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From Lightroom to Capture One : a no regret move

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Hi all,

 

Following a previous conversation, I did leave the Adobe world (and more specifically Lightroom) to join Capture One. I shall not come back on the reasons which made

me leave Lightroom after many years of use. They have been already shared by myself, among many others.

 

I just wanted to share with you my first impressions on Capture One :

 

It definitely took little time to adapt to this new environment but not with significant difficulties :

 

1 / Lightroom is certainly more advanced and powerful for the management of catalogs but at the end I found my ways with Capture one. It was a good occasion to review my own organization without changing the basics : keep my raw pictures database organized with the simple time criteria. I must confess that the migration of my Lightroom catalogs has not been very easy and i had in some cases to reshape things (not all parameters are transferred)but it was worth the journey.

 

2/ Pictures Color treatment : this is in my opinion quite a strong point in Capture One and since I do mostly portraits and landscape pictures, it is definitively a

powerful tool. The way you can refine colors in capture One is just excellent. You need to get used to it and choose the advanced menu to get the best of it but once you understanfd how it works, what a pleasure ! I like verymuch the possibility to transfer a color change into a mask and then refine the picture where you want to have the right impact.

Lightroom does not give you that, but, of course you can use Photoshop to use masks.

 

 

3/ You can find in Capture One all what you need for your pictures, like in Lightroom,and sometimes more, but you have to test each piece since the algorithms are not the same and then the result may differ : to take a very simple case, the color saturation button does not give the same impact as in Lightroom : just a question of adaptation.

To this respect, I strongly recommend to watch the available tutorials or webminars dedicated to Capture One : not only you will understand quickly how to use it but also understand what's behind each functionality.

 

4/ About the price : I did leave the Canon world a few years ago (after having owned a 5D MKII that I loved) for joining the Sony world which I like verymuch (such a big progress in a few years !) and then I have bought the Sony version of capture One 10 for 50 Euros. Not such a big expense, knowing that I got the version 11 release for free.

 

I must confess that after so many years of lightroom (from version 1 to version 6 !), my main workhorse, I was anxious to switch to something else : I can witness today that i have no regret and hope that capture One will sustain long with the right philosphy of making real progress in each new version.

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I tried both Lightroom and Capture One Pro Sony at about the same time a couple of years back. So, unlike many people who are deeply rooted in the Lightroom catalog ecosystem, I was able to choose the one I felt was the best. No contest, clearly Capture One. The much more robust capabilities on masking adjustment layers was the deciding factor. I still have Lightroom 6, but never use it anymore. The price for the Sony version is a screaming bargain!

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Guest Jaf-Photo

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I think it's a good idea to avoid LR if you can. C1 produces the best results for Sony files, after you get used to it.

 

Another really useful alternative is DxO. Their correction functions are really good, fast and easy, whether it is optics, exposure or colour. With the new local adjustments, it's a complete editor. The film pack is a very good way to get away from the generic digital camera look.

 

Then again LR does have it's advantages, such as colour correction plugins and print modules. I basically need to use it for my prints to get the colours right. Also, batch processing works better. So, if you have to produce a large number of consistent photos, rather that fiddle with individual images, LR is still better.

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I think it's a good idea to avoid LR if you can. C1 produces the best results for Sony files, after you get used to it.

 

Another really useful alternative is DxO. Their correction functions are really good, fast and easy, whether it is optics, exposure or colour. With the new local adjustments, it's a complete editor. The film pack is a very good way to get away from the generic digital camera look.

 

Then again LR does have it's advantages, such as colour correction plugins and print modules. I basically need to use it for my prints to get the colours right. Also, batch processing works better. So, if you have to produce a large number of consistent photos, rather that fiddle with individual images, LR is still better.

My 2 cents... I found that I never liked ACR whether on my Canon RAWs or my Sony's so I took a trip through DXO Elite and fell out with them over colours i.e. Grass [Yellows/Greens] would you believe, however their noise reduction was super but -  I realised it was a big dead end for me as I was ending up with huge TIFs so I could come back and edit stuff over much later.

