Nikon has today released a major new version of its Nikon View software, and it's available for free download from the Nikon Tech USA website. Nikon View 5.0.1 has a whole new interface, improvements, fixes and features. Nikon View 5.0.1 consists of three main areas: Image Transfer, Nikon Browser (thumbnail browser) and Nikon View (image viewer). Nikon View 5.0.1 is available for both Windows and Mac Operating Systems (inc. OS X).

UPDATE 19/Apr: Because of problems with the Mac version of Nikon View 5.0.1 Nikon has pulled it from their website, it is not currently available for download. DO NOT INSTALL on OS X if you have already downloaded (it could damage your system).

Click here to visit the Nikon View 5.0.1 download page

Click here to download Nikon View 5.0.1 for Windows (17.2 MB)
(Windows Readme - PDF format)

Click here to download Nikon View 5.0.1 for Mac (18.3 MB)
(Mac Readme - PDF format)

Screen shots below are from the Windows version running under Windows XP. At the time of writing this short review the IPTC feature wasn't working under Windows XP. UPDATE: Note that several users have let me know that this version of Nikon View no longer uncompresses compressed NEF (RAW) files, instead it leaves them intact.

Nikon View 5.0.1 - a Brief Review

Image Transfer

Image Transfer is the first link in the chain, it can be installed to 'monitor' connections of a camera to the computer or even insertions of a card into a card reader. It will automatically pop-up and then transfer images from the camera to a pre-programmed destination folder. Each transfer is made into a unique folder. File naming can also be changed to either a running number or be based on file date & time. Once images are transferred you can have Image Transfer launch Nikon Browser or any other third party application.

Nikon Browser

Nikon Browser allows you to (as you'd expect) browse through images on your hard disk has a list of thumbnails. You can select five different thumbnail sizes for viewing. The window is split into three panes; Shooting data (can be hidden) - includes full EXIF data information as well as additional "manufacturer unique" information you may not be able to get from other EXIF header readers. Folders - An explorer-like tree of folders and the actual thumbnail window itself.

The thumbnail window operates just like any other explorer window and you can drag and drop files, select multiple files, delete etc. (you can't for some reason rename files..) Nikon Browser also provides the ability to create a list of favourite folders, transfer destinations (places where you commonly copy images), run slideshows, view the image in a separate window (Nikon Viewer), rotate images (doesn't actual rotate the JPEG file, it just marks the header) and upload them to Nikon.Net (for sharing) or your PDA. Image editing can be linked to any third party application (such as Photoshop).

Nikon Browse has a powerful built-in printing subsystem which allows you to choose from a wide variety of layouts, crops, trims and picture information (single or multiple images).

Nikon Viewer

Nikon Viewer operates in a similar fashion to Nikon Browser except that you are of course viewing a single image at a time and have the ability to zoom in and out of the image. Nikon Viewer supports JPEG, TIFF or NEF (Nikon RAW) files. You can still browse through the underlying list of images by using the left and right arrows on the toolbar. I found the way the software 'painted' the image a little erratic, especially zoomed in dragging the image around the window is not as smooth as ACDSee or Photoshop.

Overall Conclusion

Nikon View 5 looks and feels much better than its predecessor, it both assists new users in getting to grips with the 'arriving home' experience as well as having enough functionality for regular shooters to use it every day. The print layout subsystem was also a pleasant surprise. My only gripe was that IPTC wasn't working under XP. Best of all, it's free and many of the features work with any digital camera images, not just Nikon's.