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Subscription Pricing--and now what?

andix

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After 10 years of LR, starting from the first beta, it's now time to switch.

The subscription model and force to use their cloud is a clever move to make more money with the existing customer base. But this is not future proof for me, as I don't want to get locked in. (plus price is at least 3x p.a.)

A quick test surprised me already. Both C1 as well as DXO seem to deliver superior image quality compared to LR6.13.
That's a good start! But I struggle with the workflow so far, especially DXO seems to be comparatively slow.

So:
CaptureOne or DXO, or other options? Thoughts?

Many thanks,

Andi
 

tspear

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Andi,

I have played with Capture One and DXO. Both default to brighter and higher contrast, which for many is more pleasing to the eye. Adobe has chosen to default to a much more neutral state for the image, but this can be adjusted via presets.

Anyways, since I had already renewed my subscription in the fall; I am taking my time and deciding which way to jump, or even if I am going to jump.

So far, I am enjoying playing with iMatch for digital asset management. Looking at Excire for some additional meta-data enhancements, and Excire is already planning on adding some features I want in 2018, so that may be a good fit for meta-data. Have not decided on what I would do for editing for this solution.
Otherwise, my leading contender is darktable.org It is missing some meta-data related functionality I want, but that could be solved with the application of a little money. :D

DXO really excels at the camera/lends correction but tends to be more on the global level versus the local level. Not sure if just my bad camera technique; but I tend to more local corrections than global.
Capture One I just found confusing, not just the interface for some reason, but the directions were not very helpful. The application really is a folder based file browser (think Adobe Bridge) which has dreams of grandeur. The end result, I found the workflow capabilities more of a distraction than useful.

ACDSee is still on my pending list to evaluate. CyberLink also (they have been adding capability and trying to move up to the "pro" level). Macphun Luminar and looks interesting if you are always shooting in the same location (e.g. portrait studio) since they super focused on presets. Have not taken the time yet to actually give a spin/trial.

Tim
 

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You are not forced to use the cloud. You can choose to use the cloud if you wish to. I am on the plan, the software is on my system like LR6 was, I edit on my desktop, all my files and catalogue are stored locally. PS as well. I don't use Bridge so I never installed it.

There are two ways to the cloud. The plan comes with an installer app and you can choose what you want to install. That app has a "Sync Files to CC" option which I did not activate. LR CC is cloud storage based. You don't have to install if you don't want to. I didn't install it. Again your choice.

LR CC version 1 is not the same as LR Classic CC version 7. LR CC is a new product. LR Classic CC 7 replaces LR6 and the previous plan version LR CC 2015.
 
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tspear

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You are not forced to use the cloud. You can choose to use the cloud if you wish to. I am on the plan, the software is on my system like LR6 was, I edit on my desktop, all my files and catalogue are stored locally. PS as well. I don't use Bridge so I never installed it.

There are two ways to the cloud. The plan comes with an installer app and you can choose what you want to install. That app has a "Sync Files to CC" option which I did not activate. LR CC is cloud storage based. You don't have to install if you don't want to. I didn't install it. Again your choice.

LR CC version 1 is not the same as LR Classic CC version 7. LR CC is a new product. LR Classic CC 7 replaces LR6 and the previous plan version LR CC 2015.
That was a funny link. And there have been a few threads on here about what CC is or is not. For example here is one: Is Lightroom Classic end-of-life?

Getting back to the discussion....

Tim
 
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Zenon

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I have even read about how Adobe dropped the ball on how they named the new products. Confused the masses they did and the naming should have been crystal clear. That was on another respected forum and the member would not let up.

Here is my take.

