The Adobe Camera Raw filter is greyed out, how do I enable it?

I am using Adobe Photoshop CC 2015. I have a JPG file that I opened up in the Photoshop editor. In the layers panel I right clicked the layer and selected Convert to Smart Object. I then tried to go to:

Filter > Camera Raw Filter

..but this option is greyed out. Not sure why? Might it be that the image mode is incorrect? It is currently set to:

CMYK Color | 8 bits per channel

I hope someone can help me with my confusion.

  • You opened a JPEG, or is that a typo? If not, Camera Raw are for raw files, not JPEG. Raw is the format that your camera (assuming it can shoot raw files) stores images when set to RAW in the camera body's settings. You cannot apply a Raw filter to a JPEG file. – Gmck Jan 15 '16 at 15:44
  • 1
    @Gmck Camera Raw, despite the name, can operate on JPEGs. – coneslayer Jan 15 '16 at 16:44
  • @Gmck I bought myself Teach yourself Photoshop so I am working through the samples in the book. Yes they used a JPG for example. – Brendan Vogt Jan 18 '16 at 8:58

Camera Raw filter only works with 8/16-bit RGB images. Even if you're intending to print the image, I suggest you do your edits in RGB, then convert to CMYK in the final stages of editing. CMYK has a smaller colour space than RGB, so you'll have more colours out of gamut and shadows can be rather blocky.

Switch the image to RGB with

Image > Mode > RGB Color

you'll see the bit-depth lower down in the menu. If it's a jpg, switching it to 16-bit won't do anything useful as the information has already been lost in the 8-bit save.

Hope that

  • I bought myself Teach yourself Photoshop so I am working through the samples in the book. – Brendan Vogt Jan 18 '16 at 8:57

Just save the photo as PNG. Then open again so that in the file that you need it in then you may now use camera raw filter

  • 1
    Why would saving as PNG help? – scottbb Oct 20 '17 at 11:44

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