How to convert RAW photos to JPEG

I have a backlog of photos which I (accidentally) took in RAW and now have too large of files to upload to iNat. I haven’t found any way to convert them using the default Photos app on my computer, so does anyone know of a good way to do this? If it’s possible to do easily I may begin taking more pictures in RAW on purpose to improve quality.

what kind of camera do you have, and what is your computer OS?

I don’t know what computer OS is, but the camera is a Canon EOS 70D as far as I can tell (I’m inexperienced at this sort of thing, and was borrowing it). The one I have now is different, but that doesn’t matter for this problem.

To get quality from RAW you need to edit those files, simple conversion won’t give you anything but frustration, as raw RAW is a bleak photo, so you need to get yourself a program for photo editing, like Photoshop, Lightroom, etc.
Your computer is either Windows, Linux, such things or iOS, so is it Mac or not?


My computer is an HP using Windows.

on a Windows machine, you should be able to view most RAW formats after installing this:

programs like Photoshop and Lightroom and Darktable may have their own RAW codecs, if you want to just use one of those programs instead.

Canon also offers software that should allow you to view and edit the RAW files:


As the camera is borrowed you can ask the owner to help you with downloading the Canon DPP program. Windows or Mac. But if your current camera is also a Canon you can use that software CD and upgrade to the latest version. Lightroom and Photoshop (which include its own Raw-converter) comes with a monthly subscription.

The images should be exported to a 2024 x 2024 jpg (larger images are reduced).


I often use the free program IrfanView for quickly converting photos. It’s pretty fast and its plugins provide support for pretty much any kind of RAW file. Its editing options aren’t amazing though. For better editing you would want something like the program that comes with the camera or Lightroom or darktable (a free alternative to Lightroom) as others have said, but I find they’re slower for browsing and converting.


I’ll second Irfanview. Apparently there has, at times, been an issue with Canon’s RAW files due to using an external library (installed as part of the Irfanview plugins for reading them), however it should probably work.

Additionally, Irfanview includes a batch mode for conversion and/or renaming of files. Essentially it will speed through an entire folder making a jpg (or other filetype) for each RAW (or whatever input filetype) in the folder.

And one can specify a pattern for the filenames, so one is not limited to IMG_4938.RAW → IMG_4938.JPG, but a wide range of names that can be based on your file properties, such as the date. As an example, here’s a pattern: mytrip_$T(%Y%m%d)_$N.jpg And if I took that photo today here is the output: mytrip_20210727_4938.jpg

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Fotor, the FREE version, will easily convert the RAW files to JPG and allow you to edit them and re-size them for uploading to iNat. See here:

I don’t shoot in RAW.
But I do use to compress images for my blog. Or to convert screenshots to JPEG
Also from a Canon camera.

I use the same camera, and I use RAWtherapee – it’s a free download. It can be a bit of a memory hog, but I found that the Canon software wouldn’t allow me to choose which files to include in it’s own database. (Which is a problem when it starts trying to download all of my cloud files…)

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