How to Reduce PDF File Size on MacBook

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The PDF file format enables you to produce read-only, print-ready copies of your documents. PDFs are designed to be easy to distribute (and protect), but depending on the type of document, they can also be rather large.

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If you’re having trouble sending a large PDF file, you might want to consider compressing it. There are a few simple ways to reduce the size of PDF files on a Mac, including built-in and third-party alternatives.

Follow the instructions below to compress and reduce PDF Filesize on MacBook.

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How to Use Preview App to Reduce PDF File Size MacBook

The Preview app is the simplest way to compress a PDF file on a Mac. Preview is a built-in feature in macOS for viewing documents and images. Other important capabilities include the ability to lower the quality (and consequently the size) of documents such as PDFs.

To minimize the size of a PDF file on a Mac, use Preview:

  • Launch Finder and navigate to your file.
  • Double-click the file to launch Preview.
  • Select File > Export in Preview.
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Opening file in Preview
  • In the export window, pick Reduce File Size from the Quartz Filter drop-down box.
  • Confirm any additional changes (such as a file name change), then click Save.
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This will result in an evidently smaller file size of your PDF document. However, you may notice a decrease in quality, especially if your paper contains photos.

If this is an issue, you may need to examine alternative ways of compressing a PDF.

Alternative – Reduce PDF File Size MacBook

While Preview is the best built-in way for decreasing PDF file size on Mac, there are other third-party methods you might try. For example, Adobe Acrobat Pro DC provides you the option to minimize the size of your PDF file during the save process. However, if you want a free option, you may utilize a free application on the Adobe website that allows you to compress PDFs online.

The Adobe Compress PDF tool is simple to use, just go to the website and choose a file, then find the PDF file. Once the file has been uploaded, choose a quality level (Low, Medium, or High) and click Compress.

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However, we advise you to utilize this service solely for non-sensitive data. If the file contains sensitive data, we recommend using the Preview approach outlined above, or another third-party software such as Adobe Acrobat.