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Capture One FAQ

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This Capture One FAQ is a 10 minute read and answers your most urgent questions. Some answers contain links to other posts for a more in-depth view of the matter.

capture one FAQ, first aid helicopter

Capture One FAQ

There are a number of issues that many users of Capture One run into. Therefore it is time for a Capture One FAQ or Frequently Asked Questions!

This post lists the most common questions I am aware off and provides answers. I will keep it short and may  direct you to another post for more help.

#1-Can I Import From Connected Camera?

Q: When I connect my camera I can not import my images stored on its memory card, although my camera is shown as connected.

A: In general, Capture One does not import from the card in the camera. You need a card reader for that. Capture One uses the connection to the camera exclusively for tethered shooting. For more on importing read Importing Images Into Capture One.

Exceptions exist to this rule. My Sony A7 series camera can mimic a card reader and act like a mass storage device. I need to switch it back to PC Remote to allow tethered shooting.

#2-How To Process Multiple Images At Once?

Q: When I select a number of images to process, move or delete, only one image is processed (moved, deleted). Can Capture One act on the entire selection at once?

capture one FAQ, edit all selected variants

A: Yes. Look in the Edit menu for the feature Edit All Selected Variants and enabled it. You can also access the feature from the Toolbar (triple rectangle symbol) and via a shortcut key. For more read Capture One Variants.

#3-Can I Save To Memory Card When Tethering?

Q: When I shoot tethered, can I also save the image to the memory card in the camera?

A: No. When you shoot tethered Capture One does not use the memory card. Reason: saving to card is considerably slowing down the image transfer to the computer. For best results, use an empty memory card or no card at all if the camera supports shooting without.

In addition use sync software on the computer to create backups on the fly. For more on tethering read Capture One Tethering Explained.

#4-Is The Trial Feature Limited?

Q: I run Capture One Pro during the 30-day trial period. Sometimes tools do not seem to work. Does the trial also limits functionality?

capture one FAQ, capture one db versus pro, about

A: No, the trial is fully functional during the trial period. Make sure you run the Pro trial. Do not accidentally run as Capture One DB. Check the status from the About screen. For more on different running modes please read Capture One Modes.

#5-All Tools Are Greyed Out Or Have An Eye-Icon Or Crossed Pencil. Why?

Q: Since and update/upgrade all Tools are greyed out and I can not edit any image. The thumbnails show an eye-icon or crossed pencil. Where does this limitation comes from?

A: This can have several causes. Most often Capture One does not run as Pro. Other modes with limited file support are DB, Pro (for Sony) and Express (for Sony). Check the About screen. In Capture One Modes you find instructions to change the mode into Capture One Pro.

Another cause is that you view images in the Trash collection. Editing is not enabled here. Also very small and large files are not editable. And last, in macOS, you can not edit images on a memory card from your camera. You need to import first.

Important Notice:

If you plan to buy Capture One Pro, please visit the Ambassador page. It will save you money!


#6-My Trial Expired. Can I Ever Run A Trial Again?

Q: I ran a trial of Capture One in the past which has expired. Now there is a new version I like to try out. Can I run the trial again?

A: Yes. Capture One resets the trial counter with each major upgrade (for example from 10.x to 11.x) and each point update (from 11.0 to 11.1). Download and install the latest release and enjoy a new 30-days trial period. Note that a maintenance update (from 11.0 to 11.0.1) does not reset the trial counter.

#7-Some Images Are Cropped Automatically

Q: After import some images have a slight crop (some more the others) that I can not remove. Why is that and how can I avoid that?

capture one FAQ, disable default lens correction

A: The is due to automatic lens correction, which hides distorted areas. To change this behaviour go to the Lens Correction tool and open the action menu (3 dots top right). Select Disable Default Lens Correction. Note that this setting affects new imports only, not existing images. For existing images set the Distortion slider to zero (0).

#8-Can I Send A Raw File With Edits To Another Computer?

Q: I like to send some RAW files with Capture One edits to somebody else to work on it with Capture One. Must I send an entire Session or Catalog?

capture one FAQ, export, pack as eip

A: Select your image(s), go to File menu > Export Images > Originals and under Options mark Pack As EIP. More on Export please read Capture One Export.

#8-Does Capture One Support DNG Files?

Q: Does Capture One support DNG files, and if yes, fully or limited?

A: Yes, Capture One Pro supports DNG files in several ways. Mind the difference between native DNG (straight out of camera) and converted DNG (non-DNG format converted into DNG).

Capture One Pro fully supports native DNG files as any other RAW file format (for example CR2, NEF, IIQ). Capture One Pro also fully supports converted DNG files that include the original RAW file.

converted DNG file without the original RAW file is also supported but with some limitations. A generic DNG profile is used. Note that a camera must be supported in its native format to be supported as converted DNG file.

Please note that Capture One Pro does not support RAW files from other medium format cameras that are converted to DNG.

#10-Any Important Preference Settings?

Q: What settings in Preferences do I need to setup? Are there important Preference settings I should know off?

A: All default Preference settings are fine for 80% of users.

capture one FAQ, preferences, preview image size

In case you have a high density display (4K or 5K) you should review the Preview Image Size on the Image tab, Cache section. The default 2880 px might not be sufficient and an increase to 3840 or 5120 px is advised. For more on Preferences please read Capture One Preferences.

capture one FAQ, preferences, catalog backup

In addition, if you work with Catalogs, please set your backup reminder to Always or Once a day on the General tab, Catalog Backup section.

