The Nikon Electronic Format abbreviated to NEF is a file format used solely on Nikon cameras. NEF is a raw image format based on TIFF. NEF images are stored uncompressed and contain image metadata such as camera ID and the lens used. When edited in an image editing tool, changes to the original image are stored as instruction sets, separate from the raw image data. This means that any NEF image can always be reverted to its original state, no matter how many times it has been edited.
How can you open NEF files?
NEF files can be opened on any Nikon digital camera. Most raw image viewers will be able to display NEF files. Most file converters can convert NEF files to other image formats, given the size of RAW images however, local software may be preferable to online converters. Converting NEF images to other file formats will remove the ability for those converted versions to be able to be reverted back to the original state.
What programs work with NEF files?
Nikon ViewNXi is the free image viewer and editor provided by Nikon, it is well featured and supports NEF images. GIMP, IrfanView, Able RAWer, Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Photos, and Corel Aftershot Pro can all edit and view NEF formatted files. Pics.io and Zamzar can convert NEF files into other standard image formats. Adobe’s DNG Converter can convert NEF images to the DNG file format.