D800 NEF files

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Rick Helmke, May 5, 2020.

  1. Afternoon everyone,

    I've managed to work myself into a headache. National Guard did a flyby today and we went out and shot both passes. Got a few nice shots of F-16's for our efforts. Got home and was reminded that I had the D800 shooting all raw images. I haven't messed with NEF files in some time and can't recall the software needed to open them. I found that neither View NX2 nor CS6 will do the job. How can I at least open one and convert to a jpeg small enough to send in an email?

    Rick H.
  2. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    Nikon View NX I - a free download - there may be something newer.
  3. For a quick look, I use irfanview, free software that I've used for many years. It's worth playing around with it: there are two programs, the viewer with a red icon, and the file manager with a panda icon. (I assume you use Windows, can't help with Apple, sorry)
  4. CS6 should open D800 files. You may need to update your version of Adobe Camera RAW.

    With that said, you can download Adobe's free DNG converter and spit them all out as DNGs, which are at least as close to a standard RAW format as you will find.
    Andrew Garrard and bgelfand like this.
  5. Lightroom 6 should work,
  6. F ree download nikon capture NX-d and VIEW NXi combo, the View NXi part to be used for trandsfer the capture NX-d for developping the NEF.
    - But ithink the old Capture NX2 also still works for the D800 , in that case you can use Transfer-2 or the View NX2 for the load into your PC
    View NX2 does not edit/ develop NEF's,
  7. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    Could have been something I did, but I got NX - i and Transfer 2 because the previous ones failed. Was not aware of the D version. Thanks!
    c.p.m._van_het_kaar likes this.
  8. I translate everything from NEF to DNG, and have used one of the free converters when I did not have LR.
  9. I highly recommend Faststone Image Viewer. It is free. In fact all Faststone products are just wonderful. You will love it.
  10. Like others have mentioned, the free update of Adobe Camera Raw for Adobe CS6 does what you want and does not require you to learn new software.

    Personally, I am somewhat sceptical when it comes to converting RAW-files to Adobe's DNG-format. I prefer to keep the native formats for as long as possible.
  11. I understand your reasoning, but I've found the DNG format to be far more universally accessible across software platforms than the native NEF files, which change from camera to camera and across firmware updates.
  12. If you are running Windows, just for viewing install the Nikon Codec Package.

    LINK Nikon | Download center | NEF Codec

    It will let you use the built in Windows Photo viewer to view NEF files. Also file thumbnails will appear in File Explorer. So far no problems under Windows 10.
  13. Rick, I think the Adobe DNG Converter is still free and current. Any DNG converter in the last 7 years should work since the D800/e was released in 2012.
    Adobes is on version 12.2.1. I recently downloaded a version to go with an old copy of Elements I was playing with.
    Good hunting.
  14. Nikon's best package for raw conversion is Capture NX-D. The default output should be similar to an in-camera jpeg, and it will read the in-camera settings that other converters ignore:

    Capture NX-D:
    Nikon Imaging | Global Site | Capture NX-D

    ViewNX-i should also work, but it has less scope for adjustment:
    Nikon Imaging | Global Site | ViewNX-i

    CS6 shipped with Adobe Camera Raw 7.0, but the D800 needs at least 7.1:

    ACR Application compatibility:
    Camera Raw plug-in and Adobe application compatibility
    ACR Camera compatibility:
    Cameras supported by Camera Raw

    I think you should be able to update ACR from PS using Help->Updates. If not, you can download ACR directly. If you have an up to date version of Windows or MacOS, the most recent version of ACR that will work with CS6 is 9.1.1:

    ACR 9.1.1 Windows:

    ACR 9.1.1 Mac:

    But Adobe says "If you are using Mac OS 10.6, Windows XP, or Windows Vista, Adobe Camera Raw 8.4 and later is not compatible. You can use up to Camera Raw 8.3." ACR 8.3 is available as a bundle with the same version of the DNG converter:

    ACR 8.3 & DNG converter bundle Windows:
    Adobe - Adobe Camera Raw and DNG Converter : For Macintosh : Adobe DNG Converter 8.3

    ACR 8.3 & DNG converter bundle Mac:
    Adobe - Adobe Camera Raw and DNG Converter : For Windows : Adobe DNG Converter 8.3

    Note that you don't actually have to convert to DNG. Your NEFs should be directly readable in ACR after it is upgraded to 9.1.1 or 8.3. Personally, I only find DNG useful for compatibility with older versions of Adobe products (like CS5) that aren't compatible with a recent enough version of ACR to read your files directly. Some non-Adobe software has problems with some DNG files, even when it works with the native format from the same camera.

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