18 Jun Should you switch to Capture One from Lightroom?

Source: Thomas Fitzgerald Photography

“Should I switch to Capture One?” is a question I get asked a lot. It’s also challenging to answer, because everyone is different, and everyone’s needs are different. So in this post, instead of answering that question directly, I’m going to try and give you the information you need to make that decision yourself!

Note: this post contains some previously published material.

I have a few different articles on this blog covering various aspects of this topic, but I wanted to combine them into a single report. So I have covered some of this before, but for this post, it has been re-written and updated.

About Capture One

Capture One was originally designed as a software front end and processing tool for Phase One’s medium format camera backs. As such, it has always been a relatively high-end tool, but over recent years, the company has seen the potential to go toe to toe with Lightroom. They have begun pushing it more as a general-purpose image editor, and a possible alternative to Lightroom.

However, just viewing it as a straight-up Lightroom alternative misses out on some of the things that make Capture One what it is. In particular, the software shows strength in a few key areas:

Core RAW image engine is very good and offers quality that is as good as or better than Lightroom for most cameras. For some cameras, especially Sony, it offers arguably better colours than Lightroom (But not for all cameras – see below) Extremely powerful colour controls, allowing to do

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