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Where to, now?

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165 comments

  • syncrasy
    You don't say if you're on a Mac or Windows PC. My current plan is to keep using Media Pro on my 2010 Mac Pro running High Sierra for as long as possible (e.g., until Apple stops supporting High Sierra, likely in fall 2020). A new Mac won't run High Sierra or Media Pro, meaning I'll be forced to choose from one of these options (updated September 2019):

    Closest matches to Media Pro:

    • Adobe Lightroom CC. Full-featured DAM + raw editor but you'll have to pay for the Adobe subscription (even if you never use Lr's raw editor) and adapt to Lr's inferior interface (compared to Media Pro). Limitations: Does not allow customizing HTML for web galleries and lacks a simple list view (can be added via third party plug in, but this should not be necessary in a professional DAM).

    • Photo Supreme. The most comparable standalone DAM for a Mac. In my opinion PSu is inferior to MP but the developer is responsive. But PSu lacks HTML gallery output so I would still need Media Pro just to generate my galleries. Another possible disadvantage is that the company is a "one person shop."

    • iMatch. Well-regarded standalone DAM for Windows. Could be used on a Mac via a virtual machine (e.g., VMWare Fusion or Parallels). But like Photo Supreme, lacks HTML galleries and also is a "one person shop."

    Future possibilities (keeping an eye on these):

    • Photo Mechanic Plus, a database-driven cataloguing version of Photo Mechanic, the popular browsing/culling/tagging program by Camera Bits. PM Plus has been in limited beta release since April 2019 (beta testers must already have a paid license for Photo Mechanic 6). If PM Plus's cataloguing component is as robust as Media Pro, then this option might become my top pick.

    • NeoFinder. Nicely-designed basic DAM (much better than Apple Photos) but not yet a replacement for Media Pro, and another "one person shop." But the developer is actively soliciting Media Pro refugees and likely will add more features in the future.

    Options I considered but ruled out because of too many disqualifiers:

    • FotoStation. A browser-type DAM (not a database-based catalog). Has comparable features but is very slow compared to Media Pro, making it difficult to use for large catalogs.

    • Capture One. There are so many disparities (slow catalog speed, inability to add keywords to small or monochrome images, inability to make non-contiguous selections, lack of robust web galleries, etc.) that CO can not be considered a suitable replacement for Media Pro. If Phase One actually brings Capture One’s catalog/database/DAM infrastructure on par with Media Pro, then this could become a more viable option, but I'm not holding my breath. Phase One would have to change its software paradigm for Capture One (primarily a RAW editor for commercial shooters, with a tacked-on catalog) which I suspect they will not do.

    • Lightroom Classic CC in "expired mode" (if you don't want to subscribe to Adobe). This option had been suggested because even after Lr expires, the DAM portion will "work" but, unless I'm mistaken, the external editor feature is disabled. If you can't open your images from your DAM into your chosen editor, then the DAM is virtually useless.

    • digiKam. An open-source ("free") DAM for Linux, Windows and Mac. It appears to have many of Media Pro's features that other competitors lack, including a list view and the ability to export to HTML gallery. I tend to avoid open-source software (lack of support, accountability, etc.) and an MP user reports annoying bugs, so unless I hear more positive experiences and the bugs are fixed, I won't consider this a serious option.


    A couple of relevant articles:

    â€Peter Russell Photography: Digital Asset Management (DAM)â€. (Advocates for Media Pro, so the article is now moot, but it provides a good argument for Media Pro’s database-centric philosophy. I'm not sure if Phase One ever appreciated this philosophy.)

    “How I found my best Digital Asset Management (DAM) system†by Mike Briggs. (He settled on Photo Supreme.)
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  • felipes
    Thanks for replying, Mark.

    I'm on Windows and was never convinced that Media Pro was bringing something useful to me (comparing to Expression Media, except for the (possible) file number and database size limitations of the latter). I've tried every single PhaseOne release of this software and never got something as useful as Expression Media is to me (interface and speed, mainly). I've bought iViewMedia Pro and Expression Media but was never convinced to open my wallet to PhaseOne. Was hoping that the DAM part of Lightroom would catch up with Expression Media, but it is really unusable (at least on my 700.000+ pictures collection). I do regret not going to some other DAM from Expression Media, but I am glad I didn't bought Media Pro. Would be just a repetition of my sorry story: keep using a dead piece of software.

