iPhoto 06 simply plug in your camera and click the “full screen” editor mode icon in the bottom left of iPhoto.”

    How does this help the issues mentioned here? The problem is not “previewing” images just prior to importing them. The problem is having to import them in the first place.

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