Let's pick them calling it LR7 CC. Here is my take on the reaction. "What does that mean? Is it a stand alone like LR6? Why not, LR6 is? What a stupid name. How was I supposed to know that? What is Creative Cloud? Do I have to use the cloud? I bet I do because CC is in the name." :)

I imagine Adobe had a few meetings and probably concluded no matter what they called it, it would have not gone well. The bomb was dropping LR6 perpetual. I was in manufacturing for over 30 years. 3 take overs and 3 plant mergers. You know what I learned. No matter what you say or how you do it - people don't change and some never get over it. The last one was in 2005 and I retired in 2012. My best friend and shooting partner still tells me today how the company is out to get everyone. It's probably because he owns a Nikon :D

Frankly I'm no LR expert and ask the simplest questions but it only took about ½ of research to figure out everything so I prepared myself for the installs. By the time I got to purchasing a few days later LR had already corrected the new version un-installing the old version. Actually was that a mistake or did people just not click on it to choose an option? I don't remember what the option looked like but it was there. I guess it was not easy to spot.

The new names didn't and don't bother me at all except having to write out LR Classic CC every time and I have done it a lot. I'm on a few forums and if I got a dollar for every post explaining the facts about the cloud where you are not forced to use it and Adobe won't go Don Corleone and hold your images ransom if you don't pay up I'd have have a new camera by now. ;)
 

tspear

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@Zenon
In short, Adobe via the name change, the lack of features I gave a flying fart about, the fundamental point is Adobe has signalled they are going in a direction where I see little value.
If you want more details, please enjoy reading the thread I linked too.

Tim
 

PhilBurton

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Andi,

I have played with Capture One and DXO. Both default to brighter and higher contrast, which for many is more pleasing to the eye. Adobe has chosen to default to a much more neutral state for the image, but this can be adjusted via presets.


Capture One I just found confusing, not just the interface for some reason, but the directions were not very helpful. The application really is a folder based file browser (think Adobe Bridge) which has dreams of grandeur. The end result, I found the workflow capabilities more of a distraction than useful.

ACDSee is still on my pending list to evaluate. CyberLink also (they have been adding capability and trying to move up to the "pro" level). Macphun Luminar and looks interesting if you are always shooting in the same location (e.g. portrait studio) since they super focused on presets. Have not taken the time yet to actually give a spin/trial.

Tim
About Capture One. On the Photo Supreme forum, there are lots of reports about C1 does not properly preserve existing metadata for an image.

Phil Burton
 

Zenon

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@Zenon
In short, Adobe via the name change, the lack of features I gave a flying fart about, the fundamental point is Adobe has signalled they are going in a direction where I see little value.
If you want more details, please enjoy reading the thread I linked too.

Tim
Actually I don't care what anyone uses. I also tell people if $10 a month is too outrages, you don't like the product, you don't like or trust Adobe, you believe there are better products out there then don't get it.

Adobe doesn't need my help. I only respond when I read misinformation about the cloud. There may be people who want to stay with LR because of the DAM, want the new features, etc or people who have never used it want to check it out but are not comfortable with the cloud.

Outside of that I'm not devoted to Adobe or will try to convince anyone that they should use it. I have not gone down path and I never will. I just believe people should make informed decisions, not based on internet rumours.
 

andix

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These are not the main problems with the CC.

Some of the key issues are:

1. CC doubles (or more) the price
2. They (Adobe) can tie you into their system
3. Adobe controls your data, images
4. CC doesn't offer any e2e security (like AWS would, i.e., local encryption, you keep the key)
5. 2018, the option not to replicate in the cloud will be dropped (mandatory, best to my knowledge)
...
 
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2. They (Adobe) can tie you into their system
3. Adobe controls your data, images
5. 2018, the option not to replicate in the cloud will be dropped (mandatory, best to my knowledge)
What makes you think that? The new cloud-native Lightroom CC app is a cloud client, so yes, it syncs everything to the cloud, but you can keep a local copy too. Lightroom Classic continues to hold everything on your computer, and continues to be developed as a desktop-focused app.
 

tspear

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These are not the main problems with the CC.

Some of the key issues are:

1. CC doubles (or more) the price
2. They (Adobe) can tie you into their system
3. Adobe controls your data, images
4. CC doesn't offer any e2e security (like AWS would, i.e., local encryption, you keep the key)
5. 2018, the option not to replicate in the cloud will be dropped (mandatory, best to my knowledge)
...
First one may be valid depending on how you purchase software and what software you purchase. In my case, you underestimate it, it worked out to effectively almost tripple for me.
Second has been true since Lr 1.0 Beta. Non-destructive or parametric editing by nature will almost always tie you into a solution. The possible exception is an opensource tool, where in theory you could own the code.
Four might be a valid critique, for those that use Adobe cloud and do not want it exposed to the public.
Three and five, gimmie proof.

