Using the Adjustment Controls

You can use menu commands, keyboard shortcuts, or the Inspector button on the left side of the toolbar to show and hide the Inspector pane containing the adjustment controls.

To show the Adjustments inspector
Do one of the following:
  • Choose Window > Show Inspector (or press I), then click the Adjustments tab.

  • Click the Inspector button in the toolbar, then click the Adjustments tab.

Figure. Controls in the Adjustments inspector.

Each adjustment contains individual properties, called parameters, for which you can specify a range of values. You click an adjustment’s disclosure triangle, or double-click the top of the adjustment, to view the parameters for the adjustment and the controls you use to change parameter values. For more information about using the adjustment controls to change parameter values, see Using Sliders.

The adjustment controls in the Adjustments inspector are also found in the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD. You can use menu commands and buttons in the Full Screen view toolbar to show or hide the Inspector HUD.

To show the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD
Do one of the following:
  • Choose Window > Show Inspector HUD (or press H), then click the Adjustments button.

  • Click the Inspector HUD button in the Full Screen view toolbar, then click the Adjustments button.

For more information about Full Screen view, see Performing Adjustments in Full Screen View.

Figure. Controls in the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD.

Note: The adjustment controls in the Adjustments inspector and the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD appear dimmed when an audio or video file is selected.

Choosing a Histogram View for Adjustments

When you show the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD, a histogram of the selected image’s luminance or color channels appears. The histogram displays a graph of the brightness values in the image, from the blackest point to the whitest point. You can adjust the histogram to show luminance; red, green, and blue (RGB) channels displayed together; or separate red, green, and blue channels.

To choose a histogram view
  • Choose a view option from the Histogram Options section of the Adjustment Action pop-up menu (with a gear icon).

Note: The histogram updates in real time for images displayed in the Viewer and in Full Screen view, but it is slightly delayed in the Book Layout Editor, the Webpage Editor, and the Light Table. For more information about how to interpret a histogram, see Understanding How to Read Histograms.

Showing Additional Adjustment Controls and Quick Brushes

The first time you show either the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD, only the White Balance, Exposure, Enhance, Highlights & Shadows, Levels, and Color adjustments are available.

Note: An image version must be selected in the Browser in order for adjustment controls to appear in the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD.

To add additional adjustments
  • Choose an adjustment from the Adjustments pop-up menu at the top of either the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD.

    Figure. Adjustments pop-up menu in the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD.

The new adjustment appears highlighted in both the Adjustments inspector and the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD, if both are shown. For more information about adjustment controls, see Using Sliders.

You also use the Adjustments pop-up menu to add Quick Brushes.

To add Quick Brushes
  • Choose a Quick Brush adjustment from the Adjustments pop-up menu at the top of either the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD.

    Figure. Adjustments inspector showing Quick Brush adjustments available in the Quick Brushes submenu of the Adjustments pop-up menu.

The adjustment controls for the Quick Brush appear in both the Adjustments inspector and the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD, if both are shown. Also, a HUD containing the Quick Brush controls appears, and the pointer changes to a brush. For more information about Quick Brush adjustments, see Using the Brush Controls.

Using Sliders

There are two types of slider controls for changing parameter values—sliders and value sliders. Slider controls have varying value ranges depending on the parameter.

  • Sliders: Drag the slider left or right to set a value, or click anywhere along the slider’s range to jump directly to that value.
    Figure. Sliders and value sliders for the Exposure adjustment.
  • Value sliders: Double-click the value and type a number in the value field, click the left or right arrow, or drag inside the value field to set a value. Often, you can type a much larger number in the value field than can be achieved by dragging the standard sliders. When using value sliders, you can use a modifier key to make value adjustments in small or large increments.
To change values in small increments
  • Option-drag in the value field.

To change values in large increments
  • Shift-drag in the value field.

Resetting Parameter Values

You can reset all of the parameters for an adjustment to their default values.

To reset all parameter values for an adjustment
  • Click the Reset button to the right of the adjustment name.

    Figure. Reset button for the Exposure adjustment.

Turning Adjustments On and Off

Use checkboxes to turn adjustments on and off. Turning adjustments on and off is a good way to verify the cumulative effect of adjustments on your image.

Figure. Checkbox that turns the Exposure adjustment on and off.

Accessing Adjustment Controls

Whenever an image is selected and displayed in the Viewer or in Full Screen view, you can adjust it using the adjustment controls in the Adjustments inspector or the Adjustments pane of the Inspector HUD. You can also adjust images in the Book Layout Editor, Webpage Editor, Slideshow Editor, and Light Table.

Note: Some of the adjustment controls are not available for use in the Book Layout Editor, Webpage Editor, Slideshow Editor, and Light Table, but you can easily switch to the Viewer to make your changes.

To switch to the Viewer from the Book Layout Editor, Webpage Editor, Slideshow Editor, or Light Table
Do one of the following:
  • Click the Show Viewer button at the top of the Browser.

    Figure. Show Viewer button in the Browser.

    When you have finished making the adjustment, click the Show Viewer button again to return to the previous view.

  • If you have a system that has more than one display, choose View > Secondary Viewer > Alternate, then perform the adjustments on the second display.

For more information about using Aperture with multiple displays, see Viewing Images on Multiple Displays.