    I've put all my Photos files on Google Drive (GSuite) last year and, as Peter Krogh seems to point on his more recent DAM Book, I am each day relying more on the AI behind it to "organize" (mean find) my pictures. Of course, it is (still?) not as powerful as a proper DAM, but...

    I do want to support the development of a good DAM. I just need it to do what iViewMedia Pro was doing 10+ years ago and look like its development will last. I am really lost. I will keep an eye on both Photo Mechanic 6 and Photo Supreme (I've tried IDimager a long time ago, and really couldn't put my head to work with it). And would love to hear more suggestions of where to go.
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  • Franz J Wenzel
    Hello,

    I have also done the trial of PSU last year and did not get it to work right on my system (Mac OS); at one point it would not even get the exif data right on my NEF files (they even extended my trial but ended up telling me that PM5 for ingesting was 'messing up my metadata and that I should only use Adobe products to manipulate my files, lol).

    I ran across a program called NeoFinder that is doing a decent job of cataloging my inventory and I now started to give it a serious consideration (fast and small 'footprint') - It does not have ALL the 'bells and whistles' of MediaPro but is the closest one to organize and find my current inventory - mainly it also works on/off line of the actual images as MediaPro does...

    Good luck,
    Franz

    ps, where in Brazil are you from? I married a Carioca who was living in Bahia (Marau) when we met...😉
    pps, I received my copy of THE DAM BOOK 3.0 yesterday and am eager to read what Peter Krogh has to say about the changes in our fast changing world of digital assets...
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  • James Johnson
    This is most disheartening.

    As someone who used the original iView Multimedia professionally, suffered through the acquisition by Microsoft, and then by PhaseOne, I'm frankly exhausted. The AppleScript integration of MediaPro was the most complete and functional of any of the DAM solutions I encountered, which is why I stuck with it through thick and thin.

    Bridge, PhotoMechanic, etc. didn't allow the for customization and powerful batch processing possible through the robust AppleScript dictionary of MediaPro. At one point i was prepping 20K images a month for insertion into a newspaper archiving system.

    I use C1 because I'm not much of an Adobe fan. I should add that Apple orphaned me when they EOLed Aperture a while back, which is when i adopted C1.

    Paying good money for commercial products that become abandonware on a regular basis really isn't working out all that well. Open source is looking better by the moment. If I find something that looks like a suitable replacement, I'll be sure to circle back and post it here. Nothing I've looked at since I read the announcement email looks promising.

    Thanks,

    pixelsrzen
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  • rsa
    Condolences all round

    Having used iView/ Media Pro on a daily basis, lived with it, for almost the whole 20yrs, I am sad to see it discontinued. I was a student at the Royal College, adjacent to Elcho St and bought my license from the iView office in person, way back when.

    I remain convinced there is a big idea in MP still undeveloped, an opportunity missed, a tool of the moment, with much broader use than photo management, to help structure, collate, curate, to organize and make sense of the world. A gap for DAM software at this level remains, as years of threads across the web testify.

    There is quite a legacy. It would be nice if some fuller history were available on the Wikipedia page, including reference to the original shareware. Can Phase One sell it on, or could it go back to being shareware, like a big circle? I don’t understand such things. I hope Phase One retain relevant resources here for a while yet.

    Best wishes to all
    Richard
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  • briang
    I too have been using it since it was $25 shareware. It's always been that go-to software for sorting and cataloging almost anything. Have a folder(s) of PDFs? Throw them in and sort using colors to move them into other folders, keyword them, whatever. Audio files, fonts? Sure. I've really appreciated the breadth of input formats (albeit not my current photo editor, Affinity Photo). I've never relied on MP for the editing functions, but it's been indispensable in sorting and cataloging tens of thousands of images for export into the SQL-based archive that I built for my job. The ability to quickly set colors to sort things into "bins" is golden. And the light table!

