Canon RAW Viewer

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Best Canon RAW Viewers to View CRW and CR2 Photos on Windows and Mac

The RAW file format is a favorite option for photographers. When you shoot with Canon DSLR camera, you should get the CRW and CR2 RAW photos within the SD card. How do you view Canon RAW files on your Windows or Mac, or even manage and edit the files with ease?

For the Canon RAW files include the information files, which cannot view the photos directly within the default photo browsers. What are the best Canon RAW viewers to browse the CR2 or CRW photos? Just find the details from the article now.

Canon RAW Viewer

Part 1: What are CR2 and CRW Files?

CR2 and CRW are the RAW formats for Canon digital images. It is TIFF-based, and able to preserve more details from your camera’s sensor than JPG. The CR2/CRW files record the original white balance, exposure, and detail among other photo components.

Since Canon’s RAW files contain so much unprocessed data, they are pretty large. On the other hand, it means that RAW files offer much higher quality than compressed images.


The biggest benefit of Canon RAW file is the excellent quality. It makes sense that it contains all of the image information from the sensor. That leaves more space to create the end photographic result that you desire. It allows you to adjust your image color and appearance easily.


The downside of CR2/CRW files is the file size. Thus, your photos take up a great deal of space. Plus, you have the Canon RAW viewer to view and browse both CR2 and CRW files on your computer with ease.

CR2 Canon

Part 2: How to View Canon RAW on Windows 10

You cannot view Canon RAW files on Windows directly. The good news is that Microsoft released a Camera Codec Pack for Windows that allows you to view thumbnails of RAW images, including CR2 and CRW files.

For Windows 8 and earlier, you have to install the pack manually from Microsoft website. When it comes Windows 10, the pack has been built-in your system. Therefore, you can preview CR2 files directly in your Windows Explorer.

Step 1: Once you connect your Canon camera to your computer running Windows 10, open an Explorer window and open the camera storage with the Canon RAW images.

Step 2: You can view the Canon RAW files in thumbnail. It is convenient to manage your CR2 files on Windows 10 and search for a specific one within the default photo viewer.

Bear in mind that Microsoft has stopped updating for Camera Codec Pack. If your Canon RAW file cannot be viewed on Windows, search for extra code from here, and install it to your computer. Then reboot your computer and your RAW photos will appear as thumbnails.

View RAW Thumbnail Windows 10

Part 3: Best Canon RAW Viewer for Mac

Of course, you can follow the similar method to view Canon RAW files via Photos on your Mac. But it only enables you to check one image at a window. You need a professional Canon RAW viewer for Mac to view the RAW files in different modes, manage the photos, edit the files or share them to social media sites. WidsMob Viewer Pro is a versatile Canon RAW viewer that opens all the files of your Canon camera, including the JPEG, RAW and even video files.

1. Support JPEG, JPG, CR2, CRW and MP4 from the SD card of Canon.

2. Manage the Canon RAW photos within the different folder with ease.

3. Provide multiple RAW viewing modes, like full screen, slideshow, etc.

4. Convert CR2 files to JPEG, apply photo effects and rename in batch.

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How to View Canon Photos with Canon RAW Viewer

Step 1: Import RAW photos into the program

When you download and install the Canon RAW viewer, you can launch the program on your Mac. Just double click any image of your SD card to load all the RAW files, JPEG and even video files within the same folder to the program.

Step 2: View CR2 images in various modes

After you add your CR2 photos in the Canon RAW viewer, the photos will be displayed in the thumbnail mode on the right panel. Plus, you can adjust the thumbnail size by moving the slider at the bottom.

View Media by Folder Viewer Pro

CR2 images provide high quality, so you can see details in the Full Screen mode. Click the “View” menu on the top menu bar, and select the “Enter Full Screen” option.

Full Screen Viewer Pro

Similar to other RAW files, Canon RAW images contain a lot of information as well. If you want to get it, double-click on the photo, and click “View” > “Show info” to enter the EXIF mode.

Check EXIF Info Viewer Pro

To view your CR2 files automatically, click the “View” menu and choose the “Slideshow” option to enter the slideshow mode. Then your photos will playback automatically according to your requirement.

View Slideshow Mode Viewer Pro

Step 3: If you want to edit your Canon RAW files, click the “Edit” icon at the bottom to open the Canon RAW editor window. Here you can rotate and crop the photos, as well as adjust the parameters.

If you have to convert CR2 files to standard images, such as JPG, TIFF, and more, you can Select Batch from the Edit list, and choose Batch Convert. On the popup dialog, expand the Format dropdown list, and select a proper image format.

Adjust the Quality based on your need, and set a specific folder in the Destination box for saving the output. Click the “Convert” button to convert all CR2 files to images.

Besides, the Canon RAW viewer allows you to share your photos to social media directly. Choose Share on the top ribbon, and select the channel to share, like Facebook, Twitter, Email or Message.

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You can find the best Canon RAW viewers on Windows and macOS. CR2 and CRW are the file formats of Canon digital images. Though it has many advantages, the compatibility is the biggest drawback of Canon RAW formats. Therefore, you cannot view or edit CR2 files directly. WidsMob Viewer Pro is the ultimate Canon companion to view, convert and manage the RAW, JPEG and videos within the SD card.

Peter Wood
Peter Wood
Peter Wood, a senior editor, focus on photography design and editing software and devices.