Adobe’s new Lightroom 6 is the best Aperture alternative

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Photo: Adobe

Today Adobe released Lightroom 6, cementing the photo editor as the best alternative to Apple’s now-extinct Aperture.

For Adobe Creative Cloud subscribers, the new app is called Lightroom CC. While perhaps the biggest enhancement is related to speed and performance, there are also a few new features users should find helpful.

The new HDR merge and panorama merge tools let you stitch together images to form larger DNG files, and facial recognition makes it easier to find familiar faces in projects. Slideshow creation has been improved with additional effects and intelligent audio clip syncing. Graduated and radial brushes have been added, both of which allow for more precise editing of a filter mask.

Facial recognition in Lightroom 6. Photo: Adobe
Facial recognition in Lightroom 6. Photo: Adobe

Adobe claims that the new Lightroom will be kinder on nearly all Mac GPUs, from four-year-old MacBooks to the latest Retina Mac. Specific tools should render faster too, although editing RAW images will still take a few seconds longer than normal.

This latest release of Lightroom isn’t a very flashy update, but it address under the hood issues that are important. Apple has a guide for migrating your Aperture library to Lightroom, and if you want something more robust than OS X’s Photos app, you should really consider Adobe’s suite.

Lightroom CC is included with a $9.99 per month subscription to Adobe’s Creative Cloud Photography plan, which means you’ll also be able to sync photos between Lightroom’s desktop and iOS apps. Lightroom 6 is also available as a standalone purchase for $149 or $79 for existing customers.