GIMP supports AVIF! Learn how to use it.


AVIF is a modern and different format derived from the AV1 codec. It offers efficient lossy and lossless compression and is meant to supersede JPEG. Additionally, it provides several features, such as a wide color gamut. GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) is a free, open-source graphics editor. Although it was developed as a Linux image editor, it has become an effective alternative for Adobe Photoshop while remaining both free and open source.

Exporting as AVIF

As GIMP 3.0 development has been going on, on the 7th of October 2020, GIMP 2.10.22 was released. This release is titled a bug fix, however it had severe effects on GIMP's functionality. Since then, thanks to the encoder libheif, it is capable of supporting the AVIF image format natively, which means you can import and export AV1-based AVIF images as you would any other supported format.

gimp can export as avif

When you export an image from the editor, select the file type "HEIF / AVIF" or use the extension ".avif." A prompt will appear in which you will be able to choose between several possible options on how the AVIF file should be saved. First, you will have the option to select the degree to which you want to preserve the quality of the image. We recommend a value above 20.

You can also save files with lossless compression. In addition, you can adjust the bit depth of the image. You can choose between 8, 10 or 12 bits per channel. The higher the bit depth, the greater the number of colors stored in your image. By way of comparison, JPG has 8 bits. So if you are not a photographer and want to use the AVIF format for images for your website, we recommend sticking to 8 bits and a lossy compression for low file size..

gimp export avif dialogue showing different bit depths

AVIF Plugin

There is also a GIMP plugin called gimp-avif-plugin by novemesk. Despite the non-creative name, the user interface is fantastic. It allows you to choose from many options, such as minimum and maximum quantizer, pixel format, bit depth, encoder, encoder speed, alpha channel settings, EXIF data and XMP data processing, as well as the ICC color profile. If you do not understand most of these settings, don't worry, you will get along well with the default interface.

Converting existing images

If you look to have many images converted, it's a lot easier to convert them all in one go. Make life easier for yourself by using our AVIF converter, which is free.

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