I'm new to the world of RAW photo processing. I've been doing it for a couple of years (All the cool kids DO it), but have only been using the RAW program that comes with Photoshop. I've experimented with all of the major programs and am just leveled by the amount of CPU cycles eaten up by these fucking horses of programs.
Adobe Lightroom, I'm being literal, sends my CPU to 100% with ANY ACTION. Any! It's absurd. I can only assume that someone operating on an old single-core cpu, although still running at 3.2Ghz, just isn't considered a legitimate market to Adobe.
DXO, Bibble, Capture One, the whole lot of them are similar. At least Bibble is a BIT faster. What the fuck! What ever happened to optimization? What ever happened to finding little tricks to reduce the CPU load? Why do I need a bloody server farm to process photos?
Capture One is a freaking nightmare. It creates cache folder EVERYWHERE, and never seems to store thumbnails. It always reloads photos when moving through a gallery. It's slow as a snail. How the hell is this worth $300? I'll tell you something, it's not. Not even close. It's not even worth pirating. Seriously, pirate something else.
Adobe Lightroom seems to be becoming my go-to program. Although, it's a lot slower than just running my raw files through Photoshop. Greater control; a butt-load slower. Lightroom tries to get you to use it as a full library and photo manager program... don't. It's slow as shit. Google's Picasa is free and it does a better job.
I can say from all of this is that if you're paying, get DXO. If you're pirating... well, still get DXO, but also consider Adobe Lightroom. Lightroom has an ENORMOUS problem in that it won't compensate for lens distortion. I have no idea what ganja Adobe is smoking to think that they can pass off a $400 program for RAW photos without any lens correction, but they're doing it. I would never buy Adobe. I'm kinda' sort of using it because I pirated it. Otherwise, DXO gets all of my love.
A shout-out to Noise Ninja, though. You should so get that.