12 Best Photo Recovery Software Free/Paid in 2023
In today's digital age, photos have become essential to our lives. They capture our cherished memories and moments, from family vacation snapshots to once-in-a-lifetime experiences. However, whether it is a corrupted SD card, accidental deletion, or a virus attack, it is heart-wrenching to see your memories disappear without a trace. But don't worry; numerous software for picture recovery options are available to help you retrieve those lost memories in no time. To that end, we've compiled a list of the 12 best photo recovery software options for your reference, whether you're looking for a free solution or are okay with paying for premium features. So, without further ado, let's look at these incredible tools and hope they can help you regain your lost memories. But, before you start, you can refer to the following tips to find a suitable one.
- Quick Navigation
- Part 1. How to Choose the Right Tool for Picture Recovery
- Part 2. Top 12 Free/Paid Photo Recovery Software You Need to Know
- Part 3. Frequently Asked Questions About Restoring Images
- Part 4. How to Keep Our Precious Memories Safe
How to Choose the Right Tool for Picture Recovery
Losing precious photos can be devastating, but with the right tools, they can be regained. However, with so many options in the market, when choosing the correct photo recovery tool, you consider the following factors:
- 🏷️ Features and Capabilities: Look for software that offers comprehensive photo recovery features, including support for various file formats, deep scanning options, and preview functionality to ensure accurate recovery.
- 😃 Ease of Use: Opt for a user-friendly interface and intuitive navigation software. This will make the recovery process smoother, especially if you are not technically inclined.
- ✔️ Compatibility: Ensure the photo recovery software is compatible with your operating system and storage devices, such as disks, memory cards, USB drives, or SSDs. Check the supported file systems as well.
- ⌛ Scan Speed: Consider the speed of scanning and recovery processes. While deep scans can take longer, a balance between speed and thoroughness is essential. Also, verify if the app allows pausing and resuming scans.
- 🔎 File Preview: Look for an app with a preview feature allowing you to see a thumbnail or a full view of recoverable photos. This helps in identifying and selecting the specific files you want to recover.
- 👨💻 Customer Support and Reviews: Check the availability and quality of customer support, including user forums and documentation. Also, read reviews or seek recommendations from trusted sources to gauge the overall performance and reliability of the software.
- 📝 Cost and Free Version: Consider your budget. Evaluate whether paid versions provide added value over free versions. Free versions can be a good starting point to test the software's suitability for your needs before purchasing.
- 💸 Trial Versions and Money-Back Guarantees: Look for software that provides trial versions, allowing you to test the functionality and ensure its compatibility with your system. Some application providers may offer money-back guarantees, allowing you to change your mind if the product does not meet your expectations.
By considering these factors and evaluating your specific requirements, you should be able to make an informed decision. Next, check out our list of the 12 best photo recovery tools for free and paid, and I hope they can help you.
Top 12 Free/Paid Photo Recovery Software You Need to Know
- iBeesoft Data Recovery
- User-friendly Interface: It has a straightforward and intuitive GUI, making it easy to navigate and use, even for beginners.
- Advanced Recovery Techniques: The software utilizes advanced file carving techniques to recover photos by examining file headers and footers, even if the file system is damaged or missing.
- Comprehensive File Format Support: It supports a wide range of popular image formats like JPEG, PNG, and TIFF, as well as RAW files from various camera brands.
- Support for Multiple Platforms: The photo recovery app can work on Windows PC, Mac, and iOS, giving users flexibility in choosing their preferred platform.
- Deep Scan Capability: It can perform deep scans, locating and recovering fragmented or partially overwritten files on the storage device.
- No portable version: it can only be installed on the computer's internal drive, and you will need to install it again when you change machines.
- Disk Drill
- Multiple Scanning Modes: It provides a quick scan for recently deleted pictures and a deep scan for more thorough recovery on formatted or corrupt storage media.
- Recovery Vault: One of Disk Drill's unique features is the Recovery Vault, which acts as an extended Recycle Bin, allowing for easier and more efficient recovery of files.
- Extra Disk Tools: The software has free disk tools for disk cleanup, duplicate file finding, disk health monitoring, etc.
