Setting Aperture Preferences

Aperture provides a Preferences window for specifying settings that control the location of the Aperture library, the appearance of the Aperture window, the application used to import photos onto your computer, how images are exported out of Aperture, how color labels are defined, how preview images are generated, as well as additional advanced settings. By taking time to specify your preference settings, you can speed up your workflow.

To open the Preferences window
  • Choose Aperture > Preferences, or press Command-Comma (,).

The Preferences window appears.

Figure. Controls in the Preferences window.

The Aperture Preferences window contains the following controls:

  • General button: Click this button to display options for setting the location of the library, automatically stacking new versions of the same image together, enabling scrolling with the mouse to navigate through images in the Viewer, enabling face detection, and enabling gestures when using a Multi-Touch trackpad or Magic Mouse. For more information, see General Preferences.
  • Appearance button: Click this button to display options for customizing the Aperture interface, including setting the background brightness level for the Browser, the Viewer, and Full Screen view, choosing which display to view slideshows on, and displaying tooltips and badges. For more information, see Appearance Preferences.
  • Import button: Click this button to specify what Aperture should do when a camera is connected to your computer, whether images should be imported into a new project or into the item selected in the Library inspector, and the length of time used to determine when to automatically split projects. For more information, see Import Preferences.
  • Export button: Click this button to display options for selecting an external editor for changing your images, audio, and video outside of Aperture, as well as specifying the email application and settings you want used when emailing images. You can also create a copyright statement that will be included in webpages that you create, as well as specify that images exported from Aperture contain location information and Faces metadata (names you have assigned to people in your images using Faces). For more information see Export Preferences.
  • Labels button: Click this button to display options for assigning text to color labels. For more information, see Labels Preferences.
  • Previews button: Click this button to display options for how Aperture creates and displays preview images. For more information, see Previews Preferences.
  • Photo Stream button: Click this button to display options for turning on Photo Stream in Aperture, as well as setting Aperture to immediately upload photos to and download photos from Photo Stream. For more information, see Photo Stream Preferences.
  • Web button: Click this button to display options for reviewing and updating albums that you’ve published to your MobileMe Gallery. For more information, see Web Preferences.
  • Advanced button: Click this button to display options for specifying hot and cold area thresholds, adding tolerance to Auto Levels adjustments, choosing color or monochrome clipping overlays, and choosing to have Aperture look up image location information automatically. For more information, see Advanced Preferences.

General Preferences

Use the controls in the General preference pane to set the location of the library, enable face detection, automatically stack new versions of the same image, and configure other image management options.

Figure. Controls in the General preference pane.

The General preference pane contains the following controls:

  • Library Location field: Displays the default location of the library. To specify a custom location for the Aperture library, click Change and navigate to a location to store the library. Quit and reopen Aperture to complete the location change. Click Reveal to display the Aperture library file in the Finder.
  • “Automatically stack new versions” checkbox: Select this checkbox to automatically stack versions of the same image as you create them.
  • “Scroll to navigate photos in the Viewer” checkbox: Select this checkbox to enable scrolling with the mouse when the pointer is placed over the image in the Viewer (or in the Viewer mode in Full Screen view).
  • Enable Faces checkbox: Select this checkbox to enable face detection when importing photos into the Aperture library.
  • “Enable gestures” checkbox: Select this checkbox to enable gesture functions in Aperture when using a Multi-Touch trackpad or Magic Mouse.

    For more information about the gesture functions supported in Aperture, see Using Multi-Touch Trackpad Gestures with Aperture.

  • Reset All Warnings button: Click this button to display warning messages. If you have set Aperture to not display certain warnings, this button resets Aperture to display them again.

Appearance Preferences

Use the controls in the Appearance preference pane to customize the Aperture interface.

Figure. Controls in the Appearance preference pane.

The Appearance preference pane contains the following controls:

  • Viewer Brightness slider: Adjust the Viewer background brightness using this slider.
  • Full Screen Viewer Brightness slider: Adjust the Full Screen view background brightness using this slider.
  • Browser Brightness slider: Adjust the Browser background brightness using this slider.
  • “Show ‘Loading...’ indicator while full size photos load” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture display an initial proxy image if there is any delay when loading a full-size image.
  • “Show tooltips on controls” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture display the names of interface items when you place the pointer over them.
  • “Show number of versions for projects and albums” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture display the number of versions in a project or album in the Library inspector.
  • “Badge referenced items” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture display badges that identify referenced images, audio clips, and video clips.
  • "Show corkboard background for Faces” checkbox: Select this checkbox to display a corkboard in the background of Faces view.

Import Preferences

Use the controls in the Import preference pane to specify what Aperture should do when a camera is connected, whether to import photos into a new project or into the item selected in the Library inspector, and the length of time used to determine when to automatically split projects.

Figure. Controls in the Import preference pane.

The Import preference pane contains the following controls:

Export Preferences

Use the controls in the Export preference pane to set the external editor, choose the email application used to email images from within Aperture, and assign a copyright statement to webpages you create.

Figure. Controls in the Export preference pane.

