A Guide to Converting Nikon NEF Pictures to JPG

For any photographer who shoots RAW, understanding how to convert NEF to JPG is a crucial skill. NEF, the format used by Nikon cameras, captures more data than JPG, offering greater flexibility for editing. However, JPG pictures boast smaller file sizes and wider compatibility. Converting between the two formats allows you to strike a balance between quality and practicality.

This article delves into the world of NEF to JPG conversion, guiding you through five effective methods. You can use a preferred converter to easily transition your raw images into shareable formats.

Convert NEF to JPG

Part 1. What Is NEF

For photography enthusiasts who shoot with Nikon cameras, NEF files are the lifeblood of their captures. These RAW images hold immense potential, capturing every detail straight from the sensor and offering unparalleled flexibility for editing and post-processing.

What is Nikon NEF File

Understanding the Difference: RAW vs. JPG

NEF, the Nikon Electronic Format, stands as the native file format for Nikon cameras. It contains unprocessed sensor data, offering maximum editing control and preserving all image information. However, NEF files are large and require specific software to open.

JPG (JPEG) is a widely used, compressed image format. JPG files are smaller in size, making them ideal for sharing and online use. However, compression leads to some loss of image data, impacting fine details and editing flexibility.

Part 2. Easy Way to Convert NEF to JPG with No Quality Loss

Converting NEF to JPG involves compression, which discards some image data. That results in a slight loss of quality compared to the original RAW file. The degree of quality loss depends on the compression level chosen during conversion. This part recommends Aiseesoft Video Converter Ultimate to transform NEF to JPG while preserving the source image quality. It has an individual Image Converter to handle image conversions between various formats.

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Step 1.
Download the NEF to JPG converter software and open it. Click More Tools and scroll down to find its Image Converter. Click + to add your Nikon pictures.
Image Converter Mac VCU
Step 2.
This image converter allows you to convert NEF to JPG, PNG, BMP, TIF, and WebP. Click the Output Settings button to adjust Zoom and Quality according to your needs. Then, click the Convert All button to start the Nikon RAW image conversion.
Convert NEF to JPG Mac VCU Image Converter

This introduced converter is designed with many useful video, audio, and image editing/converting functions. You can try some based on your current needs.

Part 3. Turn NEF into JPG Using Nikon Software

Nikon offers dedicated software like ViewNX-i and Capture NX-D for RAW image management and conversion. These programs provide advanced control over conversion settings and ensure compatibility with Nikon cameras.

ViewNX-i is Nikon's free image management software that offers a built-in conversion tool. Select your NEF files, choose JPG as the output format, and adjust quality settings if needed. It's a convenient option for basic conversions.

Nikon Capture NX-D is a professional editing software that includes advanced conversion options with precise control over color balance, sharpening, and other parameters. Suitable for experienced users seeking fine-tuned results.

Convert NEF to JPG with Nikon Software

Part 4. Free Ways to Change NEF to JPG

Converting NEF files to JPGs allows you to share, store, and edit your photos more easily. While some software charges for conversion, several free options deliver quality results.

Convert NEF to JPG with FastStone Image Viewer

More than just a viewer, FastStone offers basic editing and conversion tools, including NEF to JPG. It's a versatile option for managing and processing images. It supports batch conversion of various image formats, including NEF to JPG. Moreover, FastStone offers basic image editing tools. However, this free NEF to JPG converter lacks specific settings for optimizing NEF conversion.

FastStone Image Viewer

Turn NEF into JPG with Convertio NEF to JPG Converter

Convertio is a convenient online platform for various file conversions, including NEF to JPG. It offers multiple file size limits and advanced settings for customization. It converts NEF to JPG and various other formats. Convertio offers a specific NEF(RAW) to JPG Converter page for you to easily make the image conversion.

Convertio NEF to JPG Converter Online

This online converter requires an internet connection for conversion. Its free plan has limited file size and conversion capacity.

Transform Nikon NEF Images to JPG Format Using iLoveIMG

iLoveIMG is a free online toolset for various image editing and conversion tasks. It allows users to easily convert, resize, compress, edit, and share images directly in their web browser. Among its many features, it offers a Convert NEF to JPG page for Nikon photographers. This online tool works seamlessly on any device with a web browser. Your photos are protected and automatically deleted, ensuring privacy. But its free plan restricts individual file size to 5 MB.

Convertio NEF to JPG Online iLoveIMG

Part 5. FAQs of How to Convert NEF to JPG

How do I open a Nikon NEF file?

Opening a Nikon NEF file requires specific software or tools due to its RAW format. You can use Nikon software like Nikon ViewNX-i and Nikon Capture NX-D to easily open NEF photos. Also, many popular programs like Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, GIMP, and more can open and edit NEF files. Moreover, some free online tools like Zamzar, Convertio, and CloudConvert convert NEF files to JPG or other formats. Then, you can open them with your image viewer.

Can you convert NEF to JPG in Photoshop?

Yes, you can definitely convert NEF to JPG in Photoshop. Open your NEF file in Photoshop and then use its Export As feature to save it as a JPG file.

Does converting RAW to JPEG lose quality?

Yes, converting RAW to JPEG does lose quality because JPEG uses a lossy compression method. That means some data is permanently discarded during the conversion process to achieve smaller file sizes.


Some Nikon cameras offer the option to capture both NEF and JPG simultaneously in-camera. That can be a convenient way to have both formats readily available. For captured NEF files, you can use the methods above to convert them to JPG format. Besides, popular photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, and GIMP offer built-in NEF conversion tools. So, you can use them to convert NEF to JPG conveniently. These tools provide flexibility and integration with other editing workflows.

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