How to compress a PDF on Mac


Books, papers, presentations, and instructional resources look beautiful in PDF format. However, do you know what the annoying part is? They eat up storage space on your disk and slow down your Mac. So, in this article, I’ll take you through the options to compress PDFs on Mac.

Use built-in tools to compress a PDF on Mac

Using Mac’s built-in capabilities, you can reduce PDF size manually. To learn more about the features and how to use them to reduce the size of your PDF file, keep reading.

Use Preview to reduce PDF file size

  1. Open the PDF to be compressed in Preview.(Right-click on the document → Open with → Preview).
  2. Click File Export in the menu bar. (Don’t choose export as PDF)Click File, Export in the menu bar
  3. Fill in details like Export As or Where.
  4. From the dropdown menu next to Quartz Filter, choose to Reduce File Size.

    Fill in details like Export As or Where
  5. Click Save.

    Click Save

Bravo! You’ve now saved your compressed PDF to your desired Mac location without compromising the PDF quality.

Use Shortcut app on Mac to make PDF smaller

  1. Download Optimize PDF File Size by following the link and clicking Get Shortcut.

    Use Shortcut app on Mac to make PDF smaller
  2. Click Add Shortcut. Select Add Shortcut once more if prompted.

    Click Add Shortcut
  3. Launch the Shortcut app using Spotlight Search (cmd + space bar).
  4. Head to Optimize PDF File Size → click the Play button.

    Head to Optimize PDF File Size and click the Play button.
  5. Select PDF OpenOpen. You can compress multiple PDFs at once.

    Select PDF, Open, Open
  6. Close the app.

Now to view the compressed PDF document, head to the original location of the PDF.

Third-party apps to compress PDF

There are many applications that allow you to compress PDF file size without losing quality on Mac. Although some of them could be pricey, you can also discover free ones that allow you to compress PDF files temporarily. The top applications are listed below.

  1. PDF Squeezer
  2. PDF Expert
  3. PDF Element
  4. PDF SAM

Free online PDF compressor tools

Another easy method to compress PDFs is to use web tools. Check the best free websites that let you shrink your PDF below.

  1. Adobe Acrobat
  2. PDF Compressor
  3. I Love PDF
  4. Small PDF
  5. PDF 2 Go


How to convert PDF to Word?

You may convert a PDF to a Word document using various methods, including built-in Mac capabilities, online websites, and web apps. You can find out more in our article about how to convert a PDF to Word on Mac.

How to combine PDFs?

One of the simplest ways to join two PDF files is available on Mac Preview. Check out how to merge PDFs on Mac to see how it’s done.

How to remove passwords from PDF files?

Protecting a PDF file with a password is a must if it carries sensitive information. It may be a curse, too, if you consistently store a lot of PDF files. On a Mac, follow these steps to remove PDF file password security.

How to edit a PDF file?

The easiest way you can edit PDF files on your Mac is using the Soda PDF. The app is a one-stop solution to convert, edit, and create PDF files online.

What are you using?

Additionally, you may also accomplish compression of PDFs using Apple’s native Text Editor app, but I stayed away from it because it was a bit complicated.

So, there you have it! These are the easiest ways to quickly compress your PDF document. You can select your preferred strategy or test each one to see the one you like most.

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