How to optimise PDF exports

When exporting files to PDF, especially Keynote presentations for email delivery, you will need to use Adobe Distiller and Adobe Acrobat Pro. Adobe Acrobat Pro is a very powerful app that can help you optimise your PDF files. This is how it is done:

  1. With your Keynote presentation open, go to File > Reduce File Size then click the button Reduce
  2. After the process has completed, go to File > Print...
  3. On the Print Dialog window, choose the following options:
    1. Make sure to select "Individual Slides"
    2. Uncheck "Add borders around slides" and "Use page margins"
  4. Click the PDF button on the lower left and choose Save as PostScript... (depending the on the size of the Keynote presentation, this may take some time to complete)
  5. To check whether the "Save to Postscript" has completed, open "Activity Monitor" located in /Applications/Utilities. Make sure that these processes do not appear in the processes list: cgpdftops & pstops
  6. Open Acrobat Distiller.
  7. Select "Smallest File Size" from the dropdown menu under Adobe PDF settings.
  8. Drag and Drop the postscript file in the Adobe Distiller process window.
  9. You should now get an email optimised PDF file. If the filesize is still too big, you can still try to reduce it down or split the PDF into parts using Adobe Acrobat Pro.


To further reduce a PDF file, please do the following:

  1. Open the PDF file in Adobe Acrobat Pro.
  2. Go to File > Save As...
  3. In the "Save As" dialog, select "Adobe PDF Files, Optimized" in the dropdown list, then click the "Settings..." button.
  4. In the "Images" section, change all Compression quality to "Minimum" (you can also play with the values of Downsample settings) then click "OK".
  5. Click "Save".


To split a PDF file, please do the following:

  1. Open the PDF file in Adobe Acrobat Pro.
  2. Click the "Pages" icon on the top left to reveal the pages in thumbnails.
  3. Simply delete the desired pages and save it as another file.
Tags: acrobat, distiller, pdf compression
Last update:
2015-05-13 12:35
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