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

Last Updated on November 29, 2021 by Peter Wood

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

Best Nikon RAW Viewers

Top 1: WidsMob Viewer Pro

WidsMob Viewer Pro is the ultimate companion of the Nikon camera and Nikon Raw viewer. It can let you view the Nikon RAW and JPEG files and 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 installing 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 view the thumbnails on the right pane. Plus, the slider on the bottom can adjust the thumbnail size.

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

Load NEF Image

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 select the desired one.

The full-screen mode not only views 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 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 other information related to the RAW image file.

EXIF Information NEF

Besides, you can view the photos in a slideshow mode and play the images within an automatic method. Just choose them to playback automatically.

It is the slideshow mode that you can view Nikon RAW in the desired method. As more features and elements add to the slideshow mode, you can get a satisfactory result accordingly.

Slideshow Mode

Step 3: Select the RAW photo and click the Edit menu. You can crop, rotate and flip the image quickly. Moreover, you can get the batch editing tools in the 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 the Save button. If you want to share a photo to social media or your friend, click the Share option and select the desired channel.

Top 2: Faststone Image Viewer

Faststone Image Viewer is an excellent RAW viewer for Nikon cameras. The full-screen mode of the image view lets you hide all toolbars, 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. It is far more than an image viewer that enables you to browse, edit and even manage the RAW photos.


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

2. Offer some image editing features.

3. Expandable with various additional plugins.


1. The interface looks outdated.

2. It had not to update for years.

IrfanView Preview

Top 4: Picasa

Picasa is both an image editor and a Nikon RAW viewer. It is free of charge, so it is a good starting point for beginners. Moreover, it offers a good 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 pro-level without an 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 features.


1. It is large and takes too much space.

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

Fotor B/W


Here are the 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 easy to use and enables you to display your NEF files in various modes. Moreover, there are some advanced features to touch up the photos.

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