When I am assessing the readability of scanned documents, I would like a transparent grid overlaid on top of my screen that shows perfectly parallel lines, as opposed to crudely "eyeballing" it. The lines of the grid should float on top of all other applications, and the holes of the grid should be transparent.

I do not need anything fancy, something like this (except rectangular, to fit my rMBP screen):

grid image

I have found a program entitled "GoldenMeanGrid," which is close to what I want, but its grid only contains two lines. This is a screenshot:

GoldenMeanGrid screenshot

Does anyone know of a suitable program for my objective with an adjustable-sized grid?

(2013 rMBP) -- (OS X 10.11.3)

2 Answers 2


The xScope app is a veritable powerhouse of overlay, measurement and screen detail functionality.

You should be able to set up multiple grid lines if that is what you want.

This app has paid for itself tenfold over the years. Super useful for color and measurement and, of course, grids.

  • Great find, thank you. I only wish the thickness of the guide lines could be adjusted (those lines are thin!).
    – Kyle
    Feb 21, 2016 at 20:39
  • @Kyle The developer is very responsive to feedback. I'd send them a mail showing what you're doing and ask if it's hackable, configurable or something they'd need to implement.
    – bmike
    Feb 21, 2016 at 20:42
  • 1
    I actually did contact the developer. This is what the Senior Project Manager told me: "Currently, there is no way to increase the thickness of the Guides lines onscreen, just the transparency. Because allowing the user to change the width of the lines could impact several tools in xScope (Dimensions, Guides, Frames, Crosshairs) as well change measurement accuracy, it's highly unlikely that we're going to add that particular feature. I will put it on our Feature Request list and we'll discuss the possibility of adding it in a future release of xScope." Still, xScope is a very handy program.
    – Kyle
    Feb 21, 2016 at 20:49
  • Wow - that's detailed @kyle - I suppose you could zoom the screen using Accessibility to get "fatter" lines at the expense of screen area. I've done that from time to time when I needed less retina and more thickness to UI elements...
    – bmike
    Feb 21, 2016 at 20:54
  • Absolutely. I use the Accessibility zoom feature habitually. Compared to the alternatives (GoldenMeanGrid or...nothing), it works. (It's times like these I am thankful I got the Retina display.)
    – Kyle
    Feb 21, 2016 at 21:06

Red Line Tools is a free app which allows you to add various elements to the screen, such as: lines, grid, layout, and various image overlays on top of all windows.

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