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Capture One 6 NR much improved

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127 comments

  • Robert Goldstein
    I've done additional work on some very difficult images, and I would say that C1-6's NR is much more powerful than before, or at least it has a much steeper gain. It takes only slight boosts in the luminance slider (approx 10-20) to remove most luminance noise. The rest can be dealt with by the surface noise slider. Understand that I am not interested in removing all noise, just enough so that it is no longer intrusive. There is a tendency for the luminance slider produce fine horizontal streaks in areas of black. It is controllable, but you have to be on guard for it.

    In comparison, ACR requires a much higher adjustment (approx 50-75) to reduce noise by the same amount. Although ACR produces a smoother effect with a bit less of the streaking phenomenon and less blotchiness, it also softens the image to a much greater degree. So there seems to be a trade off--smoothness vs. softening. In most of the samples images that I have tested, the C1 version ends up looking better. Perhaps that's because it is a much better raw converter than ACR.

    Rob
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  • Lionel12
    Hi Bob.

    Can you let us know what kind of raw files you are referring to (and the ISO)?

    I happy to know you found some of the improvements we made.

    -LKU
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Lionel12" wrote:
    Hi Bob.

    Can you let us know what kind of raw files you are referring to (and the ISO)?

    I happy to know you found some of the improvements we made.

    -LKU


    Sure. I have been playing with some files from a Pentax K-7 shot in very dim light at ISO 2500-3200. They have lots of noise, and I am quite impressed with how C!-6 handles them. It does not get them perfectly clean, which is never my goal, but it does leave them detailed and fairly crisp. Some areas come out a bit blotchy. I still think that Topaz DeNoise is the best NR program around, and I will continue to use it on the worst offenders, but C1-6 should be able to handle most images with moderate levels of noise, which is more that I would have said of C1-5. I have not tried printing any of them yet, which is the true test.

    Rob
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  • Keith Reeder
    [quote="Lionel12" wrote:
    I happy to know you found some of the improvements we made.

    Would you care to put something in writing about what these supposed improvements are, Lionel?

    I ask because - after a solid day's testing and comparing 6 Express with Cap One 5 - I can't a single worthwhile improvement in IQ or NR.

    Specifically, the demosaicing appears to be identical to Cap One 5's (and as such, is not close to the quality of Lightroom 3's, something glaringly obvious with my Canon 7D files) and the NR isn't in the same league either - nowhere near.

    I've been with, and have recommended. Cap One since r.3: but with 6, I'm so utterly unimpressed by the lacklustre IQ "improvements" it delivers (and the usual Phase One trick of denying non Pro users useful tools like local adjustment), that - sad to say - Cap One 5 will have been my last upgrade.

    I got Lr 3 for the $99 upgrade price from Lr 2: for that I get everything, and in IQ terms that's a damn' sight more than 6 Express delivers.

    Phase One has done a fantastic job of ensuring that they won't get any more money from me...
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  • Lionel12
    Try color noise larger than 60. I know we generally have some improvements to be made for the default settings for Canon high ISO images. In case you have a specific image in question, please forward this to our support department, and we will try yo give you an optimized setting.
    -LKU
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Keith Reeder" wrote:
    [quote="Lionel12" wrote:
    I happy to know you found some of the improvements we made.

    Would you care to put something in writing about what these supposed improvements are, Lionel?

    I ask because - after a solid day's testing and comparing 6 Express with Cap One 5 - I can't a single worthwhile improvement in IQ or NR.

    I got Lr 3 for the $99 upgrade price from Lr 2: for that I get everything, and in IQ terms that's a damn' sight more than 6 Express delivers.


    Keith,

    Your experience with the NR tool in C1-6 is certainly different than mine. I have taken very high ISO images that I had previously edited in C1-5 and re-edited them in C1-6 with much better results. I have long been critical of C1's NR tool and had even started a thread on the topic not too long ago.

    As far as comparing Capture One with ACR, there is no question that the two programs render images quite differently. It is not simply a matter of detail, but rather of tonal and color transitions and probably a host of other technical minutiae that I can scarcely understand. I have performed so many head to head comparisons that I have lost count, and in my hands, C1 consistently produces images with greater presence, clarity and depth. Also, I am very unhappy with ACR's propensity for pinkish color balance that is very difficult to correct. Of course, you are entitled to your own opinions and preferences, and one cannot argue with them.

