Mac OS X Lion & Photo/Video Software Compatibility

Mac OS X Lion

As I’m sure most Mac users are aware of by now, OS X Lion is out.  I haven’t upgraded my MacBook yet because I’m still running software that won’t run on Lion.

Nikon and Adobe (among others) specifically detailed which of their applications that have compatibility issues with OS X Lion. Check out the details below.

Note that this is not a comprehensive list of compatibility issues for photo and video editing software.  It’s a list of what I have been made aware of or dug up as of today.  If you are aware of something that should be on this list, drop a comment or shoot me a message via the contact form.

Bottom line:  If you have mission-critical software on your Mac, do not update to Lion until you have confirmed from the vendor that it is in-fact compatible with Lion and future support will continue.


Adobe has listed “known issues” for OS X Lion compatibility with its products here.

There is also an FAQ from Adobe here.


For those of you editing video on Avid Media Composer, Lion is not yet supported. Details here.


Canon is currently testing compatibility issues and will release a statement once testing is complete.  Via Rob Galbraith.


iStockers are having mixed results with DeepMeta. Part of the problem could be server issues at iStock (nothing new).  The DeepMeta website currently only lists download versions through OS X 10.6.  Discussion on iStock forum here.


Some compatibility issues with audio channel mapping.  Discussion here.


It appears that the open source Photoshop-alternative, GIMP, does not currently support OS X Lion. Discussion here.


“The current installers for Dfine 2.0, Viveza 2, Color Efex Pro 3.0, Silver Efex Pro 2, and Sharpener Pro 3.0 are not able to install into Photoshop CS5 on a Mac running OS 10.7 Lion. This issue will affect both new and re-installations of these plug-ins.”

“There are no issues installing our plug-ins into Lightroom or Aperture on a Mac running OS 10.7 Lion. There are also no issues installing HDR Efex Pro into any host application.” More details at Nik’s website.


Nikon listed its planned support for software on OS X Lion in the following press release:

We plan to test the Macintosh versions of the following software applications for compatibility with Mac OS X version 10.7 (some older applications will not be tested). We will announce our plans regarding full compatibility once testing is complete.

  • Capture NX 2
  • ViewNX 2
  • Camera Control Pro 2
  • WT-4 Setup Utility/Thumbnail Selector
  • nik Color Efex Pro 3.0
  • PC-PJ Transfer

We do not intend to provide compatibility with the following applications.

  • Capture NX Ver. 1.x
  • Camera Control Pro Ver. 1.x
  • Nikon Capture series
  • ViewNX Ver. 1.x
  • Nikon Transfer Ver. 1.x
  • PictureProject
  • Nikon View series
  • Nikon Scan series
  • PictureProject COOLPIX Remote Control
  • WT-3 Setup Utility
  • Wireless Camera Setup Utility
  • Wireless Connecting Utility
  • nik Color Efex Pro 2.0

See the announcement regarding Mac OS X version 10.6 “Snow Leopard” compatibility.

In addition, we do not plan to provide compatibility for other software, or SCSI- or serial-connection products. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. For more information regarding this matter, contact Nikon Customer Relations at 1-800-NIKONUS.

onOne Software

onOne Software warns to deactivate onOne plugins before upgrading.  Details available here.



  1. Guillermo says

    I have issues with Skype, I can’t find the hang up button, my webcam is no where to be found when video chatting. It takes way to long to start-up even though i vane the latest imac i7 with 12 gigs in ram. I hope they release an update soon

    • mike says

      other than removing Skype from my dock (and replacing it with FaceTime), Skype ran properly for me. Call hangup is fine, webcam working as normal. I’m on a 2 year old Macbook Pro.

  2. Dan says

    I have been using Quicken 2007 for Mac for several years. Unfortunately, it isn’t compatible with Lion so I have to look for another checkbook application.

    • george Wilson says

      I have tried many programmes to replace Quicken. The best, by far, is SEE Finance.

  3. Alley says

    I was over 500 hours into a project that only needed two little pix colored in order to be all finished when I downloaded lion and could not finish gimping! Luckily I have a second laptop or I would have been totally messed up.

    Does anybody know if gimp is being developed for lion? Or do we have to find a different software?

  4. forkboy1965 says

    There’s a good life lesson Alley… never install a new OS before finishing a big project.

    A real kick in the head, isn’t it?

  5. Byronius Zedricks says

    Time to switch back to good ol’ Windows 7?

    What’s funny is that all these softwares that I use, Vegas Pro 10, After Effects CS5.5…. all work under Windows 8, and that’s barely even a beta.

    • Neil says

      or you just found out that Windows 8 will be just empty and visual upgrade intended to keep MS stock afloat ;)

      all this wouldn’t need to happen if these companies properly tested their apps during the beta stage

  6. rich says

    Seasoned computer users know better than to upgrade to a new os before it has been thoroughly
    used and all the kinks worked out. Unfortunately I did not fall in that category and expected the “latest greatest” to outperform what the last version. It seems semi unethical for apple to not warn the novice somewhere prominently visible on the Lion download page that the programs they might use to make a living may become useless upon installation of Lion. Is it so hard to give users the ability to run both 10.7 and 10.6 on the same drive… just in case, or create the program with the ability to be reverse compatible? The time lost over this I will just chalk up to Learning the Hard Way.


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