I'll also reply to my own post with a smirk. I see I'm tagged a 'Community Beginner'. That may be so on this thread. However I have only been using Adobe products since 1994 and PS 2.5.1. So what would I know?
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Eh, it's me again. I simply couldn't stop digging, and today I found this page: https://helpx.adobe.com/camera-raw/system-requirements/2019.html where it clearly states that 11.3 and earlier versions require OpenGL 3.3 or later, but NOTHING about requiring DirectX. I don't know why Adobe adheres to saying OpenGL can be forced up to 11.3 (via preferred_system line), when it's clearly not the case. Adobe also states in their blog that OpenGL support was restored to ACR 11.4.1 - I tested it as well, but couldn't force it to OpenGL. I have to restate that my Windows 10 laptop uses a hybrid, dynamic switchable graphics - integrated Intel GPU, and dedicated AMD GPU. In switchable graphics settings, photoshop.exe is set to use AMD GPU - setting it to Intel GPU makes no difference. Perhaps ACR is confused by such configuration, since AMD GPU actually uses Intel GPU for final render-to-screen operations (that is, one can't function without the other)? Also, I have noticed that the problem started with 11.2, which introduced a complete overhaul of ACR preferences window. The question remains: Why ACR 11.3 can be forced to OpenGL on my Windows 7 computer and not on my Windows 10 laptop, when both Photoshop and ACR versions are exactly the same? Does Windows version play any role here, since Windows 7 doesn't have DirectX 12 so it has to use OpenGL? Until I find the solution, I will use ACR 11.0 on my laptop. Forced to OpenGL, of course - DirectX is so slow, it's borderline useless for brush adjustments.
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