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Lightroom CC - Time to jump onboard? #1
Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
April 21, 2015 - 10:58pm

Now that Lightroom CC is available, is it time to make the switch?  I have 31,000 items in iPhoto, 93,000 items in Aperture - all Managed.  I am totally an Apple person - Apple desktop, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV. I use Aperture & Nik and have avoided learning Photoshop as long as possible.  I am not a professional.  I belong to a local Photo Club in which the members almost exclusively use Lightroom and Photoshop so it seems that Lightroom is the right choice for me since I am part of that community.  I am participating in competitions and plan to learn Photoshop and to print at home on an Epson 3880 in the near future.  I have been reading the forums about how to make the switch but I’ve been hoping for a step by step video that would just tell me how to do it!   (Joseph?)  And now there is Photos too.  Help!!  Any suggestions on where to start?

Move photos from iPhoto, move photos from Aperture, learn Lightroom, learn to print on Epson 3880, learn Photos, learn Photoshop, figure out new way to incorporate iPhone photos into Library (I now use Applescripts from this website)., stop mourning the loss of Aperture.

Any and all help appreciated.




MikeA's picture
by MikeA
April 24, 2015 - 7:38am

Have you had a chance to try out some of the options out there? All the tools have trial periods, where you can test the software for a few weeks to check them out.

Before recommending you to switch to this or that my recommendation would be to really check all the alternatives out there and then make a decision.

It’s not that LR is the only option available to long time Aperture Users. When I was starting to move away from Aperture, I was pretty sure to end up with LR in the end and was totally surprised to find a different option, which not only feels a lot more like Aperture than LR but has also better image quality. I took both tools through a deep evaluation phase, was writing down all my Pro’s and Con’s to not forget something crucial and then made a decision in the end.

Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
April 25, 2015 - 12:48am

Can you give me a hint about what you changed to?  

I am making my decision on the fact that I meet regularily with a group of photographers and it is nice to exchange tips and be able to get help from them.  In my case, community trumped individual choice.  Thanks for your reply.



MikeA's picture
by MikeA
April 25, 2015 - 7:49am

I’ve migrated to Capture One Pro 8 by Phase One after using Aperture for 10 years since the 1.0.

I was comparing it to LR side by side for weeks. The superior image quality of C1 was the deciding factor. In the end its all about the pictures.

Alex U's picture
by Alex U
April 24, 2015 - 12:46pm

I think that we have to talk about the functions of Aperture that we use. First you say that your use managed originals. Thats fine. Further we know that LR will not take over all the adjustment we did with the rulers in Aperture. And C1 cannot either. As we can assume that many tools (first of all LR or C1) can do a good editing job then you come to the conclusion that it does not really matter to which tool you move to. Use the trial period then you know. On the other hand you say that in your club most members work with LR (I face exactly the same situation) then you must really question why NOT to move to LR. With any other tool you stand fully out in the green. Further with LR you have access to many videos ans tutorial in the web.

Finally hand we have to think of the other functions of Aperture that we might use: Keywords (maybe cascaded), faces, tags and stars. Do you use those? If not you’re fine. If you do use them then it gets tricky. In my case I am a heavy user of cascades keywords and faces. I do not know yet how to mange that.

As a migration path I imagine that I could export out of Aperture ALL my working copies that are fully edited as JPGs so that I have the final product available for viewing in the new too (I work with referenced files and exclusively with Canon CR2 RAWs).

As I am still very unsure I decided to wait. A colleague gave me a demo of LR5 and I was a bit disappointed with the brush tools. I ask myself why I have to make the move NOW. Is there any reason? I do not think so. Therefor I wait.

Best regards, Alex

Gary with a big Mac's picture
by Gary with a big Mac
April 25, 2015 - 6:26am

Hi Susan,

I made the move late last year,

Nikon abandoned Capture NX2, was my main editing software, then changed to Aperture, (I am all Apple as well), then Apple abandoned Aperture, that then encouraged me to make the push to a another software editing option

As mentioned above, unless your files are tiffs, all edits are lost and this can become a pain if you have a large library, I had all my current year managed and then referenced, I changed all images to referenced before the move and had a cloned drives of all the originals, used Carbon Copy Cloner

Just to be sure to be sure, I bought new drives and started afresh and imported images into lightroom as I gradually started up a library , by year then subfolders into type, Joseph is the expert on this, (I remember his teaching from his Aperture days), 