    I will attach a link to an illustrative comparison between Capture One 6 and ACR. The photo is not meant to be art but rather a test scene containing solid objects with lots of detail. I worked very hard to get the ACR version to look as good as possible, and the histograms match very closely. In my eyes, the C1 version is more palpably real and present with a greater sense of depth and space surrounding the objects. When you open the individual images, click on them again to view at full size.

    http://photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=990036

    Edit: I just added another set of images showing the difference in image rendering between C1-6 and ACR. None of the posted examples are of high ISO photos requiring NR. Apologies for the poor quality of the web jpegs.

    Rob
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  • deejjjaaaa
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    None of the posted examples are of high ISO photos requiring NR.


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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="deejjjaaaa" wrote:
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    None of the posted examples are of high ISO photos requiring NR.




    Your are so astute. 😎 Those examples were in response to Keith's comments regarding the quality of raw conversions. If you want to see some high ISO NR examples, check the Capture One forum on Luminous Landscape. I have posted some in the thread on C1-6.

    Rob
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  • picman2
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    [quote="deejjjaaaa" wrote:
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    None of the posted examples are of high ISO photos requiring NR.




    Your are so astute. 😎 Those examples were in response to Keith's comments regarding the quality of raw conversions. If you want to see some high ISO NR examples, check the Capture One forum on Luminous Landscape. I have posted some in the thread on C1-6.

    Rob


    I am sorry to have to say this but even the picture you have posted on luminous landscape does not cover what I would call the area of "absolutely required, serious NR" and is hence inadequate to judge C1's NR capabilities. I think the V6 upgrade has some very appealing new tools which I will be using quite a lot, but when it comes to serious NR I simply have to use LR or DxO. It is a pity that we can not post pictures in this forum. I have one very particular picture which I use for testing the quality of NR which shows a tremendous difference in what LR does as compared to what C1 does. C1 is my main tool and I absolutely love working with it for most everything else, but when it comes to serious NR it is totally behind some of the competition, in particular LR.
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  • Paul Steunebrink
    [quote="picman" wrote:
    It is a pity that we can not post pictures in this forum.

    You can post pictures here. Publish the image elsewhere on the Interwebs and paste the link in you post with the Img tag. If you do not have publish facilities yourself, there are free services like tinypic available.
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  • Keith Reeder
    The problem I'm seeing - and "problem" is the word - is not with Chroma NR (I've always been very happy with Cap One's Chroma handling), it's the "chequerboard" effect caused by the demaosaic, with a nominal amount of Cap One sharpening applied, even at lower ISOs.

    This is a 100% crop of a 400 ISO Canon 7D file, converted in Cap One Express with default Luma NR and sharpening applied:

    http://www.capture-the-moment.co.uk/tp/tfu29/upload/C6_7D_chequerboard.jpg

    This is a crop of a 400 ISO 40D file converted in Cap One 4 - essentially identical settings - enlarged to equalise it with the 7D crop:

    http://www.capture-the-moment.co.uk/tp/tfu29/upload/C4_40D_chequerboard.jpg

    In both there's a very obviously visible "hatching" - it's not noise per se, but an ugly demosaicing artifact.

    Back in Cap One 4 days I was happy enough to accept this as the best I could get at the time, about two years ago, but these days it's simply not acceptable, especially when compared with the quality of output from Lr 3 - and even the free Raw Therapee, which is capable of far superior results than Express seems capable of:

    RT3, 7D, 400 ISO, nominal sharpening and NR:

    http://www.capture-the-moment.co.uk/tp/tfu29/upload/RT3_7D_crop.jpg

    Here's the same file from Express, with a good bit more Luma NR than I'd normally use, and much more than in the RT image:

    http://www.capture-the-moment.co.uk/tp/tfu29/upload/C6_7D_chequerboard_2.jpg

    The fact that this Cap One hatching pattern is easily visible in an old 40D/Cap One 4 file means that it's not a 7D/Cap 6 Express-specific issue, and it also means that in real terms Cap One has gone rapidly backwards compared to the competition.

    I may as well persevere with Bibble 5 if this is Cap One's best - and Bibble 5's demosaicing is well known to be (and I'm being generous here) "shabby".

    As far as Lr 3 is concerned (which Phase One needs to be competing with), I can get cleaner 6400 ISO files than I can get from Cap 6 Express at 400 ISO.
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  • picman2
    [quote="Paul_E" wrote:
    [quote="picman" wrote:
    It is a pity that we can not post pictures in this forum.

