How to Save Screenshots as JPG on Mac?

How to Change Screenshot File Format on Mac

More often than not I have to capture the screen of my Mac; especially when I’m writing an article and wish to explain some of the points through pictures. I prefer JPEG to PNG (the default screenshot format on macOS) as the former is universally accepted. Hence, I make JPEG default screenshot on my Mac.

Fortunately, setting JPEG as default screenshot is pretty straightforward on macOS. Better still, you can comfortably revert back to make PNG as the default format if you ever want to. Read on to find out how it works:

How to Make JPEG Default Screenshot on Mac

Step #1. Open Finder on your Mac.

Step #2. Next, click on Applications.

Step #3. Click on Utilities → Terminal.

Or simply, search Terminal in Spotlight.

Open Terminal on Mac from Spotlight Search

Step #4. Now, you have to type the line given below, or simply copy and paste it into the Terminal window, and hit return.

defaults write type jpg

Save Mac Screenshot as JPG

Now, you have successfully changed the default screenshot format. However, you will have to restart your device to make the change come into effect. To do so, simply use Control–Command–Power button to restart your computer.

How to Change Screenshot Format to TIFF/ PDF/ GIF/ PNG on Mac

Using the same aforementioned process, you can change screenshot format to TIFF, PDF, GIF and PNG formats.

Change Screenshot Format to PNG

If you want to change the screenshot to PNG, use the following Terminal command.

defaults write type png

Save Screenshot as PNG on Mac

Change Screenshot Format to TIFF

To change the screenshot format to TIFF, you need to use the following Terminal command:

defaults write type tiff

Change Mac Screenshot Format to TIFF

Change Screenshot Format to PDF

In order to change default format to PDF, you will have to use the below mentioned Terminal command:

defaults write type pdf

Save Screenshot as PDF on Mac

Change Screenshot Format to GIF

To change the default format to GIF, use the Terminal command:

defaults write type gif

Save Screenshot as GIF on Mac

Note: In the end, make sure to restart your computer to effect the changes.

How to Change Default Screenshot Location on Mac

I make sure to save all the screenshots to a separate folder to ensure I am able to quickly access them or prevent my desktop from being messed up.

Creating a default screenshot location is just as easy. Just head over to Finder → Applications → Utilities → Terminal and then use the following command.

defaults write location ~/Pictures/Screenshots

Change Default Screenshot Location on Mac

One thing you need to know that ~/Pictures/Screenshots is just the path of your selected folder, which could be located anywhere on your Mac. Hence, first create a separate folder before taking a screenshot and change the path accordingly.

Video: How to Save Screenshots as JPG on Mac

YouTube video

You take?

Have any feedback for us? Make sure to toss it up in the comments below.

You would like to have a look at these posts as well:

Readers like you help support iGeeksBlog. When you make a purchase using links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read more.

Author Profile

Jignesh Padhiyar is the co-founder of, who has a keen eye for news, rumors, and all the unusual stuff around Apple products. During his tight schedule, Jignesh finds some moments of respite to share side-splitting content on social media.

1 comment

  1. This is great! The only thing I wonder, to upgrade this to perfect, is how can I create the smallest JPG file? As a web designer, I’d like to take screenshots of my videos and put them in their smallest container so that they’re web ready. Any ideas?
    As it was, I took a screenshot, opened preview -> Saved as -> Jpeg -> slid the slider quality all the way down to its lowest option (which was about 100kb).
    This is really close to what I want to do though. Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.