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Why do YOU like C1?

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14 comments

  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    The post doesn't show in recent activities (https://support.captureone.com/hc/en-us/community/topics), I guess it needs a at least one comment.

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  • Keith R
    Top Commenter

    I am interested in why you have chosen C1 over other raw developers

    Personally, I haven't - I use several converters/developers, each to their particular strengths.

    and what you like the most.

    Not that much, if I'm honest - I still don't like the overly warm default "Capture One Look"; I don't think it's high ISO noise handling is brilliant; the demosaicing algorithm never extracts as much fine detail/micro-contrast as (say) Photo Ninja (which is also far superior in noise handing, and produces more detailed files with Sharpness off, than Capture One can achieve with Sharpening applied and the Structure slider on the Clarity panel boosted); and I still remain of the view that the watermarking feature is completely wrong-headed in its implementation.

    But I'm very comfortable with the workflow - Sessions suit my preferred way of working very well, especially when I'm looking at converting several hundred files in a sitting - and I know that I can get a decent (enough to hand over to a pixel editor) result quickly (Capture One has always been faster on my machines than any other converter), as long as the files are of reasonably well-lit subject matter that isn't in need of heavy-duty wrangling at the conversion stage.  

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    Interesting, thanks. Can you add which camera(s) raw files you like better when developed with Photo Ninja?

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  • Fabrizio Giudici (stoppingdown)

    I've been a Lightroom user since it was first released to October 2017, when I switched to Capture One. The reason was #3, licensing: I can't tolerate a software which is only licensed by means of subscription. Should it happen to Capture One too, I'll move to another application.

    Given that, I can say that at the moment of the switch I reckoned that Capture One was superior as a matter of quality (I can't compare with more recent versions of Lightroom of course). In particular I appreciated layers and other adjustment tools, as well as the superior capability to manage extreme dynamic range scenarios.

    I'm aware that Capture One is not the absolute top in terms of demosaicing or noise reduction, but I'm just an advanced amateur so it's ok for me.

    What I miss is the set of DAM features of Lightroom. At the moment I need to use another application (Photo Supreme) for managing my workflow. While I understand that DAM is not the primary area of Capture One, there is a small set of minor improvements (mainly in the filters) that could anyway partially fill the gap.

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    Thanks Fabrizio, very interesting.

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  • Keith R
    Top Commenter

    Can you add which camera(s) raw files you like better when developed with Photo Ninja?

    Honestly, all of them. I'm a Canon user, and currently alternate between a 1D-X, 7D Mk II and (occasionally) M6 Mk II.

    I'm a wildlife/sport photographer, so "true to life" is important to me: Photo Ninja routinely produces more detailed, more colorimetrically accurate, and - to my eyes - more satisfying conversions.

    Added to which, as I allude to above, noise is much better handled by Photo Ninja (I'm in relatively low light a lot, on top of which I must have high shutter speeds, so high ISO is an inevitable part of life for me.)

    Not only because of Photo Ninja's class-leading noise reduction (DxO's "Deep Prime" is only now catching up to Photo Ninja, in my experience - but it takes forever); but because Photo Ninja intelligently applies NR and sharpening with regard to edges and open areas of the image.

    Finally, Photo Ninja's demosaicing algorithm both generates less noise, and more detail, in the first place.

    Oh - and I very much prefer Photo Ninja's highlight recovery too, although Capture One's implementation is streets better than it used to be, several versions ago. It's good enough, but Photo Ninja's is way better, and I often need better, because I have no control over where my subject matter is in respect of the available light, and a white bird in sunlight is often too much for Capture One to cope with.

    So these are the characteristics which tip the balance for me, but another aspect is that I'm not actually a fan of Raw converters that try to do everything, to the extent that people mistake them for PhotoShop replacements: Photo Ninja does one thing - produce excellent conversions - and because my converted tiffs are always going to end up in a pixel editor anyway, Capture One's "bells and whistles" - up to and including lens distortion correction, which is of little to no relevance to long lens users - are of little real interest to me.

    I don't need selective editing/layers/cloning and what-have-you in my Raw converter, because I've got them in my pixel editors - and I will always end up there, because they also allow me to apply (essential to my way of doing) "Adobe" plug-ins, which Capture One doesn't support.

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    I think I know what you mean regarding detail, for my bird and busy insect images and particularly with higher ISO due to fast shutter speeds, and because I often have to crop a lot (partly because I never have a long enough lens :-) I feel that C1 rendering is not optimal.

    I think I will check out Photo Ninja as an additonal alternative. I believe PN is a one man show, isn't it? But even apps from big companies have their life cycle and one never knows when they stop maintaining it.

    Regarding highlights, did you try using Linear Curve in C1?

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    Thanks, EtMRS.

      Do you have all 80k images in one catalog?

    Thanks, Christopher.

      C1 seems to make Fuji Raws shine, from what I hear. Do you use Fuji film simulations? What is in your Auto-adjust setting?

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    @EtMRS,

    wow, 80k images on a NAS in one catalog. What's your network speed? Do you work with the collection "All images" or use smart albums? That must be very slow - even with internal SSDs.

    Thanks.

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  • Fabrizio Giudici (stoppingdown)

    That must be very slow - even with internal SSDs.