    You can post pictures here. Publish the image elsewhere on the Interwebs and paste the link in you post with the Img tag. If you do not have publish facilities yourself, there are free services like tinypic available.


    OK, but I'll hold off for a while. I sent pictures to Doug Peterson for his perusal and evaluation and I'll see what he says first.
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  • Keith Reeder
    When you get round to it, Picman, it's simply a case of typing this:
    [img]www.route_to_image_on_the_net_somewhere.jpg[/img]
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  • picman2
    [quote="Keith Reeder" wrote:
    When you get round to it, Picman, it's simply a case of typing this:
    [img]www.route_to_image_on_the_net_somewhere.jpg[/img]


    Thanks Keith!

    Cheers, Bob.
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  • Robert Goldstein
    I am sorry to have to say this but even the picture you have posted on luminous landscape does not cover what I would call the area of "absolutely required, serious NR" and is hence inadequate to judge C1's NR capabilities. I think the V6 upgrade has some very appealing new tools which I will be using quite a lot, but when it comes to serious NR I simply have to use LR or DxO. It is a pity that we can not post pictures in this forum. I have one very particular picture which I use for testing the quality of NR which shows a tremendous difference in what LR does as compared to what C1 does. C1 is my main tool and I absolutely love working with it for most everything else, but when it comes to serious NR it is totally behind some of the competition, in particular LR.


    I freely admit that I am not a NR expert, but I do think that the samples posted on LL show that Capture One can remove noise quite effectively, yet retain detail and edge sharpness. It does have a tendency to produce blotchiness and horizontal streaks. Still, I believe that I am getting better results from C1-6 than C1-5. In any case, it is certainly not the best NR program available. I think that the jury is still out on how it compares to ACR. I will leave that question in more able hands.

    Rob
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  • Keith Reeder
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    I am able to get what I consider better results from C1-6 than C1-5.

    Well that's all that matters really, Rob - we speak as we find, and I certainly don't begrudge you your satisfaction..!

    😉

    It seems to be more and more the case that the characteristics of the latest sensors put more demands on converters, and that individual sensors' output work better with some converters than others. This makes it more important that we look for the best for our own circumstances.

    For me, now, that's clearly no longer Cap One.
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  • Robert Goldstein
    I'm going to try to post a series of images showing the results of ACR and C1-6 in terms of noise reduction for an image shot with a Pentax K-7 at ISO 3200. All are 100% crops. I do think that this photo is a reasonable test of NR capability, although possibly not for all kinds of noise. My take is that ACR produces finer, more even grain but with less detail and sharpness. Hope that this works.

    Rob

    Baseline, no NR
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044856&size=lg

    ACR
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044854&size=lg

    C1-6
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044855&size=lg

    Edit: Well, the images did not show up in the thread. Here are the URLs:

    Baseline, no NR http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 56&size=lg

    ACR http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 54&size=lg

    C1-6 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 55&size=lg
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  • deejjjaaaa
    [quote="robgo2" wrote:
    I'm going to try to post a series of images showing the results of ACR and C1-6 in terms of noise reduction for an image shot with a Pentax K-7 at ISO 3200. All are 100% crops. I do think that this photo is a reasonable test of NR capability, although possibly not for all kinds of noise. My take is that ACR produces finer, more even grain but with less detail and sharpness. Hope that this works.

    Rob

    Baseline, no NR
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044856&size=lg

    ACR
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044854&size=lg

    C1-6
    http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=12044855&size=lg

    Edit: Well, the images did not show up in the thread. Here are the URLs:

    Baseline, no NR http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 56&size=lg

    ACR http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 54&size=lg

    C1-6 http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id ... 55&size=lg


    I used you "Baseline" .JPG (so w/ artefacts, not like it is possible from the original raw) to do NR in ACR :

    here are my parameters used in ACR for jpeg (and "contrast slider" @ +25) =

    http://img72.imageshack.us/img72/4798/acrparameters.jpg

    and image itself =

    direct link : http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/3961/rogboacr.png

    http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/3961/rogboacr.png





    vs your C1 (sorry, I reposted your .JPG @ imageshack, hope you do not mind) :

    http://img684.imageshack.us/img684/472/12044855lg.jpg




    now if you still continue to claim that C1 v6 has NR on par with ACR 6.x then I can only - 😂
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  • Robert Goldstein
    now if you still continue to claim that C1 v6 has NR on par with ACR 6.x then I can only - 😂


    You sharpened the ACR version? But that spoils the direct comparison of the NR functions of the two programs. Why didn't you sharpen the C1 version while you were at it, and why did you cut off the numbers pad? I said that ACR gives finer, more even grain with some loss of detail and sharpness, which it does. I'd bet that if you made prints of both versions, it would be hard to detect any difference in noise that seems so obvious at 100% enlargement.

