Codec for new Nikon .nef format not working in Lightroom 6

rswensor

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Feb 22, 2022
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Lightroom Classic 6.0 (1014445)
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  1. Windows 7
RAW files from new Nikon Z9 won't import to Lightroom 6, running on a Win 7 PC.

I tried all three compression algorithms (lossless, high efficiency, and high efficiency*) with same result. RAW files stored with the "high efficiency*" algorithm will open with the Win 7 Media Viewer, but not LR6. I downloaded the Adobe .nef to DNG converter, but it's installation package won't run with the Win 7 OS either.

Has anyone come up with a workaround? I really hate the prospect of moving all of my applications from the Win 7 to a Win 10 PC. AARRGGHH!

Thank you.
 
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Of course they won't import. You need to download the latest DNG converter from Adobe and convert your NEFs to DNGs before importing.
 
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I really hate the prospect of moving all of my applications from the Win 7 to a Win 10 PC. AARRGGHH!
Unfortunately this is what happens when sticking with outdated software. If you're going to stick with LR6 and convert the Z9 files to DNG, then you need to move to Windows 10. On the Adobe site, it shows the DNG converter needs at a minimum, Windows 10 (version 20H2 or later).

Ed
 
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I believe DNG Converter 12.4 was the last to run on Windows 7, and Z9 support was added in 14.0, so it's time to upgrade your OS, sorry.
 
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RAW files stored with the "high efficiency*" algorithm will open with the Win 7 Media Viewer, but not LR6
I would check on this. I believe that the Media Viewer is not opening/converting the NEF file but simply displaying one of the embedded preview JPG images. In other words, the codec is not a converter from RAW to something like JPG/DNG like LrC has.

For NEF files at present, here is a list of embedded previews using EXIFTOOL

Code:
$ exiftool -preview:all 20221116_124149.NEF
Jpg From Raw                    : (Binary data 1556492 bytes, use -b option to extract)
Other Image                     : (Binary data 960683 bytes, use -b option to extract)
Preview Image                   : (Binary data 143727 bytes, use -b option to extract)
Thumbnail TIFF                  : (Binary data 57816 bytes, use -b option to extract)
 

rswensor

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Feb 22, 2022
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Thanks to all for the feedback. I stumbled into a workaround myself.

Affinity Photo opens the new Nikon .nef files without issue. From there I can export them as .tiff files, which then can be imported into LR6 Classic.

It's a little clunky and I'm not sure that it is a long-term solution, but at least now I can ...
Use what I have without a monthly subscription and continue to do some of my post-processing up in a remote area of the UP of Michigan, where there is no Internet access. (Which means that I can't log in to validate my current LR CC license every month).

Maybe this will apply and help out someone else.
 
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Just be aware that your editing will be more limited on a TIFF than it would with a raw file - closer to shooting JPEG.
 
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