A few images that had a huge amount of edits, I changed to tiffs, to be honest, there was only one that really needed this as I soon found out later I could edit faster in LR

Once I had the images sorted into years and sub folders like landscape etc, I soon found out that once I had one image edited to what I was happy with, the new software made it easy to highlight a group of images and apply those edits very quickly

The other thing you will find is that learning the new software and starting over with editing, its a great way to learn the new software, although I have 8TB of images, still edited with the old software, although I lose the old edits on import, I’m finding doing a re-edit is not such a big deal, actually, I’m getting a better result second time around

lastly, I went for the Adobe CC $9.95 subscription plan, works a treat, don’t use PS that much but very handy when you have to do things that PS does best, like content aware fill for example, also, the new LR CC 2015, (LR6), has some new features I’m sure you will like, HDR and Panorama, reports so far are very encouraging, I haven’t had a chance to try the new tricks out

Glad I made the change,



I have a photographic memory but never got it developed

Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
April 25, 2015 - 7:22pm


This is such an encouraging email from you.  I am glad to hear that your experience was good.  I am anxious to get to the point where I can spend most of my time editing photos rather than housekeeping.  With the changeover I will make small steps at first.  It’s nice to know how you started.



Alex U's picture
by Alex U
April 25, 2015 - 9:08am

It seems to be a consensus that C1 delivers excellent image quality that is superior to LR and indeed to Aperture. As I wrote above I think that a move to C1 is the best move when you have the image quality as your first priority. When other criteria are important then it gets difficult: What to do with keywords, faces, tags etc? Intelligent albums? … . . Aperture was much more than just an editing tool.

Best regards, Alex

Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
April 25, 2015 - 7:29pm

I will try out Lightroom first but it’s nice to know that if I find it lacking in photo quality I can check out C1.  That does seem to be the choice of numerous members of this website.  I’m just tired of being the lone user of a software program after 2 years in my photo club.  


Craig Andrews's picture
by Craig Andrews
April 25, 2015 - 10:01pm

I wanted the most up to date version of PS so like Gary I purchased the cloud subscription so it only made sense to try LR since it was included in my monthly fee.  I’m happy to see that Lightroom is now CC as well.   LR offers so much that I’m having a difficult time getting hyped about PHOTOS even though I’m completely Apple as well.   

I did almost the exact same thing as Gary, purchased three new 3T external HD’s, (two for back up)  but being a bit of a chickenshit I didn’t try to migrate anything from Aperture.  Started fresh with LR so anything imported through LR is on those drives.  I back up every 3 days using the same software as Gary, CCC (Carbon Copy Cloner)  Eventually I will migrate my personal stuff over and in a year or so when clients are no longer interested in images on my Aperture HD’s I’ll just take then off line and store them away. 

Actually, I was quite impressed with the brushes in LR.   Couldn’t brush in exposure to specific areas of a file with Aperture (that I recall) such as you can with LR.  Sliders (to me) seem to be more sensitive than in Aperture which takes some getting used to.   No doubt Capture is  fantastic but there is only so much room in this ole head of mine for new info.   


I'd much rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

Gary with a big Mac's picture
by Gary with a big Mac
April 27, 2015 - 2:23am

Hi Craig,

One of the new features I like is the ability to use the brush with the graduated filter which I’m finding an asset with landscape


I have a photographic memory but never got it developed

Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
April 25, 2015 - 10:25pm

Loving these suggestions for first steps!  Thanks.


Darrell H's picture
by Darrell H
April 27, 2015 - 8:55pm

Hi Susan

My situation is very close to yours. I have photos in both Aperture (mostly for camera club and personal use) and iPhoto (family).  I honestly thought I was going to be one of, if not the last, hold out on Aperture but decided to abandon that ship just about a month and 1/2 ago.  Although a lot of Aperture users here have decided to go to Capture one I decided to go with LR.  For me it wasn’t that I had anything against Capture one (I honestly didn’t even try it).  My reason for going to Adobe CC was that I didn’t want to get into another situation where there was basically one website with training on the program I choose.  I’m sure there are a few with tutorials on C1 but no where near as many as for LR.  This was my personal choice and it certainly wouldn’t be right for everyone.  Although Aperture was by far the best at managing a photo collection LR in my opinion blows it away when it comes to editing.  I never believed it but now that I’ve tried it I believe it.  I own the Nik plugins and don’t find myself having to use them nearly as much as before.  I still miss Aperture’s DAM and I’m still upset that Apple abandoned it.  I have to be honest it feels really good to be using a program that is adding features (something we were all waiting for from Apple).  I wish Nik would take note of this too.

