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Author Topic: Best Way to Learn Capture One?  (Read 1078 times)

John Hollenberg

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Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« on: December 24, 2018, 03:09:12 PM »

I have had Capture One for quite a while (recently upgraded to version 12) but haven't really used it much being used to working in Lightroom.  Have always found it confusing compared to Lightroom.  I want to make a concerted effort to learn it and would like to know the best way to do so.  I know there are several resources:

--the Capture One Users Guide available from the program
--tutorials on the Phase One web site
--an ebook Photographer's Guide to Capture One 11: https://gumroad.com/l/RawCaptureGuide

I am sure there are many other resources and am hoping for suggestions on the best written resource to learn Capture One.

Thanks.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2018, 03:58:55 PM by John Hollenberg »
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Doug Peterson

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2018, 04:11:05 PM »

Not written, but once you've got the basics down, I highly recommend our Capture One Masters class taught in LA and NYC and occasionally elsewhere. 

kirkt

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #2 on: December 24, 2018, 05:33:53 PM »

There is an extensive written guide here (for v11):

http://alexonraw.com/capture-one-free-guide-1/

that gives an overview of the application and its individual tools, and links to various video resources in each subject area.  The author is selling preset styles, so you will see offers for them, but the guide is thorough and provides a nice introduction to the application and its concepts of image management, raw conversion, color correction and image processing.  You can also download the guide as a PDF if you do not want to scroll through the web page.

Kirk
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Dave Rosser

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #3 on: December 24, 2018, 05:47:25 PM »

You are on the right site, try here for instance.
There are other videos in the video section.
Dave
 

LeonD

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2018, 09:43:10 PM »

Capture One offers very good webinars on using Capture One.  And if you miss one, they are available on YouTube.  I believe they said one of the webinars in January was about switching from Lightroom to Capture One.

Also Marin Bailey has a couple of blogs/podcasts detailing when he went from Lightroom to Capture One.  Even though they one or two releases behind, they still are very helpful.
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IanSeward

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2018, 04:49:47 PM »

I have had Capture One for quite a while (recently upgraded to version 12) but haven't really used it much being used to working in Lightroom.  Have always found it confusing compared to Lightroom.  I want to make a concerted effort to learn it and would like to know the best way to do so.  I know there are several resources:

--the Capture One Users Guide available from the program
--tutorials on the Phase One web site
--an ebook Photographer's Guide to Capture One 11: https://gumroad.com/l/RawCaptureGuide

I am sure there are many other resources and am hoping for suggestions on the best written resource to learn Capture One.

Thanks.

This will be a long post - sorry.
There is plenty of tutorial info out there but just to give you an overview to orient yourself I have made a few comments that I hope you will find useful.
First important point: C1Pro is not LR.:-)
The philosophy of C1Pro is not the same as LR.  Trying to restrict yourself to just using familiar LR tools and techniques will not result in a good experience.  You need to learn the tools that aren’t in LR.
C1Pro is more like PS than LR.  LR was designed with a mind set of “anything but PS”.  Simple example is the way crop works; the opposite to PS and every other image editing program.  C1Pro uses a layer model (with opacity sliders) and makes use of levels (unavailable in LR) and curves.  The curves include a Luma curve which allows contrast to be varied without affecting colour – similar to using luminosity blending mode in PS.  C1Pro uses “standard” image editing commands so no sync settings et. just simple copy and paste.

Background Layer:
1.   Adjust white balance

2.   Exposure, Contrast, Brightness, Saturation, Highlights and Shadows to taste.  Note that the saturation slider in the adjustment tab works like a normal saturation slider if you move it negative but like the Vibrance slider in LR if you increase saturation. Use levels to set your black and white point if necessary.

3.   Add clarity and structure to taste.  Note that the clarity slider offers four types of clarity.  Natural is the default and I find it works well.  I find you can push C1Pro’s clarity slider far harder than the one in LR without breaking the image.  The structure slider does not exist in LR and is brilliant for defining texture like feathers, rock detail etc.  Experiment with this to understand how to use it.

