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are they bigger than 10,000 pixels in one direction?
No, I've read about the 10K pixel limit, but this problem occurs with small files, too. I also read that it has s.th. to do with the way Silverfast writes tiff-files. Opening the file in CS3, making small changes and saving the file under a slightly different name does not help. I have no idea what this is, some scanned files open in ACR while others won't.
Macintosh or Windows? What versions of the applications and the OS?
Windows XP prof 32bit, Photoshop CS3, ACR 4.1
Sometimes Purging the Cache (from Bridge's Tools menu) for the particular folder that contains the non-opening Tiff will fix the problem.
Ann, I tried this, but so far it didn't help. Meanwhile I have found the other thread where you discussed this problem, but none of the suggested procedures worked for me. I like to use film, so the option in CS3 to work on tiffs in ACR seemed quite attractive to me. This is somewhat disappointing.
How big are your Tiffs?
There is definitely a limit to the size of file which ACR 4.1 can open but I am not sure exactly what that size may be.
Also, I work on a Mac G5 in OSX 10.4.10 so the problem may be connected to your platform.
Ann, the file size limit in ACR is the same as in Lightroom: 10.000 pixels in either direction. This would explain why I cannot open scanned panoramas oder files from 6x7 slides. Unfortunately I also encounter this problem with files as small as 7,22 MB. So far I haven't been able to work out what these files have in common. All were scanned with a Coolscan 2000 and Nikon Scan and more recently with a Coolscan 9000 and Silverfast.
I use NikonScan on a CoolScan 4000 and also Silverfast AI with an Epson 4990 and, mostly, the resulting Tiffs do open in ACR 4.1.
Or, if they don't open on the first attempt, using Bridge Tools/Cach/Purge this Folder does the trick.
I also scan using the software in stand-alone mode and not from within Photoshop if that makes any difference.
The files that wouldn't open in ACR on my machine were, in fact, bigger than 10,000 pixels long.
I know that SilverFast has a non-free upgrade for Ai but I haven't yet purchased it.
But, as I mentioned earlier, I am on a G5 Mac and Windows XP may behave differently.
I may have narrowed this issue down a bit.
If I use NikonScan to scan a whole batch of images, the software saves those files as Tiffs and writes them directly to the HD. These Tiffs always open in ACR 4.1 without problems.
However, if I scan only a single frame at a time, the scan opens in NikonScan itself and has to then be manually Saved As a tiff.
These files do NOT then open in ACR 4.1 until Bridge's Cache has been Purged for that folder.
It would seem that Tiffs must be being written to disk differently depending on whether they were scanned individually or in Batches in NikonScan?
Yesterday I did quite a bit of scanning and ALL of the tiffs open in ACR 4.1 without problems. These were scanned with Silverfast Ai Studio (Version 6.5.1r1a which is the most recent). I do not use NikonScan anymore because Silverfast allows me to calibrate the scanner and follow a color managed workflow. So far I have only scanned single frames, I haven't tried batch scanning. I tried both scanning from within PS and with Silverfast as a standalone application - no problem either way.
But still I cannot open older tiffs scanned (always single frame) with NikonScan. Purging the cache for the individual folder does NOT help - I tried several times. Since the Coolscan 2000 (sold) does not work with the most recent version of NikonScan I thought that maybe the old NikonScan version is not compatible with ACR 4.1. I sent my logfiles to Adobe, they answered really fast and said they cannot find anything wrong with my setup. They asked whether I could send them zip files of some tiffs that refuse to open in ACR - which I did last night. I'll keep you updated when they find out anything.
So far it looks like I have to rescan my older slides if I want to work on them in ACR. Though I still don't understand why purging the cache or making a small change and resaving the file under a different name never helps.
BTW: Thanks, Anne, for suggesting to use Silverfast as a standalone application. I find it's a much easier workflow - don't know why I never tried it before.
Just got an answer from Adobe. They opened the files and logged a bug. Now the ACR team is looking into it.
Do you know if the bug which Adobe logged is due to the way that NikonScan saves Tiffs when you scan only a single frame?
I actually prefer NikonScan's tools and interface to SilverFast's but I do use SilverFast Ai (still on v.6.5.0r 3b as I haven't yet bought v. 6.5.1r1) with my Epson 4990 for my larger-format negatives.
Virtually all of my film is color negative stock, taken under varying lighting conditions, and find that both NikonScan and SilverFast do an excellent job to produce scans from my negatives that need virtually no further over-all color correction in ACR or in Photoshop.
Anne, as yet I have no further information as to the nature of the bug. As I said before the files come from NikonScan in single frame mode. I do not know whether the different behavior on my machine (i.e. cache purging doesn't make any difference) is due to the fact that I am running Windows XP. I'll let you know as soon as I get any additional information.