    I knew this day was coming, but since I don't see why PhaseOne would go to the trouble of adding non-image formats to CO, it's time to go back to the list of bookmarked DAMS and pseudo-DAMS that I've been building for that rainy day...

    Thanks, Script Software, for getting the ball rolling!
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="felipes" wrote:
    I'm not looking for anything else but a DAM.


    I use ca. 3/4 Year - . I mean its really great DAM Software (Windows, OSX, Single User or Client-Server)

    I'm not 100% sure but I mean there is a rabat for all Media Pro users now.

    :top:
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  • felipes
    [quote="RobiWan" wrote:
    [quote="felipes" wrote:
    I'm not looking for anything else but a DAM.


    I use ca. 3/4 Year - . I mean its really great DAM Software (Windows, OSX, Single User or Client-Server)

    I'm not 100% sure but I mean there is a rabat for all Media Pro users now.

    :top:


    Their most recent demo will not even start on my work desktop (probably due to improper proxy use implementation by idimager). Will give it a try at home, on the (less capable) laptop.
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  • Gregory Edge
    Aperture was the best I have used. Switched to C1 when Apple stopped developing. I have upgraded twice. I bought Media Pro last year and finally this June I got it all organized. I am pissed to say the least.

    I tried Photo Supreme in June along side Media Pro. I liked it enough to buy a license. As soon as I activated it the software would crash on launch. I tried every trick including reloading Mac OSX from scratch. No luck. I got my money refunded because the developer could not figure out why it crashed every time.

    I tried ACDSee and do not really like it. Lightroom is not really intuitive and I tried before C1.

    For now I am going to suffer with C1’s slowness. I may break my catalogue into several smaller ones and see how that works. I am hoping v12 will address some of the speed issues. How come others like DigiKam, ACDSee, Lightroom etc can be so fast and C1 is not?
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="Edgephoto" wrote:
    I tried every trick including reloading Mac OSX from scratch. No luck. I got my money refunded because the developer could not figure out why it crashed every time.


    This is true bad. I'm using Windows and OSX versions Standalone (with manually sync and catalog changes and Server Version with PostgreSQL) and have no one crash on my OSX boxes. 2-3 times on Windows but not dramatically

    I have given up hope that Phase One will be able to improve the catalogue. There are always new features to the software but stability and speed fall by the wayside
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  • Ian Wilson
    [quote="RobiWan" wrote:
    [quote="Edgephoto" wrote:
    I tried every trick including reloading Mac OSX from scratch. No luck. I got my money refunded because the developer could not figure out why it crashed every time.


    This is true bad. I'm using Windows and OSX versions Standalone (with manually sync and catalog changes and Server Version with PostgreSQL) and have no one crash on my OSX boxes. 2-3 times on Windows but not dramatically

    I have given up hope that Phase One will be able to improve the catalogue. There are always new features to the software but stability and speed fall by the wayside

    It's said that the Capture One catalog in v11 is much better than in v10. Is that not your experience? (I am a sessions user so I don't have any experience to go on. I've used MP for catalogs until now.)

    Ian
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="Ian3" wrote:
    Is that not your experience?


    I think the V10 catalogue was better than the V11. It has less features and was perhaps unstable but significantly faster.
    I made the mistake and switched to the C1 catalogue.
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  • Franz J Wenzel
    Don't want to sound like a broken record, but

    I just saw on Facebook that NeoFinder is giving a 50% rebate (I think) for people that have a licensed MediaPro version .

    I still think for right now this is the 'best' alternative for a catalog only solution on the market at this point in time.

    I am in no way or fashion affiliated and/or associated with the maker of said software - just my experience based opinion.
    Of course there is a learning curve but rather quick and manageable...
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  • Franz J Wenzel
    On a side note,

    The DAM book 3.0 which is fresh out of the printing press, uses MediaPro as an excellent and efficient tool to prepare and organize any migration tasks for your database and archives - how ironic is that???
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  • randygentry
    I'm going to transition to NeoFinder software. They are offering a crossgrade price.
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  • Ian Wilson
    [quote="randygentry" wrote:
    I'm going to transition to NeoFinder software. They are offering a crossgrade price.

