6 Replies Latest reply on Mar 21, 2015 7:21 PM by ChasLaird

    ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements

    ChasLaird Level 1


      I use Photoshop CC 2014 with Adobe Camera Raw for my RAW images, but a question occurred to me regarding ACR in Photoshop Elements.  I know that ACR has limited functionality in PS Elements in that it has fewer Tools and far fewer Image Adjustment Tabs compared to ACR in Photoshop CC 2014.


      I know you can’t make any of the missing ACR adjustments in Photoshop Elements, but can Photoshop Elements read, interpret, and display the correct image with any of those adjustments?  That is, if I make adjustments with ACR in Photoshop CC 2014, will ACR in Photoshop Elements correctly interpret and display the image?  I know you won’t be able to change any of these adjustments, but will Elements show the correct image?  I don't have access to Photoshop Elements so I can't test this myself.







        • 1. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Yes, Camera Raw running with Photoshop Elements will read all of the adjustments. That is why there are many users who use Photoshop Elements as the external editor with Lightroom. Lightroom has all of the extended functions that Camera Raw does when running with Photoshop. And all adjustments made using Lightroom transfer to Photoshop Elements.

          • 2. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
            ChasLaird Level 1


            Jim, thank you for your reply.  I’m not sure, however, that you actually answered my question regarding Photoshop Elements because the Lightroom example you gave is not applicable.  When you choose to edit with an external editor from Lightroom, Lightroom creates a file that has all of the adjustments baked in before the file is actually passed to the external editor such as Elements.  Elements, nor the Elements version of ACR, does not play any part in converting the file from Lightroom.  This is why with Lightroom you can use any external editor you want, regardless of if it understands anything about embedded Lightroom settings.  Photoshop Elements, however, would have to do all of the conversion for a file created with the Photoshop CC 2014 version of ACR.

            • 3. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
              ssprengel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Jim’s analogy of LR for PSCC/ACR is valid.


              LR and PSCC/ACR have the same wider set of raw adjustments.  If LR and PS/ACR are matched versions LR DOES NOT bake in the adjustments in a TIF file, it sends the adjustments to PSE and PSE calls ACR to render them in the raw file without any TIF file being involved.


              Of course if your PSE / ACR is older then LR has not choice but to render to TIF or PSD, first, but that is not the normal function.  So if that is your question, if my PSCC/ACR is newer and my PSE/ACR is a version older, then things won’t work and the older ACR with PSE will just ignore the adjustments it doesn't understand.


              An example would be if you have PS-CC/ACR 8.7 and PSE/ACR 8.7 the adjustments are completely compatible.  If you have PSE-CC/ACR 8.7 and PSE11/ACR 7.4 then PSE’s ACR 7.4 won't understand the Upright functions of the lens correction tab so those wouldn't be performed, but it has nothing to do with PSE’s limited UI it has to do with the ACR being older.


              If you want a more precise answer then include the precise versions of ACR being used by both PS-CC and PSE.


              The way to think about what happens with ACR in PSE, is that the plug-in file, Camera Raw.8bi, is exactly the same--you can copy it from PS to PSE.   When the ACR plug-in is hosted by PSE it hides some of the user-interface so you cannot make adjustments as compared to when it is hosted by PS, but the rendering engine is exactly the same.

              • 4. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
                ChasLaird Level 1


                Thank you for this very thorough explanation and my apologies go to Jim as his analogy is valid. Since I knew that Lightroom must bake in the settings and create TIFF or PSD files to pass files to an external editor like Perfect Photo Suite 9 that doesn’t know anything about Lightroom or ACR settings, I mistakenly assumed that Lightroom did the same when passing a file to Elements.  My bad. Now I understand that Elements can open a file with ACR settings as long as the ACR in Elements is the same or later version to that used to create the settings by Photoshop CC.


                My real reason for even asking this question was my curiosity about the following scenario. Say for some reason a person allowed his subscription to Photoshop CC to lapse. He would then no longer be able to open or print any of his raw files that had been edited with ACR and Photoshop CC.  My underlying question was would he later be able to open these files with whatever the most current version of Elements with ACR and still have all of the adjustments applied.  If I understand you answer correctly, this is indeed the case.

                I know that Lightroom can now still open files, even if the subscription is no longer valid. You just can’t use the Develop and some other modules.  This doesn’t apply to me as I don’t use Lightroom.  I’m not planning to discontinue my subscription to Photoshop, I was just wondering--what if.

                • 5. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
                  ssprengel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  Obviously Adobe could change how their licensing and programs work, but currently the data in the XMP file would be interpreted the same by whatever incarnation of Adobe camera raw engine is being used.   You could theoretically hand-edit the XMP files and render them with whatever software was still operational regardless of what program originally created the XMP file.


                  One question would be if your LR goes unlicensed can it still be asked to create an XMP file with the settings in the LR catalog database or is the data hostage in the LR catalog?  Adobe could restrict the writing of XMP files from the LR catalog if LR was unlicensed but I don’t know if they do.  It would be a reason to have the auto-write-XMP enabled in LR preferences.

                  • 6. Re: ACR Question Re Photoshop Elements
                    ChasLaird Level 1

                    According to Tom Hogarty at the Lightroom Journal section of Adobe blogs:


                    "With the latest update to Lightroom 5.5 I believe we’ve also addressed a lingering concern in the community: What happens to my photographs after my membership ends?  With Lightroom 5.5, at the end of a membership, the desktop application will continue to launch and provide access to the photographs managed within Lightroom as well as the Slideshow, Web, Book or Print creations that we know many photographers painstakingly create. The Develop and Map modules have been disabled in order to signal the end of the membership and the need to renew in order to receive Adobe’s continuous innovation in those areas. Access to Lightroom mobile workflows will also cease to function."


                    I wish they would do something similar with Photoshop and ACR, so you could still open, print, and export your files but not be able to make or change any edits.