Tim
 

tspear

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Actually I don't care what anyone uses. I also tell people if $10 a month is too outrages, you don't like the product, you don't like or trust Adobe, you believe there are better products out there then don't get it.

Adobe doesn't need my help. I only respond when I read misinformation about the cloud. There may be people who want to stay with LR because of the DAM, want the new features, etc or people who have never used it want to check it out but are not comfortable with the cloud.

Outside of that I'm not devoted to Adobe or will try to convince anyone that they should use it. I have not gone down path and I never will. I just believe people should make informed decisions, not based on internet rumours.
If you did not care, you would not have posted. https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/duty_calls.png
And what is almost worse, is the link you provided was full of such spin and crap.
And each company thinks, oh ten bucks. You can afford ten bucks a month. Now you add up Netflix, Cable Premium, NFL Package, Landline phone, Extra data on cell, cell phone financing, Lr Photography plan.... you suddenly find that a good portion of your income is going out the door. Personally, I have better use for that money.

Anyway, getting back to alternatives. Are there any options I am missing?

Tim
 

tspear

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About Capture One. On the Photo Supreme forum, there are lots of reports about C1 does not properly preserve existing metadata for an image.

Phil Burton
Oh, thanks for the info. That is a deal killer for me.

Tim
 

Zenon

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If you did not care, you would not have posted. https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/duty_calls.png
And what is almost worse, is the link you provided was full of such spin and crap.
And each company thinks, oh ten bucks. You can afford ten bucks a month. Now you add up Netflix, Cable Premium, NFL Package, Landline phone, Extra data on cell, cell phone financing, Lr Photography plan.... you suddenly find that a good portion of your income is going out the door. Personally, I have better use for that money.

Anyway, getting back to alternatives. Are there any options I am missing?

Tim
:cry:
 
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4. CC doesn't offer any e2e security (like AWS would, i.e., local encryption, you keep the key)
While I tend to offer my photos to anyone who asks anyway, this has bothered me from the beginning, as does the lack of any obvious integrity checking in the various paths your photos take (card to disk, while sitting on disk, disk to cloud, bit-rot in the cloud, cloud-to-device for edits, device back to cloud). Maybe they are all there, but an Amazon service like AWS would have several white papers detailing the integrity checks, and more than likely exposing them in an API/SDK where one could make use of them for validity checks.

While Adobe uses Amazon for storage, I think, the absence of any public engagement in the file integrity and security aspect to me is a concern; it's all "Trust Adobe".

And I'm not sure which is more of a concern -- that Adobe doesn't offer it, or that most photographers seem to care less about file integrity assurance even in their day to day local usage.

And... that they have access to your photos is right in line with the default behavior being "we can use your photos for our AI development" that I think is the default unless you opt out. And your opt out is also a "trust adobe", you don't control the security they do.
 

PhilBurton

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While I tend to offer my photos to anyone who asks anyway, this has bothered me from the beginning, as does the lack of any obvious integrity checking in the various paths your photos take (card to disk, while sitting on disk, disk to cloud, bit-rot in the cloud, cloud-to-device for edits, device back to cloud). Maybe they are all there, but an Amazon service like AWS would have several white papers detailing the integrity checks, and more than likely exposing them in an API/SDK where one could make use of them for validity checks.

While Adobe uses Amazon for storage, I think, the absence of any public engagement in the file integrity and security aspect to me is a concern; it's all "Trust Adobe".

And I'm not sure which is more of a concern -- that Adobe doesn't offer it, or that most photographers seem to care less about file integrity assurance even in their day to day local usage.

