Aperture 3 – Quick Performance Tips

No doubt most Mac users have been trying out Aperture 3.0. On Twitter and some forums, there has been the occasional users who have upgraded to version 3 reporting slower performance to what they expected. The majority of what I’ve read though is reporting faster performance, which is something I totally agree with.


I have two tips to help out those who may be experiencing slow systems; before that though, you should ideally upgrade to 4Gb of RAM. Being a 64-bit program it can manage extra RAM extremely well, so the more loaded your system, the more obvious speed gains you will see.

Tip 1: In Preferences go to the Previews tab and only tick “Use embedded jpeg from camera when possible” and if you don’t need it, choose to ‘Never’ share previews with iLife and iWork.

Tip 2: Aperture 3.0 now has the Faces feature. It has to be seen to be believed; it still amazes me how it can pick out faces throughout my Library and start to recognise people after they have been tagged a few times. Whilst this feature will be of great use to some, you need to realise that it’s a very computer intensive process the first time it runs after an upgrade, or if you are using a trial and have imported many thousands of images. My suggestion would be to switch off the feature when you’re using the program and then switch it on to run over night. Once it has catalogued the many thousands of faces, you won’t notice a performance hit.

During my beta testing period, I used a 15″ MacBook Pro with 2.53GHz Intel Core 2 Duo and 4Gb of RAM. It’s definitely not the fastest in Apple’s line-up but by following the above suggestions, runs extremely fast with Aperture 3.0.

Lastly, check out Mac Create for some great information on Aperture 3.0.

4 responses to “Aperture 3 – Quick Performance Tips

  1. Hi Edmond!The test I am going to do tonight, once at home, is to export a project and trying to export the jpeg from Faby's computer.As for the technicalities… no one can do anything else than guess, as the application in itself is extremely complex and touches too many hardware/software component. I really hope Apple will fix this, also because the number of people unhappy with the way they are managing this situation is growing hour after hour… I feel that they are serving a juicy number of angry customers to Lightroom or other competitors…Thanks (and I will definitely keep you posted) and catch up soon! :DCheerioCarlo

  2. Carlo..This memory leak is actually easily fixed. It has to do with upgrading from 2 to 3. you need to do a complete UNinstall of Aperture 3 and reinstall it. To do it fully download AppZapper, and use the trial of it to remove every item aperture3 installs. Then reinstall… Warning: it will now require both your A3 serial and your original A2 serial. Once this is done your memory leak should be fixed and it wont fill up RAM and Virtual memory anymore and crash it.

  3. Hi John,Unfortunately that was a test I already did early, but it did not fix anything. Luckily Aperture 3.0.1 is out and it seems issues are fixed! 🙂

  4. Carlo,I'm glad to hear that the issues you were experiencing are now fixed. Great news 🙂

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