Capture One Pro 11 - New features in 10 minutes

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Today Phase One released Capture One Pro 11. This upgrade looks very promising and re-invents the Raw processing and the whole workflow. Alexander Svet, a professional photographer and Capture One trainer, produced a fantastic video with showing some of the new features of version 11.

If you are already a Capture One user or want to buy Capture One Pro 11 don't miss to get a 10% discount on Alexanders website

Finally! Finding the right workflow in Capture One!

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I have Capture One for a few years now, but I never made the full transition from Lightroom. The reason for it was that Capture One is very complex and has a different workflow. Lightroom is more intuitive, well structured and easier to learn. But with Capture One you’ll get the best outcome of your pictures. The Raw Converter is amazing - I have no idea what Capture One is doing with the files. The pictures look outstanding compared to the LR files - they don’t look flat and you’ll see more details and more sharpness.

I tried the full transition to Capture One a few times, but always ended up with using LR - 'cause it was easier… This year, I set myself a goal. I was travelling to Lisbon and started to use just Capture One. I worked hard to find the right workflow and set up. I changed the shortcuts and finally, I am overwhelmed… There are still bits and pieces what Capture One could improve, but till now I am very happy with the results and my workflow. 

I’ve written a few blog posts about Capture One and I know that some of you are looking for more details. So here is my current workflow and set up in Capture One.

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Catalog size
The last time I had problems with my catalogue. The catalogue size with 50.000 shots was 38GB.  I redirected my files from an external HD to Capture One and after the import, the catalogue crashed and I had to restart the whole process. As you can imagine I wasn’t happy about it - and so I ended up with LR again. It took me some research to figure out a solution.

I changed my preview file size to 1920 px on my 27’inch iMac. My catalogue size with nearly 54000 pictures is now 1.68 GB. Capture One runs smoothly. This time I imported my LR Catalog to Capture One and I didn’t have any problem.

Workspace
In Capture One you can set up your workspace for your prefered workflow. There are so many possibilities, that it can be pretty confusing in the beginning. To adjust the setting, I wrote down my workflow and adjusted then the workspace. This is my workflow of most of my pictures:

  1. Import the files (Redirecting files to an external HD & extra Back Up Copy) + Copyright
  2. Go through the image, select the keepers & delete the bad pictures
  3. Analysing the shots:
    - Keystone correction
    - Simple adjustments:
      Aperture, Contrast, Light, Shadows
    - Tone Correction
    - Curve
  4. Sharpness / Clarity / Vignette
  5. Presets? (Sometimes I use some User Presets of Capture One to try different looks)
  6. Detailed corrections with the brush
  7. Export
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Therefore I adjusted my Toolbar for my workflow. I deleted tools for tethered shooting ('cause I don’t use it), B&W, Details and a few more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Selection:
When I uploaded my pictures to Capture One I start with the selection - same like flag & unflag the pictures in LR. Capture One is not having a special shortcut for selecting the pictures. I decided to use stars - if I select an image, it gets 3 stars - if I unflag an image it goes right into the trash, by pressing x. After selecting the pictures I go into the 3 stars selection and have a proper look at the files and start with my editing process. The Shortcuts help me to run quickly through my pictures.

Editing Process:
My editing process is the one I described in the adjustments for my workspace. Everyone has a different workflow. I don’t do lots of portraits and colour correction, that is why the colour correction tool doesn't play a big role in my editing process - but it is very powerful. Overall I try to edit as less I could… 

Sometimes I convert my colour files into black & white or use some of Capture Ones presets, just to compare different looks. To do this I added a new Shortcut for „Copy Variant“ by pressing alt+command+C. 

Exporting images:
Exporting images is such a joy in Capture One. You can have several „recipes“ and run all of them at the same time.

I use 2 recipes for my archive:

  • High Res for prints
  • 1600px for Web

In Capture One you can adjust the recipes with different ICC Profiles, naming the files, sharping the image for Displays, Metadata, Watermarks etc. There are so many options. The great thing about the exporting tool is, that you can export many images and recipes at the same time. This is such a time safer!