With my old scanner I also liked NikonScan better than Silverfast. Now I have gotten used to the different interface and find Silverfast to be an excellent tool. When I said I preferred Silverfast for its CMS abilities I did not mean that I have apply a lot of color correction to my files, but I like to embed the right color profile (in my case ECI2RGB since I live in Europe) right from the start.
I hope the Adobe guys come up with a patch for our problem.
Anne and Gabriele,
I too am not able to open TIFF files in ACR 4.1, but my problem relates to all TIFF files, whether scanned or Graphics program generated. I have never been able to open any TIFF file in ACR 4.1 no matter what combination of preference settings (I am pretty sure that I have tried every possible combination ) I set in Bridge 2.1, ACR 4.1 and PSCS3 and no matter what size of TIFF file (ranging from 8-bit 5MB to 16-bit 120MB) or its source - even TIFF files generated by PSCS3 itself and regardless of the absence or presence of any known form of compression. I am using Win XP SP2 Pro, Intel Processor 2.4GHz with 2GB RAM and 200GB spare HDD space. I have tried Purging the Cache, compacting the Cache, junking and renewing both the PSCS3 and ACR 4.1 Preference files (cant identify the location or name of the Bridge 2.1 Preference file) and all without success. Anyone got any suggestions, please?
Ann and Gabriele,
Found this post by Jeremy Woodhouse (Post #1) at
From within Photoshop, go to File>Open As (he said "Open" but that does not work), select your image, select the format Camera RAW from the pop-up near the bottom left of the window, and let her rip. Not sure if it is possible directly from Bridge!
This works for me (allows me to open a TIFF in ACR 4.1) but it is an unsatisfactory workaround. I look forward to hearing of any response you receive from Adobe.
I have tried this workaround. The first time I got a "Program Error" and the next time nothing happened at all. Obviously different setups behave differently with regards to this problem.
Anne and Andrew: Maybe it would be easier for the Adobe people to identify the source of the problem if you too would submit zip-files of one or two of your tiffs? My contact was Julie Manley (email@example.com). She passed the files on to the ACR team.
Submitting a spectrum of TIFF files from different Users to Adobe is a very good idea. Unfortunately, the very smallest of my 16-bit TIFFs is 36.28MB which would in all probability not compress much and then either clog up or be rejected by Julie Manley's Inbox. I will however email her and ask her if there is a way to get some files to her, and whether in fact she wants them. Thanks for your response and suggestion.
Just to let you know, I have just emailed Julie Manley with my offer to supply example TIFF files.
I don't think that Julie probably needs a sample Tiff from me because Adobe probably have Nikon Coolscans and NikonScan so can replicate the problem at any time by just scanning a single image (as opposed to running a Batch Scan) because this seems to be 100% repeatable.
Gabriele and Ann,
After some helpful input from Julie Manley at Adobe (in response to my email) and a little trial-and-error on my part, I AM NOW ABLE, FROM WITHIN BRIDGE, TO OPEN ALL MY TIFF AND JPEG (AND .CRW RAW) IMAGES IN ACR 4.1 and, at my choice, with ACR hosted either by Bridge 2.1 or Photoshop CS3. In case it may assist you or others, the steps I took are set out below.
1. Start by clearing/unchecking/turning-OFF all options in Bridge, Camera Raw and Photoshop preferences which in any way relate to using or preferring Camera Raw for opening or editing JPEG, TIFF or RAW files. There are 2 relevant Tabs in Bridge (General (1 checkbox under Behavior) and Thumbnails (1 checkbox under Performance and File Handling)). Camera Raw has 2 relevant checkboxes (under JPEG and TIFF Handling) at the bottom of its single page of preferences. There is one relevant Tab in Photoshop (File Handling - in which you must clear 2 checkboxes under File Compatibility).
2. Close Photoshop and Bridge. Restart Photoshop.
3. Restart Bridge by holding down the CTRL key while double-clicking on its shortcut or the executable file itself. You will be presented with the Reset dialog displaying 3 checkboxes called: Reset preferences to factory settings, Purge entire thumbnail cache, and Reset to default Workspace. Tick all 3 boxes and continue with loading Bridge.
4. On my system, step 3 did not work first time around. So I closed Bridge and repeated step 3. The second time around it did work, and the option "Open in Camera Raw... CTRL + R" was re-enabled in the File Menu of Bridge and in the the right-click menu of the mouse (previously it had been greyed-out). Examination of the Preferences for Bridge, Camera Raw and Photoshop revealed that the only change in all 3 occured in the Bridge/Preferences/Thumbnails Tab, where the checkbox for "Prefer Adobe Camera Raw for JPEG and TIFF Files" was now ticked/turned-ON.
5. Steps 1 to 4 above resulted in the following functionality on my system:
(a) Selecting a JPEG, TIFF or RAW thumbnail in Bridge and pressing CTRL+R opens the file in ACR hosted by Bridge.