    Does it do hierarchical keywords? From the brief information abut keywords on their help files, it doesn't look like it.

    Ian
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  • syncrasy
    [quote="Ian3" wrote:
    [quote="randygentry" wrote:
    I'm going to transition to NeoFinder software. They are offering a crossgrade price.

    Does it do hierarchical keywords? From the brief information abut keywords on their help files, it doesn't look like it.


    As far as I can tell, no. It appears to lack a lot of features/functions that we're used to in MP. My quick "missing feature" list from a brief test: Batch file rename, Lightbox, hierarchical keywords, editable date metadata field, People metadata field, list view presets, custom metadata fields, robust/customizable web gallery generator, attach a file to email, bundled scripts. Probably many more, but those are the features I use daily.

    My impression is that NeoFinder is a really nice-looking, better version of Apple Photos (minus the image editing part), with the ability to archive multiple file types, but it's not comparable to Media Pro.
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  • Franz J Wenzel
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    [quote="Ian3" wrote:
    [quote="randygentry" wrote:
    I'm going to transition to NeoFinder software. They are offering a crossgrade price.

    Does it do hierarchical keywords? From the brief information abut keywords on their help files, it doesn't look like it.


    As far as I can tell, no. It appears to lack a lot of features/functions that we're used to in MP. My quick "missing feature" list from a brief test: Batch file rename, Lightbox, hierarchical keywords, editable date metadata field, People metadata field, list view presets, custom metadata fields, web gallery generator, attach a file to email, bundled scripts. Probably many more, but those are the features I use daily.

    My impression is that NeoFinder is a really nice-looking, better version of Apple Photos (minus the image editing part), with the ability to archive multiple file types, but it's not comparable to Media Pro.



    I agree with Syncrasy that it is not MediaPro with all its bells and whistles - then again I don't think one will find any alternative right now on the Apple/Mac platform to do so...

    - Apple Photos will ingest your Photos and thereby remove them from being generally accessible by other programs ('proprietary 'hostage' of ones image collection); NeoFinder works in 'referenced mode' only - it is a cataloging program for your assets.

    I can also confirm the lack of hierarchal/structured Keywords in NeoFinder which is unfortunate (It does do multi catalog searches though).

    On a Windows platform I understand the closest application to compare to MediaPro is iMatch - but I can not evaluate this as I don't have any Windows based hardware.

    In all it is fortunate that the discontinuation of MediaPro is NOT like a light switch 0n/off - we all have some time to research and evaluate the developments in the near future...
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  • Ian Wilson
    [quote="C-F" wrote:

    - Apple Photos will ingest your Photos and thereby remove them from being generally accessible by other programs ('proprietary 'hostage' of ones image collection); NeoFinder works in 'referenced mode' only - it is a cataloging program for your assets.

    Apple Photos can actually work in referenced mode too, though I don't think it is a suitable replacement for MP.

    Ian
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="C-F" wrote:
    then again I don't think one will find any alternative right now on the Apple/Mac platform to do so...


    Try again Photo Supreme. The new V4 version has 64Bit OSX version and some new features and .... for me its work great.

    And for me personally very important point - I can contact developer and so far we have found a solution.
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  • Wolfram Hölzel
    I just have Windows and using IMatch too.

    https://www.photools.com
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  • syncrasy
    FYI... Robert Edwards, an iView/Media Pro expert who (I think) now uses Lightroom, has posted a very insightful post over in the CO forum in my original Media Pro refugee thread. He points out that Lightroom CC can be used as DAM for free if you let your CC trial expire. The image editor won't work but the DAM portion will still work.

    He refers to an article by Peter Krogh, called "Lightroom *never* fully expires" that explains how this works.

    I never liked Lightroom's UI, but will probably consider this option out of necessity. I am checking out the Lightroom Classic trial version now.
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  • Franz J Wenzel
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    FYI... Robert Edwards, an iView/Media Pro expert who (I think) now uses Lightroom, has posted a very insightful post over in the CO forum in my original Media Pro refugee thread. He points out that Lightroom CC can be used as DAM for free if you let your CC trial expire. The image editor won't work but the DAM portion will still work.