Important Notice:

If you plan to buy Capture One Pro, please visit the Ambassador page. It will save you money!


#11-How To Rename Or Delete A Session Or Catalog?

Q: How do I rename or delete a Session or Catalog?

A: Close the Session or Catalog (a.k.a. document) or close Capture One. Go to Finder (macOS) or Explorer (Windows), locate the document, and rename or delete it. After renaming, open Capture One and locate the document with the Open command the first time instead of the Open Recent command.

#12-Can I Browse Images Without Import?

Q: In Capture One can I browse a folder with images without importing?

A: From a Session, yes. Go in the Library tool to the System Folder section and browse to the folder with images.

capture one FAQ, session, system folders

From a Catalog, no. A Catalog needs an import to show you the images. For more on Sessions please read Sessions Explained and for more on Catalogs please refer to Catalogs Explained.

#13-What Is The Purpose Of The CaptureOne Subfolder?

Q: Where is the CaptureOne subfolder inside my images folder for?

A: The CaptureOne subfolder contains sidecar files that Capture One uses for two purposes: preview and thumbnail files (Cache folder) and setting files (Settings folder).

capture one FAQ, finder, captureone folder

For more on Sessions please read Sessions Explained.

Note that Capture One never write to your original files but stores every adjustment in a sidecar file, when working with Sessions. A Catalog stores the adjustments in the central Catalog database.

#14-My Workspace Unintentionally Changed. How Do I Get It Back?

Q: I miss a Tool or Tool Tab. I may have accidentally removed it. How do I get it back?

A: Go to Window menu > Workspace. Select your Workspace or the Default Workspace. For more on Workspaces please read Capture One Workspaces.

#15-Can I Use Capture One On More Computers?

Q: On how many computers can I use Capture One Pro?

A: When you bought a single-user license of Capture One Pro, you can activate it concurrently on three systems. A single-user license Capture One Pro subscription however you can activate on two systems.

#16-Can I start Capture One without a Session or Catalog?

Q: Can I start Capture One without automatically opening any Session or Catalog?

A: Yes. By default the program starts as it has ended when you closed it. It opens with your last document (Session or Catalog).

capture one FAQ, recents dialog

During program startup press the Option-key (macOS) or Shift-key (Windows). It starts clean with the Recents dialog. Now you can browse to open a Session/Catalog or create one new. You can also verify a catalog via the File menu.

This clean startup is also a great help when you have a document that crashes Capture One on opening.

 Your Question?

Still an unanswered question that maybe should be on this list? Let me know in the comments below. Thank you!

Before We End

I hope you enjoyed reading the blog and will get more out of your images with Capture One Pro! Do you like the blog, and like to save 10% on Capture One Pro as well? Visit our Ambassador page for the voucher code.

Ambassador-EN-banner-rectangle Next, link directly to Phase One where you can buy Capture One Pro with the voucher code. Like to try first? Download and run a trial for 30 days. Free and fully featured!

Thank you for reading. Please feel free to leave a comment. Like us on Facebook or subscribe to stay informed about new blogs and special offerings.

Best Regards,

Image Alchemist

12 replies
    • Image Alchemist
      Image Alchemist says:

      Hi Michael,
      RAW + JPG combo is not displayed as a single image, although Capture One can see them as pair during import (renaming with numbering). There is also the option of filtering either one.
      I use this combo only when there is a real benefit, otherwise, shoot RAW only as it in general slows down your workflow.
      Best, Paul Steunebrink / Image Alchemist

  1. Alan Boone
    Alan Boone says:

    There’s an internal Backup (essential) to the catalog . Should that in turn be backed up to an external drive, in case of crash? I seem to remember way back in my Lightroom days I did just that.

    Thanks as ever for your highly professional advice – there are those of us who depend on you.

    I dare say, your new mugshot is a success – much more Phase One / Capture One!!
    Sincerely, Alan

    • Image Alchemist
      Image Alchemist says:

      Hi Alan,
      Yes, the backup should end on an external drive for safety. Thanks for your encouraging comments, much appreciated.
      Best, Paul Steunebrink / Image Alchemist

  2. Toni
    Toni says:

    Hi – firstly great site and glad I’ve found it. I’ve been using Capture One for a while and recently upgraded to Pro 11. Somehow I’ve deactivated my mask brush. I can’t make any adjustments and though I can select size of brush etc, no ability to select area…no red highlight. I have no doubt I’ve accidentally hit a key stroke and deactivated. Any help in re-establishing would be appreciated.

    • Image Alchemist
      Image Alchemist says:

      Hi Tony,
      Check whether you run Capture One as Pro, not as DB from the About screen. Otherwise, contact me directly by mail or contact form.
      Best, Paul Steunebrink / Image Alchemist

  3. Marcus
    Marcus says:

    I just want to open D850 NEF files in Capture One 11 and do color enhancements along with color aberration corrections then export to a DNG with these corrections embedded! It appears that I can only output to DNG without changes? Please advise!

    • Image Alchemist
      Image Alchemist says:

      Hi Marcus,
      You are correct that you can not save adjustments when output to DNG. Would not makes sense by the way, as you can only use these adjustments in Capture One, not else, and then it is better not to use DNG. To pack adjustments with RAW file use EIP instead.
      Best, Paul Steunebrink / Image Alchemist

  4. Hollis Nolan
    Hollis Nolan says:

    I work 90% from a desktop at home, but occasionally make light edits, browse, and export from my laptop. I’m thinking a workflow with the Capture One catalog, or session folder in Dropbox would work?


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