4.   Fine tune the image with curves.  Remember that the UI in C1Pro is fully customisable you can design your own palletes with whatever tools you require in whatever order you like.  Just like PS when you need to do detail work with the curves tool you need a large curve tool.  Simply pull the curves tool out into a floating window (as for PS) and fine tune in comfort.  As well as the RG&B curve you also have the Luma curve.  Brilliant for tweaking contrast without affecting colours.  Try it out to understand what it does.  Remember the customisable UI?  Want to curves tools open at the same time  - no problem.:-)

5.   Colour adjustments are fantastic in C1Pro.  Use the Colour Balance tool for shadow, mid and highlight adjustment, great for colour grading an image.  Then we have the Colour Editor.  Basic is just there for compatibility with the free versions of C1, you want the Advanced and Skin tone tabs.  You need to look at specific video tutorials for the advanced colour editor.  Apart from the colour control you can make masks from the colour selection:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PebU2KTUcFE

6.   That is the basic adjustments on the background layer but the real power of C1Pro comes from the layered workflow.  Virtually all of C1Pro’s editing tools work on layers, the basic colour editing tab and the B&W panel are 2 tools that don’t work.  Curves, advanced colour editor, levels, clarity, structure, etc. do.  The layers have an opacity slider, so you can vary the overall effect of the layer to fine tune the effect.  When we are talking about layers, we need to discuss masks.  C1Pro has the expected brush, gradient, radial, luma masks etc. but remember you can also create colour masks in the advanced colour editor.  These masks can also be feathered and refined after creation, copied to different layers, inverted, filled and cleared.  Again, you need to look at the video tutorials that explain masking in detail to be able to use these tools effectively. 

7.   Want to soft proof an image?  C1Pro has one of the best soft proofing options (spectacle icon top right of main toolbar).  Remember that C1Pro uses ICC profiles so you need to enable an appropriate output recipe eg sRGB or printer profile to see how the output will be rendered.  No need to make a soft proof virtual copy just add a filled “print” layer, adjust as necessary and output the file for printing – I recommend Qimage Ultimate.:-)  Want to continue working on the file, simply uncheck the “print” layer.

8.   Odds and ends.  Difficult file? Under base characteristics change the curve to linear from auto.  Image will look bad, simply press the Auto adjustment button (big A on the main toolbar) and that will give you a starting point (using the Exposure, High Dynamic Range and Levels options only).
Want to see multiple images or process multi images?  Make sure the edit primary or all variant toggle is selected.  3 overlaid rectangles in the top menu bar – turns orange when selected.

Hope this helps.

Ian
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John Hollenberg

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2018, 12:37:28 AM »


C1Pro is more like PS than LR.  C1Pro uses a layer model (with opacity sliders) and makes use of levels (unavailable in LR) and curves.  The curves include a Luma curve which allows contrast to be varied without affecting colour – similar to using luminosity blending mode in PS. 

5.   Colour adjustments are fantastic in C1Pro.  Use the Colour Balance tool for shadow, mid and highlight adjustment, great for colour grading an image.  Then we have the Colour Editor.  Basic is just there for compatibility with the free versions of C1, you want the Advanced and Skin tone tabs.  You need to look at specific video tutorials for the advanced colour editor.  Apart from the colour control you can make masks from the colour selection:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PebU2KTUcFE

6.   That is the basic adjustments on the background layer but the real power of C1Pro comes from the layered workflow.  Virtually all of C1Pro’s editing tools work on layers, the basic colour editing tab and the B&W panel are 2 tools that don’t work.  Curves, advanced colour editor, levels, clarity, structure, etc. do.  The layers have an opacity slider, so you can vary the overall effect of the layer to fine tune the effect.  When we are talking about layers, we need to discuss masks.  C1Pro has the expected brush, gradient, radial, luma masks etc. but remember you can also create colour masks in the advanced colour editor.  These masks can also be feathered and refined after creation, copied to different layers, inverted, filled and cleared. 

7.   Want to soft proof an image?  C1Pro has one of the best soft proofing options (spectacle icon top right of main toolbar).  Remember that C1Pro uses ICC profiles so you need to enable an appropriate output recipe eg sRGB or printer profile to see how the output will be rendered.  No need to make a soft proof virtual copy just add a filled “print” layer, adjust as necessary and output the file for printing – I recommend Qimage Ultimate.:-)  Want to continue working on the file, simply uncheck the “print” layer.

Hope this helps.


