What's Better for Tethering: Capture One Pro or Adobe Lightroom?

I've been a Lightroom user since the beginning of my career and honestly, I love it. It fits seamlessly into my workflow, and I couldn't imagine using any other raw processor. That is of course until I downloaded a trial of Capture One 11. I've heard people talk about Capture One, but I never thought much of it. After all, what's wrong with Lightroom?

Well, my main issue with Lightroom is how slow tethering is. It takes ages for the image to show up on my monitor and quite frankly, that doesn't look great when a client spends half their session waiting for images to transfer. The way I look at it, if Capture One can out perform Lightroom in the realm of tethering, it's worth a look. 

Rather than just taking other people's word for it, I decided to perform a simple comparison between Lightroom and Capture One to see which one is faster when tethering. Check out the video above to see the results. Keep in mind that your results may vary based on your camera, tether cable, and countless other variables. Don't take my word for it though, check it out for yourself. Download the fully functional 30-day trial of Capture One 11 and maybe you'll make the switch like me.

[via Readylight Media]

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Previous comments
Reginald Walton's picture

Man, I don't know what equipment people are using, but my LR doesn't take nearly that long to tether with either my Nikon or my Canon cameras. When I downloaded the trial version of CP1 months ago, I tested the capture process and didn't see a difference in speeds. I like LR b/c when I take the picture, it downloads it to my computer and to my camera's media. CP1 doesn't do that, it only downloads it to the computer. But to each their own.

Brian Schmittgens's picture

I've been using C1P since I first started shooting professionally. The girl I was shooting weddings with at the time used it, so naturally, that's what I gravitated towards.
It's the main reason I've been dragging my feet on buying the Fuji GFX 50S. I'm really hoping PhaseOne caves and starts supporting it soon, but I'm not holding my breath.


Capture one, hands down!

Capture One teathering just works. At least with my Sony it is 100% pain free. Rock stable.

Question for Capture One Users- But first my workflow in Lightroom
I take headshots for multiple people in company offices. Ill setup lightroom with the session name. This creates a main folder of the Company Name. Then I just press "New Shot"\Shift Command T and type in the name of each person. as they come in. Its so easy and organized. THE PROBLEM IS ITS LIGHTROOM, so it only randomly works when its in the mood to. Each update creates another problem (for instanceShift Command T no longer works to create a new folder.

Question: Can Capture one do this folder setup just as easy?

I also use Lightroom to email images directly after some tradeshow type shoots. Thats also awesome, but only when it works.

Dave Photographer's picture

Hi everyone,

This is going to stun you all, however after shooting strictly tethered since the Nikon D100 way way back, I had to find a solution for tethered shooting that gave me super super fast previewing. I wanted to see the shot on a larger screen than the back of that camera and I needed to see it fast. I used the capture software that came with the camera (Nikon Capture) and ACDSee Software.

I would wager that connecting your camera's generic capture software (any camera) and pointing ACDsee to the download folder where your capture software is placing the images will blow your socks off. It is way way faster than Lightroom and in actual fact I would suggest that it may be way faster than Capture one. My 2cents.

Best of all you can download and test this for free with your workflow and see if it works better with whatever system you have. I have been shooting for almost 20 years tethered and usually shoot extremely fast. Acdsee will display both raw and .jpg files as well.

If you would expand your test to this method and repost I think you will surprise your entire audience here.

Using the method above I can see images in 2 seconds or less.

They have a newer software called Smart Shooter however I have not yet tried this. I don't see why when 2 sec or less is fast enough for me **

Happy shooting!