    I don't think that I ever claimed that C1-6's NR is as good as ACR's, but only that it is now competitive, which it is. The fact of the matter is that for most images with a moderate level of noise, C1 will remove it quite nicely and still provide a superior raw conversion. For images with very high levels of noise, Topaz DeNoise is the program of choice, not ACR.

    You are always looking to start a food fight. What perverse pleasure you derive from it is a mystery to me. Unlike you, it really does not matter to me if C1 is or is not the absolute best NR program in the world, nor is that what I am trying to prove. What matters to me is that it can do a good job with most of the noise related problems that I am likely to throw its way. Like a Swiss Army Knife, it has many tools, some of which are better than others. The NR tool is good, but not best in class. I can live with that. Can you?

    Rob
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  • Zach2
    I ran across an issue in an image recently that I think sheds some light on some of this stuff. The shot had to be pushed about 1.5 stops on a 5DII. Normally I don't like to go that far, but I kind of had to. I'm using the latest versions of Capture One 6 and Lightroom 3.3. What I noticed was not a difference in the NR, but a difference in the initial rendering that affected the subsequent NR. C1 creates weird line patterns in the subjects face due to the grain, while LR keeps it detailed but natural looking. This is the ONLY area I think LR looks better than C1, and it doesn't make up for all the other stuff imho, for the record. To show this, I made a 100% view of the same picture with no sharpening, some sharpening and extreme sharpening so you can see what each program is doing. They are all set to 0 luminance noise and minimal color noise, which didn't change this effect on or off. (I don't know how to get pictures on here, so go here):



    Clearly the two programs take a very different approach, and I think some of the NR issues you guys are talking about stem as much from this as they do from the actual NR itself. I will say LR's is definitely better, but it's not likely to show on a print and this is, let's be honest, getting pretty nit picky. I can only see this effect on rare photos, this is one of hundreds from this session that all looked great in C1.

    I agree with robgo2, C1 is once again competitive. I had moved away from it temporarily because it was costing me too much time, but the new version has fixed all that and I, for one, am pretty satisfied and happy to be back to using C1. There's a lot more to an image than sharpness and noise and C1 is the best overall in my opinion.
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  • Keith Reeder
    Rob,

    I'm seeing the same "crosshatch" demosaic artifact in your C1 example above as I've commented on, and it's (not surprisingly) especially apparent in deejjjaaaa's sharpened version.

    I think deejjjaaaa was absolutely right to apply sharpening to the C1 image: it is, with respect, "artificial" not to apply sharpening during an NR test, because that's presumably how we'd use it in real life, even if it's only capture sharpening.

    The results of the "whole package" - NR and sharpening - is clear to see in the sharpened C1 example.

    In the Real World you can't divorce the two, and in C1 it's not pretty.

    In my examples above I made a specific point of saying that they included default/notional sharpening - it is C1's NR and then sharpening which exacerbates this issue.

    Whether the sharpening is applied in C1 or elsewhere, the image will be sharpened at some point in the workflow, and with C1 you get a chequered flag. And if you apply enough Luma NR in C1 to kill the hatching, you kill all detail.

    That might be fine for fashion/wedding/portrait photography (where detail arguably doesn't really matter) but to a bird photographer it's an unmitigated disaster...
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  • Keith Reeder
    [quote="Zach2" wrote:
    What I noticed was not a difference in the NR, but a difference in the initial rendering that affected the subsequent NR. C1 creates weird line patterns in the subjects face due to the grain, while LR keeps it detailed but natural looking.

    That's precisely my point up the page, Zach, it's an ugly demosaicing artifact which has no place in a converter that lays claim to being "the world's most advanced image processing engine".

    Adobe has expended considerable resources on improving its own demosaicing in Lr and ACR, having recognised the vital importance of demosaicing to the end result, and Cap One has fallen far behind in that regard. In fact, Cap One is now in the same situation as Bibble 5, which also uses a very poor demosaicing algorithm: great except for the image quality.

    In other words, great except in the most important area of all.

    This is the ONLY area I think LR looks better than C1, and it doesn't make up for all the other stuff imho, for the record.