Yes, it helps.  I understand the power of C1 with the use of layers.  Didn't know about the softproofing option.  In theory C1 seems like a much better option, but so far (which isn't very far, I admit) I am struggling to get the rough adjustments that I find easy to do in LR.  The fine tuning seems much more powerful and flexible.  I spent some time reading and experimenting with C1 but haven't made much progress yet.
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IanSeward

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2018, 05:14:35 AM »

Yes, it helps.  I understand the power of C1 with the use of layers.  Didn't know about the softproofing option.  In theory C1 seems like a much better option, but so far (which isn't very far, I admit) I am struggling to get the rough adjustments that I find easy to do in LR.  The fine tuning seems much more powerful and flexible.  I spent some time reading and experimenting with C1 but haven't made much progress yet.

Hi John

That is a little unexpected as the rough adjustments are normally easy.  I used LR since V1 and switched to C1Pro for the customisable UI and powerful edit tools.  A PS way of working is comfortable for me.:-)

Where are you coming from in LR?  Are you using Adobe Standard, the new chrome (which is Adobe's attempt to match C1 type default, or perhaps a Canon or Nikon profile that matches the jpg?

In what way are the rough adjustments causing an issue? Having gone through the transition from LR to C1Pro I might be able to help.

Ian
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David Grover / Phase One

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2018, 07:23:24 AM »

I have had Capture One for quite a while (recently upgraded to version 12) but haven't really used it much being used to working in Lightroom.  Have always found it confusing compared to Lightroom.  I want to make a concerted effort to learn it and would like to know the best way to do so.  I know there are several resources:

--the Capture One Users Guide available from the program
--tutorials on the Phase One web site
--an ebook Photographer's Guide to Capture One 11: https://gumroad.com/l/RawCaptureGuide

I am sure there are many other resources and am hoping for suggestions on the best written resource to learn Capture One.

Thanks.

Hi John,

Head to learn.phaseone.com.

Once in the Capture One section, filter to Getting Started so you can get a grip of the basics.

David

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Mike Guilbault

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2018, 02:08:29 PM »

I struggled learning Capture One coming from Lightroom as well. When I stopped trying to "do it like LR", it was much easier. Forget LR, and learn CO from the ground up. It'll be easier.
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Mike Guilbault

BartvanderWolf

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2018, 02:42:54 PM »

When I stopped trying to "do it like LR", it was much easier. Forget LR, and learn CO from the ground up. It'll be easier.

+1

Decide what you want to achieve, and use Capture One's tools to achieve it.

1. Achieve What (e.g. make parts of the image lighter)?
2. How to do it?

If you don't know what to achieve, it becomes difficult to pick the best tools, and there are often several ways of achieving the result you are after, some more efficient and others more accurate.

Once you get the hang of it, it might turn out that you happen to repeat certain operations for certain types of images. In such cases, you can think about creating Styles and Presets to get you in the ballpark with a mouse click, or already when importing the images.

Cheers,
Bart
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John Hollenberg

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2018, 05:17:16 PM »

OK, I figured out the best way for me to learn the basics in a way that sticks for me.  I started working on an image I had worked on in LR.  First thing I had to do was crop.  Couldn't figure out how to end the cropping operation and display cropped image without the cropped out portions so I did a quick google search.  Turns out that selecting another tool (like the Hand) does the trick.   Happened to be working on an immature great blue Heron that I got a photo of with a fish suspended in mid-air between his open jaws. I remembered about the Structure being useful for fur/feathers.  Looked up how to draw a mask with the brush tool.  Drew the mask on a layer on his feathers and added a little structure.  Fantastic improvement!  Annoyed that I couldn't change the brush size/hardness with the modifier keys used in LR, looked up the answer and found [ and ] and Shift-[ and Shift-].  OK, now we're getting somewhere.  When I wanted a starting point with Auto Adjust I was annoyed that clicking "A" only affected exposure.  Looked up and found that Control-L produced a very nice starting point.  Added a little bit of saturation.

I think this way of learning is much better than reading through tutorials because it is hands on and each time I find a way to do something I actually want to do at the time I am more likely to remember it.  Perhaps after I get the basics down I will go through the tutorials to pick up the finer points.

