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.CR3 File Extension

File TypeCanon Raw 3 Image File

3.3 (49 Votes)
CategoryCamera Raw Files

What is a CR3 file?

A CR3 file is an image created by select Canon digital cameras, such as the EOS M50 and EOS R. It may store uncompressed RAW image data exactly how it was captured by the CCD or compressed RAW (C-RAW) image data depending on the camera setting selected. CR3 files were introduced in 2018 with the release of the Canon EOS M50, replacing .CR2 files.

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Screenshot of a .cr3 file in Apple Preview 10
CR3 file open in Apple Preview 10

The CR3 format is based on the ISO Base Media File Format, and includes custom tags and the crx codec, which supports lossless RAW and lossy C-RAW compressions. If saved with lossy C-RAW compression, the image is roughly 40% smaller in size with minimal differences in image quality.

The Canon EOS M50 comes with the Digic 8 processor, which allows it to capture images in the CR3 format. Earlier versions of Canon digital cameras used the .CRW and CR2 format. The CRW format is based on the Camera Image File Format (CIFF) and the CR2 format is based on the TIFF specification.

NOTE: System-level support for CR3 images was introduced with the release of macOS Catalina (10.15) and iOS 13. However, there are Canon camera models that create CR3 images that are not supported by the macOS or iOS operating system.

How do I open a CR3 file?

Windows users can open CR3 files in Microsoft Windows Photos. If you have not already installed Microsoft's Raw Image Extension, Photos will prompt you to install the extension when you open your CR3 file.

Non-Windows users and those looking for more editing options can open CR3 files in Adobe Lightroom (Windows, Mac), Adobe Lightroom for iPad, or Adobe Lightroom Classic (version 8.0 and later) with the Adobe Camera Raw plug-in (version 11.0 and later) installed. You can also open CR3 files and convert them to other formats in Canon Digital Photo Professional (Windows, Mac) and Canon Digital Photo Professional Express (iOS).

Open and view .CR3 files with File Viewer Plus.

Programs that open CR3 files

Updated 2/1/2021

About CR3 Files

Our goal is to help you understand what a file with a *.cr3 suffix is and how to open it.

The Canon Raw 3 Image file type, file format description, and Mac, Windows, and iOS programs listed on this page have been individually researched and verified by the FileInfo team. We strive for 100% accuracy and only publish information about file formats that we have tested and validated.

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