How to Convert HEIC to JPG using Quick Action on a Mac

How to convert batches of HEIC to JPG by creating a built-in Quick Action on a Mac.

In this mac tip tutorial we are going learn how to do convert HEIC to JPG seamlessly.

Posted the tutorial in my Youtube Channel if you’d rather watch it for reference.

What are HEIC

If you got your iPhone or iPad camera settings format to High Efficiency, this file format uses better compression while still preserving high image quality. Pictures taken in this file format are saved as HEIC instead of the traditional JPG. The problem with HEIC is that it is not widely compatible with other apps or devices. After transferring or air dropping the files to your Mac and if you want to use it for other apps in your Mac you may need to convert it first.

Camera Settings

Saving as JPG

As a remedy you can change your camera settings format to Most Compatible. This increases file size but would save the file as JPG. 

Handling HEIC on a Mac

But back to dealing with HEIC . We have air dropped a bunch of photos.

HEIC files - better compression with high quality image
HEIC files

Convert HEIC to JPG Manually with Preview

One way to convert the file is to open the HEIC file in Preview, click File > Export and either save as JPG or PNG then save.

Preview exporting to diferent format

Imagine doing this step by one by one for all photos transferred.

Quick Action

A better way is creating a Quick Action. You don’t need any fancy software, it’s a tool baked directly into the MacOS. Once configured you can simply right click the HEIC file or a batch of HEIC and convert.

To get started do the following, launch the Automator App. Hit Command + the spacebar and type in Automator.

Once launched, click on New Document, choose a type and select Quick Action.

Quick Action

Set the workflow options. Under Workflow receives current select image files.

Workflow files
Workflow options

From the library in the left section, click Photos then in the list of actions scroll down till you find and choose “Change Type of Images”. Click and drag it to the workflow section.


To keep the original click on Add after dragging to the workflow section.

Copy prompt

Change To Type to JPEG.

Workflow settings

This wil automatically create an entry in the Preferences > Extension > Finder

Convert HEIC to JPG Quick Action

Let’s try it out, go back to the HEIC files and right click, there should be a new Quick Action menu, choose Convert HEIC to JPG.

Quick Action

This should do as what we have it configured, the HEIC is converted and a JPG copy will be saved in your desktop.

If you check the file size, notice that convert JPG is larger than the HEIC.

Now you know how to convert HEIC to JPG using Quick Action with no additonal software and is seamless. Hope you found this useful.

2 thoughts on “How to Convert HEIC to JPG using Quick Action on a Mac

  1. I changed 2 images from HEIC to pdf. Worked fine until I opened them in photoshop. they are no longer good quality photos. What happened? when I use preview to make jpegs they look good but I just lost those images. basically.

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