Improvements over LR so far:

1) I can change the zoom level while cropping  to get the exact crop I want (very important in this case because I had to crop 90% of the photo as my 100-400 zoom did not get me anywhere as close as I needed to be
2) Really like the structure command for the feathers.  Just had to dial in the right amount to get a nice improvement
3) Having the changes on a layer that can be modified by changing the mask or altering the opacity of the layer.  I found that I didn't miss having History as LR does.

Thanks to all who have given suggestions.
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IanSeward

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2018, 05:35:17 AM »

OK, I figured out the best way for me to learn the basics in a way that sticks for me.  I started working on an image I had worked on in LR.  First thing I had to do was crop.  Couldn't figure out how to end the cropping operation and display cropped image without the cropped out portions so I did a quick google search.  Turns out that selecting another tool (like the Hand) does the trick.   Happened to be working on an immature great blue Heron that I got a photo of with a fish suspended in mid-air between his open jaws. I remembered about the Structure being useful for fur/feathers.  Looked up how to draw a mask with the brush tool.  Drew the mask on a layer on his feathers and added a little structure.  Fantastic improvement!  Annoyed that I couldn't change the brush size/hardness with the modifier keys used in LR, looked up the answer and found [ and ] and Shift-[ and Shift-].  OK, now we're getting somewhere.  When I wanted a starting point with Auto Adjust I was annoyed that clicking "A" only affected exposure.  Looked up and found that Control-L produced a very nice starting point.  Added a little bit of saturation.

I think this way of learning is much better than reading through tutorials because it is hands on and each time I find a way to do something I actually want to do at the time I am more likely to remember it.  Perhaps after I get the basics down I will go through the tutorials to pick up the finer points.

Improvements over LR so far:

1) I can change the zoom level while cropping  to get the exact crop I want (very important in this case because I had to crop 90% of the photo as my 100-400 zoom did not get me anywhere as close as I needed to be
2) Really like the structure command for the feathers.  Just had to dial in the right amount to get a nice improvement
3) Having the changes on a layer that can be modified by changing the mask or altering the opacity of the layer.  I found that I didn't miss having History as LR does.

Thanks to all who have given suggestions.

Glad to see you are making progress, and sounds like an excellent capture to be working on:-)

I mentioned previously it helps if you understand the philosophy of a program.  The crop tool is a good example of Phaseone's "efficiency" philosophy.  Why have to press a key to exit the crop when whatever tool you touch next will do that job at the same time?  It is difficult when you are used to one program to change mind set.

Control L will auto adjust levels.  This is a tool that is not available in LR but is a standard feature of PS and most image editors.  By default the "Auto" adjustment, Big A in the top toolbar, should have been set to do this by default.  Might be worth checking by press and hold on the "Big A" and a drop-down list will appear with check boxes.  Of the 7 choices Exposure, Levels and HDR should be checked by default, might be worth checking.  There is also an "auto" button on many of the individual tools.

Once you have experienced the power and simplicity of a layered workflow it is hard to go back.

Enjoy.

Ian
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2018, 07:46:55 AM »

There is also an "auto" button on many of the individual tools.

And the clipping behavior of e.g. the Auto Levels can be tweaked in the Edit>Preferences under the Exposure Tab.

Cheers,
Bart
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John Hollenberg

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2018, 09:46:13 AM »

And the clipping behavior of e.g. the Auto Levels can be tweaked in the Edit>Preferences under the Exposure Tab.

Do you suggest a setting different than the default of 0.1%?
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2018, 10:49:31 AM »

Do you suggest a setting different than the default of 0.1%?

Hard to say for someone else's type of images, and image size. That's because 0.1% of a 40 MP is 40000 pixels, but less on smaller sensors, and it depends on whether they are typically clustered together or spread over the image. Also, makes a difference whether one shoots lots of Low-key or High-key images, and at which ISO setting and with which camera/sensor.

Personally, I tend to ETTR at base ISO, so I'm usually already close to highlight clipping, hence I use 0.0% there (I aim to retain accurate specular highlight color if possible, which is also why I use a linear curve response instead of a film curve response). Given the type of sensor and it's (lack of) dynamic range, I don't mind clipping the blacks a bit (say between 0.01% and 0.1%), as long as they're not clustered together. This can be combined with a Curves preset that lifts shadow detail a bit, which I have set as an import default Style.

These are of course starting-points in a parametric workflow, so nothing is lost, nothing is permanent. But it is closer to what I usually end up with, so it gives a faster first impression.

