How to open Pentax 645z DNG files in Capture One Pro (Mac-only tutorial)

How to open Pentax 645z DNG files in Capture One Pro (Mac-only tutorial)

Yes, this short post will show you how you can open and tweek your Pentax 645z DNG files in Capture One (involving some tampering with the EXIF data). But don’t get your hopes up too much. At least with me, Capture One often crashed with with the DNGs from the 645z. And the color looks just not quite right out of the box. But it’s a start.


  1.  This only works with DNG files, so don’t shoot PEF!
  2. Download and install exiftools, a free open-source perl tool to do the EXIF tampering:
  3. Make sure your DNGs (and optionally JPGs) are all in a folder with no other photos or files in them
  4. Open your terminal and navigate to that folder, e.g.
    cd ~/Desktop/myimportedDNGs
  5. Change the “camera model name” field from “Pentax 645z” to “IQ250” using the following command
    exiftool -model=IQ250
  6. Open CaptureOne and move the tampered DNG files into a new session. The default settings will be way off, but like I said, it’s a start

Let me know in the comments, how this worked for you. Are there any CaptureOne functions not available at all or crashing the software with these tampered DNGs?

Windows users: exiftool is available for Windows as well, but the command might look slightly different. Check the documentation and don’t ask me ;-).



  1. James · October 11, 2014

    I work primarily in the studio and I’ve just purchased the Pentax 645z which will arrive next week. As a 645z user yourself, do you know anything about tethering with this camera? There is a software called image transmitter 2 but at the moment it is unavailable in Europe. My last camera was a canon 5d mark 2 and I alway tethered with Capture One Pro. It will be a shame to leave that software but we only used it to review our pictures on a monitor and to select the better shots, so no big deal anyway. Everything else we do in Photoshop. I really look forward to playing with this camera early next week, thanks for your time.

    • admin · October 11, 2014

      Hi Shannon, congrats on your 645z, I got mine just 2 weeks ago and enjoy almost everything about it. In the studio I’ve almost always shot tethered as well, either from 6D to the iPad, or from the Hasselblad directly into Phocus. I’m not a Capture One Pro user though. I just ran a couple of tests using a free trial version to see wether it would be an option for the workflow of the 645z. A long-time C1 user on the pentaxforum ( told me that C1 strong suit is that it knows exactly what the camera’s performance is at each ISO and reacts to that. Since ISO 100 on a 645z does look differently to ISO 100 on a IQ250 back, the results are very different and as you can see from the example pic above, not very satisfying. So I don’t thing C1 is an option for us. What’s the option? The Image Transmitter 2 is now availabe in the UK, but they don’t ship it outside. Lightroom doesn’t know about the 645z, as matter of fact, it no Pentax cam is supported there apparently, not even the K-Series bodies. CamRanger doesn’t support the Pentax 645z either. What’s left? The FluCard. I bought it and tried it a little bit last week. It’s VERY slow, but as it is the only option right now, I’ll work with it some more for now. I imagine the Image Transmitter 2 software will be available soon, now that UK already has it. But browsing through the user manual of the software, I don’t the the impression, I’ll be overly thrilled by it – the UI looks very badly designed. So tethering, unfortunately remains a problem to this date.

      • admin · October 11, 2014

        PS: Image Transmitter 2 seems to be available in the German Ricoh store as well. For Switzerland, the product is listed but not yet directly available. I’m expecting it’ll just be days now…

  2. James · October 11, 2014

    Thanks for the info. I will get the image transmitter 2 when it’s available again. Ricoh customer support will get back to me next week to tell me when it is. I also read the user manual and yes you’re right, it’s doesn’t look great. But i’m hoping with the software you can create a hot folder so the pics will land in there and Lightroom will pick them up. I heard that is possible but slow. I also have been looking at a Japanese program called Silkypix which supports 645z, so i’ll give that a shot too. I just need the pictures on a monitor to review them and then to make the selection to a separate sub folder. Shouldn’t be too difficult right?! Thanks for the link too, i’ll have a look through the forums now.

  3. Stephen Devries · December 19, 2014

    I am trying to get this to work, and when I run the command as you say, it says No file specified

    MacBook-Pro:~ stephendevries$ cd ~/Documents/PENTAXc1
    MacBook-Pro:PENTAXc1 stephendevries$ exiftool -model=IQ250

    There are files in the said folder. What might I be doing wrong?

    • admin · December 19, 2014

      hmm… do you have the right folder. add the following command after the first one:
      it should list all the .dng files in this folder. Maybe you need to go a folder deeper…

      Good luck

  4. Nicolas Claris · November 24, 2015

    Hi there!
    Nice and interesting blog…
    I’ve done some trials and comparison with image Transmitter 2 and flue card on my own blog, you may have a look there:
    Hope it helps!

    Kind regards

    • admin · November 24, 2015

      Salut Nicolas,

      superbe je vais le lire ce soir ton blog. Je trouve que flue card n’est pas satisfaisant, mais de toute façon les fiches sont vraiment lourde pour transmitter. Donc pas de surprises là. Bonne chance avec ta photographie et ta camera splendide!


  5. Lisa May · July 7, 2017

    That is what I don’t like about CaptureOne Pro ! It doesn’t support RAW!!! I have Pentax camera and I love shooting in RAW It contains the direct image data from the camera sensors with no loss of quality and alteration and when you transfer the images to DNG they lose on quality.

    • admin · July 7, 2017

      Hi Lisa, CaptureOne does support RAW of course. Just not for certain cameras – i.e. cameras which are direct competitors to PhaseONE. It’s understandable, yet frustrating too.

  6. hub · October 14, 2019

    It is important to understand that for hardware and software to work well with each other, camera manufacturers have to work close with post-processing software companies in order to have full, proper support. Unfortunately, this is where camera manufacturers have always continuously failed, making it extremely frustrating for software companies to be able to support them. Camera manufacturers think they are better off bundling their own proprietary software with their cameras, but all they do is end up creating unusable trash that nobody wants to use. Nikon has been pushing its buggy Capture NX-D (which is something it forced all Capture NX2 users to switch to after Google acquired Nik Software ), Canon has had its useless Digital Photo Professional software for a while and just when I thought that Sony was the smart one with its Capture One partnership, it has also recently announced the development of its own post-processing software called Imaging Edge Software Suite . And the worst of them all by far in my experience has been Sigma s Photo Pro software, which for a while was pretty much the only software tool that was capable of reading Sigma s RAW files. I remember sitting with my friend who invested in a Sigma SD Quattro, wondering what a heck he was thinking when he picked that camera, since none of the post-processing software I was familiar with could open those super detailed RAW files. It was a very frustrating experience and I am thankful that Sigma finally decided to implement DNG support in its Quattro cameras, so that one can use any software that can read DNG files.


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