I've just installed Yosemite on my iMac and noticed that my PDF files viewed with the Preview.app don't look the same as in Mavericks. If I view the PDF files directly in Safari, all looks like it should. Against this in the Preview.app it looks kinda trashy.

Is there anyone who can confirm this? And if it's so, how can I make Preview.app show the PDFs like Safari does?

  • 1
    Found the PDF and tried it on my own machine. @srolle you are right that Preview and Safari are rendering the PDF differently. I don't think it is a different font though. It just looks slightly different in the way they are rendering the PDF. It does seem to be Preview that is doing something different though. Safari, Chrome and Firefox (which all use different engines to render PDFs) all look roughly the same, to my eyes anyway. Oct 18, 2014 at 9:35
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    This bug has been reported on Apple Support Communities (see here and here). See also the reddit discussion.
    – Leo Fang
    Oct 21, 2014 at 4:06
  • 3
    NOT fixed in 10.10.1 ...
    – level1807
    Nov 17, 2014 at 19:38
  • 2
    NOT fixed in 10.10.3. Getting frustrating.
    – level1807
    Jan 28, 2015 at 11:01
  • 2
    @LeoFang Yes, finally it's fixed in 10.10.3! :)
    – joni
    Apr 9, 2015 at 7:51

1 Answer 1


For troubleshooting isolation, what if you use Adobe Reader, Is the rendering clear using a dedicated software ?

edit : It appears that Preview is no longer using subpixel rendering in Yosemite. There is no fix for now, Apple will probably enable this in a next OS X update as the problem is quite documented over the Web

  • Frankly I would downvote this answer if I could. First of all, the link you provided was issued this May, which is apparently not for the problem we are concerning. Secondly, it has been thoroughly discussed in the comments and other linked posts that font smoothing is not used by the Yosemite Preview.app and that subpixel rendering is disabled. While it is nice that more and more people notice this bug, I do hope that an answer should be posted before doing some homework.
    – Leo Fang
    Oct 30, 2014 at 14:55
  • You must have missed my edit (you know the part in bold) that states that you will not find a solution to this, unless someone or Apple decides to recompile Preview.app to use subpixel rendering. Oct 30, 2014 at 22:20
  • I removed the upper part, so it is now more clear Oct 30, 2014 at 22:21

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