Seven years of experience also plays a role, LR is a program I know pretty well by now. Another factor is that C1 doesn't integrate in my workflow. I don't want to databases, and I try to avoid TIFFs, I have only RAW files. Yes, I know that C1 one has parametric capabilities and database, but I don't feel I would migrate my 75000 images from Lightroom to C1, so I stay with C1.
Jeff Schewe says that he can achieve the same image quality in LR as in C1, so I feel it may be better to improve my processing in LR than working with another product.
Regarding colour, I can achieve almost twice the accuracy on a ColorChecker with LR and DCP profiles on my P45+ compared to Capture One, using it's standard profiles. C1 one profiles are built for "film curve" but I don't want a film curve, using a linear curve the results are not as good.
One advantage I found with Capture One is that it produces less aliasing than LR 5, it is probably depending on the demosaic algorithm. Could be that LR is more addressed to OLP filtered images but C1 is more intended for non OLP filtered images? But C1 doesn't take away all the artefacts. I will look a bit into RawTherapee for difficult cases.
Another issue is that I am leaning very much towards DNG based workflow and Capture One doesn't support DNG well or not at all. I don't like proprietary formats, partially for ideological reasons. A practical aspect may be that I need DNG images for working with the profile tools and also that IIQ images don't work with RawTherapee. I embed the original raw in my DNGs and I can extract a bitwise copy if needed. I checked the bitwise stuff a couple of days ago.
I have been using C1 for something like 9 months I guess, and was never happy with it. Sometimes I positively hated it. Yes, it can produce good images, but I simply don't like it.
The main issues:
- Film curve
- Bad support for DNG
- Cannot handle DCP profiles, no easy to use tools for generating ICC based profiles
- No good integration in Lightroom (could perhaps be fixed)
- Lightroom 4 and later got tone mapping built into highlights and shadows, I use these facilities a lot. HDR controls in C1 one don't have tone mapping, also there are no 'HDR' options on layers.
- The P45+ I have is a bit challenged in DR compared to my Sony Alpha cameras, at least what I feel. C1 is a bit aggressive on noise reduction, something I observed, but this has not really been an issue for me.
- User interface issues
For someone that pixel peeps and frets as much over image quality factors as you do, Erik, I'm surprised that its C1 you threw away. I get consistently better IQ from C1 than LR4 for my phase and Leaf backs and better IQ from Phocus for my Hasselblad backs. Better IQ with C1 for my older DMR files too. I'm not convinced LR4 does anything better except sharpening with the detail slider and possibly NR for some cameras.