The Export preference pane contains the following controls:

  • External Photo Editor field: You can use an external image editing application to make adjustments to your images. To identify an external editor, click Choose and select an application. To open an image in the external editor, select the image, then choose Photos > Edit with [application name].
  • External Audio Editor field: You can use an external audio editor to make adjustments to your audio clips. To identify an external editor, click Choose and select an application. To open an audio clip in the external editor, select the audio clip, then choose Photos > Edit with [application name].
  • External Video Editor field: You can use an external video editor to make adjustments to your video clips. To identify an external editor, click Choose and select an application. To open a video clip in the external editor, select the video clip, then choose Photos > Edit with [application name].
  • Web Copyright field: Enter copyright text for webpages and web journals here.
  • “Include location info in exported photos” checkbox: Select this checkbox to include location metadata in exported photos.
  • “Include face info in exported photos” checkbox: Select this checkbox to include Faces metadata (names you have assigned to people in your images using Faces) in exported photos.

Labels Preferences

Use the text fields in the Labels preference pane to customize labels for each color.

Figure. Controls in the Labels preference pane.

Previews Preferences

Use the controls in the Previews preference pane to set how Aperture creates and displays preview images.

Figure. Controls in the Previews preference pane.

The Previews preference pane contains the following controls:

  • “New projects automatically generate previews” checkbox: To set Aperture to create previews for the images in all new projects and new libraries, select this checkbox. Deselect this checkbox if you don’t want previews created for images in new projects.
  • “Use embedded JPEG from camera when possible” checkbox: Select this checkbox to set Aperture to use the JPEG thumbnail of an image produced by the camera, if available.
  • “Photo Preview quality” slider: To change the image quality of the previews, drag the slider. The higher the quality setting, the more disk space the previews require.

Photo Stream Preferences

Use the controls in the Photo Stream preference pane to turn Photo Stream on and off for an Aperture library, as well as set options for automatically uploading and downloading photos between Photo Stream and your Aperture library.

Figure. Photo Stream pane in Aperture Preferences window

The Photo Stream preference pane contains the following controls:

  • Enable Photo Stream checkbox: Select this checkbox to turn Photo Stream on and off in the currently open Aperture library.
  • Automatic Import checkbox: Select this checkbox to have photos from Photo Stream automatically imported into your Aperture library so that they appear in Projects view, Photos view, Faces view, and Places view. If you do not select this checkbox, you have to manually drag images from Photo Stream view to projects in your Aperture library.
  • Automatic Upload checkbox: Select this checkbox to have all new photos that are imported into your Aperture library uploaded to Photo Stream.

Web Preferences

Use the controls in the Web preference pane to set options for reviewing and updating albums that you’ve published to your MobileMe Gallery, Flickr accounts, and Facebook accounts, as well as add and remove MobileMe, Flickr, and Facebook accounts within Aperture.

Figure. Controls in the Web preference pane.

The Web preference pane contains the following controls:

  • Accounts column: Select the account you want to modify in this column.
  • Add (+) button: Click this button to add a MobileMe account and multiple Flickr and Facebook accounts.
  • Remove (–) button: Click this button to delete the selected account from Aperture.

    Important: All albums associated with the deleted MobileMe, Flickr, or Facebook account are removed from Aperture. However, the albums and their images still appear in the MobileMe, Flickr, or Facebook account.

  • “Automatically check for newly published albums” checkbox: Choose whether you want Aperture to check for new albums published outside of Aperture to your MobileMe, Flickr, or Facebook accounts on a regular basis or whether you want to update the accounts manually.
  • iDisk Usage indicator: Indicates the amount of iDisk storage space that your MobileMe Gallery is currently using and the total amount of storage space that you have access to.
  • Account Details button: Click this button to access your MobileMe account’s settings and purchase more storage space for your MobileMe Gallery.

Advanced Preferences

Use the controls in the Advanced preference pane to specify the display threshold for hot and cold areas of images, add tolerance to Auto Levels adjustments, choose whether clipping overlays are displayed in color or monochrome, specify that Aperture look up image location information when images are imported, and specify that Aperture create a new version when you adjust an image.

Figure. Controls in the Advanced preference pane.

The Advanced preference pane contains the following controls:

  • “Hot Area threshold” slider: You can view an image’s hot areas (where highlight data in any color channel has been clipped) by choosing View > Highlight Hot & Cold Areas. To adjust the threshold used to determine an image’s hot areas, drag the slider.
  • “Cold Area threshold” slider: You can view an image’s cold areas (where black data in any color channel has been clipped) by choosing View > Highlight Hot & Cold Areas. To adjust the threshold used to determine an image’s cold areas, drag the slider.
  • “Auto adjust Black Clip” slider: Use the “Auto adjust Black Clip” slider and value slider to add tolerance to Auto Levels adjustments when evaluating colors beyond black.
  • “Auto adjust White Clip” slider: Use the “Auto adjust White Clip” slider and value slider to add tolerance to Auto Levels adjustments when evaluating colors beyond white.
  • “Include location information for published photos” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture include any location information with the photos you share online.
  • “Auto-complete contact info in IPTC Contact fields” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture automatically enter contact information in the IPTC Contact fields after you have entered the information the first time.
  • “Create new versions when making adjustments” checkbox: Select this checkbox to have Aperture automatically create a new version when you adjust a selected image. The adjustment is applied to the original version and the new one is left untouched.