Lightroom and ACR Versions + Compatibilities

Started Dec 20, 2012 | Discussions thread
suddie1215 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,818
Re: Thanks Everyone ... a follow up question ...

Jim F wrote:

... When one buys the latest full-install version of Lightroom, are you also getting the latest Adobe Camera Raw? Sorry if this seems basic, but I'm just a little uncertain from where the ACR plug in comes from.

No, you're not getting the latest ACR which is a plug-in for Photoshop.  But you're getting similar functionality built into a totally separate program - Lightroom.

I do understand that since my CS3 is out of date, I do not have a seamless way of getting a PSD file from LR4.x to CS.3.

Part of my confusion also stems from the fact that I routinely install camera raw updates as part of the Mac OS updates (just got one today). Doesn't LR see that? Or is LR "ignoring" any RAW coding in MAC OS?

The camera raw updates provided by Apple are solely for use by the operating system - these updates allow you to preview raw thumbnails or open the raw files in Finder and other software provided with the operating system like iPhoto.  They have nothing to do with Adobe Camera Raw software... with the exception of fixing major security issues, Adobe never provides updates for software once a new version is released.

The reason you get periodic updates for your operating system is because raw files are not natively recognized as image file formats by operating systems.  In other words, neither Mac nor Windows operating system have built-in raw codecs that will recognize and interpret raw files as they do other standard image formats like JPEG, TIFF, GIF, etc.

So whenever new cameras are released by manufacturers - and raw files a different for each camera - Apple updates the operating system so that it would recognize the files produced by these new cameras.

On the Windows side its the same except Windows users typically have to buy third-party codecs to get the latest updates. Many use FastPictureViewer Codec Pack to be able to see raw file thumbnails in Windows Explorer:

Windows periodically releases new codecs but not often in a timely fashion - for a while their raw codecs were not updated but recently they have been a bit better:

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