4.3 out of 5 with 24 ratings

IrfanView Reviews

My favourite image viewer

about IrfanView and XnView MP, WildBit Viewer, ACDSee Photo Studio · · Helpful Not helpful 6 Helpful Report as spam

I've used many different image viewers throughout the years, starting way back in the day with ACDSee (not an option anymore these days, yuck!) at some point discovering IrfanView, then cycling through many alternatives but always coming back to settle on IrfanView.

It has everything I need and is of very high quality (no crashes, no weird behaviour, no lagging). It's very fast in reading and displaying pictures, so I can browse massive folders quickly. It has a lot of features, making sure that pretty much everyone can view their images the way they prefer. It's a very old school program: countless options to configure everything the way you want, rather than the dumbed-down "one size fits nobody" approach that is so popular today. There are also tons of keyboard shortcuts, that may take a while to learn (although, of course, you only look up the ones that fit your style of working) but will make everything so much faster once you know them by heart. In fact, that keyboard shortcuts are not customisable is the only real downside about IrfanView that I can think of.

Just as one usage example, I can create a slideshow over tens of thousands of pictures within a folder structure, and jump through images in a predetermined or shuffled order. The sequence is memorised, so I can jump back if I've skipped something by accident. Many handy zoom shortcuts allow me to inspect images in detail directly from within the slideshow. If I'm in a place of interest of a picture series, I can use the Ctrl+N shortcut to open that picture in a new, regular IrfanView window with full functionality, to e.g. apply edits or move back and forth among the pictures of the current directory. I can even compile my slideshow, whichever way it was configured, into a standalone executable!

This is just one use case, but I have found that no other tool supports it as well and comfortably as IrfanView, and that's a recurring conclusion for many other situations.

To compare to some other popular viewers: I have used XnView for a very long time, and still have it installed on most of my systems. It comes closest to IrfanView in terms of speed and feature set. The original XnView has become rather slow, but the modernised XnViewMP is coming along nicely now (January 2017) and I definitely recommend it, it pretty much ties for first place. I like FastStone Viewer, but it offers me much fewer options to configure its behaviour. WildBit Viewer is an interesting alternative in some cases, but its strange interface, and the way it's split up into different applications, make it rather unintuitive to use. Most other alternatives I didn't really find worth the attention at all. Most notably, ACDSee is terribly bloated these days. It's become so sluggish from years of efforts to make it do anything and everything, that it's almost unusable for its original purpose as an image viewer.

Overall, IrfanView still gives me the best overall performance in the biggest variety of tasks that I set it to. Two thumbs up for this one-man project!

[Edited by Anamon, November 27]

[Edited by Anamon, January 23]

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A very reliable, fast and simple image viewer that does the job.

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I am 30 years old and I use it since my first pc, perhaps half my life. It might not be the best image editor but it never aimed to be. It's an image browser, viewer, you can use it for cropping rotating, saving... You get the idea. You can really minimize the mouse and keyboard usage required to do simple, often repetitive tasks. It's simply invaluable. I use it as a screenshot capturer also. Really, I could talk about IrfanView for hours. And I love the icon, I am happy it has not changed!

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Best image viewer out there.

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This software has been and is still simply the best viewer, quick editor, resizer, optimizer for Windows platform!

So many fast and efficient plugins, the bat converter is simply awesome and save a lot of trouble. The RIOT plugin is also very useful indeed.

This is the first software I install on a freshly installed Windows box.

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I have used it for years and closely followed is development. I moderate at the IrfanView support forums so I get to learn what amazing tricks it can do with Batch operations and command lines that I would seldom need myself.

The 64-bit version can open a 256 Megapixel NASA image in less than 7 seconds, and is able to load large RAW images too, much quicker than the 32-bit version. It is no substitute for PhotoShop, but it does a lot.

Contrary to popular belief, it is not free, except for personal use. Commercial users are morally obliged to pay for registration of €10 per copy, which is next to nothing even for a small business user. Education and charity use is also free; and there are no nasty surprises if you fail to register your copy.

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Simply the best, even on Linux!

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I simply can't find a better alternative to this program anywhere else really.
Even on Linux, I have to run it through WINE even though it crashes sometimes :(
It's so fast compared to all other programs. So intuitive and a great user interface.
The RIOT plugin / stand alone program is also a great companion tool.

CAN'T REPLACE.
SO SAD THERE IS NO NATIVE LINUX SUPPORT. :(

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I sincerely have nothing negative to say about this program which offers many great features & effects. I started using this program back around about when Windows XP was released on & have considered it a must have for myself. I wish it had a native installer for Linux also but that's not really a reason to downgrade or give bad review.

[ Pros ]

  • Can make custom icons from images
  • Offers Batch Resize, File Type & More
  • Great for making thumbnail galleries
  • Optional Free Plugin Pack
  • 100% Free
  • Many cool & useful Effects
  • Great for making 3D buttons & more
  • Easy to Install & Use
  • So much more...

[ Cons ]

  • No native Linux installer
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My two cents

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I will shamelessly admit that this viewer was the first, and last I have ever used in my entire (Windows) life.

Simply put: it has all features I ever needed: open image, slideshow, zooming, rotating, flipping, image information, cropping, copy-paste, thumbnail previews, keyboard shortcuts, batch processing, automated screen capture, EPS viewer plugin, etc. What the heck, if you can name it, you have it.

It also comes with a handful of filters, like red eyes removal, grayscale converter and RGC color corrections. But if what you want are filters, you are better off with GIMP/Photoshop.

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I used IrfanView for years until I moved over to Linux. Would you please make a Linux version of IrfanView?

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Great, but...

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On my Windows 10, it lies about JPGs being corrupt despite Windows Photo Viewer and the Explorer preview working fine. I suspect Irfanview is outdated considering (Japanese) Unicode paths.

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A marvel

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Even when it may have a somewhat unpleasant aesthetic (especially its icon), it is fast, light and versatile. This marvel is an essential part of the Freeware/OpenSource set of applications that I always install and use on my PC. Do yourself a favor, try it.

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It's one of the first software's I always install on new clean windows computer. The defaults are horrible. Loved it for at least 15 years. Have not yet found a worthy alternative.

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It is very easy to use and user friendly.

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Easy to use. My go-to when I need to change the size of images without losing the quality.

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It is the best tool for easy resolution switcher.

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