- Expensive software: It costs $89.00 to upgrade to PRO, but you must also pay extra to ensure updates.
- Scanning Speed: Disk Drill's scanning speed may be slower than other photo recovery software for Windows 11/10 and macOS, mainly when performing a deep scan.
- Incomplete File Recovery: In some instances, It may not be able to recover images completely, particularly if the files are severely fragmented, or the drive is heavily corrupted.
- Free and Open-Source: PhotoRec is free to use, making it an accessible option for users with a limited budget.
- Cross-Platform Compatibility: PhotoRec is available for multiple operating systems, including Windows, Mac, and Linux, ensuring compatibility regardless of the platform.
- Comprehensive File Format Support: It supports a wide range of popular image formats like JPEG, PNG, and TIFF, as well as RAW files from various camera brands.
- Lack of Graphical User Interface (GUI): PhotoRec does not have a graphical user interface, making it less user-friendly for individuals who prefer a visual interface.
- Complex Setup: The installation and setup process for PhotoRec may require some technical knowledge, especially when using the command-line version.
- Can't preview before recovery: the software lacks a built-in preview feature, making it more challenging to identify photos before recovery.
- Stellar Photo Recovery
- Multiple Recovery Options: The software offers different scanning modes, including a quick scan for recently deleted files and a deep scan for more thorough recovery from formatted or corrupt storage media.
- Extensive File Format Support: It supports many graphics file formats, such as JPEG, RAW, PNG, and more, ensuring compatibility with various digital cameras and devices.
- Limited Deep Scan: The deep scan feature might not be as thorough as other advanced photo recovery tools, potentially affecting the recovery success rate.
- Limited Version: Its standard version cannot repair damaged photos and extract image thumbnails, and you can only enjoy its features by upgrading to the expensive Professional/Premium version.
- Limited File Preview Options: While the software allows file preview before recovery, it lacks advanced features like full-screen preview or support for video playback.
- Easy-to-Use Interface: It offers a user-friendly interface with a simple layout, making it accessible for users of various technical levels.
- Flexible Recovery Options: The software provides both quick and deep scan options, allowing you to choose the appropriate level of scanning based on your needs and time constraints.
- Preview Feature: It offers a preview function that allows you to see a thumbnail or a full-size preview of recoverable photos, enabling you to verify the files before saving them.
- May Not Support Some File Systems: It may encounter difficulties recovering from specific file systems, such as macOS's APFS (Apple File System).
- Limited Technical Support: The free version of Recuva offers limited technical support, whereas the paid version includes priority customer support.
- Advanced Recovery Features: It offers advanced recovery options, including raw drive recovery, RAID recovery, and network recovery. It can handle complex data loss scenarios and recover files from damaged or formatted drives.
- Flexible Scanning: It provides flexible scanning options, such as quick scan, deep scan, and even sector-level scanning, allowing for comprehensive recovery from different storage media.
- Comprehensive File System Support: The deleted photo recovery software supports many file systems, including FAT, NTFS, exFAT, HFS, APFS, and more, making it suitable for different storage devices and operating systems.
- Complex User Interface: The interface of R-Studio can appear overwhelming for some users, especially those unfamiliar with advanced drive recovery tools.
- Higher Price Tag: It is a premium software with a relatively higher price than other data recovery solutions.
- EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard
- User-Friendly Interface: It offers a straightforward graphics page, making it easy to navigate and use for users of all levels of technical expertise.
- Comprehensive Data Recovery: The app supports various file types, including documents, images, videos, audio files, emails, etc.
- Preview Feature: It allows you to preview recoverable photos before the actual recovery, enabling you to verify the authenticity and quality of the files.
- Relatively Higher Price: It may have a higher price than other photo recovery solutions available in the market.
- Occasional File Misidentification: In some cases, the software may misidentify or label recovered images, leading to potential confusion when sorting and managing the recovered data.
- Data Rescue
- Multiple Scanning Options: It provides quick and deep scans, allowing you to choose the appropriate level of scanning based on your data loss scenario.