I’m not going to lie it took me most of the month under the free trial to figure out the Library module (and honestly the whole module concept.  Tabs are so much easier).  I still miss being able to add a smart album right off an album but I’d getting used to it.  I put in a lot of late nights watching tutorials on LR.

There is a TON of free and paid training on LR (Kelby, Lynda, Youtube).  I just really love the editing ability of LR.  I think that is where Aperture really lagged behind in the last couple of years (I had such high hopes after WWDC last year).

I converted all of my iPhoto’s over to new Photo app and will continue to use that for family photos.  We don’t edit those much and basically use it to organize them.

My conversion over to LR has been very slow but that has been on purpose.  I’m exporting each project one by one into a folder and then adding them into LR.  Slow process but I’ve decided to change the way I organize my photos so it makes the most sense to me.  I’m also deleting a lot of photos while I go through the process.  Since I edited a lot of my photos in Nik plugins those come over already processed.  For the rest I will go back and try to re-edit them using LR.  Something I’m actually looking forward to getting the time to do.

I have two Aperture libraries and are moving them to external drive for storage once I’ve moved them over to LR.  I store all my photos on my main drive (3.1TB iMac with fusion drive).  I still have 1 TB left so I’m not planning on moving to external drive until I have too.  For me this is the easiest way to back up.  I backup through time machine and clone with SuperDuper (one on site and one off).  I’m hoping Apple introduces a 5TB 5K imac before I run out of space. Come on Apple don’t let me down again.

This certainly isn’t going to be the best path for everyone, I just thought I’d share my story with you.

Tom McKay's picture
by Tom McKay
May 2, 2015 - 7:38pm

The original post from Susan could have been written by me - Mirrors what I was exactly. When I bought a MFT Olympus & Aperture was never going to be able to import my ORF raw files I tried LR5 as a trial. The learning curve was just a steep as when I started with Aperture, maybe a good bit easier because there are more free tutorials for LR than you could ever possible view. I started with a clean sheet only ‘importing’ new stuff not any APT libraries & watched Christine Kost free video’s. Terrific.

Now this last week I have decided on the subscription of $10/mnth for PS & LR CC. Bargain! Oh I’m still a committed Mac user but PSE & LR on my MBP is the fastest editing I have ever had AND my photo’s are kept where I put them not in an obscure Library file. I dint realize how inconvenient that was until I didn’t need it!

There has been much angst over Apple’s photo decisions but there is no way back, they decided numbers were for them not photographers who want serious editing. In passing I wonder in one day their will be raw capability on an iPhone. Other smartphones are already looking at it. Then what for Photo’s app.

You never have enough gear!

Susan Mayne's picture
by Susan Mayne
May 5, 2015 - 4:30pm

Thanks Darrell for laying out the process you started with to change from Aperture to Lightroom. I’m moving slowly in your same direction and will refer back to your post. Looking forward to Joseph’s take on this subject, waiting with baited breath for his videos. I may just do the same as you with my iPhoto Library and move it to Photos. I never did move it to Aperture as there were some problems doing that.  Mostly watching videos at this point but will start my CC subscription in June after daughter graduates from college and I get back from travels. 



David Edge's picture
by David Edge
May 8, 2015 - 9:10am

I think Susan makes an excellent point about being in a community and that driving the choice of a tool that might otherwise otherwise be regarded as second-best. I can’t tell her what to do, but I’m trying to get people to talk about images and tonality which is the fundamental thing we’re after surely? Isn’t the point that the image needs, say, a bit of a a boost in the shadows, or toning down a bit here or whatever? The fact that that means pressing Cmd-Option-R in one piece of software or Shift-Option-P in another is surely irrelevant. With a well-designed piece of software it shouldn’t be that hard to work out which button to press.

But I do feel the pain. While I will probably go Capture One I have a good friend who will likely follow me and I am nervous about isolating her from others. But my mind is (almost) made up and as I say I will put my effort into understanding what needs to be done to make an image great (and outside of advertising photography and camera clubs that’s 90% pre-capture) and as for post-processing concentrate on the 9% that is image evaluation and deciding what changes are required, and take my chances with the 1%! 

