Why I like Capture One over Lightroom?

As a wedding photographer working for the last 12 years + I can say no software is perfect for the human eye as the human eye is more powerful. Although we are looking for software which can give us what we want at least near to our visualizations. Year after year adobe product wins the race as for there new inventions and powerful software and an ecosystem they have created for photographers. 

Hi, my name is Sanjoy Shubro started my journey as a documentary photographer and now I am a full-time wedding and portrait photographer for more than 10 years. I am a curious person a bit technology-oriented person and I was using Lightroom and Exposure X for my wedding workflow. Both of this software has some good side and have some lacking. I prefer layer-based workflow as it gives me more flexibility to work with. Exposure X gave the opportunity to work with layers but Lightroom not. Since Lightroom is very powerful in a lot of fields like highlight recovery and shadow recovery but Exposure X is not. Although Exposure X is good for preset and film-based workflow more like final touch as a raw processor, it can never take first place to me. At this point, I take a shift to Capture one pro and never face back or get frustrated.  As a raw processor, it is the best in the market. it does what lightroom does but it has given me more flexibility and layer-based workflow that I am looking for so long. 

Nowadays I am using capture one pro with exposure x. 

Why Capture One Pro? 

To describe this I have to get dig into the photographer workflows first. I mostly edit wedding photos and there are thousands of photos I have to look at. So speed and all-around raw processing software for editing are a must. Capture one gives me that speed. I don't need to import photos as it takes a long time to import a huge number of photos. Before capture one I used to use Photo mechanic software for culling and selecting images first. But now I can do this thing within the capture one. This saves money also. 

Keyboard shortcut? 

In Lightroom, there are shortcuts but they are few whereas in capture one pro I can change any key to any command. This is a great and timesaving feature for me. I don't need to buy any other third-party software keyboard for this purpose like motibodo or Loupdek. Although at a first glance it seems complicated user interface for capture one when you get used to I am sure you will appreciate the interface. 

Level Tab

A level tab is a great tool I use for contrast and color correction some time. In photoshop I can use this tool but I am missing this tool in the lightroom. Capture one pro has this tool and thanks to the developer to think about the importance of this tool in the raw processor. This one tab can open more opportunities. I always use the auto level for correcting contrast. 

Color Balance Tab

Capture One has a color balance tool. Such an important tool for color grading moreover it has visual representation for complementary color. Color grading is an important part of m workflow. 

Skin and Advanced Color Tab

For correcting skin color skin tab and for specific color correction advanced color is handy tool for photographers more especially for fashion and portrait photographers. There is a huge opportunity to tweak your photos with this tool. 

Clone Stamp and Heal Tool

Both of this tool was there from the beginning but with the update now this tool works like champs. Both of this tool was not at all similar to the photoshop tool. But now with the update, these tools become so intelligent and powerful, I don't need to shift to photoshop for this tool now. This is a free update for capture one pro 20. 

Sharpness and Details

As a raw processor when I compare same photo in both raw processor engines like lightroom and capture one, I can see a prominent difference in the sharpness of the raw photo. Capture one shows more details in the raw photos whereas the lightroom doesn't. I am not a great lover of software sharpening but capture one gives me that details in the photos when I see my photos within the software. Maybe both software read the photo differently. 

Session vs Catalog 

Lightroom is catalog-based software and capture one supports both catalog and sessions. I like sessions because I don't need to import photos and it helps me to save time. For wedding photographers like me, time is money.  I can browse my photo directly from the hard drive and they are just ready to go. Catalog management and importing is a big pain in the ass for me. Although some people like the catalog system. Capture one gives you both. 

Process Recipe for Exporting Photos. 

In capture one, I can export photos in various sizes simultaneously. capture one needs to create the recipe for this and once I have created the recipe, I am good to go. No need to look back again. 


In the end, I still think there are lots of space for improvement for the capture one. The keystone tool has no auto feature like lightroom. The auto feature can be improved for all sliders. Also, it can bring some AI-based features like Luminar for portrait editor. Skin softening, blur tab are still missing. Hope capture one will bring those update soon and make the software all-around perfect. 

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