May 5th, 2013
Last week I had a reader tell me he’d like to see some discussion on the blog about how to improve his real estate workflow in Aperture. As he gets busier he wants to speed up his workflow without sacrificing quality. My short answer to his question is, “get a copy of Lightroom!”
First of all let me say that I use both Aperture 3 and Lightroom 4. I’m a Mac user, and there’s several things I really like about Aperture 3, but I NEVER use Aperture for real estate work. I do all of my real estate work with Lightroom! Here’s why:
- Lightroom 4 is faster for correcting verticals and barrel distortion: There’s no equivalent of the Lightroom Lens Correction panel in Aperture. This means if you care about fixing converging verticals and barrel distortion (and you’d better care if you are a real estate photographer) you have to use the PTlens plugin with Aperture, and make a round-trip out to PTlens for each photo (yuk!) or run a PTlens batch process outside of Aperture to do what you can literally do with a click and a couple of sliders in Lightroom 4 and will be done automatically in Lightroom 5.
- Lightroom and Aperture 3+PTlens are effectively the same price: Back when Lightroom was over $200 and Aperture was only $79 there was at least a money argument for real estate photographers using Aperture, but nowadays Aperture 3 is $79, PTlens is $25 and Lightroom 4 is $106 at Amazon. That means Lightroom is effectively $2 more than Aperture for real estate.
- Lightroom 5’s new Upright feature takes fixing horizontals an verticals to a whole new level: Once Lightroom 5 is released the new upright feature that straightens verticals automatically will save real estate photographers a huge amount of post time. It will probably save the price if the upgrade in the first week!
So my answer to the post title is, YES! Aperture is Dead For Real Estate Photographers. If you are a real estate photographer and you are still using Aperture 3 to post process your shoots I guarantee you can speed up your post processing by purchasing a copy of the new Lightroom 5 when it is released. In the mean time get a free beta copy here and start getting up to speed. Sure, there may be a short learning curve if you’ve never used Lightroom before but it is not all that different an interface than Aperture. You’ll be up and running in a couple of days.
The most amazing thing to me is that Aperture 3 was released 2 years ago and Apple hasn’t added all the features in the Lightroom 3 yet. It makes me wonder if they even care about competing!