I also use default sharpening presets (as part of the Import Style) which allows to easily judge the focus quality, to help with culling, but I disable sharpening in my common output recipe because I can do a better job of that in Affinity Photo or Photoshop with FocusMagic and a luminosity blending layer to avoid clipping.

There is not 1 right or wrong setting, there are only workflow speedups that reduce the number of required manual adjustments.

Cheers,
Bart
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John Hollenberg

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2018, 04:22:29 PM »


Personally, I tend to ETTR at base ISO, so I'm usually already close to highlight clipping, hence I use 0.0% there (I aim to retain accurate specular highlight color if possible, which is also why I use a linear curve response instead of a film curve response). Given the type of sensor and it's (lack of) dynamic range, I don't mind clipping the blacks a bit (say between 0.01% and 0.1%), as long as they're not clustered together. This can be combined with a Curves preset that lifts shadow detail a bit, which I have set as an import default Style.

I usually shoot ETTR at base ISO, occasionally going to ISO 200 or 400 if shooting hand held so I will alter the highlight setting.

Quote
I also use default sharpening presets (as part of the Import Style) which allows to easily judge the focus quality, to help with culling, but I disable sharpening in my common output recipe because I can do a better job of that in Affinity Photo or Photoshop with FocusMagic and a luminosity blending layer to avoid clipping.

I assume you sharpen differently than the default in C1.  I would like to see your Import Style if you are willing.

Any other defaults you would recommend changing?  I am particularly interest in Noise Reduction setting.  Luminance noise reduction of 50 for ISO 100 seems over the top (unless the effect of 50 varies depending on ISO).

Thanks much for your help.

John
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2018, 05:28:44 PM »

I assume you sharpen differently than the default in C1.  I would like to see your Import Style if you are willing.

Sure, but this is a default for a specific camera and high-quality lenses often used at their technically optimum aperture, and as I said it's for checking focus quality (not Capture sharpening):

First, I make sure to apply the Lens corrections; Chromatic Aberration (Analyze), and Diffraction Correction. The CA correction already changes the Chromatic noise, depending on the amount of CA and the position in the image, and Diffraction Correction equalizes the sharpness differences between different apertures, making them easier to compare.

Second, for Sharpening, I use Amount 125, Radius 0.8, Threshold 0.1.

Third, for Noise Reduction, I use Luminosity 0, Detail 50, and Color 1, Single Pixel 0.

Again, nothing magical, but it aligns with my workflow for my main camera and subjects. Actual Sharpening and Noise Reduction (if any) is usually done as postprocessing outside of C1, but I also have some output recipes that do use C1 Noise reduction and Sharpening for a faster workflow.

Quote
Any other defaults you would recommend changing?  I am particularly interest in Noise Reduction setting.  Luminance noise reduction of 50 for ISO 100 seems over the top (unless the effect of 50 varies depending on ISO).

The C1 Noise reduction settings are specific for a Camera/sensor and ISO, so different models may require different amounts. And these defaults can be saved as (camera specific) presets.

Cheers,
Bart
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John Hollenberg

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2018, 05:59:34 PM »

Thanks Bart, very helpful.  I ran across something that is puzzling me.  When I click "Summarize" under "Edit Keyboard Shortcuts" I get a nice list.  However, there are some odd entries I can't understand.  For example, increase cursor size is listed as oem6.  What the heck is "oem" in this context?  I did a google search and found this question but the answer said "seems you don't have the default capture one keyboard set active".  Surely this is not a bug in version 12???

PS I have the default Capture One shortcuts selected.
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BartvanderWolf

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Re: Best Way to Learn Capture One?
« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2018, 07:00:45 PM »

Thanks Bart, very helpful.  I ran across something that is puzzling me.  When I click "Summarize" under "Edit Keyboard Shortcuts" I get a nice list.  However, there are some odd entries I can't understand.  For example, increase cursor size is listed as oem6.  What the heck is "oem" in this context?  I did a google search and found this question but the answer said "seems you don't have the default capture one keyboard set active".  Surely this is not a bug in version 12???

PS I have the default Capture One shortcuts selected.

Capture One facilitates several auxiliary input controls/consoles beside keyboards and drawing tablets. OEM in general stands for Original/Other Equipment Manufacturer.

Cheers,
Bart
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