I’ve not even got as far as downloading the trials yet, but I’m looking at videos and support communities and spotting features it would be difficult to live without before I jump.

Finally, a brilliant community has formed here (PhotosExpert) so whichever way you jump you won’t go wrong!


pondball's picture
by pondball
May 10, 2015 - 12:36am

I’m in much the same boat as many I would assume. I have been a long time Apple guy (MacII+ days) and just recently bought a MBPro 13”. went with the 13” for travel purposes after toting an old 17”PowerBook around Europe last summer!

I bought Aperture just before Apple canned it… not impressed. Nor was I impressed with the intro of Photos. I have subsequently purchased On1’s Perfect Photo Suite 9.5 Premium as my editing tool with the thought that maybe I’d continue with Aperture after subscribing to Joseph’s Aperture Expert… oops… PhotosExpert… oops PhotosApps.Expert deal. Subsequent research suggests sticking with Aperture may just be delaying the inevitable… so I’ve been looking for an alternative. 

Our local Photo Club just had a full day training session and I chose Work Flow using LR as my morning option. I was surprised at how much I was able to follow during the presentation so I don’t think moving to LR will be an issue for me…

However I am a little leery about moving to the new LRCC or LR6 as there seem to be reports of stability issues with Yosemite? I cannot use LRCC as my hisspeed often whips along at a mid boggling speed of .2mbps. No that wasn’t a typo! I rarely tops 1 mbps so the Cloud version that Adobe offers is not an option. 

Question: Would I be just as well off with LR 5 as opposed to diving into the very new LR 6?

I want to be able to import the photo on my faster MBPro, perhaps even using the browse mode of Perfect Photo Suite, then cull the herd there and export them to my iMac 27” for storage. The camp who presented suggested using BitTorrentSync as the tool of choice for moving the files on my local network. At that point I’d then like to be able to work on the cataloguing either on my iMac 27” or remotely from my MBPro. If the latter, work on them there and then sync back the 27”. Early on I’d also make sure they were backed up on an external drive somewhere on my network and those files I deemed absolute must-save photos could be sent to my iCloud account.

Does any of this make sense or should I be looking at a different work flow… or is it even possible using LR 5 or LR 6?

If you don't have a solution you don't have a problem!

Craig Andrews's picture
by Craig Andrews
May 11, 2015 - 3:33am

Gee Pondball, I was waiting hoping someone much more techie than myself would answer you with an opinion.  

I’ve only been using LR for a few months but did move from LR5 to LRCC and since it was introduced, I think I had one freeze up and I can’t remember what I was doing at the time.   Oh yes, I remember, it was playing with the “FACES” portion of LR, putting names to faces.

I was a staunch Aperture Fan but since moving to LR the sting of Apple abandoning us Aperture Users is fading quickly.  I realize after working in LR for a while that Apple had a lot of catching up to do.

I have the 2nd most recent version of On1 PS and for some reason or another I seldom ever use it, other than for the Perfect Resize, if that is what they still call it.  I guess that is why I haven’t rushed to upgrade to the latest version.   I started out with the Nik Suite and found On1 a bit cumbersome compared to Nik.  Too many sliders and things to click on for my liking, but no doubt it is great software.

Everyone seems to adopt their own workflow to a point but the one you are suggesting sounds a bit labour intensive to me, but you obviously have certain reasons for considering that flow.  I’m thinking you must travel a lot.

LR5 and or 6 has great tools for culling the herd, (flags, rejects, colors, stars) just as Aperture did.  (I hate to talk of it in the past tense since it is still around and working fine)  I guess my only suggestion would be, if you are home import and catalogue your files to your storage location via your I-mac and do your culling there via LR6 (stand-alone)  and if on the road, to your MBP if you want to cull and play with them right away.   

Take this with a grain of salt, as like I said, I’m not real tech savvy and don’t even know what BitTorrentSync is, although I do know what Bit Torrent Sites are.   Have never owned a Laptop although I’m in the market for one late summer or early fall, primarily so I can use LR and PS along with the Nik Plug-ins while away from home.    

Sorry I couldn’t be more help but hopefully you will get an opinion from someone who really knows their stuff.   I still use the KISS philosophy  ……..Keep it Simple Stupid.  

I'd much rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

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