We were the first to break the story about marked software-corrected barrel distortion with the Panasonic LX3, and since that time just about every small camera manufacturer has followed in Panasonic's footsteps. Using software to correct barrel distortion allows camera manufacturers to build fast lenses which are smaller and less expensive than they would be if optically corrected for distortion. Like other compact zoom cameras with fast lenses, the Sony RX100 has a lens which suffers from pretty severe barrel distortion which is then corrected by the camera. The leading RAW processing software Adobe Lightroom not only applies the same barrel distortion correction as the in-camera JPEG engine - it does so without any option to disable the distortion correction. The animated GIF below shows a resized version of the same RAW file processed in Adobe Lightroom (no barrel distortion) and Capture One 7 (barrel distortion left intact). As you can see, the distortion correction involves stretching out the edges and corners of the frame. The price to pay is a distinct loss of image sharpness at the edges/corners of the image. The default noise reduction and sharpening levels differ between Lightroom (LR) and Capture One (C1), so I tried to process them for reasonably similar center sharpness and noise. 100% center crop: As soon as you move out to the right edge, the relative sharpness of the two files begins to vary significantly: In the upper and lower right corners, respectively, the differences in sharpness are even more apparent: As you can see from the examples above, much of the reported edge softness of the RX100 lens is attributable to the effects of barrel distortion correction. The corner performance of the uncorrected lens is very decent. Moreover, LR seems to sacrifice more detail than necessary in the process of distortion correction. I can get better results processing with distortion intact and then correcting the distortion in a separate step in Photoshop. Many lenses which have less than optimal edge sharpness are much sharper without the mandatory corrections imposed by LR. The Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 Micro 4/3 pancake is such a lens, as are most Micro 4/3 wide angle lenses. For years I've been asking Adobe to turn on distortion correction by default by give us an option to disable it for those occasions where we can live with the distortion in order to gain either angle of view or edge sharpness. For the time being, I'll look to C1 when that need arises. A free trial of C1 Pro can be downloaded here.