- Clone Functionality: It includes a clone feature that allows you to create a bit-by-bit copy of the drive, which helps safeguard your data and minimize further damage during recovery.
- Limited External Device Support: While Data Rescue supports various storage devices, it may have limited compatibility with specific external devices or file systems.
- Limited File Organization: Recovered images are often not organized or renamed, making it challenging to find specific files without reviewing each recovered item.
- MiniTool Power Data Recovery
- File System Support: It supports various file systems, including FAT, NTFS, HFS+, and EXT4, making it flexible and versatile for different recovery scenarios.
- File Filtering and Search: The software includes file filter and search options to help you locate specific photos more efficiently during recovery.
- Scanning Speed: The scanning process in MiniTool can be relatively slow, mainly when performing on larger storage devices or for complex photo recovery scenarios.
- Insufficient Recovery Ability: Restoring video from a camera, camcorder, or drone may result in a non-playable or black screen.
- Robust Recovery: This program provides advanced data recovery capabilities, allowing users to find deleted pictures from various storage devices, including SD cards HDDs, SSDs, memory cards, and USB drives.
- Partition Management: It includes comprehensive partition management features, such as partition creation, deletion, resizing, formatting, and converting between different partition types.
- Repair File System: It can repair corrupted or damaged file systems, helping to resolve issues and retrieve photos from problematic drives.
- Complex Interface: It has a complex and technical interface, which may be intimidating for novice users or those unfamiliar with disk management software.
- Limited Free Version: The free version of DiskGenius has limitations on the number of recoverable files and partition management features. Unlocking the full functionality requires purchasing a license.
- BPlan Data Recovery
- Multiple Language Support: It supports various languages, making it accessible to users worldwide.
- Portable Version Available: It offers a mobile version that can be worked on a USB drive directly, providing flexibility and convenience for on-the-go photo recovery.
- Lack of Deep Scan: The software lacks a deep scan option, which can limit its ability to recover files from complex data loss scenarios or highly damaged storage devices.
- Limited Support: The availability and quality of technical support for BPlan Data Recovery may be limited compared to other professional solutions.
- Orion File Recovery Software
- User-Friendly Interface: It offers a straightforward and intuitive interface, making it easy to navigate and use, especially for users with limited technical knowledge.
- Multiple File System Support: This photo recovery software supports many file systems, including NTFS, FAT, exFAT, HFS, and HFS+.
- Limited Advanced Features: It may lack advanced features in more comprehensive data recovery tools, such as advanced file filtering or disk imaging.
- Limited File Type Support: It may not support the recovery of some specific file types or have limitations in recovering certain file formats.
It is the perfect solution for recovering precious family photos and videos from all storage devices. iBeesoft's deep scan algorithm checks every sector on the storage device to ensure that even the most deeply-buried data traces are discovered and recovered, and most importantly, it can also repair damaged pictures automatically. Moreover, Before saving the images, iBeesoft lets you preview them, enabling you to selectively recover only the desired items, saving time and storage space. Here are the pros and cons of the best photo recovery software for Mac or Windows PC:
Overall, iBeesoft Data Recovery is a reliable and user-friendly option for recovering disappeared pictures. However, as with any software, success depends on various factors, such as the state of the storage device and the extent of data overwriting.
It is a comprehensive file recovery software available for both Windows and macOS. It is trusted by millions of users and professionals worldwide to effectively find lost photos from their computers and other media like USBs, memory cards, flash drives, etc. The user-friendly interface makes it easy to use while ensuring maximum accuracy. Here are its pros and cons:
Overall, Disk Drill is a reliable software for photo recovery. It has a wide range of features and extra tools that can be beneficial in managing your memories.
It is an essential tool in any tech-savvy user's arsenal. As a free and open-source tool, it is designed to recover lost files from storage devices, including pictures you may have thought were gone forever. Despite being powerful enough to handle complicated recoveries, this program is not intuitive and difficult to use. Here are the pros and cons of this free photo recovery software:
Overall, PhotoRec is a powerful and free photo recovery tool. It may be a suitable choice for users comfortable with a command-line interface and requiring advanced file recovery techniques. However, it might not be a good option for beginners or those looking for a visual interface.
