Hello to all,
i have posted it at the facebook, but since there were a half dozen questions here in forum about how to optimally load OpenEXR files into Photoshop, i would like to add some of our development results for public viewing (even risking advertising, although it is a freeware ).

There is an everlasting problem in Photoshop: it does not allow plugin- or external developers to load an image with transparencies (considering alpha channel) and Layers at the same time. In other words, you can load a 3D Image, in this case OpenEXR, as
a) SINGLE layer with transparent background
b) layered image (diffuse, reflections, refractions, AO etc) but without Alpha (in the channel list)

This was the main discussion in the past in all exr<->ps topics. It is unfortunately the limitation of Adobe SDK, and i don't think they will update it soon (as i can see it lays around dead since 2013). We have done now some workarounds, i think most of limitations can be now somehow excluded...

You can get here a free, extensive Photoshop plugin for loading and saving EXR images: www.exr-io.com and use as you wish.

I have also put some tutorials at:

If you need for your Post-processing and editing in Photoshop advanced compositing features (render passes) then it may be helpfull.

Exr-IO supports all OpenEXR features and provides workflow optimizations for Photoshop:
* Open and save all channels of the OpenEXR file
* Support for Photoshop layer features like blending and opacity
* Deep data sample import
* Accurate support for chromaticities and color formats
* Support for OpenEXR display window specification
* Extensive load and save options
* Adobe Photoshop 32 and 64 bit versions support (Windows)
* Free of charge

thanks and if you notice something wrong or have new ideas for your workflow just write it down here, we need always inputs from 3d artists

Igor Posavec