Back in March 2007 I wrote this article where I compared the RAW processing of Photoshop, Lightroom 1.0, Aperture 1.5 and Capture One 3.7. The results of that test was that Aperture produced the best results but that overall Capture One was the best RAW editor. The disadvantage of Capture One of course is the fact that it has no file management capabilities which led to the conclusion that, if you had a Mac, Aperture was the best choice if you needed file management as well as RAW processing.
Digital cameras are more popular than ever and if you own one the chances are that you will have used or at least read about the RAW format especially as most new digital cameras now support this format along with more traditional formats like JPEG or TIFF. Much has been written about the advantages of RAW and so I won't spend any time explaining these benefits or how RAW works and instead will just summarise with the fact that with RAW you can unleash the full potential of your camera and retain maximum control over your photos from adjusting exposure and white balance etc after you have taken the photo to working with vastly greater tonal ranges and greater creative control over colour balances and the like.
Memory cards can be a hot topic among photographers with many staying loyal to one brand whilst others will buy whatever is available. What is for certain though is that it is often a case of 'you get what you pay for'. Prices for the same capacity memory card can vary wildly with differences of over £20 between the cheapest and most expensive, a difference so large than often you can buy 2 cheap memory cards for the price of one expensive one. Often you will read reports of cheap memory cards either being so much slower or unreliable with high failure rates compared to their more expensive counter parts but is that always the case?