    I can talk for 50.000 images - not so slow indeed. As we said yesterday, it's just a matter of initial latency - 1 second from when I select "All" up to when thumbnails appear. After that, I can drag the thumb of the scrolling bar and the app tracks my gesture, with thumbnails that appear a few tenths of seconds later. I'm talking of a MBP 16", 32GB RAM, everything on SSD (I do use a NAS, but for backup only).

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  • ---

    noise-ninja was a great plugin 10-15 years ago but there has not been much progress and so the NR in photo ninja is very much the same and does not hold up to dxo or topaz.  but photoninja is an interesting software with very high detail and sometimes unbelievable good highlight recovery. the developer of photo ninja dr.christian has a background in business statistics when I remember right and he developed a very unique solution for this highlight problem but not without issues, the long ago promised version 2 never surfaced.

    when I look at c1 the only benefits I see is a speed advantage and convenient tethered shooting, maybe because I use it since v 3.7,  for everything else other solutions are clearly better.  PN, Iridient RAW and DXO do render more detail or have finer grain but apply less micro contrast enhancement and sharpening to the raw file before it gets displayed like c1 and this is what many user seem to like. color is another field,  for my taste too much cooked compared to others. the converter I use most today is DXO PL no magic brush and all the other fancy layer tools compare to the simplicity and organic look possible with control points but I´m biased here also as I use viveza since the early nik days. 

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  • BeO
    Top Commenter

    @CSP

    That's interesting.

    From time to time I like to check if I like the result from other raw converters more. But this is a lot of work, isn't it... I don't have much time currently for this, so I stay away from a rather limiting 30day (trial) period, so I downloaded the Irident N-Transformer which I can use without time restriction (but with a watermark). The Irident full version is for Mac only so I cannot try this.

    The Irident N-Transformer takes Nikon NEF files and transforms it into (linear?) DNG which I then imported into C1 (due to the lack of a Mac).

    Regarding detail, indeed the dng seems more detailed - at first sight. However, (only) in order to understand the difference, I zoomed in to 200-400% and the DNG it is actually more sharpened, high-frequency I would say (even with C1 sharpening set to 0). C1 NEF in comparison softens everything, looks more natural (but more blurry as a result).

    For my assessment I used 100% and lower.

    Next step was to try to "mimick" the Irident output with the NEF in C1. I did what I do often in C1 when I seek fine detail, that is to set sharpening radius to a low value e.g. 0.4, threshold to 0, and bump up the amount. Roughly twice the amount as I do for the Irident dng. Now the detail is very very similar to Irident, but the C1 NEF image has better colors.

    White balance is slightly better with the DNG though ("As shot" with both images, the dng had a more neutral white/gray).

    And I had to adjust the White slider in the HDR tool to bring back the highlights in the NEF file to the level of the DNG. Ah, I used Linear Curve with the NEF.

    This was only one / two images, low ISO, Z7 NEF, landscape image. I think I will check other images in the future and see what Irident NEF to DNG transformer can offer, also with the other transformer options.

    In addition to the 50+ MegaByte NEF file I would need to store the 150+MB DNG file. I would be happy to do so if the result were clearly (or any) better.

    But with a similar -maybe equal- level of detail plus the better color (more distinctive tones), (minus more tweaking in C1, which I could partially set as a default or preset) I would stick with C1 (based on this rather short test). What a pity, I was hoping for even better IQ with Irident.

    This might be different for other images, cameras, ISOs etc.

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  • John Clark

    I've been looking for some image editing software to replace Aperture and C1 is perhaps the least awful of the current crop and I have tried a few. There are a few things in C1 which are better than Aperture but speed, organisation, exporting and managing libraries/catalogs are not some of them.

    ON1 is perhaps a better grading tool, faster and more flexible, but it falls down badly on organisation. C1 is better - at least the idea of catalogues are better or would be if they worked. Medium term, I can't see that happening because of the inflexibility of using multiple hard drives to back up terabytes of images.

    My guess is that if you are a photographer who seldom refers to old pictures, then C1's organisation is probably OK. However if you want to look at large numbers of pictures from various sources, drives etc. then C1 leaves a lot to be desired, I guess partly because it is cross platform and some of the dialogs are not good.

    In places C1 is just plain stupid. For example, compare the locate referenced files (find offline files). In Aperture, you can have multiple hard drives and if the folder structure is similar, then Aperture would immediately reconnect thousands of images in matching folders. With C1 - I'm at a loss to see how to do this.

    So while I may stay with C1, it's not because it's the best. It's because it's the least awful.

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  • ---

    yes it is really a shame that apple trashed aperture and I agree choosing a raw software today still demands to make more or less  compromises which is surprising after more than 2 decades with digital photography. 

    one thing that astonishes me most is that no converter today is able to use the full potential of the dynamic range modern sensors give us to render a natural looking file without massive manual adjustments. i´m only aware of two solutions which try at least to address this core problem,  dxo with smart-lighting and photoninja. I really can't believe that nobody was able to develop something smarter than dumb tone curves.  

     

    @beo never used the iridient transformer software but what I have seen with IR is that it renders small details like hair finer / thinner maybe also an effect of the finer grain. raising sharpness and detail in c1 also makes the coarser noise more visible which than needs higher NR settings to counter.  you should check out the sharpening tool in IR which is really good. 

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