Apple has released Aperture 1.1, a significant update its all-in-one post production tool for photographers that runs natively on both Intel- and PowerPC-based Macs.

According to Apple, Aperture 1.1 features dramatically improved RAW image rendering and a new set of advanced RAW adjustment controls. As well as delivering speed gains on any Mac including desktop performance on a
MacBook Pro with image adjustments and searching up to 4x faster.

The company has also reduced the price to £219, making, it says affordable to any one with a digital SLR camera.

“Since Aperture launched just over four months ago, we've been incredibly focused on improving image quality and performance, working closely with pro photographers to get it right in 1.1”, said Rob Schoeben, Apple's vice
president of Applications Marketing. “With the RAW quality and overall speed of Aperture 1.1 and its new low price, there's never been a better time for pros and hobbyists alike to take the art and craft of photography to the next level.”

RAW image rendering in Aperture 1.1 is greatly improved in areas such as noise reduction, sharpening, and highlight recovery. New RAW Fine Tuning controls allow photographers to tweak decode settings such as boost, sharpening and chroma blur. A new built-in colour meter displays pixel values in RGB, Lab or CMYK in the Adjustments HUD (heads up display) or in Aperture's Loupe magnifying viewer. Enhanced export controls make it easier to output images at specific resolutions and improve the handling of layered Photoshop files. Aperture 1.1 offers support for the Nikon D200 and Canon 30D.

Aperture 1.1 is available immediately as a free Software Update to current Aperture 1.0 customers. In addition, early adopters of Aperture 1.0 will soon be able to claim a £130 (inc. VAT) coupon redeemable at the Apple.