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5 Best Nikon RAW Viewers to Open the NEF Image of Your Nikon Digital Camera

When you copy the NEF files from Nikon camera to your computer, you might still not able to view the photos. Why? Nikon is one of the most popular digital cameras that produce a special RAW format, NEF, for storing images and information. In order to view images in RAW format, you need a Nikon RAW viewer instead.

What should be the best Nikon RAW viewer? If you use Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom as the default RAW editor, it might be inconvenient to view the RAW images of Nikon. Here are 5 recommended RAW viewers for Nikon digital cameras you should know.

Nikon RAW Viewer

Top 1: WidsMob Viewer Pro

WidsMob Viewer Pro is the ultimate companion of the Nikon camera and Nikon Raw viewer, which not only enables you to view the Nikon RAW and JPEG files, but also the videos taken with the Nikon digital camera. Moreover, you can check the EXIF information of NEF files.

1. Open Nikon RAW files, JPEG and videos without converting or modifying.

2. Keep the original quality and all information of your NEF files of Nikon.

3. Provide multiple modes to view NEF in full-screen, slideshow and more.

4. Extensive bonus tools, such as photo converting, filters, slideshow, etc.

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How to View and Manage NEF Files

Step 1: When you installed the Nikon RAW viewer on your computer, you can drag-n-drop the RAW files into the program, or even import the whole folder. It provides different modes to browse the photos with ease.

Step 2: After NEF files loading, select the album from the left side and you can view the thumbnails on the right pane. Plus, the slider on the bottom can adjust the thumbnail size.

When you need to transfer the NEF RAW between different folders, you can view the Nikon RAW and drag the photos to/from desktop to the desired folder within clicks.

Load NEF Image

In order to view your images in full screen, click the “View” option and choose the “Enter Full Screen” on the top menu bar. Then you can see the detail of each image to choose the desired one.

The full screen mode not only view Nikon RAW files, but also enables you to apply the photo effect, add the favorite folder, remove the unwanted photos and share to social media sites.

Full Screen Manage RAW

If you want to get the information of the image, select “Show Info” from the “View” menu. The Slideshow option is used to enter the slideshow mode, and your photos will display one by one automatically.

It enables you to check the camera model, F-number, exposure time, ISO, exposure bias, focal length, flash and more other information related to the RAW image file.

EXIF Information NEF

Besides, you can also view the photos directly within a slideshow mode, it enables you to play the photos within an automatically method. Just choose the photos you to playback automatically.

It is the basic slideshow mode that you can view Nikon RAW in a desired method. As for more features and elements will be added to the mode, you can get a satisfied result accordingly.

Slideshow Mode

Step 3: Select the RAW photo and click Edit menu. You can crop, rotate and flip the image quickly. Moreover, you can get the batch editing tools in Edit -> Batch menu, such as Batch Rename, Batch Resize and Batch Convert.

Step 4:To export the NEF files, click “File” > “Save as” to open the profile dialog. Fill out the form and click “Save button”. If you want to share a photo to social media or your friend, click the “Share” option and select the desired channel.

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Top 2: Faststone Image Viewer

Faststone Image Viewer is an excellent RAW viewer for Nikon cameras. The full screen mode of the image view that enables you to hides all tool bars but you can access them with your mouse pointer.


1. Equip a user-friendly interface.

2. Integrate a wide range of functionalities.

3. Offer excellent batch processing options.

4. Display GPS location in Google Earth.


1. It is slower than competitors when loading large files.

2. It is only available to Windows.

FastStone Image Viewer

Top 3: IrfanView

IrfanView is a robust Nikon RAW viewer that has been around for a long time. In fact, it is far more than an image viewer that enables you to browse, edit and even manage the RAW photos with ease.


1. Support a wide range of image formats including NEF.

2. Offer some useful image editing features.

3. Expandable with various additional plugins.


1. The interface looks outdated.

2. It had not updated for years.

IrfanView Preview

Top 4: Picasa

Picasa is both an image editor and Nikon RAW viewer. It is totally free of charge, so it is a good starting point for beginners. Moreover, it offers a nice array of editing features and more.


1. Convert RAW images into JPEG files before editing.

2. See the EXIF information and add geotags.

3. Adjust contrast, brightness and other parameters.

4. Store photos up to 1GB for free.


1. The editing tools are not in pro-level without update.

2. The design is not very user friendly.


Top 5: Fotor

Fotor is another popular Nikon RAW viewer program online. It should be a comprehensive photo solution that offers both a web app and a desktop program. In addition to view your NEF files, you can also get extensive tools.


1. Integrate a photo editor for RAW files.

2. Offer hundreds of templates and effects.

3. Improve portrait images with advanced beauty feature.


1. It is large and takes too much space.

2. It is a bit expensive to subscribe the service.

Fotor B/W


Here are top 5 Nikon RAW viewers for Windows and Mac to view the NEF files from your Nikon digital cameras. Each image viewer for Nikon has unique benefits and advantages. WidsMob Viewer Pro is the most cost-effective option for both beginners and advanced users. It is not only easy to use, but also enable you to display your NEF files in various modes. Moreover, there are some advanced features to touchup the photos.

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

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