    Lr's highlight recovery is far better than Cap One's, and while I give Cap One the nod on colour - there's always been a richness to its colours - as a functional, versatile converter that's able to deal with a wide range of challenging images (I don't get to choose my light or have obliging sitters who will go where they're told and stay there until I'm done), Lr is far ahead, overall.

    For a sense of perspective, I haven't used Cap One 5 (which used to be my converter of choice, and my recommendation over Lr to anyone who asked) once since the introduction of Lr 3, and I'm deeply disappointed that Cap One 6 has done precisely nothing to persuade me back.
    let's be honest, getting pretty nit picky.

    If only that were true. Sadly - and unequivocally - it isn't.
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Keith Reeder" wrote:
    Rob,

    I'm seeing the same "crosshatch" demosaic artifact in your C1 example above as I've commented on, and it's (not surprisingly) especially apparent in deejjjaaaa's sharpened version.

    I think deejjjaaaa was absolutely right to apply sharpening to the C1 image: it is, with respect, "artificial" not to apply sharpening during an NR test, because that's presumably how we'd use it in real life, even if it's only capture sharpening.

    The results of the "whole package" - NR and sharpening - is clear to see in the sharpened C1 example.

    In the Real World you can't divorce the two, and in C1 it's not pretty.

    In my examples above I made a specific point of saying that they included default/notional sharpening - it is C1's NR and then sharpening which exacerbates this issue.

    Whether the sharpening is applied in C1 or elsewhere, the image will be sharpened at some point in the workflow, and with C1 you get a chequered flag. And if you apply enough Luma NR in C1 to kill the hatching, you kill all detail.

    That might be fine for fashion/wedding/portrait photography (where detail arguably doesn't really matter) but to a bird photographer it's an unmitigated disaster...


    Uh, Keith, you got it backwards. I criticized deejjjaaaa for sharpening the ACR version but not the C1 version.

    I also think that you may be losing sight of the fact that examining images at 200-400% to look for demosaicizing artifacts is not really photography. Photography is about producing images that have beauty and/or impact at "normal" viewing sizes. In that regard, I stick to my opinion that Capture One consistently produces better looking images than ACR, and I have done a great many head to head comparisons to come to this conclusion. Whether it does so with cross-hatching artifacts is not of great concern to me, nor should it be to anyone else who is involved in actual photography, as opposed to pixel peeping. The danger of obsessive pixel peeping (and I am sometimes guilty of it myself) is that makes us forget the proper goal of our art form.

    If you prefer the images (not pixel patterns) that you get from ACR, then use it, and be happy, and the same goes for deejjjaaaa.

    Rob
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  • Keith Reeder
    Point noted about naming the wrong sharpened file - but in that case it makes the hatching present even more unacceptable, because it is yet to be sharpened.

    This isn't about pixel-peeping either, Rob - I detest the habit and consider it pointless in and of itself, even if, like many, I indulge now and again: but like most bird photographers I'm frequently focal-length limited and need to crop on occasion (one of the reasons to own an 18 mp camera like a 7D).

    When simply cropping into an image - and not necessarily by much - can be enough to start showing that chequerboarding, then it's not acceptable.

    Whether I might prefer ACR's/Lr's rendering to Cap One's is missing the point. I'm a paying Phase One customer, and - as a customer - I'm expressing my dissatisfaction with the current iteration of a purchased Phase One product: I want to be able to use that product rather than have to jump around between converters because this one is no longer delivering the quality it is advertised as being capable of.

    So to invite me to "use ACR and be happy with it" is to ignore (and perhaps to dismiss) a legitimate expression of disappointment about Phase One's software.
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Zach2" wrote:
    I ran across an issue in an image recently that I think sheds some light on some of this stuff. The shot had to be pushed about 1.5 stops on a 5DII. Normally I don't like to go that far, but I kind of had to. I'm using the latest versions of Capture One 6 and Lightroom 3.3. What I noticed was not a difference in the NR, but a difference in the initial rendering that affected the subsequent NR. C1 creates weird line patterns in the subjects face due to the grain, while LR keeps it detailed but natural looking. This is the ONLY area I think LR looks better than C1, and it doesn't make up for all the other stuff imho, for the record. To show this, I made a 100% view of the same picture with no sharpening, some sharpening and extreme sharpening so you can see what each program is doing. They are all set to 0 luminance noise and minimal color noise, which didn't change this effect on or off. (I don't know how to get pictures on here, so go here):



    Clearly the two programs take a very different approach, and I think some of the NR issues you guys are talking about stem as much from this as they do from the actual NR itself. I will say LR's is definitely better, but it's not likely to show on a print and this is, let's be honest, getting pretty nit picky. I can only see this effect on rare photos, this is one of hundreds from this session that all looked great in C1.

