Adobe is test marketing doubling the price of LR/PS. PhotoLab has a opportunity to increase its user base

Process your files on time and take control of your photographs, Platypus. No software is going to magically manage your digital archives and turn photos you neglected to process or even properly keyword at the time you shot them into hidden masterpieces. It’s Walter Mitty thinking. Of course DxO is concerned about selling software to whomever, so if it’s profitable to continue to mine “hope and change” they will.

The only software to whom any of us can safely trust our archives are well-organised file system folders. Anything else is both naive and reckless.

DxO almost shipwrecked on the One (which seemed like a good idea at the time: even with the One on firesale I can’t get my own partner to accept a One for free to use with her iPad as she doesn’t want to carry or add anything extra when taking pictures). This DAM project is a second Cape Horn for the company.

To survive, there’s two things DxO needs to do:

  • support new cameras on time
  • make the software run efficiently with modern camera files (40 MB+) and 4K monitors. The days of 1920 x 1080 monitors and 16 MP APS-C cameras are in the rear view and fading fast.

Once they get those two issues under control (new cameras is coming along, there’s hope at last), to thrive there’s two more important bits of business:

  • catch up on colour. The colour tools in PhotoLab are okay – unless you compare them with C1. Honestly the Hue/Saturation/Lightness palette in PhotoLab 2 is hopeless in comparison to C1’s Color Editor tool.
  • keep up with new lenses. It’s very frustrating for photographers to miss out on the best features of PhotoLab if it takes DxO three or four years to support their new $2000 best of class lenses. No pro photographer will put up with that.

I use mainly established mainstream Canon glass and shoot a lot of vintage manual lenses so the latest lenses not a burning issue for me, but it sure would be for someone buying premium new glass.

Without more pro photographers on board, it will be difficult for DxO to build long term buzz. Pro photographers will go where the software will allow them:

  1. to work faster (work days are long for photographers)
  2. to produce better work

The automated tools and preset editor help with working faster, but a constantly spinning “Correction Preview” with every change, along with no real time feedback on sliders takes all of that away and then some.

Better work is possible thanks to noise reduction: finding DxO PhotoLab has allowed me to continue to shoot Canon for low light sports and enjoy using my Canon cameras including the 5DS R as I know I won’t be stuck fighting chroma noise for hours on every low light image for publication. But pro photographers mostly don’t shoot in really low light – they are in venues or studios where there is adequate or excellent light most of the time. They work with colour. The PhotoLab colour tools just are not good enough to woo pro photographers away from C1.

This is an easy fix: just copy the C1 colour tool mostly as it stands. PhaseOne took the three way colour corrector design straight out of Davinci Color Corrector (not the recent Resolve version but the Renaissance back in the late eighties and nineties). It’s how advanced colour correction is done and not patentable any longer (any patents would have expired by now).

Once DxO gets those core parts of its existing business under control, there’s space to go Grail Questing. Unless DxO’s new game is the Skylum game of selling half-broken vapourware with lots of marketing promises and little delivery. It seems to be working financially for Skylum but their window is closing as they become well-known among photographers as con artists and MLM marketers and not software developers.


I agree with your priorities for DxO, but for quite different reasons. I’m one of those who uses a DAM (IMatch, which uses open standards for metadata management, such as keywords). But I know people use many different ways to manage their images.

1 Like

Neofinder has a twin on Windows:


1 Like

Not quite sure how iMatch works (meaning to try it) but if it’s using open standards and keeping your images in well-named folders accessible by the file manage, with XMP files stored with each image, iMatch is simply a helper, like FastRawViewer is for me. I have no issue with DAM which helps. DAM which clutches and grabs files and stores its data away from the user is an issue. The half-baked DAM inside C1 (catalogues, not sessions) or Lightroom both qualify as bad DAM. Both by design attempt to make the photographer dependent on having a current/the latest version of their software on all machines to even access his or her files.

Though I loved Aperture, it was also bad DAM, in this sense. It was very difficult to get your files or any information out of Aperture and it behaved fairly badly with referenced files. Although it was good at finding them again, unlike C1.

Neofinder is in a way an ideal long term photo management tool/DAM helper. I own it for different reasons – archiving hard drives and files – but will try using it as a DAM this week. Neofinder leverages the file system and the search within the OS to do its magic. Your images and the information about them do not disappear into an abyss. Moving your files outside of Neofinder (in C1 or Lightroom you should never move your images outside of C1/Lightroom) is no problem. Just re-index the folder/drive.

PS. I’ve significantly added to/edited my first comment above as it was written and published quickly the first time before going out.

I am hesitant to commit to PL2, though I like it. Slow to add new cameras/lenses (better part of a year and I still have no support), confusing focus. Luminar overpromised and underdelivered a DAM. It is not easy to do, and if DxO goes down this path without more resources, things will only get worse. Focus on doing one thing well (DxO not quite there) and THEN add things ike a DAM.
Let’s face it, if you want the full Monty, go with LR. No one else has the resources to match them. That said, for me, Photo Mechanic (and now PM6 Plus with upcoming catalog feature perhaps) is sufficient. i think the “need for a full-fledged” DAM is over-rated. I find I rarely use it in LR to any great extent. This is the equivalent of FOMO or needing to carry every piece of equipment you own when you go out in the camera gear world (Fear of Missing Out).
Please, DxO, get things together in the raw processing world first.