And... that they have access to your photos is right in line with the default behavior being "we can use your photos for our AI development" that I think is the default unless you opt out. And your opt out is also a "trust adobe", you don't control the security they do.
When I really think about my options going forward, several things come to mind:
1. I am much more concerned about integrity and control of my images than pricing. Advantage: Desktop software.
2. I really do want some of the new features in LR 7, even though it means giving up a perpetual license. Advantage: Adobe.
3. Lightroom's overall value includes the vast ecosystem of plug-ins, which has no equivalent with any of the other non-destructive editors. Enduring advantage: Adobe.
4. While the pricing of some LR alternatives seems attractive, the lack of DAM capability is a significant issue. Advantage: Adobe.

Photo Mechanic first promised a full DAM around 2010. Have they released it yet? Doing a full-on DAM is not a quick project, else Adobe's competitors would have done one already. And I've been around enough software projects to know that good, richly-featured software requires significant time to develop.

So for the foreseeable future, I am committed to LR. I may not like the numbers, but Adobe needs to make a profit to stay in business, and I do want them to stay in business over the long term. So it's only a matter of time until I sign up for LR 7 desktop. (Probably when Victoria' book is ready.)

Phil
 
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Photo Mechanic first promised a full DAM around 2010. Have they released it yet?
No, and I think 2010 is about 3-4 years later than I remember, Phil.

John
 

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So:
CaptureOne or DXO, or other options? Thoughts?


Andi
I ran Capture One in Parallel with LR for many years, through CO V7. It is a good raw processor, and handles skin tones better and easier, imo, than LR. But since I don't shoot a lot of portraits, that never entered into my decision process. I found I can get equally good results with either CO or LR, and in about the same amount of time.
What really bothered me about CO was it's lack of a working Catalog, and Phase One's inability to get Media Pro to work. If Media Pro fullfilled its promises and potential, I might still be using it. However, Media Pro could never show me what a processed RAW looked like.

My workflow, after I have culled and rated, takes me back and forth between the Library and Develop - and LR does it seamlessly.
From what I have read, the current catalog built into the latest CO is still quite basic and limited.
I don't think any of the DAMS coupled with other processing software would work as well. I want to see my processed raw without having to export it simply to see it in a catalog.

What finally drove me to a full time use of LR CC was the inclusion of Photoshop. I had used Elements for years, but was wanting to make the switch. Basically, I fine tune all of my "best" photos in PS, and the "Edit in" process, followed by a "Save" in PS back to LR is quite good.
 

PhilBurton

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I ran Capture One in Parallel with LR for many years, through CO V7. It is a good raw processor, and handles skin tones better and easier, imo, than LR. But since I don't shoot a lot of portraits, that never entered into my decision process. I found I can get equally good results with either CO or LR, and in about the same amount of time.
What really bothered me about CO was it's lack of a working Catalog, and Phase One's inability to get Media Pro to work. If Media Pro fullfilled its promises and potential, I might still be using it. However, Media Pro could never show me what a processed RAW looked like.

My workflow, after I have culled and rated, takes me back and forth between the Library and Develop - and LR does it seamlessly.
From what I have read, the current catalog built into the latest CO is still quite basic and limited.
I don't think any of the DAMS coupled with other processing software would work as well. I want to see my processed raw without having to export it simply to see it in a catalog.
For a while, I was going to use the Photo Supreme DAM together with LR, because I thought that PSu had some features that LR's DAM did not. The PSu forums are filled with people's problems with going between PSu and various RAW processors. For LR, if I recall, the problems were around flat vs. hierarchies of keywords. For CO, the major problem was metadata corruption.

In any case, either a DAM that also has some image display features or a RAW processor that also has some DAM features involves significant workflow. Combine the two in one workflow, and it's more work, not less. That to me is one of the advantages of LR, that is has both a fully featured DAM and RAW processor.

Phil Burton
 

PhilBurton

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No, and I think 2010 is about 3-4 years later than I remember, Phil.

John
John,

Was it earlier? Senior moment on my part. Then more so the point that doing a DAM is hard.
 

tspear

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John,

Was it earlier? Senior moment on my part. Then more so the point that doing a DAM is hard.
Actually it really is not that hard. I have built large multi-user systems to manage TB of digital assets with complex workflows, routing....
It really just boils down to a few things. Solid requirements, a good vision, understanding data driven systems and couple of developers and testers. e.g. Just look at iMatch, a single person company that actually stays ahead of Adobe from a pure asset management perspective.