    I agree with robgo2, C1 is once again competitive. I had moved away from it temporarily because it was costing me too much time, but the new version has fixed all that and I, for one, am pretty satisfied and happy to be back to using C1. There's a lot more to an image than sharpness and noise and C1 is the best overall in my opinion.


    Zach,

    I agree. No program is perfect in all of its aspects. In my experience, ACR tends to produce images that are clean and detailed, but relatively flat and dull (and pink.) In contrast, Capture One consistently produces images that have real presence, depth and pop, all of which make a big difference in the final print. That's what really matters to me. Its NR tool is now more than adequate for most of my needs.

    Rob
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Keith Reeder" wrote:

    Whether I might prefer ACR's/Lr's rendering to Cap One's is missing the point. I'm a paying Phase One customer, and - as a customer - I'm expressing my dissatisfaction with the current iteration of a purchased Phase One product: I want to be able to use that product rather than have to jump around between converters because this one is no longer delivering the quality it is advertised as being capable of.


    Keith,

    I understand what you are saying. I can only respond that nothing is perfect, which is why life is full of trade-offs. This is one of them, and you will have to decide which trades to make. I am not a nature photographer, so my needs differ from yours. Does your work require frequent or infrequent switching between programs? If the former, you have my sympathies; if the latter, not so much.

    Rob
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  • Zach2
    Rob,

    You nailed it on the head. LR/ACR makes flat, pinkish looking photos and if you try to mess with the contrast the colors get ever weirder. I've switched to it for the past several months and I have to do so many extra steps to make things look right, even though it is nice and detailed and what not. C1 6 is good enough to be able to use again for my day to day workflow and even my wife can see the difference without me mentioning anything. The pictures just look better somehow. To me, that's what matters most.
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Zach2" wrote:
    Rob,

    You nailed it on the head. LR/ACR makes flat, pinkish looking photos and if you try to mess with the contrast the colors get ever weirder. I've switched to it for the past several months and I have to do so many extra steps to make things look right, even though it is nice and detailed and what not. C1 6 is good enough to be able to use again for my day to day workflow and even my wife can see the difference without me mentioning anything. The pictures just look better somehow. To me, that's what matters most.


    Zach,

    The weird thing is that I have not been able to find any adjustments in ACR that can bring its output even close to what I get from C1 with almost no effort at all. I have tried all manner of combinations of clarity, contrast, curves, sharpening, vibrance etc, and the results are still mediocre. An image may actually look quite good until you put it up against the same image from C1, at which point, ACR's IQ shortcomings become apparent. I really do not care if C1 has cross hatch artifacts at 300%. That is not how photographs are meant to be viewed.

    All of the comparisons we have been making have been with ACR, because it is, by far, the most widely used. There are a host of other capable raw processors out there, but I am in no mood to test them all.

    Rob
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  • Robert Goldstein
    [quote="Zach2" wrote:
    Rob,

    You nailed it on the head. LR/ACR makes flat, pinkish looking photos and if you try to mess with the contrast the colors get ever weirder. I've switched to it for the past several months and I have to do so many extra steps to make things look right, even though it is nice and detailed and what not. C1 6 is good enough to be able to use again for my day to day workflow and even my wife can see the difference without me mentioning anything. The pictures just look better somehow. To me, that's what matters most.


    Zach,

    The weird thing is that I have not been able to find any adjustments in ACR that can bring its output even close to what I get from C1 with almost no effort at all. I have tried all manner of combinations of clarity, contrast, curves, sharpening, vibrance etc, and the results are still mediocre. An image may actually look quite good until you put it up against the same image from C1, at which point, ACR's IQ shortcomings become apparent. I really do not care if C1 has cross hatch artifacts at 300%. That is not how photographs are meant to be viewed.

    All of the comparisons we have been making have been with ACR, because it is, by far, the most widely used raw converter. There are a host of other capable raw converters out there, but I am in no mood to test them all.

    Rob
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  • Zach2
    I couldn't agree more. I saw that cross hatch pattern and thought it was interesting having just read this post, but it certainly doesn't sway me away from C1. I've had the same experience as you, in fact I've done tests where I try to blindly make the same picture look good in both LR and C1 in any way possible, and I always liked the results better (and got there faster) in C1. There's just something to it.
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