Adobe Releases the Aperture Importer

Last week Adobe released a plug-in for Lightroom 5.6 (obviously Mac only) that let’s you migrate your Aperture (and iPhoto) libraries over to Lightroom. Probably one of the big questions is what exactly does it import. Well, here’s the list:

• Flags
• Star Ratings
• Keywords
• GPS Data
• Rejects
• Hidden Files
• Color Labels*
• Stacks*
• Face Tags*

*Color Labels, Stacks, and Face Tags will be imported as Lightroom keywords.

Another big question is what happens to the adjustments made to your photos in Aperture or iPhoto. Well, those adjustment scan’t be displayed exactly the same by Lightroom. So the plug-in will import both the original images and copies of the images that have adjustments.

Oh, and the plug-in is free and doesn’t require you to be a Creative Cloud subscriber. Here’s the link read more about it and to download the plug-in.



  1. Thomas Schloss 7 March, 2015 at 12:39 Reply

    I have customized the data base part of Aperture into: description, inventory number, value etc. Is there a way to import this into Lightroom?

  2. Helen Watson 19 January, 2015 at 12:18 Reply

    I currently use Aperture and have just moved across to PS and Lightroom 5. I don’t know how to import my aperture library in to LR? I have googled it and a plug-in has been recommended. However, when i click on the link to download the free Adobe Plug-in, it says this is no longer available. I am totally new to LR so any ‘simple’ help would be very much appreciated.

    Thank you,
    Helen x

  3. Dominique MacLellan 29 October, 2014 at 09:45 Reply

    do we really need a plug in to do this? Can we not just copy the images to our hard drives, and then import into Lightroom from the hard drive?
    My questions for you Matt is, will Aperture stop working? Are they sitting it down? Or can we keep using it for storage and cataloging images, which is why I use it, and then I import what I want to edit, into Lightroom?

    • Matt K 29 October, 2014 at 12:16 Reply

      Yes, they really do need a plug-in. I know you may find it simple, but it’s not for some one who doesn’t know how.
      As for Aperture stopping working, I have no idea. I’ve never even spoke to some one on the Aperture team so I have no info. I would guess that it’ll keep working until the OS phases it out. Meaning, that eventually upgrades to the Mac OS will make Aperture not work so you’ll be faced with staying on an old OS to keep Aperture running or upgrading and having to stop using it. Just a guess though – I have no real info.

    • Jim K 2 November, 2014 at 18:29 Reply

      The reason you can’t just copy the images into Lightroom is because if they are raw files, any edits you made in Aperture won’t come over. Raw files are read-only, so there’s no place to store the flags, keywords, ratings, etc. except in the Aperture database, not in the images.

      The point of the plug-in is to transfer as much of your work as possible into Lightroom so you don’t have to do it again. But if the image metadata you entered isn’t important, you can just transfer the images without the plug-in.

      Although as Matt said, because of how raw converters work you can’t transfer image edits between any raw software. At least with the plug-in, you’ll get the edited versions. Without the plug-in, you are back to square one with every image.

  4. John C. 28 October, 2014 at 14:22 Reply

    I tried it several times with a new LR catalog and my primary 43,000+ photo library from Aperture. It failed every time. It would import 1,300 and, pop up a window that listed a bunch of jpgs as being corrupted (which they aren’t to any other program) and stopped.

  5. allan davies 28 October, 2014 at 08:27 Reply

    This may sound like a strange question Matt. I have LR5 but I do not have the gloved clenched fist, which enables me to see it better when doing tasks. Is it in my system or otherwise?

    • Thomas Schloss 7 March, 2015 at 12:37 Reply

      In Aperture I have customized some of the data to indicate value, description, size, Inventory number. Is there a way to import this into Lightroom?

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