Tim
 

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I ran Capture One in Parallel with LR for many years, through CO V7. It is a good raw processor, and handles skin tones better and easier, imo, than LR. But since I don't shoot a lot of portraits, that never entered into my decision process. I found I can get equally good results with either CO or LR, and in about the same amount of time.
What really bothered me about CO was it's lack of a working Catalog, and Phase One's inability to get Media Pro to work. If Media Pro fullfilled its promises and potential, I might still be using it. However, Media Pro could never show me what a processed RAW looked like.

My workflow, after I have culled and rated, takes me back and forth between the Library and Develop - and LR does it seamlessly.
From what I have read, the current catalog built into the latest CO is still quite basic and limited.
I don't think any of the DAMS coupled with other processing software would work as well. I want to see my processed raw without having to export it simply to see it in a catalog.

What finally drove me to a full time use of LR CC was the inclusion of Photoshop. I had used Elements for years, but was wanting to make the switch. Basically, I fine tune all of my "best" photos in PS, and the "Edit in" process, followed by a "Save" in PS back to LR is quite good.
That is why I stuck with LR/PS. I gave CO a good trial and I found I could do just as good with LR and I'm picky when it comes to sharpening, downsizing and resampling. Hard to tell the difference at the end. I did find that like Canon's DPP, CO's sharpening is far more aggressive overall than LR so you have more careful.

If I had not had the option to not use cloud I more than likely would have chosen CO. When I was considering it based on what I read, the timing of my purchase may have been outside the range of getting the latest update for free. Looking at another $100 6 weeks later.
 

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John,

Was it earlier? Senior moment on my part. Then more so the point that doing a DAM is hard.
I wonder if that explains it...or that it's de rigeur in marketing to say you are making one when you're not. As Affinity did. Macphun/Skylum claims they've got one coming.

Back to alternatives, if you want something in the same price range, tough ask. I'd say IMatch is the best alternative organizationally I've seen. Photo Mechanic is great at inputting metadata, not so hot at finding stuff and sending to other apps. Bridge is pretty good and free.

Luminar hasn't been getting rave reviews, and the latest version esp on Win seems rushed out. But they hustle out and repackage software at a rapid pace. I don't find their filter/tool panel setup very useful myself, and although I have it I won't be upgrading to the new version. Affinity Photos is a more mature and capable program. Aftershot Pro is often available discounted in bundles (at least on macOS). DxO is very good IMHO, esp with the acquisition of Nik's stuff.

I liked Capture One but for the organizational stuff, but I left it a while ago. Since then it's gotten better, like finally getting hierarchical keywords, but still lags Lr. But great for studio/session work, and liked more by I think portrait shooters for that reason. Pricey.

You can cobble something together, but the devil is in the details. For example, I rely on the publishing features of Lr quite a bit now. Some of the alternative apps can barely export, and don't even do some of the other stuff I now take for granted in Lr/Ps. So just depends on what tools you need specifically. Most all of 'em can adjust a RAW...that's the easy (and marketable) part.
 

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Actually it really is not that hard. I have built large multi-user systems to manage TB of digital assets with complex workflows, routing....
It really just boils down to a few things. Solid requirements, a good vision, understanding data driven systems and couple of developers and testers. e.g. Just look at iMatch, a single person company that actually stays ahead of Adobe from a pure asset management perspective.

Tim
Tim,

So maybe a Lightroom competitor will acquire iMatch? :D

I'm not saying that writing DAM software is rocket science. It isn't. But I can tell you that getting the requirements right, for a range of users with different needs and different skill levels, and then producing something easy to use for all users, that isn't so easy. I've looked at iMatch, and to be honest, I'm put off by the "idiosyncrasies" that you find in all one-person software companies. (No different with Photo Supreme.) And what happens if he gets hit by a bus?

Phil Burton
 
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