Exposure

Exposure / Local Adjustment / Brightness / Contrast / Saturation

Use the Capture One Exposure tool to adjust exposure, contrast, brightness and saturation.

Video Tutorial - Exposure

Peter Eastway demonstrates how to adjust exposure and High Dynamic Range to get the most out of raw files.

Managing Exposure

  1.  Press the Exposure Warning icon to highlight areas of an image that may be overexposed.
    A (default) red color will fill any areas that may be over burnt out.
  2. Use Local Adjustments to alter the exposure if there are specific areas of an image that are overexposed.
  3. Use the High Dynamic Range tool tool to help recover loss of detail in highlights and shadow areas.
    The Highlight and Shadow slider will also affect all colors and shades.
    Start by trying to carefully recover the information (pixels) hidden in the highlights and then gently adjust the shadow tones.
    The Exposure tool will change the appearance of colors.

Tip: The Exposure tool will change the appearance of colors; so if you boost colors try setting the Saturation Slider (in the Exposure tool) to 25%-30% to ensure tones are not over saturated. 

Exposure
This slider is calibrated to provide a range of +/- 2.5 stops. It adjusts the exposure in a similar way to the controls on a camera.

Contrast
Moving the slider to the right increases contrast throughout the image. Moving to the left decreases contrast.

Brightness
Provides a tool to primarily brighten the mid-tones of an image. Move the slider to the left to increase mid-tone contrast or to the right to lighten shadow areas and reduce contrast.

Saturation
Increases or decreases saturation of an image. Decreasing the saturation will ultimately turn an image Black and White. This in turn will change the histogram from RGB to monochrome although the image will remain in a RGB color space as chosen by the output color space. This tool uses ‘intelligent saturation’ so it does more than simply affect normal saturation values.

The positive values (attained when the slider is moved to the right) are comparable to what 3rd party software often refers to as Vibrance. Vibrance is gentler to the skin tones and will be able to enhance, for instance, a blue sky without over-saturating the rest of the image. The negative values represent regular saturation settings.

Levels and Curve
Levels are used to control the overall tonal distribution of an image. Curves provide the ability to remap the area within the shadow and highlight limits that are set by the Levels tool, to produce a desired image.

To Adjust Exposure

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Exposure tool, use the exposure slider to adjust exposure up or down.

To Adjust High Dynamic Range Images

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the High Dynamic Range tool, use the Shadow slider to adjust dark areas and the Highlight slider for bright and over exposed areas.
  3. The Auto adjust button will provide a good starting point.

Adjust Input Levels Pro

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Exposure tool, use the Auto function or adjust by pulling the low/mid/highlight points.
  3. Individual colors and separate R, G and B channel can be adjusted, if necessary.

Adjust Input Levels Using Shadow and Highlight Picker Pro

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Levels tool, adjust by pulling the low/highlight points.
  3. IF needed, individual colors and separate R, G and B channel can be adjusted.

To Adjust Output Levels Pro

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Levels tool, adjust the levels by pulling the low/highlight points.
  3. Individual colors and separate R, G and B channel can be adjusted, if necessary.

To Adjust Curves Pro

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Levels tool, adjust by setting points, then pull/push the curve line.
  3. Curve points can be set using the curve point picker.
  4. Presets found in Manage Presets, can provide a good starting point.

Adjust Hazy images – Adjusting Micro-contrast

  1. Go to the Exposure tool tab.
  2. In the Clarity tool, use the slider to adjust micro-contrast.
  3. A positive value on the slider will provide increased contrast and a negative value will decrease contrast.

Learn More

The white point and black point pickers are best used with images that have been captured using controlled studio lighting in conjunction with a quality color chart. They can be used to precisely set the black and white points of an image.

Custom Target Levels (Output Levels)
Custom Target Levels extend the abilities of the Levels tool to control the output values and to reduce contrast in the image. This is particularly useful where an image has data in the highlight area that is in danger of clipping. Set the target level to the desired value and then use the picker tool to choose the area within the image that you wish to match that brightness level.

With conventional pixel based image tools, output levels are used to compress the tonal range of the image in order to fit in a smaller space, for example re-mapping highlight values of 255 to 245. Whilst this prevents clipping, it means that there is a sharp cut-off of image data, leading to a hard transition between data and no data when the image is re-opened.

Capture One Target Levels work in such a way that the tones are remapped, whilst avoiding hard transitions in highlight areas that result in more natural looking images.

Preferences allow these values to be set for every image in Pick Target Levels.

There are certain classic curves that are used in image applications to achieve specific photographic results. Best known is the S curve which is used to increase contrast in an image.
The S curve achieves the increase in contrast by pulling down the shadow values, normally on the quarter tones and increasing the values of the tones at the three-quarter tone mark.

 For advanced control, the Pick Curve point picker tool (p) can be used to pick a specific tonal area within an image. This value is added to the curve to allow adjustment of the values for that part of the image.