(b) Selecting a JPEG, TIFF or RAW thumbnail in Bridge and pressing CTRL+O opens the file in ACR hosted by Photoshop.
(c) Right clicking on a JPEG, TIFF or RAW thumbnail in Bridge and choosing "Open in Camera Raw" opens the file in ACR hosted by Bridge.
(d) Using the File Menu and choosing "Open in Camera Raw" obviously has the same result as (c).
(e) The best bit: Double-clicking a JPEG or TIFF thumbnail in Bridge opens the file directly in Photoshop.
(f) Double-clicking a RAW thumbnail in Bridge opens the file in ACR hosted by Photoshop.
(g) Shift + double-clicking a RAW thumbnail in Bridge opens the RAW file directly in Photoshop, by-passing ACR, and (as I understand it) by default converting the RAW file to a TIFF "on-the-fly" - although the file keeps the RAW file extension (.CRW or whatever) until you save it from within Photoshop.
6. This functionality suits me just fine, at least at the moment, as I do most of my editing of JPEG and TIFF images in Photoshop rather than ACR because Photoshop offers local editing as opposed to ACR's global-only editing. Interestingly, at least for Gabriele and Ann, something like 90% of my current work-in-progress consists of editing 16-bit TIFF scans of 35mm slides done with the Nikon Super Coolscan 5000 using NikonScan software. But every now and then, though I suppose it is really on a regular basis, I like to contrast my Photoshop results with what can be achieved in ACR - particularly with respect to White Balance and the group of Exposure controls, where ACR is really very good.
7. If your emphasis/workflow is based more on using ACR for JPEG and TIFF editing rather than Photoshop, however, and you would prefer to have JPEG and TIFF images open automatically in ACR (hosted by Bridge) upon double-clicking their thumbnails, then that can be achieved easily by adding 1 more entry to the Bridge Preferences. In the General Tab, tick the checkbox for "Double-Click Edits Camera Raw Settings in Bridge". This is a little misleading because it actually opens all RAW files in ACR (hosted by Bridge), whether or not they have had any previous Camera Raw settings applied to and saved with them.
8. No doubt, in true Photoshop tradition where you can get to a result by many different paths, there are other combinations of preferences in Bridge, Camera Raw and Photoshop regarding JPEG and TIFF file handling which produce the same or similar functionality to that set out in 5(a) to 5(g) above, but I have not stumbled upon, and am not in the least interested in looking for, them. What I now have finally works. Yipee!
Andrew, congratulations and thanks for your very detailed description. Unfortunately, this procedure does not work for me. I tried step 3 five times, it does not make a difference. Julie Manley emailed me yesterday, she hopes to get a response from the ACR team next week. I'll keep you updated.
The sample TIFF files provided are somewhat corrupt. It appears that Nikon's software is writing a "placeholder" Adobe Layers Data tag, with fake (invalid) data. Photoshop ignores this fake data and sees a file without layers. Camera Raw is getting confused by the fake Adobe Layers Data tag, and thinks the file has layers, and does not read it.
So this is really a bug in the Nikon software that creates these files. I'll add a work around to the Camera Raw code, but it will not be ready until version 4.3.
In the meantime, just opening the file in Photoshop and resaving should remove to corruption and get around the bug.
>So this is really a bug in the Nikon software that creates these files. I'll add a work around to the Camera Raw code, but it will not be ready until version 4.3. >
Thank you for confirming that NikonScan is, as I guessed, the cause of the problem.
Provided that you always scan a Batch (more than a single frame), you won't run into this problem.
It's a single-frame scans (which then opens in NikonScan (and needs to be saved to the HD from there) which seems to write the extraneous data to the files.
So until ACR 4.3 is ready, we should probably always scan at least two frames at a time regardless of whether we actually need the second one or not.
One other curious note. If you change the extension of a problematic tiff file to .jpg, it opens in ACR no problem. This is silly, I know, but I haven't been able to open tiffs in ACR, and if I change their extension, I can even open them in batches. Strange.
I'm having redraw problems in Bridge right now, but as soon as I can reinstall it I'll use Andrew's procedure to see if I can correct the problem. Not sure why Adobe made it so complicated to use ACR. I'd love to see a plugin for Contextual Menu Items in the OS X finder too.
We are experiencing a lot of the same problems working in the Bridge that are posted on Adobes Forum. We shoot raw files with both Nikons D2x and D200 cameras. The Bridge operates normally when working with D200 files, but has problems when working with D2x files.
I applied the Bridge CS3 2.1.1 update that is currently on Adobe's web site. This did not resolve the issues. I then tried Andrew Harts solution (#21 of 25 in the cannot open some tif files in camera raw) and this has seemed to resolve the issues.