Shortcuts:
In Capture One, you can adjust the Shortcuts to your needs. One thing which drove me really nuts in the beginning was that I wanted to confirm my adjustment by pressing the return/enter key.  It took a while to get used by pressing the V key (selection tool) to confirm edits. Here are the Shortcuts I most use:

V : Confirm / Selection Tool

H : Handtool, double-click to get to a 100% view

C : Crop Tool

K : Keystone Tool (You'll get better results when you use the markers, not in the middle of the image)

# :  Grid on /off

+ : Assign color tag: red

X : deselected images, which go straight to the trash

Cmd + : Zoom in

Cmd -  : Zoom out

Cmd 0 : Zoom to fit

Cmd + Z : Undo

1-5 : Star Rating

Arrow key right: next image

Arrow key left: last image

alt+Cmd+C : Copy Variant

Final Thoughts:
Learning Capture One takes a while. I am still in the process to learn more tricks to make my life easier. There are still a few things I miss in Capture One, but I am sure the team of Capture One is working constantly to improve the software. For me, the most important thing is, that I do have the best outcome for my images. After using Capture One for a while now, I don’t look back to Lightroom. 

I hope I could help a bit for those who are also thinking about making a full transfer from LR to Capture One. If you have further questions don't hesitate to contact me.

Capture One Pro 10

Capture One Pro 10 was just released and I can't describe how happy I was to see the new improvements.

I am a Capture One user for a few years now, but I never made the full transition from Lightroom to C1. The reason is that Capture One is very complex and has such a different workflow than LR. The workflow in LR is more intuitive, well-structured and easy to learn. Capture One is full of different tools and in the beginning you can feel totally lost with all the possibilities you have. It takes a while and an investment of time to get used to it and finally find the right workflow which fits to you a 100%.

Why changing from LR to Capture One?

There were a few friends of mine who asked me, why do you want to change to Capture One, when you prefer the workflow of LR? Well, the most important thing for me is get the best outcome of my pictures. The RAW Converter of Capture One is amazing - I don't know what they do with the files, but the pictures look outstanding compared to the ones in LR - the pictures don't look flat and there are more details and more sharpness in the images.

DNG File from the Leica Q - no edits and 100% view in Capture One Pro 10. Click to enlarge.

DNG File from the Leica Q - no edits and 100% view in Lightroom CC. Click to enlarge.

After testing the new version of Capture One Pro for a few days, I decided to upgrade my version. I finally felt that I feel good with this version, which has a lot to do with the new High Performance Engine. Compared to Version 9 it is a huge improvement to the performance for faster browsing, zooming, panning, adjusting and faster switching between images.

Exciting new start or disaster?

My current Lightroom library has an amount of 80.000 pictures. C1 allows to import 3rd party application catalogs to make migration easier. But they don't transfer all adjustments and so I decided to have a clean start and set up a new catalog with a new structure.

All my files are stored on external hard drives and reference from there to the Capture One Library. It took me a whole day to build up the new catalog with around 50.000 shots.

Error Message of Capture One

Error Message of Capture One

When I opened the Catalog to import the rest of my files I got an error message "requested document type is not recognized"! I retried to open the Catalog but I got the same message! I tried to repair the catalog but it was impossible - I finally had to delete the catalog and start all over again! You can imagine, that this was such a frustrating situation. I tried to find out what went wrong - not to make the same mistake again.

While finding a solution I also wondered why the catalog size of C1 was around 38 GB! I double-checked the import tool - but my files just referenced from the external HD to the Catalog. Just to let you know - my current Lightroom catalog with all my files is 771 kb! 

After some research I figured out, that C1 always had some issues with large catalogs...It seems that after all Capture One is a great editing software but not so good to manage a huge amount of files. From other users I figured out that it is better to work with different catalogs... the workflow there seems to be fast and stable. 

Final Thoughts.

Well, after all the excitement with the Update I am a bit disappointed... I finally decided to stick with LR and edit just my keepers and my commercial work in Capture One. After all I thought that Version 10 would be ready to manage all my files. But it seems it isn't the time now.

But I am very confident that Capture One is already working on improvements. They have an incredible customer service/forum and you always feel in good hands and very well supported.

After all, I still can recommend Capture One as an editing tool. It is amazing and I will use it. You definantly should give Capture One a try. For those who want to get a license or upgrade - there is currently a 10 percent discount on the Capture One Blog. I also recommend the Capture One Film Styles, which work perfectly in Capture One 10. 

I hope I could help a bit for those who are also thinking about making a full transfer from LR to Capture One. If you have further questions don't hesitate to contact me. 

Update:
I got a request from a photographer friend if I could include in my review to compare the Fuji X-files in C1 and LR. After the crash of my first Capture One Version 10 catalog I started a new catalog a few days ago with just a 1000 images - but my Capture One Catalog crashed again. I have to say, that I never had a situation like this with Version 9. It seems that there are some current issues with Version 10 and I hope there will be an update soon.

THE NEW EXTENDED FILM STYLE PRESETS for Capture One!