    He refers to an article by Peter Krogh, called "Lightroom *never* fully expires" that explains how this works.

    I never liked Lightroom's UI, but will probably consider this option out of necessity. I am checking out the Lightroom Classic trial version now.



    Nice,
    I do wonder however, if after the trial expiration date, the software will still stay up-to-date or if it remains in the state it was when the trial license expired.
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    He points out that Lightroom CC can be used as DAM for free if you let your CC trial expire. The image editor won't work but the DAM portion will still work.

    He refers to an article by Peter Krogh, called "Lightroom *never* fully expires" that explains how this works.


    There's only one problem. There is no guarantee that it will still work in 1-2 years. If it doesn't, you have a real problem. It would be absolutely no solution for me.
    2-3 years ago Adobe had also said then that LR will always be available as "buy" version. You simply cannot rely on such statements.
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  • syncrasy
    [quote="C-F" wrote:

    I do wonder however, if after the trial expiration date, [Lightroom] will still stay up-to-date or if it remains in the state it was when the trial license expired.


    I suspect you won't get updates after the trial expires. But I don't expect Adobe will update the DAM features anyway (it still looks the same as when I tested it 10+ years ago; even the old clunky HTML galleries look the same), so for DAM purposes the lack of updates shouldn't be an issue. The main concern will be getting the latest camera raw support (I think Adobe Camera Raw updates require a current CC license.) I suppose if you buy a new camera you could subscribe to Lr CC for a month for $9.99 just to get the latest ACR, then cancel. What's odd is that the current ACR version, v. 10.5, dates back to 2013; I don't know how new cameras are added while the ACR version remains the same.

    But I'm getting ahead of myself. Migrating to Lr is "option #4" on my list. 😉
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  • syncrasy
    [quote="RobiWan" wrote:
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    He points out that Lightroom CC can be used as DAM for free if you let your CC trial expire. The image editor won't work but the DAM portion will still work.

    He refers to an article by Peter Krogh, called "Lightroom *never* fully expires" that explains how this works.


    There's only one problem. There is no guarantee that it will still work in 1-2 years. If it doesn't, you have a real problem. It would be absolutely no solution for me.
    2-3 years ago Adobe had also said then that LR will always be available as "buy" version. You simply cannot rely on such statements.


    Very true. We must proceed with caution.
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  • Robert Rakowicz
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    Migrating to Lr is "option #4" on my list. 😉


    And what are options 1-3?
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  • syncrasy
    [quote="RobiWan" wrote:
    [quote="syncrasy" wrote:
    Migrating to Lr is "option #4" on my list. 😉


    And what are options 1-3?


    See page 1 of this thread (second post).
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  • Paul Dymond
    A little background, I too have been a long time IView, Expression, Media Pro user through all the iterations. I’m a travel photographer. Mostly stock, and have always used it to manage my archive. In recent years my business has evolved into building image catalogs for clients - mainly large government departments and tourism businesses. So when I got the email last week I nearly had a heart attack! I’ve imported 55,000 images into a CO catalog on my home computer just to see how it is and it was slow as hell. Useless for me in terms of building databases but maybe useable for clients who mainly use the Catalog Sets function to find images. I’m leaning towards the LR option though. Yes it might not be upgradeable but for many of my clients I don’t think that will be a concern. They just want to be able to find and use their images and don’t have a need to manipulate them at all. This announcement is so disappointing for me on many levels as I really feel it’s a fantastic piece of software for not only photographers, but there’s a huge untapped market there for businesses who need a simple way to manage their images without a need for the ability to manipulate them.
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  • Paul Dymond
    One thing I forgot to ask, does anybody know if the Catalog Set information transfers across to any other software apart from CO? I am guessing you would have to sync the information back to the original files for it to be readable? The advantage of CO (if it had a comparable DAM) would have been that you could have just imported existing MP catalogs and everything would come across. I’m thinking creating the Catalog Set structure in another software manually would be a long, arduous task.
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