#1. "RE: Capture 6 vs Lightroom 3.2" In response to Reply # 0 Wed 12-Jan-11 07:55 PM by Luke_Miller
Rural Virginia, US
I am not aware of any Capture One plugins, but I 'm sure not an expert on it.
I use both Lightroom 3.3 and Capture One 6. Lightroom is my primary processor and digital assets manager. So everything I shoot is imported by Lightroom. Both Lightroom and Capture One perform non-destructive editing. That is, they do not change the original image. All edits are retained in a data base and applied when .tif or .jpg copies of the original are exported (Lightroom) or Processed (Capture One).
Capture One is a product of Phase One (the maker of high end digital backs) and was developed initially to process images from those backs. Since the use of those backs is in areas where accurate colors are essential, Capture One arguably produces the most accurate colors of any raw processor. That is why I have a copy. It produces the most natural colors (particularly skin tones) of any of the three or four processors I've tried. I find it particularly useful in extracting the best colors from my Leica M8.2, which (like the Phase One backs) uses a CCD rather than a CMOS sensor.
All that said, Lightroom is what I use 90% of the time. Lightroom (and ACR) color accuracy has improved with every iteration and is now quite good, particularly if you use the profile creation utility and a ColorChecker card to create a profile for your body.
Pluses and Minuses:
If you do selective editing of an image (adjust sharpening, saturation, exposure, etc. of only part of an image) Lightroom has much better tools. The one exception is color. Capture One allows you to use the full range of color editing tools on the selected area. Lightroom only supports the creation of a color filter to be applied to the selection. Version 6 of Capture One has just added the selective editing tools, and they are (except for color) more limited. I would say they are similar in scope to Lightroom's initial set several iterations back. I suspect Capture One will add to this capability over time. Currently Capture One has no counterpart to Lightroom's Gradient Tool, which I use a lot.
If you shoot with a CCD sensor camera you will experience moiré. Capture One has an effective tool for correcting moiré while Lightroom does not. Not normally an issue for Nikon shooters.
I prefer the manual lens correction tools in Capture One, but the lenses currently supported for automatic correction are all for MF bodies.
Levels and Curves - The Capture One tools are very similar to those in Photoshop, and thus different from their counterparts in Lightroom. I prefer Capture One's implementation.
High ISO noise reduction is far superior in Lightroom.
Digital asset management (DAM) - Lightroom serves very well in this capacity. Currently I have over 42,000 images cataloged and can quickly find any one of them with a few mouse clicks. Capture One does not have an embedded DAM capability, but Phase One recently acquired Expressions Media 2 from Microsoft and is working to integrate that product with Capture One. Currently you can move from one to the other, but it is a bit cumbersome.
Both products have very capable library features allowing you to create collections (virtual folders), apply ratings, and filter by ratings. Lightroom has much easier metadata filtering IMO.
Both do slideshows and web galleries (although Lightroom has many more features in both areas).
Both do printing, but Capture One supports soft proofing while Lightroom does not.
B&W - If you are into B&W imaging Capture One has significantly more functionality than Lightroom.
I have used Lightroom since Lightroom 1 Beta, so I am much more proficient with it than any other raw processor. I am much less proficient with Capture One, so it takes me longer to process a folder of images than it would with Lightroom. Capture One has a variety of user defined presets and styles that can quickly be applied to a folder of images just like Lightroom. You can apply the Automatic corrections to all with a single mouse click. I see nothing that suggests that there is an advantage here of one over the other.
If you fully exploit the functionality (i.e. use all the modules) of Lightroom you will probably see Capture One as a step backward (other than in image quality). If you primarily use just Lightroom's Develop Module (or ACR) you will find in Capture One a powerful and full featured raw processor that produces, IMO, the most accurate colors available.
I use it for "problem" shots where I just can't get the colors I want from Lightroom, for portraiture, and for my Leica shots.