Last August I wrote a review about the new Film Styles for Capture One.  Now, some months later, the Capture One Film Styles Extended Set is released. Alexander Svet, a Phase One Certified Professional and editor of http://1styles.pro asked me to write a new review about the set.

The new extended set contains 100 new film styles and 25 grain emulation styles. The new set includes new film styles like Kodak Gold and Royal Gold, Kodak Ektar, Agfa Vista, Rollei Retro, Kodak Max and UltraMax and new variants of existing film styles from the first set. 

The Film Styles Extended Set is compatible only with Capture One Pro 8 and not seen as an upgrade or replacement to the first set. 

CAPTURE ONE.

The latest version of Capture One 8 was released in September 2014. As I mentioned in my Capture One Review in March 2013, C1 was and still is the best RAW Converter on the market - especially when it comes to render the Fujifilm x-files. 

With Capture One you will get a huge software package, with many options to personalize the GUI for you're editing and workflow needs. For me personally - it is still a bit to overloaded and sometimes to complex to use. That is why I still don't use it as my main film editing software. I use Lightroom and Capture One side by side! I guess I would swop to Capture One only if they would simplify a bit their GUI. But maybe I need to invest some more time and build my own set up for my personal workflow needs! 

THE NEW EXTENDED FILM STYLE PRESETS.

The set up of the Style presets in Capture One was easy. The different styles are organized in B&W, Color and a new film grain presets folder which keeps everything simple and organized. 

The extended set is coming with new film presets including styles like Kodak Gold and Royal Gold, Kodak Ektar, Agfa Vista, Rollei Retro, Kodak Max and UltraMax. All styles come in different variants and this time the set includes Grain presets - which I like a lot. The 25 universal film grain styles are arranged by different ISO and film development specifics.  

What I absolutely like about the new preset set is, that you can combine the film styles and grain styles together and even stack different film styles from the Original and Extended Set or the preset set which comes with Capture One. 

MY FINAL THOUGHTS ON THE EXTENDED SET FOR CAPTURE ONE.

Well, first of all I have to say that it is nearly impossible to show the same result of a digital image to a film image. Film still has a unique texture and character - and it always will have. But the film styles presets from http://1styles.pro or VSCO do a really good job.

For me, presets are always a starting point of my own vision - they help to get a first impression and support to get deeper in the editing process. But at the end of the day the photographer needs to feel that his images has the right look and feel.

WOULD I BUY THE EXTENDED SET?

I would  buy the extended set if I would like the film look of Kodak Gold and Royal Gold, Kodak Ektar, Agfa Vista, Rollei Retro, Kodak Max and UltraMax. I am much more a B&W person and prefer the classic color film look of Portra 160 and 400 or Polaroid simulations - the first version of the Capture One presets included this set of presets. But I really liked the B&W presets of the new extended set.

I loved as well the possibility to stack different styles and grain options. Thisgives you an endless possibility to find your own version which shows your personal vision or to experiment with crazy version of your image.

I think the team of http://1styles.pro presets did an excellent job! The price of 69,95 $ is good and I highly recommend downloading a free trial of 5 film presets and 2 grain styles of the extended set and play a bit around! 

Film Styles for Capture One

A week ago Alexander Svet, a Phase One Certified Professional, asked me to review their new Film Styles presets for Capture One. They contacted me through an older post of my blog, where I compared the x-file rendering in Aperture, Lightroom & Capture One. 

The film style presets is a set of 100 styles that can be applied to automatically processed images in Capture One photo editor. The set includes 58 color and 42 black and white styles and is available for download for 49,95$.

Each style is designed to make the most of Capture One's capabilities and to replicate the popular film effects including Kodak Portra, Ilford Delta, Kodak T-MAX, Agfa Scala, Polaroid and many more. 

Capture One.

In an earlier blog post I wrote that Capture One is in my opinion the best RAW converter on the market. They get most out of the images - highlights and details are not comparable with Lightroom or Aperture. It is an awesome software - but I have to admit - I use it just from time to time... Why? Well, I don't like the workflow - the GUI is too complex with all different editing areas & tools, the library system is a bit confusing etc and at the end it doesn't fit into my workflow. I like everything more minimal, easy and clearly structured. That is why 85% of the time I use Lightroom - for more detailed work I use Capture One and use the pro's of it. 

What about the film presets?

The installation and set up was easy.  I love that you can put the different styles in a B&W and color folder - that keeps everything simple and organized. 

What about the different styles?

I wanted to compare the C1 presets with the VSCO presets which I am using for a while now. But after installing and starting to compare both presets I have to admit, that I can't do a detailed comparison. Both softwares are too different in the look and usage. I attached some RAW images from my Fuji x-Pro1 with the same film preset styles of C1 and VSCO. I did no editing - I just removed the grain effect from the VSCO presets in Lightroom (Film Style presets for C1 can't show any grain rendering).

