Preview App Tips & Lessons
Compress PDF Files with the Preview App on Mac
Learn how to easily compress large PDF files using the Preview app on Mac. With just a few simple steps, you will be able to send your PDFs through email without having to worry about the file size.
In this video, we’ll explore how to easily reduce the size of a PDF using the Preview app on a Mac. Whether you have a large PDF that’s too big to send via email, or you just want to make your PDFs more manageable, I have a solution. Using Preview, you can compress the PDF and make it small enough to send via email. Join me as I walk you through the simple steps to compress a PDF on your Mac.
00:00 – Introduction
00:18 – How to View the Current File Size of a PDF
00:56 – How to Set Which App opens your PDF
01:26 – Compress a PDF with Create Linearized PDF
03:05 – How to Compress a PDF with Preview Wrap Up
In this video, we’re going to look at how we can compress a PDF with the preview app. On the Mac. Maybe you have a PDF that you’d like to send to someone and it’s too large, well, you can compress that using the Preview app. Let’s see how, let’s go over to my Mac.
So I have this PDF here, this is a large PDF. It’s about 48 megabytes. So let’s go ahead and select it. And to see the file size, what we do is we go up under File, and then we go over to get info. When we select this, we have a window that opens up and you can see that it’s about 48 megabytes, I will not be able to send this file via email, most emails will accept only up to about five megabytes. So how can I send this? Well, basically, what I need to do is I need to compress it. And we can do that with the preview app. So I need to first open it up in the preview app. Now by default, when you have a PDF here, it will open up in the preview app. But if you have another PDF app or another PDF application, it may open up in that such as acrobat. So how can you get it to open up in preview? Well, basically, all you have to do is just hold down the CTRL key and you click on it. And then you’re going to see Open With and then select Preview. But again, by default, when you double click this, it should open up in the preview app.
So now I have it open here, I want to export this out, I want to make it smaller, I want to compress it. To do that, what we do is we go up under File, and then we go over to export. And from here, what I need to do is I need to make sure that I have create linearized PDF selected, we can see that I have it selected here. This is what compresses it. If I deselect this and click on save, it will be the same size. So let’s go ahead and do that. I’m just going to rename it here, we’re going to call this one, two.
So there it is, I go and get info on it, we can see it is 48 megabytes, it didn’t compress it. But now let’s go and do that again. But this time, what we’re going to do is go over to create linearize PDF. When I select this, let’s go ahead and call this one three. What it’s going to do is it’s going to compress it.
So let’s go ahead and select this, we can see we have my file here. Let’s go ahead and get info, command, I opens up that window, and we can see it’s about three megabytes, I’ll be able to easily email this out. And the quality is really just as good. It didn’t really change the quality I open it up, we can see it looks good yet.
Now your results may vary depends on the PDF. I’ve done other experiments with this where it compresses it to about 50%. Again, it all depends on what is in your PDF. And this case here, what it did is it reduced it to less than a 10th of its original size. But again, your results may vary. But basically all you have to do to compress a PDF and see if it’ll work for you is just go up under file in the preview app, go to export and make sure that you have create linearized PDFs selected. When you do that. It will compress that PDF. And then in a lot of cases, what you’ll be able to do is send it because it’s a lot smaller. So that is how you can compress PDFs using the Preview app on the Mac.