I literally just installed iLife ’08 an hour or so ago but already I’m happy with what I’m getting for my money. I would consider myself a power user of two of the iLife Apps: iPhoto, and Garage Band (but only for creating podcasts). I don’t have a video camera so I have no real use for iMovie or iDVD. Since iTunes is now updated separately from iLife and free I don’t consider it part of iLife any more. I was a very happy with the previous version of iLife, it worked very well for me but there were five things about it that annoyed me a bit. Even at this early stage I can see that at least four of those have been fixed. Those four fixes alone make me very happy but on top of that the whole suite has had a face-lift. It looks even slicker than it did before. There have been a lot of subtle UI tweaks which make things simpler and clearer as well as shinier. The bottom line is that my first impressions of iLife ’08 are all good, no nasty surprises, and no major disappointments. That really is the bottom line. If you want to find out what the four fixes are I’m so happy with read on, if not, you’re done 🙂

[tags]Apple, iLife[/tags]

The Most Important Fix – Proper Exporting from Garage Band

Garage Band has always been able to export as both MP3 and AAC but you couldn’t change the settings on a per-export basis, there was only a global setting hidden deep in the preferences pane. This meant that each time you wanted to export just one thing using different compression settings you had to open the preference pane, navigate to the right sub-section and then remember to change it back afterwards. This wasted a lot of my time when I’d export something at a different setting for some reason and then forget to change things back and export my next podcast incorrectly. Now each time you export you get presented with a full list of settings with your defaults pre-selected. This allows you to see exactly what settings are about to be used and easily change them. Thank you Apple!

Three iPhoto Tweaks – Importing, Keywords & Searching

My issues with iPhoto were minor but I’m still happy to see them fixed. Firstly, keywords are now easier to manage, secondly there is a proper search box like on iTunes, and thirdly you can now see the thumbnails of the photos you’re about to import from a camera and select the ones you want to import rather than having to import the lot. None of these things were show stoppers, but I’m still going to get real pleasure from these enhancements from now on.