Home » Photography » Aperture Import Plugin for Lightroom Now Available

Aperture Import Plugin for Lightroom Now Available

By on

Adobe has released a new Lightroom add-on called Aperture Importer.

The plugin allows Aperture and iPhoto customers to migrate their images and key metadata (such as keywords, events, project structure) into Lightroom catalogs in a seamless way.

Aperture and iPhoto import plugin enables users to import their libraries including data such as flags, geotags, ratings, keywords and more to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom. Note that colour labels, stacks, and face tags will be imported as Lightroom keywords.

Aperture Import Plugin for Lightroom


What’s Included in the Transfer:

  • Metadata
    • Flags
    • Rejects (files designated as Rejects in Aperture will be imported into Collections > From Aperture > Photos Rejected in Aperture)
    • Star Ratings
    • Color Labels (Aperture has more color labels than LR, so Color Labels will be mapped to keywords: Red, Orange, etc…, including support for custom label names)
    • Keywords
    • Faces will be added as keywords in Lightroom (note that the box around the face doesn’t translate to a Lightroom 5 feature)
    • Places (GPS Data)
    • Info panel metadata (i.e. IPTC, etc.)
    • Hidden Files (files designated as Hidden in iPhoto will be imported into Collections > From iPhoto > Photos Hidden in iPhoto)
  • Organization
    • Aperture project/folder/album hierarchy and iPhoto events/folders/albums hierarchy will be mapped as closely as possible into Lightroom collection sets and collections
    • Stacking (Aperture Only — stack groupings will be mapped to keywords in Lightroom as they don’t map cleanly between the programs)
    • Aperture Versions will translate into Virtual Copies in Lightroom (metadata only – no Develop adjustments)
  • Edits
    • You can import ‘Full size’ previews from Aperture/iPhoto (optional, off by default) to help you remember how you edited the file in Aperture, provided that they are up-to-date. Lightroom can automatically stack the preview with the original photo.

What’s NOT Included in the Transfer

Some Aperture/iPhoto features don’t have an equivalent feature in Lightroom. As a result, some settings aren’t transferred. They include:

  • Develop Settings don’t translate to Lightroom’s settings, so you have a few options:
    • Edit the files again using Lightroom when you need them.
    • Keep Aperture around to export those photos when you need them.
    • Use Aperture to export full resolution edited photos and store them with the originals.
  • Smart Albums don’t quite translate to Smart Collections.
  • Custom Fields have no Lightroom equivalent (except for certain plug-ins)
  • PSD Files can only be imported into Lightroom if they’re saved with ‘maximize compatibility’ enabled.
  • Anything else not already listed is probably not imported into Lightroom.

You need to be running Lightroom 5.6 on a Mac.  You can check your Lightroom version by going to Help menu > System Info. If you’re not using 5.6, you’ll need to update using Help menu > Check for Updates.

Download the plug-in from here: aperture_iphoto_importer