It is a powerful, all-in-one picture recovery solution that helps you quickly and easily restore lost or deleted items. With just a few clicks, you can get your precious memories even after experiencing accidental deletion or formatting of your device. Its fast scanning speed and user-friendly interface design make it ideal for novice and experienced users. Here are the pros and cons of Stellar Photo Recovery:
Overall, it is a reliable and effective option for recovering lost or deleted images. However, it is not suitable for retrieving other types of data.
It is your good choice if you ever need to find accidentally deleted or formatted graphics. This free photo recovery software comes with robust scanning and deep restore algorithms designed to give you the highest chance of recovering any lost memories. Here are the pros and cons of using Recuva:
Overall, It is a popular choice due to its ease of use and wide range of compatible file types. But may have limitations in handling complex scenarios or specific file systems.
It helps you recover lost or deleted pictures and other files from various storage devices such as SD cards, disks, USBs, CDs, flash drives, and more. R-Studio also features enhanced scanning options that help locate the missing files faster and offers several advanced features such as disk imaging, RAID reconstruction, encryption/decryption support, and file sorting. This robust photo software ensures complete protection of your data, which can be securely transferred with its integrated FTP Client. Here are the pros and cons of R-Studio:
Overall, R-Studio is a powerful file recovery tool that excels in handling complex recovery scenarios, such as RAID recovery and forensic recovery.
It is a powerful and advanced data recovery software designed to help you recover pictures, videos, and more from almost any storage device. Whether your files were accidentally removed or other lost cases, It can help you get them back. This photo recovery tool lets you filter search results based on file type, quickly locating missing shots even if the name has changed. Here are the pros and cons of using the EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard:
Overall, it is a popular and practical choice for recovering lost memories. However, the expensive paid version and occasional misidentification of files may be minor drawbacks to consider.
It is designed to get back images accidentally deleted or lost due to system corruption, hardware failure, or other unforeseen circumstances. With the power of the latest technology and a highly intuitive interface, Data Rescue offers an easy-to-use solution for anyone who needs to restore vital information. Here are the pros and cons of using its:
Overall, Data Rescue is a powerful photo recovery app with various features. However, slower scanning speeds may be a consideration, and the lack of effective file organization may make it more time-consuming to find your target image. Nevertheless, recover deleted photos from an SD card, disk, and more remains a capable option.
It utilizes advanced algorithms tailored for each storage device, ensuring an efficient and comprehensive image recovery process. With support for all types of hard drives, SSDs, memory cards, USB devices, optical drives, NAS systems, and other popular storage solutions, it has covered no matter what type of data loss event occurs. Here are the pros and cons of using MiniTool Power Data Recovery:
Overall, it is a reliable software that is a solid choice for recovering lost or deleted shots from different storage devices.
It is a comprehensive disk management and data recovery software designed to help users manage and recover their items. The convenient File Explorer makes finding lost files simple or searching for specific information. Furthermore, the robust file recovery module enables users to retrieve damaged images from corrupt file systems. Here are the pros and cons of using DiskGenius:
Overall, DiskGenius is a powerful disk management and photo recovery software. However, its complex interface may not be as user-friendly for beginners, and the scanning speed may vary depending on the specific recovery scenario.
It is an easy-to-use file recovery software that will help users restore their formatted or deleted photos from various storage devices. It has a powerful search engine that allows you to scan deep into the machine, recovering even the most deeply buried information. The advanced filtering capabilities enable you to find the files you need without confusion or hindrance quickly. Here are the pros and cons of using BPlan Data Recovery:
Overall, it is a basic photo recovery software with a simple interface that can be suitable for users who need to recover recently deleted files in a user-friendly manner. However, it may have limitations regarding advanced recovery features, deep scanning, and compatibility with specific file systems.
It is the ideal solution for restoring lost or deleted graphics/videos. Its recovery capabilities support many devices, from hard and USB drives to memory cards and digital cameras. Its highly intuitive interface makes the process straightforward, allowing you to get your data back with minimal effort. Here are the pros and cons of using its:
Overall, it is suitable for basic photo recovery needs and offers quick and deep scanning options. However, it may have advanced features and specific file type support limitations.
