I have to admit I’m a huge fan of Lightroom. It’s an amazing program that’s perfectly tailored for photographers. So why did I ditch it for Capture One Pro? The answer is simple: phenomenal image quality. In addition, the program has a host of features that are ideal for studio photographers. What started as a simple trial has turned into my permanent image processing solution. Here are the 5 reasons why I left Lightroom 5 and switched to Capture One Pro 8.
This program is quick. I mean eat a plate of Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies quick. As soon as you snap the shutter, the image appears on the computer. In this respect, Capture One Pro 8 makes Lightroom look like a dinosaur.
In addition to speed, it hosts a variety of other fantastic features like live view and remote viewing. It even has the ability to show editorial overlays and focus masks.
If this was the only advantage over Lightroom, I might still buy it.
In Lightroom, images with a portrait orientation look small due to the fixed workspace. With Capture One, I can place the filmstrip on the right and use the full screen for image previews. When I’m out on location with my 15″ laptop, this feature is invaluable. In addition, I can move and customize just about any other part of the workspace to fit my needs.
It’s Not Made By Adobe
Let’s face it, Adobe has won the hearts and minds of photographers. Unlike the days of film, where professionals used a wide variety of cameras and film stock; digital is all about Nikon and Canon files being processed with Lightroom.
Capture One offers me the chance to break away from the pack and process images with a unique set of tools.
As opposed to Lightroom that creates a catalog for an entire lifetime of photos, Capture One creates a session folder that holds the raw images from a single photo shoot. Once you’ve finished editing the raw files from the session and output the images, you create more session folders for new projects.
Unlike Lightroom with its huge catalog, the folders are self-contained and I can hand off the “selects” to a retoucher. All of the changes I made in Capture One are held in the folder from the photo shoot.
Capture One Pro Image Quality
As I said at the beginning of this post, the image quality of Capture One Pro 8 is phenomenal.
When I first started using it, I loved the default image rendering so much, I tried to replicate the same look in Lightroom. (I really didn’t want to learn a new interface) I came close, but Capture One has the “secret sauce” that really brings out the best in Nikon Files. It even does a beautiful job with the typically flat files from the Canon 5Dmkii.
Capture One isn’t all wine and roses. The program is complex and has a substantial feature-set. As a longtime Lightroom user, I found it to be frustratingly counter-intuitive when I first started using it. Fortunately, Phase One offers an extensive library of video tutorials and within a few hours I was able to overcome my initial hurdles.
I never thought I would leave Lightroom, but Capture One has won me over with lightning-fast tethering and beautiful image quality.
If you would like to see Capture One’s amazing image processing for yourself, Phase One now offers a 30 day trial of Capture One Pro 8 here. (no affiliate link)