Capture One / Film styles

Lightroom / VSCO

My final thoughts on the Film styles for Capture One.

Well, first of all I have to say that it is nearly impossible to show the same result of a digital image to a film image. Film still has a unique texture and character - and it always will be. But, VSCO and Film Styles for Capture One did a really good job - both have their own character. 

For me a preset is always a starting point of my own vision. Presets help to start and go deeper into the editing process. But at the end of the day the photographer needs to feel that his images have the right look and feel.

Pros
+ clearly arranged
+ better details, highlights & shadows (...of Capture One)
+ fantastic B&W presets with more contrast than VSCO
+ good prize 

ConS 
- no grain simulation - which should always be in film simulation
- no extra toolkit for Auto WB, Fade, Grain, Contrast etc..

Would I buy the Film Styles?

Yes! There are still a few things missing but the price is fantastic and for Capture One users it's a fantastic opportunity to save some time on the workflow. VSCO & NIK Software is still not available for Capture One - so the Film Styles are an alternative for C1 users.

I really hope that the upcoming version of Capture One will be more improved. After the death of Aperture, Capture One has a huge possibility to get more customers if they improve their GUI & library by just making it more simple. C1 is the best RAW converter and helps to get out most of the pictures but if it is still too complicated and pricy - people wouldn't jump on the Capture One train. Then it will just be the Pro-Photographer tool, like it is now. 

I hope I could help a bit with my review - but the best is always to try things out. There is a free Capture One Test Version and 5 free Film Styles for C1. Enjoy your own test! 

Aperture, Lightroom...Capture One! Finally the Odyssee ends.

It's been a while since I posted something on my blog. I needed a little break from photography and time to reflect last year!  

I have been on the road for more than 6 months lately. It was an exciting and fantastic year! I got a contract with a press agency, shot at the Olympics in London, the US-elections and switched my gear from Leica M to Fuji X-100 & Fuji X-Pro1. 

The x-Pro 1 is not a Leica - honestly I miss my Leica from time to time - but the xPro is a trusty partner in nearly all situations. But there is one thing that I don't like with the x-Pro - working with the RAW files!  

I used to work with Aperture. But till now they don't support the RAW files of the x-series of Fuji. I hope that this will change with the upcoming Aperture X ! There are so many rumors with Apple releasing the new Aperture X - but I finally came to the point that I am not willing to wait anymore! 

With the x-series, I switched from Aperture to Lightroom. I have never been a huge fan of Lightroom - I never liked the interface - but with every software there are pro's and con's. So I tried to make the best of the situation to get along. I have to admit - I have never spend so much time editing my files! Till now, after hours of editing I still don't get the look I want with Lightroom. It really sucks, cause usually I uploaded my Leica DNG files, edited a bit the curves and that was it. 

You can imagine that I was very excited when Capture One announced the support of the x-files! I downloaded the trial version and I tested C1 for a few weeks. All I have to say - it is such a relief! The RAF files are looking great! The colors, the details & skin tones of the pictures look amazing! 

Here is a comparison of 2 random shots from Venice Beach last year. RAF files straight out of the camera - not editing at all.

Fuji X-Pro  Lightroom 4.4 vs. Capture One 7

Fuji X-Pro Lightroom 4.4 vs. Capture One

In my opinion the Capture One files look much better - there are more details, the colors look nicer and the picture don't look flat as in Lightroom. 

I also checked a jpeg file in Lightroom, Aperture & Capture One of my new Nikon D600. Here a shot straight out of the camera of our foster dog, Mr. Bootsmann.

 

Nikon 600 Lightroom, Aperture, Capture One

The jpegs look great in Capture One, but I have to admit, that I do like the Aperture file a bit more.  

So finally after months and weeks I came to the decision that I will work with Capture one & Aperture! Capture One - because of the fantastic RAW Converter & Aperture for the interface, the file managing and the plug-In's (VSCO, Nik Software) I use.

I know that Capture One is not cheap at all and again I have to get used to another software - but at the end of the day I want to achieve the best result for a picture within a minimum of time. I know it will take a bit of time to get used to Capture One - but there are fantastic Online Tutorials on youTube and everything looks pretty easy so far. I also like that u can switch the interface & tools the way you prefer it.

For me - my Odyssee has ended and I feel pretty good with my decision. I hope I could help some of you who are in a similar position but at the end of the day it is a personal question of the preferred look and feel!