We have selected these 12 best photo recovery software among many products. With them, you will be able to retrieve precious memories. If you have doubts about using them, check the following FAQs on recovering missed memories to clear your concerns.
Part 3. Frequently Asked Questions About Restoring Images
Here are some frequently asked questions about photo recovery, along with their answers:
Stop using the storage device immediately to prevent further data from being written to it. Then, use the picture recovery tool to scan and recover the deleted photo as soon as possible.
In most cases, yes. Deleted photos can often be recovered from digital cameras using photo recovery software for PC or Mac as long as the storage media has not been overwritten.
Photo recovery software can often recover photos from formatted SD card or hard drive. However, the success rate may depend on factors like the erasing method and subsequent data overwrite.
There are several reputable photo recovery software options available, including iBeesoft Free Data Recovery, Disk Drill, Recuva, and Stellar Photo Recovery. The best choice depends on your specific needs, preferences, and the type of storage media you are recovering from.
Change the connection: Sometimes, the problem lies not with the card but with the card reader or adapter. Try using a different card reader or inserting the SD card into another device to see if it works.
If the physical damage is severe, it may require professional assistance from a data recovery service. However, software-based recovery options may still be possible for certain types of physical harm.
While most photo recovery app is safe to use, it is vital to download software from reputable sources to avoid malware or unwanted programs. Read user reviews and ensure the software is well-regarded before downloading.
No, many photo recovery tool programs have user-friendly interfaces and step-by-step instructions, making them accessible to users with varying levels of technical knowledge.
To prevent future photo loss, it is important to regularly back up your photos to multiple locations, use reliable storage devices, and practice good data management habits. Additionally, consider maintaining cloud backups or utilizing online storage services for protection.
Losing memorable images is something no one wants to face. So, to avoid similar situations from happening again, you can also refer to the following tips to better protect them.
How to Keep Our Precious Memories Safe
Memories are precious and irreplaceable. They are moments frozen in time that hold sentimental value. Photos, videos, and other memorabilia are tangible reminders of those moments. Unfortunately, these precious items can be lost due to natural disasters or technological malfunctions. To keep your photos safe, consider the following tips:
- 📤 Backup Your photos: Regularly backup your shots and videos to multiple locations. Use external hard drives, cloud storage, or online backup services to create redundant copies of your files.
- 🗂️ Organize and Label: Organize your photos into folders or albums and add descriptive labels or tags. This will make it easier to find and retrieve specific memories when needed.
- 💎 Use Reliable Storage Devices: Invest in high-quality storage devices from reputable brands, such as external hard drives or SSDs. Ensure they have ample storage capacity and reliable performance for long-term use.
- 🛡️ Protect Against Picture Loss: Protect your storage devices from physical damage and data loss. Keep them safe and secure, away from extreme temperatures, humidity, and potential hazards.
- 🔒 Protect Against Loss or Theft: Keep your storage devices secure and backup copies in different physical locations. Store them in fireproof safes or use online backup services with encryption and secure access.
- 📀 Scan and Digitize Physical Media: Convert old printed photos, film negatives, and slides into digital formats. Digitizing physical media helps preserve and protect them from deterioration or loss due to age or accidents.
- ⚙️ Regularly Update Software and Firmware: Keep your operating system, backup software, and storage device firmware current, including bug fixes, security patches, and performance improvements.
By following these tips, you can significantly enhance the safety and longevity of your pictures. It's essential to be proactive in implementing backup strategies, utilizing reliable storage options, and safeguarding against potential loss or damage.
From accidentally deleting shots off your camera roll to experiencing a hard drive crash, losing precious pictures is a nightmare. Luckily, many great picture recovery tool options are available to help restore your cherished memories. Whether you prefer free or paid software, there is a solution to suit your needs. With features ranging from deep scan options to support for various file formats, these app choices make it easy to recover even the most stubbornly deleted photos. So don't fret the next time you lose a photo - check out these 12 best photo recovery software options and get your pictures back where they belong!