How To Open .Psd Files On A Mac

Do you have a .psd extension file but are unsure about what it exactly is? Many people want to open PSDs on their Mac, but they don't have the tools to do so. That's why we've created the following detailed, easy to follow guide to explain what .psd files are and how to open them on a Mac.

What Are .PSD Files?

Even if you have .psd files on your Mac, you might not be aware what they are exactly. "PSD" stands for PhotoShop Document and is the default format of storing images in Adobe Photoshop. Files with this extension can store many things, such as photos, text, layers, etc.

Methods To Open .psd Files

Unlike regular files, .psd files can't be opened the usual way with your usual image apps.

Image Editor

The most obvious method to open a PSD file is to use an image editor such as Photoshop. Other Adobe products can be used as well, such as Illustrator or Premiere Pro. However, most people won't want to use these as they are paid (and can be expensive!).

Luckily, there are many free and open-source alternatives that you can use. One of the best ones out there, for macOS, is called GIMP. It's one of the most powerful free image editors for Mac. You are given advanced options that are also found in the much more popular Photoshop.

It is perfect for opening .psd files. Other alternatives include Paint.NET and Photopea. Here is a guide on how to download and use GIMP.

  1. Click here.
  2. Select the download option and wait for the file to download.
  3. Open it using the Finder.
  4. Drag the on-screen GIMP icon to the Applications icon. GIMP will open up.
  5. Click on "File."
  6. Select "New File."
  7. Search for the .psd file on your computer and open it.
  8. You are now free to edit the content of the files, including the layers.

Google Drive

Google Drive is a cloud service used to store various kinds of files. Many are unaware of the fact that you can use it to view .psd files. You simply upload the file and then take a screenshot to edit it, if you want. A disadvantage of this method is that you'll only have access to the image as a whole, not its individual elements like the layers and filters. Here is how to do it.

  1. Go here and click on "My Drive."
  2. Select the "Upload File" option.
  3. Search for the .psd file on your Mac and upload it.
  4. Once uploaded, double click on the file to view it.
  5. Press and hold the Shift, Command, and 3 keys on your keyboard to take a screenshot.

File Conversion

If you can't open a .psd file, you can convert it into JPEG or any other format of your preference and view it like that. You'll require a format conversion application to do so. The app we recommend is 'The File Converter', which is available on the Mac App Store. Here is how to use it.

  1. Click here.
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password to download the app.
  3. Open up the application and search for the .psd file that you want to convert.
  4. Choose an Output Format. If you don't know which file format will be appropriate for you, then we recommend using JPG.
  5. Click on "Convert."
  6. Now you can open the file on your computer like a regular image.

Preview App

The easiest method to open a .psd file is using the preview application already installed on your Mac. You don't have to install anything. Although, it may be possible that it's not selected as the default viewing app so you'll have to open it manually.

  1. Open up "Applications."
  2. Select "File."
  3. Click on "Open."
  4. Browse for the file on your computer and then open it.
  5. You can only preview the file here, so take a screenshot by clicking on the Shift, Command, and 3 keys on your keyboard.
Muaz Ashrafi

Hi! I am Muaz, a Mass Communication major. I like to think I am a free urban spirit. I write blogs with a focus on tech and gadgets. When I'm not writing, you can find me with my headphones on, relaxing to some good house EDM music. I'm also a hobbyist photographer, you can find me on Instagram @mzwithacamera.


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