That strange thing about changing the .tiff extension to .jpg did the trick for me. I scan in a batch of images with my Epson 3170 Photo, do a batch rename and change the extension from .tiff to .jpg. I then can open them all in ACR at once, work on each one to crop and do anything else needed, then select all the images and use the save file feature to save them as real jpgs (with highest quality).
Changing the extension from .tiff to .jpg does NOT change the file type at all. In the best scenario it might force ACR into opening the embedded JPEG preview, but it's still a monumentally bad idea.
it is possible, that those file *are* JPEGs.
You can verify it for yourself. Rename the file to TXT and open it for example in Notebook. If the first two characters are neither II nor MM, then it can not be a TIFF file. If it's JPEg, then the first characters are undisplayable; you will see probably JFIF close to the beginning, but that is not a required element of a JPEG.
Thanks Andrew, Bridge 220.127.116.11, ACR 4.3.1, & CS3 10.0.1 Now Work Properly
Looks like one can run into this 'tiffs not opening in ACR' issue with time.
Andrew, I simply followed your detailed instructions then retrieved the Open In Camera Raw from Bridge on the first pass by right clicking on a tiff file. Now, if I right click on the tiff file, I can open it in ACR and fix it.
For a while, trying to open tiff files saved by Photomatix Pro, that option was not available. After corrections, I can now take two CS3 created panoramas with different HDR settings, run them through Photomatix to get a tiff file, then use Bridge to open that tiff file and perform Bruce Fraser's Real-World single image ACR workflow.
Andrew and Julie Manley, I'm much obliged...
Glad we could help.
It seems, from reading the posts in this topic and other related topics in this forum, that ACR is very fussy about the kind of Tiff files it is prepared to recognise/open. I recently bought the Kodak Digital GEM Airbrush Pro for smoothing skin blemishes. This is a terrific Ps plug-in, producing much better results than any other method I have seen (and I have tried quite a few) but you need to mask out everything except the skin or it will strip grain from wooden backgrounds and smooth out detail in other areas of the image you may wish to preserve. I applied it to a number of Tiff portraits which ACR had previously been quite happy to open. I saved the results as Tiffs but thereafter ACR would not touch them. The fix, to allow ACR to open them from Bridge with Ctrl+R, was simply to open the airbrushed Tiffs in Ps (CS3) and do a Save As. Photoshop's Tiff save process must restore those attributes which ACR requires to recognise a file as a genuine Tiff. Wierd stuff!
I've been having the same problem with the 5000 ED scanner - but have just noticed a curious aspect to it - when I move the scanned files into a new folder (by drag and drop in bridge) then right-click the files, the 'open in camera raw' is now available. I guess that when this is done, bridge rebuilds the cache and is poss. an easy work around.
this sounds like a cache problem for that folder, point Bridge to the original folder with problems, in the menu go to tools - cache - purge cache for folder. If that does not work just dump the folder and create a fresh one for your original scans.
Thankfully all this advice is here in one place! I recently updated to CS3 plus updates, and today I found the same problem with Epson 2400 Scanner files not opening into Camera Raw. No matter how I would scan the images (i.e., through Photoshop, through Bridge, or through the scanner's program), the files would not open in Camera Raw from Bridge (or from anywhere else). Purging the Bridge cache did not seem to help. However, once the folder cache was purged, I went to Photoshop, chose Open As, chose Camera Raw, and the tiff opened readily in Camera Raw. I then tried moving the tiff files to a brand new folder. Once the files were in the new folder, the files opened readily in Camera Raw from within Bridge. I have not found, however, that the "right click open with" lists Camera Raw. For me on WinXP Home, the simpler procedures worked. This forum is a lifesaver! Thanks to all who have posted here.
Ok, update...I did not test the theories far enough. Seems that opening my scanned tiff files from Bridge will not work consistently, despite purging caches etc. However, so far, the most successful procedure for me is open the file using Photoshop, "Open With..." and choosing Camera Raw. I have not yet tried the lengthy purge and close for both programs. No time to do so today....
NikonScan software does a rather strange thing:
If you Batch-scan to Tiffs those Tiffs will open in ACR.
However, if you scan only a SINGLE frame, that Tiff will NOT open in ACR.
There is a work-around (or at least it works for me):
In Bridge, Duplicate the errant Tiff (Cmd. D) and trash the original.
The duplicate should now open in ACR.
I don't know if that trick will work with Epson-scanned Tiffs but you can but try.
I am having the problems described above regarding opening Tiffs in ACR created by Nikon Coolscan 5000 and Nikon Scan 4.02. The latest version of ACR does not seem to solve this problem but Ann's work around described above seems to work for me.
I am so glad to hear that it worked for you too.
After saving a HDR file to TIFF, adding a couple of layers, merging them together, so I had only 1 layer left, I had to use the command "flatten image" in order to be able to open the image in ARC