# FAQ overflow

## Great Answers to Questions About Everything

#### QUESTION

On this question a comment by Martin H says, that one should forget about the subfigure and subfig packages and use subcaption. As subfig replaces subfigure, no argument there.

I am currently using subfig for displaying my subfigures and quite content with it. So I am wondering, what the advantages of using subcaption instead would be or if and why the use of subcaption is generally preferable to subfig.

#### ANSWER

Pro subcaption:

• subfig's hyperref support contains bugs (which is clearly a problem of subfig and not of hyperref) while the subcaption package (hopefully ;-)) works fine with hyperref.
• The subcaption package offers enhanced hyperref support, \subref* will behave like \ref* (offered by the hyperref package), \autoref will work out-of-the-box, and the caption options hypcap= and hypcapspace= will work for sub-captions, too.
• The subfig package breaks the starred version of \ContinuedFloat offered by the caption package while the subcaption package does not.
• The subcaption package is more "in touch" with the caption package, supporting more common options like list=on etc., and offering similar commands to \caption, \captionbox, and the figure environment: \subcaption, \subcaptionbox, and the subfigure environment. (Please note that \captionbox is not avail yet but will be offered by the very next version 3.2 of the caption package.)
• Offers more ways to place and align sub-captions, e.g. \subcaption could be used to place a sub-caption (left or right) beside the figure.
• \subcaptionbox offers more optional arguments than \subfloat, e.g. for giving the box a specific width.
• Offers \phantomsubcaption for referencing without having a caption. (since version 1.1 of the subcaption package)
• Is supported by the bicaption package for typesetting bilingual sub-captions. (since version 1.1 of the subcaption package)

Pro subfig:

• The subcaption package needs the caption package while the usage of the caption package is optional in subfig. (The subfig package offers the option caption=false.) Because of that the subfig package could also be used with document classes which are incompatible to the caption package.
• The subcaption package does not offer top and bottom margins (yet) while the subfig package does. So when using the subcaption package one have to do the vertical spacing between sub-figures manually by using the \vspace command, \smallskip, \medskip, \bigskip, or similar.

Please note that I'm the author of the caption & subcaption package, so this list is far from being objective ;-)

But is the use of subcaption generally preferable to subfig? IMHO no, because the subfig package is a fine (and well documented) one, and if one is contented with the subfig package there is no need to switch.