Is it possible to reduce the padding between menu bar items? I'm mostly looking to reduce the space between the battery icon and the date.

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I noticed on the OS X page at http://www.apple.com/macos/sierra/ the menu items are more condensed, and to my eye, look better. I'm assuming this is the result of some photoshopping versus a live screen shot.

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  • I wish this had an answer. I just upgraded to Sierra on my work machine, and the extra padding really stands out, in a bad way. It wasn't like that on El Capitan. Commented Mar 11, 2017 at 12:20

1 Answer 1


After some time searching, finally I found what I think is the best solution:

At https://apple.stackexchange.com/a/465674/319887 you can see:

defaults -currentHost write -globalDomain NSStatusItemSpacing -int #

For me setting it to 8 is enough, but you can still go with less. It requires logging out and in again!

Not sure though if it would work on Sierra, but in Sonoma I can confirm it works.

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