Adobe and Capture One showcase different ways to take advantage of the cloud

Adobe and Capture One showcase different ways to take advantage of the cloud

The meaningful impact of cloud computing on photo editing was an amorphous topic when it was first introduced to photographers in 2013. Nearly a decade later, that’s changed, and two of the biggest companies in the editing space are showing how they can be leveraged to support… Photographers differently.

Meaningful cloud

When Adobe first announced Creative Cloud, it wasn’t entirely clear what the benefits would be for photographers beyond the ability to quickly download the software to any computer and share files through a Dropbox-like interface. That was it, and the move to a subscription service was a boon to Adobe’s bottom line.

For many, the cloud is just a term for online file storage, but both Adobe and Capture One have advanced to the point that what the cloud can offer extends beyond file storage, even if storage is still at its core.

It will only be several years after Adobe’s controversial switch from Creative Suite to Creative Cloud that the company will make some of the system’s benefits more apparent through cloud computing.

Adobe introduced cloud computing several years ago to solve hardware flaws at the time, says Brian O’Neill Hughes, director of product management at Adobe.

“In terms of computing power, our first forays here were with Photoshop Mix, many years ago, where mobile devices were able to offer content-aware fill, upright mode, and judder reduction,” he says. Petapixel.

These were desktop features that could run on underpowered machines by sending those process-intensive tasks to the cloud instead.

“We’ve been pushing what’s possible here for a long time now.”

Capture One recently launched its own foray into cloud computing, and the choices the company has made have been considerably more subtle, so much so that it had never written the word “cloud” in any of its marketing campaigns at the time of the announcement.

Different approaches to similar problems

Instead of starting with cloud storage or even cloud processing, Capture One focused its efforts on the collaboration made possible by the cloud.

Catch one says Petapixel They chose not to go the direct storage route because the need for cloud storage solutions was well solved by a number of services that many photographers already subscribed to such as DropBox, SmugMug, OneDrive, iCloud, and more. When Capture One chose to get into cloud computing in some capacity, it looked at what it could immediately offer to help workflows in a pandemic world while simultaneously keeping an eye on what its users wanted to see next.

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“Working closely with photographers, both in the studio and on location, we noticed the indiscriminate use of smartphones, cloud storage, video conferencing platforms, and general crowding around screens by all the different actors playing a role in the shoot,” Rafael Orta says. , CEO of Capture One Petapixel.

“By bringing Cloud and Mobile to Capture One, we are uniquely focused on removing friction from collaboration, making contemporary photography workflows more efficient and delivering the best images.”

This single focus is of course different from Adobe’s strategy. As a much larger company, Adobe has several irons in the fire at once and is developing them simultaneously. But even in how Adobe and Capture interact, the idea of ​​collaboration is different.

The ability to view a captured photo session or make editing changes in real-time from almost anywhere is a focus that seems uniquely designed for discerning photographers who use Capture One. Capture One doesn’t have a long-term storage option and doesn’t do any computing in the cloud either.

“We’re really excited about our vision of how cloud and mobile can be seamlessly integrated into photography workflows, providing photographers with a powerful creative and collaboration platform, helping them accelerate the shooting cycle to the final image without compromising quality,” Orta says.

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Adobe has a much larger product portfolio than Capture One, so what it does with the cloud is considerably more complex. In terms of photographers, in particular, there are some things that their cloud infrastructure has been able to offer that address similar issues from a different perspective.

Hughes says the company’s products, specifically Lightroom, still leverage the cloud in ways no other editing software does.

“Lightroom is uniquely powerful in how it stores, syncs, and edits original (full-resolution) files,” says Hughes. “Not only does cloud storage make these files easy to access from anywhere, but Lightroom enables full editing capability across platforms: iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Windows, and Web. You can access, edit, and collaborate (share, edit, contribute, comment) from and to anywhere.

Hughes also points out that how data is managed has been allowed to advance thanks to Adobe’s use of the cloud.

“Let’s look at this in a workflow,” Hughes says. “A Lightroom user has an iPad in their camera bag and is photographing a wedding. Not long ago, they would have had to have a card operator pick up SD cards and deliver them to the studio so they could start annotating, processing, editing and reviewing – quickly.

“Today, that user can import full-resolution RAW files directly to their mobile device; they quickly sync to the cloud over 5G and the studio (on the same Adobe ID) instantly accesses these files. Not only can they see, comment, report and review, but edits can begin.” Instantly, from the field, the studio, or both. All changes are synchronized instantly and, as always, non-destructive. This system dramatically speeds up not only the review process, but also the collaborative editing of full-resolution files.

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There are no right or wrong answers

Adobe is focusing a lot on letting photographers work with original files across a range of platforms, while Capture One is putting its efforts on workflow improvements that cater directly to helping photographers serve customers better.

Adobe and Capture One have different approaches to solving similar problems, but neither is right or wrong. Photographers should look to development courses like this so they can spend their time learning and growing within the editing platform they believe best suits their future needs.

Capture One app works on iPad
A very early look at the Capture One app for iPad.

This is one of many examples of the benefit of competition in the field of photography software. These two companies saw what was possible with the cloud, and each developed a unique way to serve photographers. As everyone continues to iterate, the future of the possible looks bright.

Today, having already developed its vision of cloud computing for photographers, Adobe is putting a great deal of effort into making its editing platforms easier to use for a wider range of people, hence the launch of Creative Cloud Express.

And while Capture One certainly has goals of increasing the number of people who want to use its platform, it’s clearly focused on its power users first.


Image credits: Header image elements licensed via Depositphotos.

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