 

Capture One gave me what I wanted out of my RAWs, my new Sony one's but also when I bought the full blown version (beyond the Sony limited version) my old Canon RAWs too came to life away from ACR. I just couldn't live with using LR for my Canon RAWs and C1 for my Sony's so I bit the bullet and consolidated on a C1 future.

 

I don't use C1 Sessions as it doesn't fit what I do, I use a single C1 Catalog BUT I don't import my images into the catalog rather they go into my file system and all the metadata and edits I do are maintained in the C1 Catalog.

 

I watched a youtube vid done by Mark Galer who happens to be a Sony Ambassador, and very good he is too, BUT this Vid was about how folks can make LR look much better when processing your RAWs using an import adjustment and you don't have to go to Capture One at all.....Well...

 

My immediate reaction was well why the hell didn't Adobe do something better out of their ACR Box? You know we all start as beginners and if you have to start with a RAW file rendered by ACR like it has clingfilm over it and then years down the line someone pops up and says you don't have to live with this [Mr Galer], all this time you could have had this... well sorry more fool me for staying here...

But...

then to get to absolute best out of Capture One we get the "linear Response Curve" which has been mentioned above by Wsidec400 ;-) and in a funny sort of way we come full circle. However I've made my bed with C1 even though the print functionality is PANTS so over to PS for that (or LR TBH)

 

You do all the C1 webinars , you even bought and swallowed Sascha Erni's book "Capture One Pro 9" ISBN 978-1-937538-81-1 then you meet Linear Response Curve...and hopefully by then you are proficient enough with C1 to fly solo!

Enjoy C1, I know you will if you invest YOUR time in it and I doubt you will look back.

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Guest Jaf-Photo

Interesting take, Jaytee.

 

My full workflow is to import the photos in LR, which I use as a catalogue. For quick editing I use LR. To do more work, I export the RAW file to DxO Labs. There, I'll do optical corrections and select the Neutral colour and gamma profile (similar to linear profile in C1). Then I'll export the file to PS, correct black, white and greypoint; do some layer work to get the right contrast and gradients. Last, I'll export it back to LR to use the superior print plugin for my printer. It is convoluted but there is no single program that can perform those steps. I have variations on this flow, for instance when I use a colour chart. Then I rely more on LR and PS. But I find that DxOs camera profiles have improved a lot so there is less need for manual colour calibration these days. C1 I use mainly when I have time to fiddle a lot with an individual image, rather than edit several photos in the same style.

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You can do a radial filter in Capture One...Sort of.

 

Make the brush really big, and expand its edge.  Now make a new layer and just click one spot where you want the center to be.

 

JCC

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I was a long time Adobe CC Suite person and I have admit I was never a big Lightroom person. It's probably because I spent a lot of time in Photoshop and I even took a couple of Photoshop courses in college. I never really catalog my photos, but I have started with Capture One. I left the Adobe CC Suite universe totally, for I was finding it silly paying a monthly subscription to a company. It almost made be feel like I was working for them on commission. 

Lightroom work is now done in Capture One now though like I said I never used Lightroom all that much.

Photoshop work is now doin in Pixelmator Pro - I know people have complained about Pixelmator Pro not have very good color correction, but that is why I use Capture One plus I am now organizing my files.

Premiere / After Effects is now done in FCPX and Motion 5 - To be honest I like FCPX better for it's easier to storyboard/edit than Premiere and the only edge I give to Adobe is Affect Effects for it seems more robust. Though Motion 5 does the job without to much added work. 

My Impressions so far with Capture One is very positive and yes I do know I replying to kind of an old thread. 

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Given that raw development results do not vary hugely across software platforms, for me the deal breaker with C1 at the moment is the catalogue component. I absolutely need to be able to search across my whole catalogue and splitting it up into years or some other way, just makes no sense. I would give C1 a real try if I could import my 90,000 image catalogue from Lr, and have the same functionality.

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